Have you ever searched for yourself on Google? It is common for people to often search their own names to see what pops up first, and it can be fun to find old pictures and articles, but when you search for your own business and nothing valuable shows up, it can be frustrating. In terms of click-through rates, search terms that include your business’ name in them should have your highest click-through rates. Obviously, if someone is specifically looking for your business they should be finding you. However, that’s not always the case. In this article, we will cover some of the main reasons for your website not ranking.
Is Your Website’s Homepage No-Indexed?
Everything that appears on the results of a search engine is only there because Google, Bing, and other search engines are constantly scanning and crawling websites looking for relevant information for users’ searches. But not everything online can be read by Google or Bing. A simple line of code can actually tell search engines to ignore you. Adding a no-index code to a website tells search engines that you don’t want this page to be found. Many CMS systems (WordPress, Wix, Weebly) and plugins can add this line of code for you when you are developing a website.
How To Check For No-Index & No-Follow Codes:
- Go to the page you want to be visible on search engines.
- Right-click the content and select “view page source”
- Use CTRL+F (command+F on macs) to bring up the search feature
- Search the code for the phrase “no-index” or “no-follow”
How To Remove A No-Index Code
- If you didn’t add the code it may be coming from another source
- For WordPress check settings>reading>search engine visibility. Find out if this box is checked off. If it is, turn this feature off.
- Check WordPress plugins. Many SEO plugins (Yoast, All-In-One SEO) allow you to no-index specific pages or entire sections of your website from their settings. There are also development plugins like Under Construction that allow you to quickly no-index an entire website.
Are Your Page Titles & Meta Descriptions Optimized?
If there are no codes actively telling Google and Bing to ignore your page, there are still some other reasons you might not be showing up for searches containing your business’ own name. One quick way to improve how your site ranks for something is by working on the metadata. Google and Bing can only read content and meta tags on your website. They cannot read images (other than alt text), so having branded logos all over your website might not help you. Your page titles and meta descriptions not only inform Google about what keywords you should rank for but also alter the appearance of how a webpage appears in its search results. Many SEO plugins have a feature where you can add the name of your business to the end of every title. This is recommended as a best practice as it will greatly improve how often you show up for people looking for your business. Generally, a good method for writing a page title is to keep it less than 60 characters and to include an important keyword, a geographic area, and the name of your business. (e.g. Web Design in Boston | Boston Web Marketing).
Do You Have Local Business Schema?
Schema is another type of code that makes things easier on search engines. Search engines do not have the bandwidth or capacity to scan the entire internet on a daily basis. This is why when looking for changes to existing websites they crawl and index pages based on an assumed hierarchy. Generally, home pages and pages that are directly linked in the navigation bar are primary. Blogs, old content, and content that is hard to get to are secondary. You can make Google & Bing’s jobs easier by including relevant schema code. Local business schema lists all of the basic info about your business making it easy for Google to answer questions like “when does Boston Web Marketing open” or “Where is Boston Web Marketing”.
Is The Content On Your Homepage Valuable/Relevant
Another common mistake that will keep your homepage off of search engines is not having enough relevant content on it. Google and Bing are looking to display relevant answers to people’s searches. There is a common mistake with modern web design to be extremely minimalist and feature mostly images with almost no text. For SEO best practices, every page should have a strong h1 tag (your main heading) that features keywords you want this page to rank for. Additionally, you want more than 400 words of well-written, relevant content.
Get Help With Your SEO From Boston Web Marketing
If you are having difficulty ranking for specific keywords and searches, we would be happy to provide a tailored SEO plan designed to improve how you rank for not just your name, but your services, your geographic area, and more. Contact us today for a free website audit.