Search engine optimization(SEO) is a crucial component of any website's success. One of the key goals of SEOis to ensure that a website's pages rank high on search engineresults pages (SERPs) for relevant queries.
However, sometimes the wrong pages of a website end up ranking for certain keywords, leading to a poor user experienceand lower traffic.
Wrong page ranking happens when a page other than the intended one ranks for a particular keyword. For example, imagine a website that sells shoes.
The homepage is optimized for the keyword "shoes," but for some reason, a product page for a specific type of shoe ends up ranking for that keyword instead.
There are several reasons why wrong page ranking happens. Here are a few common ones:
One of the most common reasons for wrong page ranking is poor keyword targeting. When you optimize a page for a particular keyword, you're essentially telling search engines that this page is the most relevant for that keyword.
However, if you don't target the right keywords, or if you target too many different keywords on a single page, search engines may get confused about which page is the most relevant for a particular query.
Another common cause of wrong page ranking is internal linking issues. When you link to a page from another page on your website, you're essentially telling search engines that this page is important.
However, if you link to the wrong page or use confusing anchor text, search engines may end up ranking the wrong page for certain queries.
Finally, confusing content hierarchy can also lead to wrong page ranking. If your website's content is poorly organized, with multiple pages competing for the same keywords, search engines may not be able to tell which page is the most relevant for a particular query.
This can result in the wrong page ranking for certain keywords.
Now that we've explored some of the reasons why wrong page ranking happens, let's look at some tips on how to avoid it.
What to Do When the Wrong Page Ranks for Your Keyword(s) - Whiteboard Friday
The first step in avoiding wrong page ranking is to conduct thorough keyword research. Use a tool like Google Keyword Planner to identify the most relevant keywords for your website, and then make sure to target those keywords on the appropriate pages.
Once you've identified your target keywords, optimize your pages for those keywords. Make sure to include the keyword in the page's title tag, meta description, URL, and throughout the content. However, don't over-optimize your pages by stuffing them with too many keywords.
When linking to internal pages on your website, use clear and descriptive anchor text. Avoid using generic anchor text like "click here" or "read more." Instead, use anchor text that accurately reflects the content of the linked page.
Finally, create a clear content hierarchy for your website. Make sure that each page has a specific focus and that there's no overlap between pages.
Use internal linking to create a clear hierarchy, with important pages linked from the homepage and other pages linked from relevant category pages.
Identifying and fixing wrong page ranking is an important aspect of search engine optimization. Here are three techniques for identifying and fixing the wrong page ranking on your website:
- Use Search Console to Identify Ranking Pages:Google Search Consoleis a powerful tool for website owners to monitor their website's performance in search results. One of the features of Search Console is the ability to view the pages on your website that are currently ranking for specific keywords. By reviewing this data, you can quickly identify if the wrong page is ranking for a particular keyword. Once you have identified the issue, you can take steps to optimize the correct page for that keyword.
- Analyze Internal Linking and Anchor Text:As mentioned earlier, internal linking issues can lead to wrong page ranking. Analyzing your website's internal linking and anchor text can help you identify if this is the case. Look for instances where the wrong page is being linked to from other pages on your website or where confusing anchor text is being used. By fixing these issues, you can help search engines better understand the content hierarchy of your website and avoid wrong page ranking.
- Conduct a Content Audit:Sometimes wrong page ranking happens because there are multiple pages on your website that are competing for the same keywords. Conducting a content audit can help you identify if this is the case. Look for instances where two or more pages cover similar topics or use the same keywords. By consolidating these pages or reorganizing your website's content hierarchy, you can ensure that search engines understand which page is the most relevant for a particular query.
Yes, duplicate content can affect page ranking. Search engines may have difficulty determining which page is the original source of the content, leading to lower rankings for both pages. To avoid this issue, website owners should ensure that each page has unique content that adds value for users.
Mobile optimization can impact page ranking, particularly since mobile devices are increasingly used for internet searches. Pages that are not optimized for mobile may have lower rankings in mobile search results. To optimize for mobile, website owners should use a responsive design that adjusts to different screen sizes and ensure that page load times are fast.
Backlinksare an important factor in page ranking, as they signal to search engines that other websites consider a particular page to be valuable and authoritative. However, it's important to note that not all backlinks are created equal - high-quality backlinks from authoritative websites are more valuable than low-quality or spammy backlinks.
Wrong page ranking can be a frustrating problem for website owners. However, by understanding the reasons why it happens and following the tips outlined in this article, you can avoid it and ensure that your website's pages rank where they should.