After Google indexes your newly-published web page, you have two options:
- Wait for it to climb through the SERPs for your target keywords slowly
- Implement quick hacks to speed up the ranking of your indexed pages
In this article, we’ll show you how to do the latter so you can reap the rewards of your SEO efforts early.
How to Speed Up the Ranking of Your Indexed Pages
You have valuable content, and Google has proven that by adding your pages to its index. Now comes the matter of ranking. And not just ranking, but ranking in the right place: the first page.
Here’s how to make this happen.
1. Improve the Page’s Technical SEO
Technical SEO can range from simple terms like website-speed optimization to complex web developer lingo like Pagination and Canonicalization for Pagination.
Here are the crucial aspects:
- Clear navigation and user experience: ensure your website has a simple navigation structure, easy-to-find information, and an intuitive design to keep visitors engaged and improve search rankings. The longer visitors stay on your site and the more they engage with your content, the better it is for your search rankings.
Also, the crawl depth of your page should be lower than four. Users should be able to reach any page from your site with no more than three or fewer clicks from the homepage. To fix this, you should improve your interlinking.
- Improve page load speed: optimize your website’s performance for faster loading times, as Google considers page load speed a crucial factor for ranking. After all, you leave when a page doesn’t load for 5-10 seconds.
You can use PageSpeed Insights to analyze your site’s mobile and desktop page speed with recommendations for improvement. Both for Mobile and PC, your website should load in under two to three seconds.
- Use HTTPS and SSL certificates: employ HTTPS and SSL certificates to protect your website and enhance its credibility and rankings.
- Optimize for core web vitals: Google’s core web vitals include Largest Contentful Paint (LCP), Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS), and First Input Delay (FID). If at least 75% of website visitors have an experience that Google rates as “good” across all three metrics, you will get the maximum ranking benefit.
- The LCP metric measures how quickly your website loads for visitors. Ensure your LCP is under 2.5 seconds.
- First Input Delay (FID) measures how quickly your website responds to user input. Strive to have a First Input Delay of less than 100 milliseconds.
- Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS) measures whether the page layout is stable after the first content appears. Ensure to have a Cumulative Layout Shift metric of less than 0.1.
- Optimize images: optimize images by resizing them, enabling lazy loading, and ensuring proper compression. Consider using plugins or tools like WP Rocket and Smush (for WordPress users) to simplify image optimization efforts.
- Mobile-friendliness: prioritize mobile-friendliness, as Google evaluates mobile-friendliness before desktop appearance. Also, use tools like Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test to assess and improve mobile-friendliness.
- Server reliability: choose a reliable hosting server to prevent downtime and slow loading times. Monitor server-related errors in Google Search Console or use tools like Uptime Robot.
2. Implement on-page SEO techniques
On-page optimization refers to the elements you can control on your website, such as the content, meta tags, and images. The content on your website should be high-quality, informative, and relevant to your target audience.
Like technical SEO, on-page SE0 also has much to do with readers. Regarding on-page SEO, you must strike between pleasing Google’s algorithms and pleasing the people who read your content.
- Match search intent: Go through your content again and ensure it addresses the questions or needs searchers have in mind.
- Optimize page titles for a high click-through rate: A well-optimized page title helps search engines understand the topic of your page. It should reflect the page’s content accurately and include relevant keywords to improve search engine visibility.
Your page title also affects your click-through rate (CTR), so make it clickable.
Why? If your headlines are not catchy but appear on the first page, it can affect your CTR. A low CTR indirectly affects the page’s ranking.
- Use internal links strategically: With strategic internal linking, users navigate your site and distribute link authority throughout your pages.
Link each of your web pages to and from every other relevant page on your site. If you have many posts, use the site:yourwebsite.com “keyword” tip to find your existing articles related to what you’re writing.
Also, link high-traffic pages and hub pages to service pages or MOFU content-based landing pages that are harder to rank for competitive terms. You’ll pass link equity from informational pages to intent-based landing pages.
