5 Great Tips To Prevent Your Website From Significant Declines In Google’s SERP Rankings
Posted by Amit Kothiyal
Although there is no full-proof way to prevent your website from losing ground in Google’s SERP rankings, due to the vast amount of significant Google Search algorithm updates, which are performed annually (i.e. 15 in 2013); below some significant precautions SEO’s and business website owners can take to prevent their website from declining significantly in Google’s SERP rankings.
1. Consistently Update Your Website
These days with millions of websites and more mobile devices than people, it is absolutely crucial for your website to be up to the latest standards in website development and design, such as CSS3, HTML5, Schema, so that your businesses website is responsive and user-friendly regardless of the viewing environment you are in. And in particular, this is crucial for older business websites within competitive sectors, such as technology, real estate or internet marketing who still have not switched over to a new, more responsive and mobile friendly website, because it could lead them to losing customers to much newer and even less experienced businesses within their industry who have invested more money in making their websites as responsive and mobile-friendly as possible. Moreover, an extremely important part of consistently updating and optimizing your website for mobile devices is decreasing your page load performance, which should be no longer than 4 seconds. Some of the best tools for improving and testing your page load times include: Google’s new PageSpeed Service; Google PageSpeed Insights; Pingdom; and YSlow (for Yahoo!).
2. Build Up A Robust Internal Linking Strategy
As Neil Patel (2014) points out in one of his latest articles Why Your Search Rankings Are Dropping (And 7 Ways To Fix It), one highly effective SEO strategy that a lot of non-experienced SEO’s and business website owners might forget to use or take full advantage of is utilizing internal linking to build up your PageRank and Domain Authority, so that you can rank higher on Google’s SERP’s. However, you do not want to go overboard with internal linking or Google might penalize you by decreasing your PageRank. For instance, you should make sure that you only add internal links on your website where necessary and relevant, otherwise your copy will look like a bunch of over-hyped hyperlinks with a few unlinked words thrown in for fun. And not only will Google land up penalizing you for this, but your loyal website fans might twice before visiting your website again anytime soon. Nonetheless, if you are going to use internal linking as a new SEO strategy for some of your current webpages on your website, it is crucial that you add in these links gradually over time, so as to not appear like you are just stuffing your old articles and webpages with links just to gain a higher Page or Domain Rank on the major search engines, such as Google or Yahoo!
3. Build Links, But Not To Page That Dropped In Rankings
As Patel (2014) asserts, the biggest error people make when trying to improve their SERP rankings after taking a huge hit in ranking for a specific webpage is that they decide to build as many external links, as quick as possible to the page which dropped in rankings. However, as Patel (2014) points out, the main problem with this is that Google is very intelligent and is able to sense when you are creating links at an unnatural pace, which will likely just lead to your SERP rankings dropping even lower. Thus, instead Patel (2014) recommends that you should build links to other webpages on your website, which were not affected by the latest decreases in your Domain Authority. This in turn will not only increase your Domain Authority, but also increase the rankings for all of your keywords, which are currently optimized on your website.
4. Increase Your Click-Through Rate
Besides increasing your SERP rankings, another excellent way that you can prevent your website from dropping in SERP rankings is by increasing your click through rate (CTR) via Google Authorship and optimizing your website’s title and meta description tags. For instance, as Patel (2014) points out, in terms of optimizing your website’s meta tags for search engines, such as Google, you can use the following ten keywords to increase your website’s CTR:
- How To
- (List related numbers)
- Blog post
Moreover, Patel (2014) asserts that you can increase your CTR by 150% by increasing your Google Authorship by following these four steps:
- Make sure you have a profile with a recognizable headshot photo.
- Make sure a Byline appears on each page of your content (i.e. by Danny Sullivan).
- Make sure the name on your byline matches the name on your Google + profile.
- Check that you have an email on the same domain as your web content.
5. Create Fresh, Useful And Unique Content
Although at this point with all of the recent significant Google Search algorithm updates over the past 3 years, including Panda(2011), Penguin (2013) and Hummingbird (2013), most web content creators and website owners should be well aware that in order for their website or content to rank higher on Google they need to produce useful and unique content, it seems like a lot of these same people are just too lazy and don’t quite realize what a world of difference it makes to produce content that is fresh, useful and unique on their website in order to increase their fan base, sales, ad revenue and SERP rankings. And in particular, some of the most effective methods of increasing website traffic and social media engagement is via creating posts or articles which include original topics, that are targeted toward a specific audience; and are multimedia rich (i.e. images (200 %), videos, info graphics), etc. For example, as Patel points out in one of his latest articles How Social Signals Impact Search Engine Rankings (2014), when Moz published their Beginners Guide To SEO and Smashing Magazine shared it on Twitter, Moz’s SERP rankings for the term “Beginner’s Guide” increased significantly, due to them gaining 166 new pageviews for the webpage for their Beginner’s Guide To SEO, compared to 0 pageviews prior to Smashing’s tweet.
Ultimately if you follow the above 5 tips, such as building a robust internal link building strategy, avoid building links to pages which have caused significant drops in SERP rankings, and optimizing your website for mobile to prevent your website from significant declines in Google’s SERP rankings; it will likely greatly improve your chances of successfully ranking higher and maintaining your SERP poll position on the main search engines, such as Google and Yahoo! Rather than wasting a massive amount of time, energy and money on ineffective SEO strategies for your website.