Why Ranking Number One in the SERPs is So Important: Here’s How

Search engine results pages (SERPs) are a gateway to visibility, whether you realize it or not. Most of us perform multiple searches every day, or even dozens of searches, without consciously thinking about it. We remember that we have to buy something, or we want the answer to a curious question, so we write a query and bam! We are presented with millions of websites that we could visit to get the answer.

This high volume and almost ubiquitous visibility are the motivations behind search engine optimization (SEO), the strategic efforts designed to get your website higher in the SERPs. With the help of tactics like on-site content creation, on-site technical improvements, and of course, link building, you can move your site up the rankings.

The higher it is rated, the better, which is, for the most part, intuitive. Higher ranked websites are seen before lower ranked ones; After all, how often do you click on page two or page three of Google search results to find what you’re looking for? Top ranked sites get more traffic and earn more money.

But you may not intuitively know how vital a # 1 ranking will be to your business. Rank 1 is better than Rank 2 sure, but Rank 2 is great too, right?

Not necessarily. According to some studies, the website in rank 1 gets up to 33 percent of all organic traffic for a given search. The page in rank 2 only gets about 18 percent, just over half the traffic of rank 1. In rank 3, it gets about 10 percent, and the percentages decrease even more from there.

Here are some important takeaways:

  • Rank one generates almost twice as much traffic as rank two. If you are interested in the highest possible volume of traffic, you must recognize that while rank 2 is good, rank 1 is almost double. Moving up a single position in the ranking can instantly double the traffic a page receives from your site.
  • Ranks four or lower are hardly worth it. It takes time and effort to scale the SERPs for any search query, even if you’re only getting to page 2 or 3. If you spend all that time and money and only hit rank 4, it may not be worth it (depending on search volume). It is often better to have a single rank 1 position than dozens of page 2 positions.
  • Visibility and authority flow from rank one. Getting to rank 1 isn’t just about getting more traffic. It’s also about getting more visibility as you are the first website people will see, and more authority as many people know how much effort it takes to get to rank 1.

It was probably already obvious that rank 1, for any relevant search query, was valuable. What was less obvious is how rank 1 is so much more valuable than other rankings.

With that in mind, what steps can you take to ensure you hit Rank 1 as often as possible?

Understand the basic components of SEO

First, you need to understand the core components of an SEO strategy. There are over 200 qualifying signals worth considering, but most of your strategy will come down to one of these factors:

  • Strategic approach. You must choose the right targets for your SEO strategy. If you target keywords that are outside of your area of ​​expertise, or those that are already dominated by your competition, you will end up completely draining your budget long before you see significant results. It all starts with your targeting strategy.
  • Technical changes to the website. Google and other search engines preferably rank websites that work well and serve users well. That means that your website must live up to Google’s technical standards and that all its content is easily accessible to users.
  • On-site content. Speaking of content, you need it. Your content on the site must be original, in-depth, well-researched, and targeted at your audience. It will help you develop authority and optimize for specific topics simultaneously.
  • Link building. Did you know that rank 1 web pages they tend to have 3.8 times more backlinks than your competitors in positions 2-10? The backlinks pass “authority” to your site; consequently, the more links you have and the more authoritative those links are, the better. Earning and building backlinks is essential if you want to scale the SERPs. But if you want to reach rank 1, you will need almost 4 times more backlinks than your closest competitors.

Start with the right keyword goals

If you want to target the right people and maximize your chances of reaching Rank 1, you need to target the right keywords.

  • Prioritize relevance. Think about the terms your audience will use to search for a business like yours. You don’t want to optimize for irrelevant or peripherally relevant terms just because they are conveniently accessible.
  • Identify your competitors. Get to know your biggest competitors. How are they currently classified? What terms are they targeting? Who is your audience and how is it different from yours?
  • Find the balance between competition and search volume. Terms with a higher search volume tend to be considered more valuable because they are more visible, but they also tend to be more competitive, making it much more difficult for them to rank first. Try to find terms that offer some volume, but also a reasonable level of competition.
  • Go after the ripe fruit. Long-tail keywords and least searched terms tend to lack significant competition. First of all, target this ripe fruit to firmly establish itself in the SERPs.
  • Start with just a few target terms. Don’t generate a list of hundreds of keywords to target; This can cause your strategy to spread too thin. Instead, start with just a handful of goals and make them your highest priorities.

Become the highest authority on a certain topic

Pick an area of ​​expertise that doesn’t have a lot of competition and become an authority on the subject.

  • Do a thorough research. See what else is out there and read as much as you can. The more research you do, the better your content will be.
  • Offer original thoughts. Try to offer an original vision of the subject. That could come from original research or just your original thoughts.
  • Write long-form content. Longer and deeper content tends to hit Rank 1 more reliably than short-form content. Aim for several thousand words in each article.

Promote your best work

When you create a job you’re proud of, work to promote it.

  • Build links. The most important thing you can do is create links, as these convey authority that allows your article to rise in the SERPs. Get and place natural and organic links as often as possible.
  • Share on social networks. Share your work on social media and regularly communicate with new people to build your audience from scratch.
  • Network. Join more groups and connect with your fellow experts. The larger your network, the more people will see your work.
  • Announce. Advertising can be expensive, but it’s a fantastic investment to boost your latest writing.

Avoid keyword cannibalization

Finally, avoid keyword cannibalization. Every page on your website should focus on one main keyword; If you have multiple pages on your site competing for the same keyword, they will end up in conflict with each other. This is known as keyword cannibalization, and it can greatly limit the efficiency of your strategy (and prevent you from reaching Rank 1).

SEO is not something you can automate completely, nor is it something you can use intuitively. If you want to be successful with this marketing strategy, you will need to do extensive research, plan your strategy meticulously, and be willing to invest the time and money to move up the ranks.

Still, if you can do that and get to # 1 on the SERP for at least a few terms, you may end up dominating the competition.

Image credit: quang ngyen vinh; pexels; Thank you!

Timothy carter

Revenue Director

Timothy Carter is the chief revenue officer for the Seattle digital marketing agency. SEO.co, DEV.co AND PPC.co. He has spent more than 20 years in the world of SEO and digital marketing leading, developing and expanding sales operations, helping companies increase revenue efficiency and drive the growth of websites and sales teams. When he’s not working, Tim enjoys playing a few rounds of disc golf, running, and spending time with his wife and family on the beach, preferably in Hawaii with a cup of Kona coffee. Follow him on Twitter @TimothyCarter


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