We are living in the golden age of content. Never before has it been so easy to create, share, and distribute information. As a result, it’s never been so essential to produce high-quality content.
To compete in today’s digital world, your website or blog must have informative and engaging content. But what if you don’t know how to write? What if you don’t have any ideas for articles or your website isn’t getting any traffic?
Don’t worry — you aren’t alone. Every business owner, website owner, and marketer struggles with these same challenges at some point. It’s completely normal and happens to the best of us.
The good news is that there are ways to fix these problems. This article will review thirteen of the most common reasons why your website or blog content isn’t ranking and how you can fix them.
What Can Good Content Do for Your Website?
Now that we know what content is, the next question is: what good can it do for your website?
The answer is a lot.
Good content can help improve your website in many ways, such as:
- Draw in organic traffic: This means that people are coming to your website without you having to pay for advertising. This is because your website shows up in search engine results when people search for topics that are relevant to your website. The higher your website ranks, the more likely it is that people will find and visit it.
- Build trust with potential customers: If you can provide valuable and insightful content, potential customers will see you as an expert in your field. This will make them more likely to do business with you or purchase products from you.
- Increase website stickiness: If people enjoy reading your content, they are more likely to stay on your website longer and visit it more often. This reduces your website’s bounce rate, which is the percentage of people who leave your website after only viewing one page. A high bounce rate is not suitable for your website as it signals to search engines that people are not finding what they are looking for on your website.
- Rank higher in search engine results: If you can get people to stay on your website longer and visit it more often, this tells search engines that your website is valuable and relevant. This will help you rank higher in search engine results, resulting in more organic traffic.
- Generate leads: Good content can help you generate leads, which are people who have shown an interest in what you offer and could potentially become customers. You can include calls-to-action (CTAs) in your content, links, or buttons that encourage people to take a specific action. For example, you could have a CTA that allows people to download a white paper or e-book in exchange for their contact information.
Now that we know what good content can do for your website let’s look at 13 reasons why your website isn’t ranking.
13 Factors Contributing to Low Content Ranking
One of the most important factors in content ranking is relevancy. This means your content must be about the topic people are searching for.
If you’re trying to rank for the keyword “dog food,” but your content is about cat food, you will not rank. Google wants to provide its users with relevant results, so it will only show content that is genuinely about the topic that was searched for.
You need to do keyword research to make sure your content is relevant. This involves finding the right keywords to target that people are searching for.
2. Search Intent
Search intent refers to the purpose behind a person’s search query. In other words, why did they type in that particular query?
There are four main types of search intent:
- Navigational: People are looking for a specific website or page. For example, they may type in “Facebook” because they want to go to the Facebook website.
- Informational: People are looking for information about a particular topic. They may be trying to learn more about a subject or research a potential purchase.
- Transactional: People are looking to buy something. They may be searching for a product or service to make a purchase.
- Commercial Investigation: Similar to informational searches, people are further into the buying process and search to compare different options before deciding.
To rank well, your content must match the search intent of the query. If someone is searching for something transactional, your content must be about making a purchase. It should not be primarily informational or navigational.
3. User Intent
User intent is similar to search intent but refers to the user’s goals rather than the searcher’s. In other words, it’s what the user wants to do on your website.
There are three main types of user intent:
- Do: The user wants to do something, such as make a purchase, book a ticket, or sign up for a newsletter.
- Know: The user wants to know something, such as the answer to a question or information about a product.
- Go: The user wants to go somewhere, such as your website’s home page or a specific landing page.
To ensure your website ranks for the right keywords, you need to ensure you’re catering to all three types of user intent.
If you’re unsure what type of user intent your website is catering to, you can use a tool like Google’s Search Console to find out. Enter a keyword into the search bar and see what results come up.
4. Keyword Usage
Another critical factor in content ranking is keyword usage. This refers to how often and where you use keywords throughout your content.
If you stuff your content with too many keywords, it won’t be easy to read and will offer little value to the reader. This can result in penalization from Google.
On the other hand, if you don’t use enough keywords, Google may be unable to tell what your content is about and will be less likely to rank it.
Use keywords thoughtfully and sparingly throughout your content to strike the right balance. Make sure they flow naturally and don’t disrupt the readability of your piece.
5. Content Length
Content length is another critical factor in content ranking. This refers to the number of words in your piece.
In general, longer pieces tend to rank better than shorter ones. This is because more extended details are usually more comprehensive and offer more value to the reader.
Of course, this is not a hard-and-fast rule. A shorter piece can still rank well if it is high-quality and relevant to the search query.
