What are the top 10 signs you need SEO help? If you have a website, you’ll want it to show up in search results on the first page of Google. If your SEO is poor, you will need to either improve your SEO yourself, or seek professional digital marketing help to ensure your site ranks on the first page for important keywords. Proper optimization of these keywords will help your site visitors find your site organically.
How does this process work? First, we’ll explain what SEO is, why it’s so important, and then the signs that show if you need SEO help, even if you’re a local business.
What is SEO & How Can It Help My Website?
Search engine optimization (acronym SEO), is an incredibly valuable way to get visitors to your site – organically. People browse for a site by typing in a keyword, for example, “dog vets,” and it will show a list of results of veterinary clinics in their local area. An organic search brings an estimated 53% of website traffic to a site. As a result, if you are a veterinary clinic local to the area that also provides care for dogs, you will want to show up on the first page of those results for “dog veterinarians.” A well-thought out search engine optimization marketing plan can help you achieve that.
Approximately 75% of people will not click beyond the first page of Google results. If your SEO is poor, you will either show up many page results in or not at all, which means your site’s SEO needs major improvement.
How to Tell You Need Help with Your SEO
Don’t miss out on leads and revenue! Here we discuss 10 tell-tale signs your SEO is lacking.
1.) Your website fails to appear in search results for your most important keywords
Is your site just not ranking? If you think you may need SEO help, first look into whether you are ranking for vital keywords and phrases. Going back to our example of the veterinary clinic, you’ll want to rank in the top few results for “dog veterinarians in [your location].” If you’re not ranking in the first few results, you definitely need SEO help.
You may be asking, “how do I find out which keywords are most valuable for my business?” If you don’t know the answer to that question, brainstorm your most important products and services.
- Keywords: These may include, “dog veterinary services,” “dog vets,” “dog veterinarians,” “dog spaying,” “dog vaccines,” and more.
- Location-Based Keywords: For example, let’s say you own a clinic in the Austin, TX area. In that case, an example of good location-based keywords may be “dog veterinarians in austin,” and “austin tx dog vets,” etc.
Of course, your SEO experts can help guide you in the process of choosing the most effective keywords. SEO professionals will test the search volume of your keywords and optimize your pages accordingly.
2.) Your website gets little traffic
Have you noticed that your website gets few visits? Once you have started putting some effort into SEO on your website, you will want to start evaluating your organic website traffic. Organic website traffic is the amount of visitors to your site who discover your site by doing an organic search. To get started with this, you’ll want to utilize Google Analytics, a free web analytics service provided by Google. Once you have set up your Google Analytics account, log in and follow the instructions below to assess your organic traffic:
- Navigate to the Acquisition tab
- Click on Overview to see your top performing channels
- Click on Organic Search to review the percentage of organic website traffic coming to your website
In your research, if you find that organic searches are not leading your traffic, it’s time to hire a trusted SEO agency who can significantly improve your organic rankings.
3.) Your website traffic isn’t converting
Maybe your site visitors can find your website organically, but when they’re on your site, they won’t convert. Conversions include the percentage of visitors who:
- Click links or buttons,
- Fill out a form,
- Purchase a product,
- Share content to social media, and more.
Improving your conversions includes increasing the number of page visits, form submissions, and clicking on links or elements on your pages.
There are a number of ways of techniques to help improve your conversion rates, however, if you’re a newbie, it can be an overwhelming process. Hiring an SEO expert can help your get pointed in the right direction. A trusted SEO agency can help diagnose potential conversion issues on your site. In addition, investing in professional SEO help can be incredibly beneficial in the long run, because professionals can help you obtain better sales and revenue.
Especially since digital marketers have many years of experience in the industry working with clients like you, hiring an expert ensures that you aren’t missing out on opportunities to properly optimize your website.
4.) Your website isn’t responsive
Currently, as of 2021, approximately 55.56% of all site traffic comes from mobile phones. If you still have an old, not responsive website, you will be missing out on some valuable leads. So even if you are ranking well for valuable keywords, if your site is hard to navigate on mobile, you will easily frustrate visitors. They will more than likely tap away from your site.
