If you are reading this article, it probably means that you don’t see your online store on the first page of Google.
Do you worry about your website’s visibility loss? You’ve come to the right place. Here’s how to increase the visibility of your online store.
SEO visibility is a metric. It shows what percentage of all possible organic clicks (from SERPs) a website is getting for a given keyword. Google is king, and ranking highly will do a lot for getting new views to your website.
In other words, SEO visibility is your position in the SERPs in relation to your competitors.
Why does SEO visibility matter?
1. SEO visibility metric allows you to detect SEO issues quickly. Search visibility metric helps you figure out if you’ve been hit with an algorithm update or a penalty.
2. It gives you a good perspective on your site’s overall SEO performance. It tells you how big your part of the available traffic actually is. If you’re looking at your raw SEO traffic numbers only, you’re not getting as much insight in terms of how much more traffic is there still to grab.
3. It enables you to compare your results for specific keywords without getting into the absolute numbers. You will notice the room for improvement quicker.
Are “SEO visibility” and “SEO traffic” synonyms?
No, they are not.
Here’s the main difference between SEO traffic and SEO visibility.
SEO visibility is a relative value. It is represented as a percentage. The value tells you what percent of the available clicks you’re getting.
SEO traffic is an absolute value. It is the exact number of visitors (clicks) you’re getting.
Please note that your SEO traffic may fluctuate while your SEO visibility stays stable. For instance, you’re getting 3000 visits from a keyword this week, and the previous week you got 3300 while still ranking #1 for the keyword both weeks.
Here we can make a conclusion that gaining or losing SEO traffic is not always caused by an SEO visibility gain or loss. However, gaining or losing SEO visibility will always affect your SEO traffic.
So, watching your overall SEO visibility is perhaps the quickest way to identify any approaching SEO problems, which include Google penalties, algorithm updates, and technical problems.
To increase SEO visibility of your online store, it is utterly important to understand the reasons behind SEO visibility loss as you need to know what to fix. There are plenty of possible reasons. Here are some of the most common ones.
Updates that cause havoc
Every developer knows that strange things can happen after a software update.
For instance, you might notice that some of your custom settings or custom redirects have disappeared because a badly designed update failed to keep them backed up throughout the update.
Go back to GA charts, narrow down on the first day when your traffic dropped, and check if you changed anything to your site either that day or a couple of days before.
Your site isn’t mobile-friendly
More people use mobile devices than desktop these days. So if your site isn’t optimized for mobile visitors, you’re setting yourself up for failure.
What you can do is use GSC (Google Search Console) to check how mobile friendly your site is. Just go there and input the URLs from your site that got hit.
In any case, a successful online store is not possible without a fully responsive website. Consider getting a ready-made responsive WordPress theme in order to get an attractive design and all the necessary e-Commerce features already built in.
The server is offline
This is probably the first thing you check. However, Google might have still tried to crawl your website while your server was down. It’s a good practice to hook up your online store to a tool like Uptime Robot. It will notify you whenever your site goes offline. You can have a look at your overall server uptime chart after a while. If there’s too much downtime, Google might start penalizing you for it.
Sometimes your website loses visibility not because it’s broken, but because other sites are getting more views. Don’t forget that your online store exists in a huge ecosystem of other websites. Every web store owner is trying to improve their SEO.
Examine your competitors’ websites. You can use a tool like SimilarWeb to check how your website compares to the competition. Adjust the date range to display only the period that you’ve identified earlier through GA as the moment when you started losing your traffic.
Look at their past content. If your competitors experienced a gain, you should look into the content they either published recently or the past content that they fixed/improved.
Wayback Machine is a great tool for looking up any website’s past content. It will show you what your competitor’s content used to look like before gaining more SEO visibility.
I bet you will find that your competitors work hard on improving past content. Possessing this sort of knowledge is a great starting point to figuring out what you can do to improve your own content game.
Check if they built new links. Link building is a huge part of anyone’s SEO efforts, so it’s logical to assume that your competition probably has a bunch of new links. You can look those up via Ahrefs or any other marketing tool of your choice.
If you find something valuable, this can be the reason why your competitor has taken over your spot. What you need to do is see how you can build links from the same site and earn back some of your SEO visibility.
Google is very proficient with algorithm updates. And they have a good reason for that. Those updates make them the best search engine around. Still, they can be stressful.
The challenge is how do you find out if you were hit with an algorithm update.
You can use Panguin Tool, which shows you correlations between your search engine traffic and the known Google algorithm updates. All you need to do is go to the tool, log in with your GA account, and select the desired GA profile. It will provide you with an overlay view of your organic traffic vs. Google algorithm updates. This works on any screen within GA, so you can look into the overall numbers, individual pieces of content, devices, and so on.
If you see any correlations, take a closer look into a given Google update and figure out what the problem is and what you can do to solve it.
We have already talked above about checking if your competition has gained links. You can check if you have lost links the very same way. Use your favorite marketing tool for that. You can adjust the time period of interest and sort the list by the most valuable domains or URLs.
If there’s a big number of links on the list, or there are highly valuable links on it, you can reach out to the webmasters managing those sites and try to ask them what’s up.
I really wanted to make this resource helpful. I understand that it’s stressful when you lose SEO visibility when your site drops when you don’t get as much traffic as you expected. I am sure you will do literally anything you can to get to the bottom of what’s going on.
Acting fast is essential when bad stuff is going on with your website. You will be prepared to such situations if you are signed up with some awesome marketing tool. It will send you notifications and alerts to let you know what’s going on right away.
That pretty much sums up this article on what can be done if you experience any sort of SEO visibility/ranking problems.
So what’s your take here? Is there anything you’d like to share about your own experience with increasing online visibility of your eCommerce store? Please leave your comments below.