If you work in the digital sector at all, you’ll have experienced the wrath of the age old SEO complaint from clients:
My website isn’t in Google.
Translated roughly to: My website isn’t at the top of the search results for whatever competitive phrase they have decided to fire at the search.
The inconvenient truth of the matter is simply this.
They probably don’t deserve to rank number one.
Like them or loathe them, in this day and age the results where Google gets it completely wrong and delivers terrible ranking results are few and far between, particularly for more competitive terms. Typically the more competitive the term the more searcher intent and thus the more links to info on the web. The more links, the better the chances are that they’ll get handed to the right website. Show me a site that shouldn’t be at the number one position and I’ll show you a site that is better than the competition.
One of the easiest ways to turn that conversation around is to ask this:
‘What information are you providing on your website that makes you a better result than the current number one position?”
“What are you doing to build your website into the best possible answer for your users search?”
This question is often met with a but.
But I’m bigger.
But my product is better.
But I’ve been in business longer.
Here’s the thing. Google doesn’t care whether you are cheaper or better than your competition IRL. Google cares about providing the best possible result for an end user.
This isn’t 1995. SEO isn’t about whacking a few keywords in your content and hoping for the best.
The folk sitting at the number one positions aren’t winning through some SEO trickery; often they are simply winning because they are a better result.