You know search engine optimization (SEO) is important, but unless you’re a trained professional or bonafide web geek, that may be where your knowledge ends. Don’t worry – you’re not alone. Social media strategists, marketing departments and enterprising entrepreneurs alike have been trying to crack the code since our first ‘google’.

While there always may be some guesswork involved with great SEO, if you’re making the following rookie mistakes, you’re doing it wrong.

Your website isn’t mobile optimized.

According to the most recent Ericsson Mobility Report, there are over 2.6 billion smart phones walking around today. That number is expected to skyrocket to 6.3 billion by 2021. What does that mean for your SEO? Mobile is not an option;, it’s a must. Your website must be optimized for all screen sizes. Don’t know if you’re doing it wrong? Run a test on your site today using free Google testing tools.

You’re getting too complicated.

It’s been said the average person reads comfortably at a fifth-grade reading level. Keep your content simple and easy to read. Check your work and readability with the free Hemingway web app. Break up your content into easy bite size chunks, and accessible with limited use of industry-specific jargon.

You’re not using headings correctly.

Treat your headings like gold. Your headings should be concise, impactful and easily searchable. For best SEO results, your headings should match actual searches. Don’t forget to match the URL of the post page to the heading and make sure to use the H3-H1 formatting tags for optimum results.

You’re not using images correctly.

Do you set alt tags and titles for your images? If not, you’re doing it wrong. If the image isn’t tagged correctly, robots (like Google) and those with vision impairments can’t read it. This means that your image essentially becomes wasted space on your page for the exact search engines you’re trying to impress!

Your website functionality is sloppy.

Google, and other search engines, grade functionality and user experience without leniency. If your website has old, outdated or spammy links, any malicious malware, pop-ups or infections – you’re at risk of being flagged. Employ a professional to help you fix the problem if needed, and make sure to update your website security, any plug-ins, and all passwords religiously.

You don’t have a plan for your content.

If you don’t have a systematic plan for delivering scheduled, high-quality content, you’re doing it wrong. Many well-intentioned marketers wait for inspiration to strike, or go on ‘content creating sprees, then let efforts fall by the wayside. Craft intentional content in an organized, cohesive and scheduled plan to naturally create better and consistent SEO.

Never fear, when it boils down to it – if you create good content consistently, success will come. However, by not making these common SEO mistakes, you’ll save yourself time and energy on your way to the top.