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Website SEO: How To Fix Organic High Impressions, Low CTR

High impression, low CTR is not uncommon, but what is uncommon is to know how to identify and fix it - dive in to learn more.
High Impressions, low CTR
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High Impressions, low CTR

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You've taken the time to create content that will appeal to a large audience and contribute significantly towards your website's visibility.

You've worked hard to get good search engine results. But users don't seem to click on your website URL, which is a big disappointment.

In this article, we will help you understand how to increase the click-through rate on your website. But first, let's look at exactly what an impression is and why users might not be clicking on links they see in Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs).

Before we dive in, let's get some basics in place by understanding the definition of  impressions and CTR. 

What are organic impressions? 


Organic impressions are the number of times your website appears in search engine results pages (SERPs). SERP stands for Search Engine Results Page. It's what you see when you search for something on Google. A SERP can contain ads, organic listings or both.

Counting impressions occurs whenever an item appears in the list of google search results, regardless of whether the item is scrolled into view, so long as the user does not click to see further results.

What is a click and how does it work when calculating CTR?


Clicks refer to the action of a user clicking on a link in the search results page and being taken to a different page outside of the Google platform (excluding Discover and News). If the user clicks on a link from the search result page and navigates away from google, it is counted as one click. 

What is click-through rate(CTR)?


CTR is a metric that compares the number of people that click on your website in search results to the number of people who viewed it.  In other words, 

Clicks ÷ Impressions = CTR

CTR has long been considered the holy grail of organic search results among SEOs. It doesn't matter how many impressions your site is getting, the bottom line is whether your website has high CTR or low CTR. 

7 Effective ways to improve your Click through rate (CTR)

Why does your search ranking position matter? 


Your search ranking position is directly related to your CTR (click through rate). When impressions are dependent on the search result pages your clicks heavily lean towards ranking position. 

The following table tells you what to expect based on your ranking position in google:

Position 

Outcome 

#0

Knowledge graphs and Snippets  - you get the top spot where you will rank for feature snippets (we will cover this later section of this blog)

#1

You can expect a significant number of clicks 

#2 

You can expect less clicks than the previous position

#3

You can only  expect  relatively lower number of clicks 


As our Position table depicts, place 1-3 is ideal as you will be grabbing eyeballs and whatever efforts you are going to put forward can fetch you some real good results.  

Therefore understanding your average position from Google search console is important. To find the average position of your website from Google Search Console, log in  :

  • Select Status > Performance from the drop-down menu.
  • To adjust the time period, click the date. Select the range for which you want to see the results.
  • Now, take a look at the "Average position."


If your average ranking position is 40 + your chances are pretty bleak because the bulk of users do not scroll past the first page and in this case you are on page 4.

A position between 11-39 may have you hidden on page 2-3. That is still not getting you anywhere in terms of clicks.

Getting a ranking with an average position 5-10 indicates that you are on page 1 already and that you are very likely to get noticed if other search results don't provide the information the user is looking for.

If you are not on the first page, roll-up your sleeves,, because you have much larger problems to focus on - pushing yourself up to the first page of google

If you are ranking on the first page, kudos. Despite this if you still notice low CTR rates then, it's time to get to work by reading the other reasons which we have covered in this blog. 

Having sorted out the basics, here are some effective ways to improve your organic click-through rate.

1.

Improve your title


We must know that the most important part of your content piece, website or landing page is the title. Why should a user click on your result if it has the same title as all the others? You gotta give them the reason to click on your page. 

Incorporating the search term increases the probability of your result receiving a click by 45%. You should also use emotional titles because titles with negative and positive attitudes increase CTR by about 7%. You may improve your CTR right away by using emotional triggers like fear, optimism, interest, anticipation, and so on.

Here’s a killer example from Copyblogger

The 20-Minute Read that Will Make You a Financial Genius

Emotional benefit: feeling wealthy and powerful (also feeling smart)

A Limited Number of Spaces Are Still Available for Founders’ Circle Membership

Emotional benefit: sense of belonging, exclusivity

Apart from that, make sure the title contains your intended "primary keyword." It's an excellent idea to give the reader a sneak peek at what they're in for. So take your time when writing your title. Tell them what you're going to answer and what they'll get. Always leave them looking for more. Give them a sneak peak and get them interested in the body of the blog.

Pro-tip - Keep titles short and crisp. If your title is longer than 55 to 60 characters, Google will most likely cut it off. Wherever possible, use character savers such as "&" instead of "and," "/" instead of "or," and so on.

2.

Write effective meta description


The longest text in your snippet is the meta description. If your title evokes the searcher's interest, then description is the ideal place to rewrite a longer version of the title and urge them to click on your URL .

Always be concise. Longer descriptions are truncated by Google because the width of the description displayed on its results pages is limited to 155 characterss. Make sure that your description is no more than 155 characters long.

Starting with a verb and a strong call to action can make the strongest and most effective meta description.

Instead of just explaining your product or the contents of your blog post in the description, speak directly to the searcher and tell them about the advantages of visiting your website, choosing your product or service, and so on.

3.

Use descriptive URLs


One of the most important pieces of information displayed in SERPs is the URL of your page. As a result, you must tweak it a bit in order to boost your organic CTR. Make it as descriptive as possible so that it is easy for both users and machines to understand. 