Ideally, you should have 5-10 internal links for a 1500 to 2000-word article. Also, ensure that your anchor texts are relevant to the page you are linking to.
- Optimizing page headings: use header tags (e.g., H1, H2, H3) to structure content on a page. They provide a hierarchy and indicate the importance of different sections.
Properly using heading tags not only aids readability but also helps search engines understand the content’s structure and relevance. It also increases your chances of appearing for other SERP features, such as people also ask boxes, featured snippets, etc.
- Optimize images for direct ranking: image alt tags provide text descriptions for images, making them accessible and providing additional context to search engines.
Using descriptive titles and ensuring proper image sizes for faster page loading is also essential. High-quality images can enhance user experience and rank in image search results.
- Simplify URLs: use descriptive keywords in your URLs that reflect the topic of the page. A URL like “keyword.com/seo-tips” is far more informative than “keyword.com/page-#zWAaovtAe-12-3.”
3. Implement Off-Page SEO Techniques
Off-page SEO creates external trust signals for your website, influencing SERP rankings.
- Build backlinks: backlinks are links from other websites to your content. The more high-authority sites point to your website, the more Google trusts your site as an authority in your niche.
You can acquire high-quality backlinks through guest posting, link baiting like publishing round-up posts, and direct link outreach.
- Leverage social media: social signals, such as likes, shares, and comments, can indirectly influence your search engine rankings. On the other hand, maintaining a positive online reputation is crucial for SEO. Negative reviews and content can harm your rankings. Therefore, you have to be active with your reputation management. Monitor and address online mentions to maintain a positive image.
Why Some Indexed Pages Don’t Rank High on SERPs
Sometimes, with all your effort, there are just some keywords that you wouldn’t rank for. Some of the reasons for this may include:
1. Keyword Competition
You might be targeting highly competitive keywords or phrases. To improve visibility, conduct keyword research and consider targeting less competitive or long-tail keywords that are still relevant to your content. Then, edit to accommodate them.
2. Duplicate Content
Suppose the indexed page has identical or substantially similar content to other pages on your site or other websites. In that case, search engines may choose to show only one of the duplicate versions. Use canonical tags or implement 301 redirects to fix the same content and indicate the preferred version.
3. Search Algorithm Updates
Search engines continually update their algorithms to provide better user experiences. If your page’s ranking drops due to an algorithm update, stay updated on SEO best practices and adjust your content and strategy accordingly.
4. Geotargeting or Personalization
Sometimes, search results are personalized based on the user’s location or search history. This can lead to variations in the displayed results. You can rank on the first page for a user in London and be nowhere on the SERPs for a user in Nigeria. The goal is to ensure your content is relevant to your target audience.
Track Ranking Pages With Keyword.com
Once your indexed pages start to rank, the next step is to track their performance for relevant keywords in the SERPs. This way, you can catch any fluctuations in ranking early. Keyword.com can help here.
Keyword.com is a website rank checker that easily and accurately monitors keyword performance down to city and ZIP code levels. It analyses top SERP competitors with strategies to outperform them with automated reports to share with clients or team members.
Try Keyword.com for free for 14 days, and let us know what you think!
Frequently Asked Questions on Page Indexing and Ranking
Find answers to common questions about keyword ranking and web page indexing.
1. How long does it take for an indexed page to rank?
If you wait for an adequate time frame after publishing a post (6 months to a year) and still see no results, it might be time to investigate.
But if you just started a brand new blog, it doesn’t matter. These early stages should focus on building. Analyzing the trickles of traffic you might get is unnecessary.
The time it takes for an indexed page to rank varies based on factors like competition, content quality, domain authority, SEO efforts, etc. Typically, it can range from a few days for low-competition keywords to several months or even longer for highly competitive terms.
2. Does updating my content help it rank faster?
Regularly updating content can signal to search engines that it’s current and relevant, positively influencing rankings.
3. How often do search engine algorithms update, and how does this impact ranking speed?
Search engine algorithms update frequently, with significant updates occurring several times yearly. These updates affect the ranking system, potentially influencing how quickly pages rank.