You’ve spent the time and effort in creating a website, but are you being found online?
Google is a complex framework that constantly changes, which means so must your website.
And if your site isn’t showing up on Google or other popular search engines, then you’re missing out on lots of opportunities for traffic, leads, and sales.
In this blog you’ll learn about solutions to the common mistakes website owners make that impacts whether their website shows up online.
How Google Works
Google’s algorithm works on several levels to rank your website and place you appropriately on their search page.
Crawlers scan your website’s content, going from link to link, to bring data back to Google’s servers. During this process, the crawlers take note of their ranking factors, everything from your on-page content to keywords, and they organize and rank the information in their index.
But unfortunately, Google’s Search algorithms are constantly changing. And website owners must invest in search engine tactics to stay competitive.
SEO is short for search engine optimization. It’s the process of creating or updating your site design and content to appear in the search engines.
By improving your SEO, Google is better able to understand and index your content, making it more likely they will recommend your website when users search for keywords relevant to your product or service.
So now that you have a basic understanding of how Google works, what’s preventing your site from being found online?
So, Why is Your Website Not Being Found on Google?
There are several factors that can contribute to your website appearing on Google. Let’s dive in to the most common reasons.
Your Website Lacks Content or Contains Duplicate Content
Google’s mission is to provide quality information in a fraction of a second, so the relevancy and freshness of your website content matters.
For example, let’s say you want to know how to change a tire on your car, but Google Search shows results for a pet supply store. This isn’t a great user experience, is it?
Therefore, queries aka keywords are critical to helping your website be found online.
A keyword is a word or phrase users type in Google’s Search bar. Using these keywords within the context of your website helps align the user’s intent with your business offerings.
However, the biggest challenges for website owners is either they don’t have enough copy on their website, or the content is not unique to them at all.
When a similar page has the same content as yours, Google will attempt to identify the best version and use that page for the search – and Google might not choose yours!
Your Website Isn’t as Wonderful as You Thought
Just because you have a beautifully designed website, doesn’t mean Google will love it. When Google ranks websites, they also evaluate the usability of the website. But, large images, videos, and poor coding can disrupt the user experience. Google considers important factors like the mobile responsiveness and page loading times to enhance the user experience and rank website. Is there opportunity for improvement on your website?
Try their PageSpeed Insights tool to learn more.
You’re Missing a Sitemap
A sitemap is a file that provides a full list of pages of your website. A sitemap will provide Google with information about the content of your pages, including video and image content.
You are more likely to need a sitemap if your site is comprehensive, has a large archive of content, or is rich in media content. A sitemap will help improve Google’s ability to crawl your site.
It’s important to note Google says, “Using a sitemap doesn’t guarantee that all the items in your sitemap will be crawled and indexed, as Google processes rely on complex algorithms to schedule crawling. However, in most cases, your site will benefit from having a sitemap, and you’ll never be penalized for having one.”
You Need High Quality Backlinks
High quality backlinks on your site can determine your page authority. Page authority will in turn help your PageRank and determine your site ranking.
A backlink is when a link is created from one site to another and is an important tactic in boosting your SEO. Backlinks determine a “vote of confidence” from one site to another. If other prominent websites link to a page on your website, it gives Google a “vote of confidence” that your site is well trusted.
There are many methods to gain more backlinks, but ideally it starts with creating unique content your audience will love.
Your Site is Blocking Search Engines
One of the biggest mistakes you can make is preventing Google from crawling their site at all.
In some cases, you may have turned on a setting in your Content Management System that prevents the site from being crawled at all. Most website builders will automatically set up your site to discourage search engines from indexing your site.
In other cases, it could be a robots.txt file. This file tells Google what pages it can and cannot crawl on your site. If you accidentally block a page or a folder that has your important web pages in it, then Google will have difficulty indexing those pages.
You may also want to verify that you do not have pages with a “noindex” meta tag. Pages with this code will not be indexed, even if they are included in your sitemap for Google.
Still Concerned about Your Website’s Visibility on Google?
The internet constantly evolves. Hundreds of webpages are created every second. As a website owner, you’ll always need to stay one step ahead.
If you would like further information on how to improve your site, content, and Google ranking, we can help! As your SEO partner, Strategy will research, analyze, and measure performance and adjust tactics to provide optimal search results. Contact us today to get started!