Readability refers to how easy your content is to read and understand. Google prefers content that is easy to read so that users have a positive experience on the website.
There are a few things you can do to make your content more readable:
- Use short sentences and paragraphs
- Use simple words and language
- Break up your text with headlines, lists, and images
Making your content more readable will help it rank better and make people more likely to read and engage with it.
7. Title Tags
Title tags are one of the reasons website content may not be ranking as high as it could. The title tag is the text that appears in the tab of your web browser when you open up a website. It also appears as the blue link in search engine results pages (SERPs). The title tag tells users and search engines what the website is about.
If the title tag is not well written or doesn’t include the keywords people are searching for, the website will not rank as high as it could. To ensure your website ranks as high as possible, ensure your title tag is well-written and includes the keywords you want to target.
8. Meta Descriptions
One of the most crucial on-page SEO factors is your meta description. This short paragraph of text appears under your website’s URL in the search results. It’s your chance to “sell” your website to potential visitors and convince them to click through to your site.
Unfortunately, far too many website owners either don’t bother with their meta descriptions or stuff them full of keywords to manipulate the search engines. Neither of these approaches is effective.
Your meta description should be a brief, compelling description of what visitors will find on your website. It should be inviting and make people click through to your site. While your meta description won’t directly impact your website’s search engine ranking, it is still an essential part of on-page SEO.
9. External Links
One of the reasons your website content might not be ranking is that it doesn’t have any external links. External links are links from other websites that point to your website. They’re essential for two reasons: first, they help increase your website’s visibility to potential visitors; and second, they help improve your website’s search engine rankings.
If you want your website content to rank higher, ensure that you have a good mix of external links from high-quality websites. You can do this by publishing great content that other website owners will want to share and by using effective SEO techniques.
If you’re having trouble getting external links, consider contacting other website owners and asking them to link to your content. You can also use tools like HARO (Help a Reporter Out) to connect with journalists interested in writing about your website or blog.
What is canonicalization? In short, it’s the process of ensuring your website has only one URL. This is important because if your website has multiple URLs, Google may not know which one to index and rank, and your website’s search engine ranking could suffer.
How do you canonicalize your website? The first step is to find out if you have any duplicate content. You can do this using a tool like Screaming Frog or a manual search. Once you’ve found the duplicates, redirect them to the main URL using a 301 redirect.
11. Not Mobile-friendly
If your website isn’t mobile-friendly, you’re likely losing out on traffic. Google now penalizes websites that aren’t mobile-friendly, so if your website isn’t ranking, this may be one of the reasons why. Your website may look good on a desktop computer, but it doesn’t translate well to mobile devices. This can cause formatting issues and make it difficult for users to navigate your website.
If you want to improve your website’s ranking, make sure it’s mobile-friendly. There are several ways to do this, and most website builders have templates designed for mobile devices. You can also use Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test to see if your website meets Google’s criteria.
12. Bad User Experience
Website ranking isn’t just about SEO. Google also looks at website usability when determining where to rank a website. If your website has a bad user experience, then you’ll likely not get the traffic you want.
Several factors contribute to a good user experience, but some of the most important include website speed, design, and navigation. If your website is slow, difficult to navigate, or poorly designed, you’re likely losing out on traffic and rankings.
To improve your website’s user experience, test your website speed. You can use a tool like Pingdom or Google’s PageSpeed Insights to get an idea of how fast your website loads. If your website is slow, try optimizing your images and code to improve loading times. You can also use a content delivery network (CDN) to speed up website delivery.
In addition to website speed, navigation is another important factor in website usability. Make sure your website is easy to navigate and that users can find what they’re looking for. Use clear and concise titles and descriptions, and consider using a sitemap to help users find their way around your website.
13. Negative SEO
One final reason your website might not be ranking is that you’re being attacked through “negative SEO”. This is when a malicious actor (often times, a competitor) intentionally tries to manipulate how your website ranks through shady tactics that Google frowns upon.
They deploy tactics that go against Google’s guidelines in hopes that your site gets penalized by Google, in turn, helping them.
It can sometimes be difficult to identify if you have fallen victim to a negative SEO campaign. I recommend reading this article on negative SEO to get a better understanding of what it is and how you can recover from such an attack.
These are just a few reasons why your website might not rank. If you’re not getting the traffic you want, look closely at your website and see if any of these factors affect your website’s ranking. Once you identify the problem, you can make changes to improve your website’s ranking.
If you need help improving your website’s ranking, reach out to us at Ghax Digital Marketing. We can help you make the changes necessary to improve your website’s ranking and get you the traffic you want. Fill out our contact form here for a free growth strategy consultation!