A responsive website means that your site will look exceptional on mobile phones, tablet devices, laptops, or desktop computers. No matter the size of your device or browser your visitor is using, you’ll want your website to be easy to navigate to reduce bounce rates and increase sales.
Maybe you’re unsure of how your site looks on mobile. If that is the case, check out the Google’s mobile-friendly test tool. This effective tool can help to pinpoint whether you need a site re-design to make your site mobile-friendly. At WebCitz, we have professional web developers who design mobile-first, to ensure your site looks professional on mobile devices.
5.) Your Site Isn’t Secured with HTTPS
Starting in July of 2018, Google started penalizing non-HTTPS websites. What is HTTPS? HTTPS, or Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure, is used to establish secure communication over a network. Your browser will check a website you are visiting to ensure it is secure/the certificate on it is issued by a legitimate certificate authority.
To find out if your website has HTTPS or HTTP, go to the padlock icon next to the address bar in your browser. If clicking on it brings up a “Not secure,” you’ll want to purchase an SSL (secure sockets layer) certificate from a trusted certificate authority. Don’t ignore this important factor, because not having a secure site will get you penalized and dropped in search results.
6.) You don’t have a content marketing strategy
One of the best ways you can improve traffic to your site is by having an effective content marketing strategy in place. You will want to either hire internal content writers, write content yourself, or hire an SEO company with professional content marketers who have an understanding of how to write quality, keyword-rich content.
If your website doesn’t have valuable content that matches or helps to answer your visitors’ searches, you will need to look into hiring professional SEO help.
Again, going back to our example of the veterinary clinic, you’ll want to write in-depth, keyword-rich content full of keywords that help to get you ranking for “dog veterinarians,” etc., on search engines like Google. Please keep in mind that you will need to create informative pages that are not just for getting you ranked, but also that are helpful to your users. (This includes not stuffing your keywords! This is considered a Black-Hat SEO tactic.)
If you’re new to SEO, it may be well worth your investment to hire an experience SEO agency to make sure your content marketing strategy is working and that you’re not missing out on any opportunities.
7.) Your website has technical audit issues
Another factor that may be impacting your traffic and conversions is technical audit issues. Some of the technical issues your site may have include:
Having content that reads the same or almost the exact same can negatively impact your site’s rankings. Google will start penalizing your website if you have a several or many pages with the exact same content, as search engines will have a hard time knowing which page to rank since they’re targeting the same keyword(s). As a site owner, duplicate content on your site may fly under your radar if you don’t have a professional scan your site for duplicate content.
Approximately 40% of visitors will leave a website if it takes too long too load – aka longer than 3 seconds. If your site loads 3 seconds or longer, you will miss out on valuable leads to your website. Ensure that your site speed is properly optimized by hiring a professional who can assess what elements of your site are causing the speed issues. You can test your page speed by using Google’s PageSpeed Insights tool.
What is a robots.txt file? This file shows search bots which pages of your site you don’t want crawled or indexed. As a site owner, you will want to be very careful to avoid blocking your entire site from being crawled or indexed. A professional SEO company can help you identify if your robots.txt is blocking certain important pages from being being found in search engines.
Finally, an XML sitemap is a map or blueprint that helps search engines like Google to index everything on your website. The benefit of having an XML sitemap on your site is that it helps to increase the speed of the indexing process. Hiring SEO experts means that they can create a XML sitemap that will help significantly improve the indexing of your site.
8.) Your site has poor user experience (UX)
User experience, a term originally coined by Don Norman in his book, “The Design of Everyday Things,” first appeared when he published it in 1988. Everything provides a user experience – it just depends on whether it’s a good or a bad one. Cars, elevators, floor lamps, smart phones, hair dryers, light switches, video game consoles, and websites, just to name a few, are all examples of good or poor UX design.
