Companies that depend on their website for business—so pretty much all companies, in this day—live and die by their search engine rankings. Many SEO companies will tell you that they can “Raise your search engine ranking in 48 hours!” and make you “#1 in Google!” These promises are nice and all, but not all of these companies will be able to back up their assurances with information about why your website isn’t ranking well in the first place. Here are ten reasons your site might be dropping in the search engine rankings, and what you can do about it:
- Moldy content? If dinosaurs walked the earth the last time you updated your site’s webpages, you might want to take some time to update your site. Fresh content provides fodder for the spiders to crawl, and also give you the ability to add appropriate keywords, which is an added bonus.
- Change is (not) good. Updating your content is good. Changing your site’s address is not. Sometimes circumstances make it necessary to change your URL, but try to avoid it if you can, as doing this can result in a huge downward slide in search engine rankings. Be sure that it’s not your own neglect that leads to an address change: If your domain name is set to expire any time soon, renew it before expiry, or face the consequences.
- Take your downtime seriously. If your website is unavailable when the search engines send out their spiders to crawl its content, your rankings will take a major hit, and there’s a chance your site will be removed from the search engines’ indexes entirely. Find a dependable web host with 24/7 phone support to assist you should your site suffer from unexpected downtime.
- High bounce rate. If visitors are leaving your site in seconds without so much as a second glance at what you have to offer, this means your keywords are probably irrelevant to your content. The search engines will pick up on this and move your pages down in their rankings. Improve keyword performance with a thorough analysis with a tool like Google Analytics.
- Healthy competition. If your competition ups their game, they might push you out of your spot in the rankings. While you can’t control what your competition is doing, you can improve your own site so its ready for the next round of spiders.
Stay tuned for Part Two, which will include more reasons why your site’s SEO is underperforming.