Let’s put it simply – no one can guarantee you a top Google ranking. Because… they can’t control how Google ranks websites. Anyone that says they can guarantee a Google website ranking is either:
- Talking about listing you among the paid ads section
- Guaranteeing that you rank for either your company name or some obscure search term. This is easy and nothing to brag about
So let’s take a closer look. If you shmooze on to Google and search for something, you will be met with a screen that’s peppered with paid and free search results. Here’s how it looks:
Paid Listings – Google Adwords (Section A)
These are ads that businesses buy through Google to promote their products and services. Every time a user clicks on these ads, they are taken to a the website of the business owner. And the business owner pays Google for this transfer. This form of advertising is known as ‘pay per click’. It can cost the advertising business anything from 20 cents, right up to $50 and beyond (for insurance), depending on how competitve the industry is. This and similar advertising scores Google 97% of its revenues.
As a business, it can be expensive to play in this space especially if you in a high competition industry. But if you’re smart and generate positive ROI, adwords can be a good lead generator.
The order of ads in this section is determined by another Google algorithm. It’s based on the amount a business is willing to pay for their ad and the ‘quality score’ of their website. In this way good websites can effectively pay less to show ads than poor websites.
Organic Listings or Natural Search Listings (Section B)
Here are the natural unpaid search results. This is what your long term focus should be. Google uses algorithms to determine the quality of a site for a given search result. The higher your website quality ranking, the higher your ranking in this section. Naturally, if you’re a highly ranked website, you are put at a competitive advantage.
It usually takes some hard yards to convince Google that you have a quality website. And naturally, the more competition in an industry, the more difficult it is to compete.
Can You Rank Me Highly For This Search Term?
To rank highly in Google’s natural listings, Google must deem you an authority on your target search term. The more general the search term, the more difficult it will be to rank. E.g ‘Hairdresser Malvern’ is a lot easier to rank for than simply ‘Hairdresser’. When naming your website and your business, you should consider the best website name as that can assist your Google ranking.
Although Google’s exact ranking algorithm is a secret, the world’s internet marketing industry invests millions to test and retest ranking assumptions. They have found that the following things have a positive effect on your website ranking:
- The number of good quality websites that link to you
- Your website title and headings
- How old your content is
- How fast your website loads
- Social media mentions and clicks
Naturally, the above factors all require a bit of elbow grease to ensure success.
No Guaranteed Rankings. You Need a Good Foundation
No, you can’t guarantee Google rankings, but you can build your website so it has the best chance of success. For instance, my small business website design service understands the principles of search engine optimisation. I craft all my sites so they sing to Google’s latest tune. I’ve lay the strong foundations that the site owner can build upon to achieve website success.
Some other web designers either focus too much on design or text. Although these are important – they should always work in harmony with search engine optimisation and branding to ensure a positive user experience. After all – you can optimise your website to high water, but at the end of the day people aren’t going to buy from a site that looks like a dry turnip.
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