Caught by Pigeon? Why You Should Stop Checking The Rankings

Have you noticed your targeted keywords fluctuating in Google’s organic listings (not the paid listings)? Is it causing you a major headache?

If you’ve seen your target keywords for your site jumping up and down in the rankings, you may be thinking of what to do next. More backlinks, a new website design or perhaps some other dark form of SEO magic?

Pigeon Algorithm and The Rest!

The fact is Google has been rolling out many algorithms and updates over recent years.  Pigeon is the latest algorithm from Google and was released in July. It appears to have hit local search listings. There has also been Panda, Penguin and Hummingbird – to name just a few of the others. The rankings, at times, have felt like a white-knuckle ride.

Why the changes? Because essentially Google wants to deliver fast and accurate search results to their users. Low quality sites which don’t offer much are being dropped as well as those that use ‘black hat’ techniques.

I spend much of my time reassuring clients and gently persuading them to take rankings only as a snap shot? Why? Because search results can vary for each person. It can depend on the user’s search history, the device they are searching on, and where they are. Also keyword positions do change anyway.

Google these days also wants to return more conversational, natural search results. This means that it’s made it very difficult to focus and rank on one or two keywords. If you were to try, your site would probably be penalised in the organic search results.

How To Measure

I recommend installing Google Analytics – or similar – onto your website. This will provide you with accurate information. You can then check and measure the:

• Number of new and returning visitors
• Length of time spent on the site
• The bounce rate – how long visitors stay on the page before clicking away
• Conversion goals – such as how many people have signed up to your email list or made a purchase on your site

Optimisation

To help with increasing online exposure – and after all Google still drives huge amount of targeted traffic – create content based around longer-tail key phrases in your field. By doing this, it could mean that your content will be picked up in the rankings for lots of different searches, so more chances of being found.

Summary

Try not to focus on how well one or two of your ideal keywords are performing in the search engines. Instead create optimised content that users will want to read. I’d be very happy to chat more about this, please get in touch.

Kind regards

Tim

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I am a qualified journalist and am passionate about creating great content. I have worked with a diverse range of organisations on marketing including the UK's Central Government (Defra), large well-known companies and with local businesses. I am married to Sarah and we have two daughters. We live in Epsom. I enjoy running, badminton, reading and writing!

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