When it comes to websites, you as a site owner, will want to consider whether your website provides an understandable navigation, an attractive yet useful design, well-written content that is informative to your users, helpful CTAs (call-to-actions), excellent site speed, and more. Hiring professional UX designers and marketers will help you figure out why you may have poor SEO and UX, and what you can do to improve your site’s overall user experience. Quite often, search engine optimization and user experience go hand-in-hand as a poor user experience could be a leading factor as to why you don’t get many conversions on your site.
9.) Your site has insufficient backlinks
Google and other search engines care about the amount of backlinks you have pointing to your website from other sites. If you don’t have many backlinks linking to your site, it could be one of the leading reasons why your SEO is poor.
How does it work? When your site earns links from other authority websites, Google and other search engines see this as valuable. With more backlinks from quality sites linking to your site, your site will also be seen as an authority in the industry and you will be ranked higher overall in search results. With the help of tools like Ahrefs, you can assess the quality of your site’s own backlinks.
If you are new to backlink optimization, simply give a professional off-page SEO agency like WebCitz a call at 800-796-8263 today! Our SEO experts can help you gain backlinks that put your website higher in search results.
10.) Your competitors rank, but you don’t
If you find that your competitors are ranking, but your website isn’t, it may be time to hire an SEO professional. SEO marketing strategists are able to perform a competitor analysis to assess what your competitors are doing to rank. Hiring SEO experts to perform this assessment can provide great insight into how you can improve your own site’s content, linking, optimization, user experience, and more.
An SEO agency will review a number of aspects in a competitor analysis. These may include a competitor’s backlink profile, domain age, optimization practices, social shares, targeted keywords, and traffic, among others.
Don’t be too hasty when hiring an SEO company, because cheap SEO services are significantly different than an affordable SEO company. Check out our post on cheap SEO services – why investing in them is a bad idea.
Other Signs You Need SEO Help
Some other signs you may need SEO help include:
1.) You may need SEO help if you’re not showing up on Google Maps
When you do a search for your site in your local area, but you’re not showing up among your competitors, you may be missing out on Google My Business optimization. You’ll want to claim your Google My Business page to ensure you’re listed in local directories. In addition, you’ll want to make sure that your contact info (Name, Address, Phone Number), is consistent across all platforms like Google My Business, Facebook, Yelp, Angie’s List, and others.
2.) You may need SEO help if you’re not getting quality traffic
If you’re getting traffic to your website, but not quality traffic in your target market, you may want to hire an SEO expert to help you to optimize for your target audience specifically. Your conversion rates will be low and your bounce rates will be high as a result of not understanding who your target market is.
3.) You may need SEO help if you don’t use social media
While social media networks are not ranking factors specifically, they are an indirect ranking factor. Shared social media content can lead to engagement and linking which will help your rankings overall. In addition, a social media profile is often among the higher results in a search query for a business. For example, having a Facebook page with engagement and linking helps to improve your rankings and online presence.
4.) You may need SEO help if you don’t know what your top performing landing pages are
Do you know what your top performing pages are? You may need SEO help if you have absolutely no idea which pages are driving traffic to your site. Knowing which pages are performing best for you can help you and/or your SEO agency focus on those pages and optimize them with quality keywords, strong CTA’s (call-to-actions), and improved content.
How Hiring Professional SEO Help Will Get You to Rank
An experienced expert who uses White-Hat SEO techniques can help you rank better in many ways. Some effective ways to help your SEO include:
- Creating quality, keyword-rich content.
- Improving your website’s navigation so that visitors can quickly locate the product or service they need.
- Optimizing your page speed to prevent frustrated site visitors and lower bounce rates. (Percentage of people who visit your site and then immediately return to the search results without taking action.)
- Cleaning up your website’s code and audit issues.
- Earning backlinks.
Related: Are SEO Services Affordable?
Hire Expert SEO Help
Hiring the right SEO management company is an important investment, and it may take time to find the right one. Consider their client testimonials, portfolio, team culture, and response time to your questions as factors in your decision.
Please note that when you first begin the process of effective search engine optimization, the results will take some time. It may take as long as weeks or months to get results for some of your most important keywords. However, the investment in the right SEO agency will be well worth the time and cost, because organic traffic comprises of approximately 53% of website traffic.