Ever since I started being interested in this area of expertise, I had one big idea in my mind: nobody cares about second place. Therefore, I was always aiming for the first position in SERPs, because this is where actual competition is. So I wanted to win.
Back in days, the number one position for any search term was the main purpose for any online marketer, as it received about 32.5 percent of the search traffic, while the second got 17.6 percent, and the third got 11.4 percent.
But this is now yesterday’s news, as in 2018 number one rankings are not as important as they used to be. Wow, I’ve never thought the day when I’ll say this will come…
#1 as your main SEO goal? Pretty difficult to achieve!
A lot of search optimizers admitted that they’re not necessarily after the first position in Google nowadays, for various reasons. I know, shocking, but let me get a bit into details and you will totally understand which this is happening.
Users don’t click JUST on the first result anymore. When was the last time you typed a query and clicked on the first result? Thought so. In most cases, you probably avoided the three local results, the rich snippet and all those things that are set apart from organic search results.
Sure, Google is trying to improve the quality of the results, but these search entries are actually weakening organic number one rankings.
Then, there’s keyword targeting difficulty. This used to be one of the most important factors in determining your SEO success. Basically, if you could end up with a list of high traffic keywords and a reduced competition, you could easily rank for the first position and bam!, your SEO goal was achieved.
Yes, keywords are still very important, but Google is doing things differently now. To be more specific, it tries to match queries entered by users with the most relevant content instead of the content with the most exact text matches. All this makes it very hard to selectively target an important phrase, so marketers are avoiding putting that much effort into solely reaching position one.
Hey, CTR, what are you doing?
Click-through rates can also affect search rank. The idea is simple: the higher you rank, the more clicks you will receive. The more clicks, the more relevant your page will be in Google’s eyes and the higher you will rank. Everything makes sense.
Still, aside from that, nobody can guarantee that the first position will attract a high CTR. Your query might be receiving traffic, but if the next results has a…better offer, let’s say, it may get a disproportionate number of clicks. In this case, should the first position remain your main SEO goal? Probably not.
In the end, it’s not about the rankings
Now we all agree that rankings and traffic are very important metrics, but in the end, the overall value of your SEO efforts are tied to the value of the users who end up on your site.
It’s useless to get a lot of traffic if users bounce before taking any meaningful actions. Therefore, it won’t matter at all if you manage to achieve a lot of number one rankings. You also need to focus on aspects like conversion optimization, successful branding and – very important – high-quality, user-focused design. Without these components, your SEO strategy it won’t be worth anything.
To wrap it up, it’s obvious that the landscape of SEO has changed a lot over the past years. In order to be successful, there’s no specific strategy. The best thing you can do is consider ALL possible strategies and decide upon those which are the most relevant to your business.
If you have any question in regards to Search Engine Optimization or need a free consultation visit Local SEO Tampa Company or contact them directly via a telephone.