A person is more likely to click a link that looks like this

www.fitbrand.com/how-to-beome-a-yoga-instructor

instead of something like this 

www.fitbrand.com/Bd23ij0?ft

Also, make an effort to include your keyword in your URL in an organic way. This will highlight the crux of your piece, manifesting to users that your content is relevant to their search query.

Another advice for improving your URL is to make it as short as possible. This makes it more appealing and easier on the eyes. As a result, it will get more clicks.

4.

Use discretion with dates


It is a good idea to include the current calendar year in your title so that it will seem more up-to-date. This can positively affect how users perceive your page's content as well as its relevance for them—and search engines too! 

If you want to update the text of a blog post and still have it appear in search engines, re-publish your old post with updated information and update the data as well. 

neilpatel.com

If you think your content is evergreen, you might consider removing the date from your post or page. When your content is fresh, it's sometimes a good idea to include a date and remove it once it reaches a certain age. 

But, if you think your users will not be discouraged from finding the most useful content by reading an old content without knowing it, then go ahead and leave out the date!

5.

Use Schema Markup


Schema markup (schema.org)  is a distinct data vocabulary that identifies entities inside web pages and helps search engines identify information inside web pages so that they can provide rich search results to searchers. Because search engines will be able to understand the content of the page better, they will show it higher in search results when they crawl it. It also helps users find what they’re looking for faster by using keywords in their queries.

Some of the popularly and commonly used schema markups include :

Organizations, articles, events,reviews, recipes, people, local business, video, and so on are some of the schema markups that you may use to increase the visibility of your brand and induce more clicks.

Check out few examples below - Events

Review for Zapier.com 

Schema markup is like a map for Google's search engine. When it comes across it, it knows exactly where to display your content in a rich snippet format. For example, when you search for a restaurant in Google Maps or Google Search, you will see the name of the restaurant along with its address, phone number and other information about that business which is pulled from its Google My Business page.

6.


 Featured snippets appear in a small box at the top of the results page, below the ads, and answer a search question.

Visitors frequently review the content in featured snippets, so you will have to optimize the crux and major parts of your content in order to answer the query of users. As a result, constantly develop content with great highlighted snippets, as it will help you improve organic search results.

The biggest caveat in writing featured snippets is to understand the intent of your audience for the type of content you are writing. In this case, apple pie is a keyword that people search for usually to get the recipe not for its definition.

In the example below it is clear from looking at the search results on the first page. All the results point to making an apple pie recipe.

If you intend to feature for the definition perhaps you should target a different keyword, in this case ‘apple pie definition’ - let’s look at the search results page for that - 

So it is wise to optimize your feature snippet by understanding the search results showing up by researching the other search results.  

7.

Improve your page loading time


Website speed has never been more important than now, with Google prioritizing Page Experience and Web Core Vitals as ranking factors. Web vitals are the key performance indicators for your website. They measure site speed, engagement, and visitor experience.


Page speed is an important factor to consider when you're optimizing your website.  Page speed plays a significant role in user experience and can affect your conversion rate. If your site takes too long to load, users may abandon it and never return.  


It is important to note that your page loading time is under 3 seconds (2 second for mobile).

The faster your page, higher the conversions, as people will be more likely to buy something if they don't have to wait for pages to load.

As per a Google research a jump in site speed from one to three seconds increases the bounce rates by 32% on mobile devices. According to HubSpot, “A one-second delay in page speed can result in a 7% decrease in conversions.”

This is where a tool like Ubersuggest, Google PageSpeed Insights, Pingdom Website Speed Test can help to audit your website and provide recommendations accordingly.

There are a few things that you can do to improve your page load speed: 

The first is to make sure that you're using built-in compression for your images. This is something that's built into Shopify, but if you're using a third party theme, it might not be available. A lot of themes have the option to add custom CSS and JavaScript files, so if your theme doesn't have this feature, then you can add it yourself.

Second is to make sure that you're using lightweight fonts and images. There are a lot of tools out there that will help you with this process, including Google's PageSpeed Insights tool and Pingdom's Speed Test tool.

The third thing is to make sure that you don't have any unnecessary plugins installed on your store or website. Plugins can slow down the load time of your pages significantly because they need to be loaded along with the rest of your site's content in order for them to work properly.

In order to improve your page load speed, we recommend removing unused CSS styles and JavaScript files from your landing page.

How to figure a low CTR in Google Search Console?


As mentioned before CTRs are influenced by your position in google search results, if your CTR is less, it is wise to check your ranking position and start from there.  Improve pages where your ranking is 20 or higher and try to improve your ranking. 


Although, attempting to boost CTR for queries with zero (0) impressions is not a good idea. To improve your CTR, you must first determine which pages are underperforming through Google Search Console. Now,that you have figured out which pages are the problem, you could start working towards improving them.

Your turn to hack growth


Now that's a wrap! 

The first step to boosting your CTR is identifying your average search ranking position and optimizing accordingly.

Following this, refine your title and meta description to add more context to help searchers understand what their clicking burden will be. Use descriptive URLs, and try to rank for feature snippets to win the hearts (and clicks from) searchers!

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