Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is a major buzzword in online marketing circles nowadays, and rightly so. You need your website to stand out, to be ranked highly by Google – and the other search engines – and you most likely have processes in place to make this happen. However, are you getting the best out of your SEO? Google is constantly monitoring the way websites are used by visitors in order to assess their ranking, but there are other factors to consider.
Let’s take a look at your Click Through Rate (CTR): in truth, what do you know about your current CTR? You may not have looked closely at your performance in this area, and you really need to! Google likes excellent content – content that is relevant and shows sufficient expertise in the related area – but there is more: Google also likes to see that people are clicking on your links. Even if you have excellent content – the best there is – if people are not clicking on your links, you need to find out why, and you need to work out how to ensure they do so. A better CTR will be noticed by Google, and you will see the results in improved rankings.
Now, we’ll have a look at how Google rates your site in a little more depth: above, we mentioned excellent, relevant content and an impressive CTR; those are very important elements, and they need to combine to show Google that people are actually engaging with you on your site. You need to remember that Google looks at the website in its entirety, not individual pages, so you must ensure that you keep your visitors engaged for a sensible length of time.
So, how do you get people to click on your page, rather than simply look and then turn away? Part of the content you present is the headline; remember, for many years’ newspapers have been driving sales by using attention-grabbing headlines, and you can do the same. The trick is to structure a headline so that it gives the reader enough information to want to read further. Here’s an example:
‘Five Amazing Tips that will Help Improve Your CTR’
In the first instance, you’ve told the reader that you are presenting them with a list; then, you’ve assured them that the information you are giving them is amazing. Then, you’ve assured them you are giving them help, and that they will be able to achieve the objective. You can apply the same idea to any product or service: the emotional element, the format, the type of content, the promise of help and the actual topic are all involved in that headline. You could, of course, have just used the headline: Improve Your CTR. It doesn’t work as well, does it?
So, now you know the basics, you just need to add loads of content, right? No; content that is just there for the sake of it is frowned upon by Google; as we said earlier, content that is authoritative, relevant and engaging is what they want. Keep quality high, not quantity. There is one final area we would like to touch on when it comes to improving CTR, and it is a simple one that many people overlook. People who have already visited your site, and are familiar with your service or product, are twice as likely to click than those who are new. Think how, by targeting those people with ads, say on Facebook or Twitter, could quickly improve your CTR. It’s not expensive, and proven to be effective.
So, by concentrating on your CTR you can improve your SEO effectively; have a look at your current CTR, and use the above information to improve.