The effectiveness of SEO can be measured by two main indicators - website visibility is one of them. Every brand which wants to enter the e-commerce market does its best to increase this parameter. Don’t worry if page visibility and its importance is still a bit of black magic to you. Thanks to our entry, you’ll gain a general overview of this concept.
Are you an e-commerce owner, blogger or do you want to promote your online business card or portfolio? Website visibility in Google is one of the terms you’ll face at the very beginning of your adventure.
Although the definition may seem quite self-explanatory (after all, it’s about how visible you’re online), the concept turns out to be more complex. Even if you understand what the term is about, you still need to analyze various elements such as places where it’s possible to check page visibility. Benefit from the following step-by-step guide and learn a new SEO skill!
What Is Website Visibility?
Page visibility is one of the indicators of how easily your website can be accessed via search engines. Of course, when talking about search engines we mean primarily Google, however, depending on the country and market, Yahoo! or Bing can also play a significant role (check out: Foreign search engines - not so popular alternatives to Google). Nevertheless, in most locations the situation is the same as in the case of the French e-commerce sector where Google is chosen the most frequently (91.73%), Bing is second (4,27%) and Yahoo! third (1,17%).
Visibility data available in SEMstorm means pieces of properly processed traffic information: the average position of key phrases enriched by the total number of searches. Another, different but also similar definition can be prepared based on measurements provided by Senuto. It’s related to the number of words the page is displayed for and estimated traffic from search engines.
In a nutshell, website visibility in Google can be determined by checking:
- the number of words for which the page is displayed in TOP3, TOP10, TOP50 search results (we'll discuss these terms in detail in a moment);
- estimated monthly organic traffic.
Visibility doesn’t translate into organic traffic directly, however, it’s crucial to improve it. Why? Page visibility determines the number of phrases a page is displayed for in the SERPs, but it includes results ranked 1, 2, 10 or even 50 and 150. Therefore, it’s worth noticing that a position in the TOP3 is likely to translate into clicks, however, being dead last won’t bring you any benefits.
If you’re just starting to work on improving your website visibility, it’s totally normal that most of the keywords you care about will be in very distant positions or sometimes completely out of the index, meaning further than 150th. Therefore, don’t get discouraged and keep in mind that achieving top positions and measurable results requires time.
Why Is Page Visibility In Google So Crucial?
Organic traffic is one of the most valuable types of website traffic. Search engines gather users who are actually interested in a particular service or product. They’re often purchase-oriented (especially in the case of long tail phrases) and you don't have to convince them - a quality offer and proper visibility is all you need to increase traffic to your site, which will translate into improved conversion and sales.
Even the most visually appealing website with a competitive offer, designed according to all UX principles won’t bring you benefits unless users are able to access it.
It’s all about top positions in the search results. The higher you’re ranked in the SERPs, the greater the chances that users will visit your page.
[caption id="attachment_42401" align="aligncenter" width="420"] source: https://backlinko.com/hub/seo/visibility[/caption]
As evidenced by the chart above, more than 50% of user interest is focused on two first positions, whereas the percentage CTR of subsequent positions in the search results drops significantly and it’s extremely hard to generate clicks if you’re shown on the second or third search page. Therefore, the ultimate goal is to reach TOP3, not TOP50.
Pages ranked in distant positions don’t have satisfactory visibility which means that they aren’t likely to reach many recipients. SEO activities are supposed to help you obtain and maintain top visibility for numerous phrases important to your business.
Where To Check Your Site Visibility?
There are numerous tools that can help you check page visibility. One of the more popular ones is SEMstorm.
[caption id="attachment_43611" align="aligncenter" width="750"] Exemplary data from SEMstorm[/caption]
Apart from analyzing visibility, it’s important to collect data about new and lost keywords. This way, both specialists and beginners are able to quickly evaluate the effectiveness of recent activities.
Problems with page visibility
1. Why Does Google Put Websites In The Sandbox?
When setting up a new website you need to take into account the possibility that it may end up in the so-called Google Sandbox. This is a kind of temporary filter imposed on new sites that haven't earned Google's trust yet.
Sandbox is theoretically supposed to prevent sites not verified by Google from being ranked high, to avoid situations when users are exposed to low-quality, spammy content. It's a kind of a trial period, which can last from a few to several months - during this period it might be hard to improve visibility.
Although Google has never officially commented on the existence of Sandbox, the facts and tests conducted by SEO experts speak for themselves.
2. Position Fluctuations: Phrases That Are Repeatedly Indexed In and Out
While monitoring positions of key phrases, you may notice situations when promising words suddenly deteriorate or drop out of the index (which means that they aren't displayed even in distant positions). This is frequently caused by Google algorithm updates, implemented website modifications, or improperly deployed website migration. On the other hand, being indexed in again is a good sign - although it won’t immediately improve page visibility, it may indicate the success of SEO activities.
3. Website Seasonality
Seasonality indicates variations in user interest over the course of a year. It's a normal phenomenon that should be taken into account when evaluating changes in visibility in Google. Seasonality is one of the reasons why SEO results are compared not only on a month-to-month basis but also on a year-to-year basis. It can be measured with Senuto by observing graphs showing deviations from the norm in specific months. In e-commerce, a slight drop in visibility after the holiday season shouldn't be a concern. The situation looks the same in tourism - lower interest during the off-season is pretty normal. Check out: How to do SEO for seasonal online stores?
How To Increase Website Visibility In Google?
Now when you know what’s website visibility and how to check it, you probably want to learn what are the methods of improving this parameter. First of all, it's worth distinguishing the basic SEO categories, including on-site and off-site, as well as valuable, appealing (and well-optimized) content. High website positions in the search results affect visibility in a direct way and are the objective of all SEO activities. Therefore, the best answer to this question is to create and follow a well-thought-out and consistent SEO strategy.
There is no one universal recipe for improving page visibility - everything depends on the industry you operate in (the book and pharmaceutical industries require a completely different approach), your target market (an SEO strategy for the Swedish market is completely different than the one for the United States). Therefore, a website audit is crucial to start the activities off on the right foot (see how to conduct a simple page audit on your own). It’s also recommended to audit your page content and only then move on to determine further steps.
Visibility is the key indicator that should be monitored throughout the entire SEO process. It can (or even should) be an important KPI alongside impressions, clicks or domain authority. With all these pieces of information in mind, you’re ready to start your SEO adventure. If you want to find out more, check out the Q&A section below or ask a question in a comment - we’ll surely answer it.
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