What Everyone Needs to Know about Search Engine Rankings

With all the emphasis on search engine marketing and getting found online, you must know that search engine rankings are very important for your business' online presence. But, how much do you know about search engine rankings and search engine marketing? What do you need to know in order to get found online? Well, here are the five things everyone needs to know about search engine rankings:

  1. Pay-Per-Click Doesn't boost Your Organic SEO Rankings - PPC and organic search do not help each other, although they can work together in a search engine marketing campaign. With PPC, you are paying for space. Once you stop paying for space, or someone else comes along willing to pay more for that space, your ad will no longer be featured. Having ads on certain keywords will no affect how nay of your pages will rank for those same keywords, so its important not to rely too heavily on PPC when it comes to your search engine strategy.
  2. Your Keyword Strategy Should Include Hundreds of Keywords - When building your keyword strategy, you want more than 10 or 20 keywords to target and to rank for. Having so few means that you'll be competing against yourself when trying to have pages and blogs posts rank for those keywords because multiple pages will be trying to rank for the same keyword. When you have hundreds of keywords to target, you can include a larger variety of keywords (long-tail, problem/solution, location based) while lessening the chances of competing against yourself.
  3. Domain Name Keywords Aren't as Great as they Used to Be - Over the past few years, the correlation between a domain name keyword, and ranking high for that keyword, has been weakening. So, don't rely on your domain name as the way to rank. Instead, choose a name that would be great for building a brand, and build a brand that can rank high for the excellent content it creates. Besides, having a domain name keyword means you'll be competing against yourself, as every page will be trying to rank for that one keyword, and every page will also be trying to rank for multiple keywords. 
  4. Don't Rely on Guest Posting Either - Yes, getting back links through guest posting is an excellent way to get referral traffic and to rank for certain keywords. No, we're not suggesting that guest posting is all bad. However, it can't be the only way you're trying to rank. You can't rely on others get it done for you. First of all, guest posting is much more time consuming than many think. You have to write the posts, get them approved by a third party site, and cross your fingers that they publish in a reasonable amount of time. Each site has different rules regarding guest posts, and not all sites allow them. Second of all, it's much easier just to publish those posts yourself on a business blog and earn a few links that way. You'll be able to publish more posts in a shorter amount of time, as you don't have to wait on someone else to publish and to let you know. After that, try pitching sites about guest posting.
  5. You Need to Consider the User Experience - Believe it or not, what the user does, or doesn't do, does affect your rankings. If the bounce rate is really high, where people leave as quickly as they came, then that can negatively affect your rankings. If your page takes a long time to load, that can negatively affect your rankings. If you don't have social signals, or anyway for people to "like" your site or to share your content, then that can negatively affect your rankings. If you have spun content, or content that's written for search engines instead of actual people, that can negatively affect your rankings. User experience is considered in the results, so make sure that you're considering them too.

For more about what goes into a website's ranking, here's a link to a table of all the factors, and how they affect one another. There's no silver bullet when it comes to getting your website on the first page or on the first spot of the results, so take the time to do a good job and to apply multiple factors well.