Ranking, at it’s simplest definition, is being listed on a search engine where people will see your website. Ideally search phrases that are relevant to your business. The idea is a person who types “Atlanta Plumbing” will be looking for a plumber in Atlanta, so naturally all plumbers in Atlanta would love to be at the top spot.
Careful though – just because you rank on the first page does not mean people are actively searching for that particular phrase. What you need is visibility – or appearing on search results where people are actually looking. We have quite a few clients who think their potential customers type in a set of words or phrases to find them, and when we give them the data it often times does not match what they expected to see.
Real Life Example
Let’s say you own a real estate company. You sell and rent property. Would you know how your potential clients are searching? Also would you have an idea of frequency? Noone knows the exact number (unless you own every result on every search) but Google provides a tool that gives us estimates that are very accurate.
I bet you can think of a few phrases, and you’d probably be right – like “Atlanta real estate” would be obvious. What about “Atlanta buy new house”? The former is searched for around 8,000 times per month. The latter? zero.
data source: Google Adwords Keyword Tool
These numbers are based on 75 key phrases totaling 30,000+ monthly searches. Would you have guessed these results? I hope you would not be guessing! Understanding your market search behavior, or the key phrases your visitors use are a critical part of your internet marketing campaign. Focusing on the wrong ones, or key phrases people don’t search for, can be very detrimental to your return on investment, not to mention the success of your business.
Looking for the data? Click here for an excel spreadsheet.
Don’t assume – get some data before you pat yourself on the back for ranking for your company name. You may just be missing out on some closely related phrases because you don’t know people are looking for them. Especially big ticket items like roofing – if you rank for roofing do you also rank for leak repair, reroofing and roofing contractor? Even on a low-traffic query one closed lead can make a significant impact.
If you have any questions we’d be more than happy to help! Contact us today