Hey Small Business! Here’s How To Improve Search Rankings

by | Dec 20, 2022 | SEO

Ranking higher or on Page 1 of Google can mean the difference between meeting your sales goals and closing up shop. You get increased website traffic and conversions when you improve search rankings. These are both great indicators for your bottom line.

Understand Your Current Ranking

To understand your current search ranking, it’s important that you’re tracking the right metrics. The right metrics help to provide you with the clearest picture of where you stand and where you need to improve. Here’s a breakdown of the metrics that affect your business the most.

Organic Traffic

Organic traffic refers to how many people visit your site via Google or direct search. Paid ads are making it more difficult to compete organically, but it’s still an important metric to track and understand. You can find your organic traffic data on Google Analytics under the acquisition channel.

Improve Search Rankings - understand current ranking, transactional keywords, google's algorithm


Conversion rates are calculated by taking the number of site visitors and dividing it by the number of people who made a purchase. This is arguably the most influential metric for business because it directly impacts your bottom line – the more conversions you have, the more revenue you bring in.

Transactional Keywords

Transactional keywords are the words and phrases people search for when they have a purchase intent. They are complementary to informational keywords that may not lead to any conversions as they are likely still in the information-gathering stage of the buying process.[1]

There are a few specific keywords people will use to signal that they’re searching for a product or service to buy, such as:

  • Best
  • Top
  • Reviews
  • Buy
  • Discount
  • Coupon
  • Deal

Google’s Algorithm

It’s no secret that Google’s algorithm is ever-changing. In fact, Moz estimates that Google makes changes to the algorithm 500-600 times a year.[2] The changes being made may impact your search rankings, making it increasingly important to stay up to date to remain competitive.

Optimize Site Framework

Now that you better understand the metrics to track, how do you improve your search ranking? You can start with a technical SEO audit by an SEO expert who can make on-site optimizations to elements on your website pages, such as title tags, keywords, image tags, internal link structure, and backlinks.[3]

All of these elements directly impact your search ranking and give clues to Google about the content that’s on your site. When you include relevant keywords within your site pages, you lead prospective buyers to your products or services more easily to increase traffic and even conversions.

Technical SEO Audit to Improve SEO Rankings

Enhance User Experience

Site structure and visitor behavior also affect how high your site ranks on search engines. There are a few behind-the-scenes improvements you can make to elicit better rankings.

Make it Mobile-Friendly

A mobile-friendly site is a necessity in the current business environment. In 2022, mobile phones generated over 60% of website traffic, while desktops and tablets were responsible for the other 40%.[4] Make sure your website is optimized for mobile users to see a boost in search rankings.

Ensure Your Site is Easy to Navigate

If visitors land on your page but can’t quickly and easily find what they’re looking for or find supporting information, they won’t stick around. This will increase your “bounce rate” significantly.

Your website’s bounce rate refers to the percentage of visitors who view only one page of your website and leave (or “bounce” back to the search results) without taking action.[5] High bounce rates – over 70% – tell Google that your site doesn’t have the information or items the visitor is looking for during their search, leading to a lower ranking.

Enhance User Experience to Help Improve SEO Rankings

Improve Page Load Speed

Slow page speed is the quickest way to land at the bottom of the search results. No one wants to wait minutes for a site to load, and they’ll bounce instead.

Reduce File Sizes

Image size is directly related to page-load speed, and given that load time is a significant ranking factor, it’s important that you reduce the image and file sizes on your website. First, make sure you’re using JPEGs rather than PNGs, as they are more SEO-friendly.

Make Accessibility Accommodations

Accessible sites are not only more inclusive, but they’re also easier for search engines to crawl, allowing your site to rank higher. Accommodations you can include to improve accessibility are:

  • Alt-text
  • Headings in sequential order
  • Page titles
  • Clear language and content
  • Subtitles or captions on videos

Include Video Content

Video content is more stimulating and engaging than static text. Your visitors are more likely to stay on your site and consume engaging video content. This is another signal to Google that your site is worth checking out.

