Do you have a page that’s ranking high but not getting you the results you hoped for? Have you had a sudden rise in page rank followed by a sharp drop? Why would this happen? Even if you haven’t changed a thing, the rules for SEO are constantly changing. This can make it hard to pinpoint one particular issue that caused these unwanted changes. However, there are three important issues that are common culprits to check for when web pages aren’t performing as well as they should.
If your page ranks well temporarily and then begins to taper off, design is often to blame. When potential customers come to your site, they want to be able to quickly scan over the site and see a professional-quality job. A well-designed web page immediately gives off a sense of quality and is more likely to keep users engaged. Conversely, a poorly-designed site can cause users to leave and increase your bounce rate which will lower your ranking over time. There are many elements of a successful design, and ignoring any one of them can deter visitors and cause them to backtrack.
Do you love a giant wall of text to read one when you go to a page? Probably not. One or two enormous paragraphs on a page immediately give an impression of information overload, and will turn away users who prefer to skim or quickly scan information. If these users are unable to find the information they’re searching for quickly, they may abandon the page and look elsewhere.
This is why page breakup is so crucial. If someone came to a page looking for information on Page Breakup for example, they should be able to find a relevant heading and concentrate their efforts there. They can then ignore what is irrelevant to them and read about what brought them to the page in the first place.
Images help to make your pages more engaging–and make them look pretty too! Visual perception is such an important topic that there’s an emerging field devoted to visual culture in the digital age. Using eye-catching, yet relevant images is an important aspect of your page and not something to ignore. And pages with a larger word count should have more images to better separate the different areas and topics.
Poorly-meshing colors can turn visitors away immediately; before they even read a word. Because of this, color theory and using online tools to help with choosing colors for your site are crucial and much more effective than guessing. Some colors work well with certain colors and clash with others, and choosing your design theme based around these principals can draw in visitors instead of push them away.
Your page is the top result for your desired term and location on Google. Congratulations! Why then, isn’t getting the conversion it should? It could be because of the actual information, the content, is lacking.
It’s important to build trust with potential customers. And one important way this is accomplished is to make sure that information the user sees on Google–The page title and snippet–give an idea of what will be on the page itself. A page about landscaping when the end product is an air conditioning unit not only doesn’t make sense, but it could seem like you are intentionally deceiving your potential customers. And who wants to trust their money for goods and services with someone if they can’t trust them?
While it may seem like a smart choice to have identical pages to market the same product in different areas, this can quickly backfire. Google tends to frown upon duplicate content, including pages that are too similar to other pages on your site. While it may be a burden to create new content for the same product or service, this rule is in place for good reason. One of these reasons is that without restrictions on duplicate content, one well-designed page could be copied and dominate the term for several cities in a matter of seconds–even if the service isn’t actually available in that city.
Duplicate content can harm the end user experience as well. If all the pages are saying the same thing on a topic, there is the possibility that you miss out on a crucial piece of information that a customer is looking for. A page for painting, for example, might focus on interior painting with a brief, easily-missable reference to exterior painting, and if the user misses this small piece, they may go with a competitor instead. If another painting page is more about exterior painting and they come across that one, it can make all the difference.
While having identical pages can be harmful, this doesn’t mean important information has to be left out. Have a warranty no one can compete with? Make sure that potential customers know that. Including crucial information that highlights what sets you apart from the competition on relevant pages can help users choose you over someone else.
Did you have a page that worked well for ages and suddenly dropped? It might not be anything you did at all. Google can be a finicky little guy, and it may hate things now that it used to love a year ago. However, there are some elements that will likely stay the same for future changes.
It’s important that Google understands what your page is saying. And as its algorithms improve over the years, it will shift towards a better user experience and become harder to trick. Methods that used to trick Google and improve rankings no longer work and are constantly being overturned. This doesn’t mean that meta descriptions and tags are going anywhere; instead, language that only Google bots can interpret should be put in its proper place in the background instead of interrupting the user.
Google’s number one item on their list of important factors is to focus on the user. Because of this, future updates will most likely be towards creating a better experience for the user. It’s hard to tell what search engine companies will do next. However, creating relevant pages that aid the users is always a good practice. Eventually, Google will likely be able to weed out deceivers and rank pages higher that have a strong design with relevant content that focuses on providing the best end user experience. These pages will rank above the all else, ultimately creating a better internet for everyone.