Once a website launches, driving traffic and achieving a good search ranking are often our clients’ primary concerns. We’ve highlighted the 10 most common questions we receive to help you understand how Google’s search rankings work and give you ideas for improving your website’s traffic.
1. Why can’t I find my website on Google?
There are a variety of reasons for a website not showing up in Google search results. Your site might have a very low ranking, beyond the first few pages, which is making it difficult for you to find. Or, it might not be indexed by Google yet, which means Google has not crawled your site to create a ranking. If your website is quite new, this is likely the cause.
2. How long does it take for Google to index a new website?
Once your website launches, it can take up to 4-6 weeks for Google to index your site. Some will be indexed much sooner, and others can potentially take longer. All of the new sites we create at Logikal Code are submitted to search engines upon launch, but you will need to be patient while you wait for Google to crawl and index your site.
3. Once my site is indexed, will I be on the first page of results?
Google utilizes a complex algorithm to rank websites, so your placement will depend on many factors including competition, website content, links to your site, HTML code, and so much more.
4. How does a lower ranking impact my business?
Many people don’t look past the first page of results, so a low search ranking means less traffic heading to your website. Instead, people searching for your business (or those similar) will likely visit your competitors’ websites that rank on the first page.
5. Is ranking on the first page good enough?
While ranking on the first page is a good start, there is a huge difference in click-through-rates (CTR) between the websites at the top and bottom of the search results list. In fact, there is an 80% difference in CTR between results 1 and 10 on Google’s first page. Ultimately, the higher your ranking the better your CTR will be, which means more traffic heading to your site.
6. How often does Google update their search results?
While you might expect Google to update their algorithm a few times a year, it actually updates 500-600 times per year. This means that the search results list is always changing!
7. Once I’m at the top of the results list, can I stop worrying about SEO?
As we mentioned above, Google’s algorithm is constantly changing. Your website could be in the top spot one day and nowhere to be found on the first page the next. It’s important that you remain aware of your website’s ranking from month to month so you can address a sudden plunge in ranking.
8. Is it true that more content means more traffic?
Quality always trumps quantity, and that includes website content. Your website should be made up of interesting and informative content that your customers actually want to read. If you over-do it with too much content (especially if it’s boring or irrelevant) your website’s traffic will actually suffer.
9. I don’t know much about SEO. What are some simple ways I can boost my website traffic?
If you’re not happy with your website’s ranking there are a lot of options you can explore to make sure that you’re still getting good traffic.
- Make sure any online directory listings include your website link so people can still end up at your website, even if they don’t choose your site in the search results.
- Get your social media accounts in tip-top shape, including relevant keywords in the descriptions and a link to your website. This way, people searching for terms relating to your business might stumble upon you through social media instead of directly through your website.
- Review your website’s content and make sure you’ve naturally included relevant keywords to help boost your ranking.
- Consider Google AdWords paid advertising. Your paid ads can get your website to the top of the search results page, even if your site can’t get there organically.
10. What else can I do to improve my search engine ranking and website traffic?
Ultimately, it’s a great idea to discuss search engine optimization (SEO) practices with your web developer or marketing company. Some suggestions might include changes to your website’s code, adding new plug-ins and more.