Optimize For Google and Other Search Engines

How much of your site’s organic traffic comes from Google versus other search engines? While Google isn’t the only search engine to keep on your radar, it is the most used – it accounted for over 93% of the mobile search market in the U.S. in January of 2022.[6] You can improve your search engine rankings by optimizing for Google as well as other search engines like DuckDuckGo, Yahoo, and Bing.

Update Meta Descriptions

Meta descriptions don’t directly impact your search ranking, but they help site visitors understand what your website is about. If you provide enough relevant information in the meta description, you can prevent high bounce rates impacting your ranking.

Optimize Your Site and Content for Google and Other Search Engines

Ensure You Include Meta Titles

Meta titles work similarly to meta descriptions. These are the headers that appear underneath the link to your site within the search results. However, unlike meta descriptions, meta titles are taken into account when search engines rank search results. In fact, it’s considered to be one of the most significant factors when the algorithm chooses what websites to rank on Page 1.

Create a Site Map

Sitemaps help search engines discover URLs on your website by helping them visualize the organization of content, which boosts your ranking in search engine results.

Local Searches and The Google 3-Pack

It may surprise you to know that nearly 30% of all mobile searches are location-related.[7] What’s even more surprising is that “near me” or zip code qualifiers have declined for the same searches. That tells us that people expect local search results to be relevant and personalized to them. In addition to relevance, distance and prominence are other important ranking factors for Google. [8]

Another way to improve your search rankings is to show up in the Google 3-Pack. The Google 3-Pack is the three local businesses Google includes when displaying top results for local business searches that include the keywords “near me” or “nearby.” You can show up here by setting up and optimizing your Google Business Profile.

Create Content To Match Intention-Based Searches

The relevance and quality of on-page content are used to determine how a page is ranked on Google. Focus your content marketing efforts on high-quality content as well as on-page SEO to get the most out of your content. On-page optimization also includes other elements of your site, such as meta tags, meta titles, and meta descriptions.

Use Content to Match Intention-Based Searches

Intention-Based Searches Require Detailed Keyword Research

While bringing traffic to your site is important, what matters most are the visitor-to-customer conversions. Detailed keyword research can improve your bottom line if you target less competitive yet still highly searched terms. You’ll rank higher more quickly by targeting keywords that aren’t already being used by your competitors.

Create and Repair Internal Linking Framework

Relevant content is a must for high rankings. However, broken links lead Google to reconsider whether your site is a top resource they need to rank high in the search results. Make sure to fix broken links if you want to rank higher.

How Long It Takes To Improve Your Rankings

Ranking higher on Google is a feat every brand should constantly strive for. But it’s important to remember that organic rankings can take between three to twelve months to see results on the first page of Google.

Rather than deterring you from trying, this is your inspiration to get started right away. While SEO is a long-term strategy, it’s one that pays off in a big way. If you’re looking for an SEO company in Rochester to help you navigate the world of search engine rankings, we’re here to help.

Improve Search Rankings With The Top PPC Agency Rochester Businesses Trust

Ranking higher on Google can seem like an impossible task, but it’s one we’re ready to help you with. That’s why you should leave it to the SEO company businesses in Rochester trust to rank their own businesses. Call us today to start getting results and watch your ranking rise!



[1] https://neilpatel.com/blog/improve-google-rankings-without-getting-penalized/

[2] https://moz.com/google-algorithm-change

[3] https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/seo

[4] https://techjury.net/blog/mobile-vs-desktop-usage/

[5] https://backlinko.com/hub/seo/bounce-rate

[6] https://www.statista.com/statistics/511358/market-share-mobile-search-usa/

[7] https://www.thinkwithgoogle.com/marketing-strategies/app-and-mobile/local-search-mobile-search-micro-moments/

[8] https://support.google.com/business/answer/7091?hl=en

Michelle Ober

Justin’s favorite sister-in-law that he “fires” regularly. Director of Content & Social Media for Full Circle SEM.

If you’re ready to take your brand to the next level, call 888-757-2714 or contact us here today.