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The Folly of Search Engine Rank Reports Part 4

Search engine ranks can almost become an obsession to website owners – and for good cause. Being found on the major search engines is vital to your business.

In this four-part series we are looking at those rank reports, how search ranks really work, and what you can do about it. Stay tuned as we dive into this confusing topic. This week is the second of those four parts helping you understand what you see when you look at a search results page.

Targeted Ads

Targeted ads allow anyone to build a campaign and throw some money at it to show up at the top of the search results. It is really that simple at the core. If you are talking to someone who can guarantee a #1 rank you can be sure they are using targeted ads. That is not necessarily a bad thing. These ads can be highly effective, and we recommend giving them a shot.

Places Listings

When you see a map and pins under the map, those are places listings. The data from these is specific to the search engine. Your rank is related to your website, but not wholly. There are a number of factors that determine how that places listing shows up. The first thing you need to do here is claim that listing and get it current. Then you can start to tackle the effort of making it show up better.

Website Ranks

Below the ads and below the places listings is where you find the website rankings. A numbered rank is assigned to these, but that rank changes every time someone searches for it. Additionally, the location of the search, history of the searcher, keyword or key phrase used, and the specific page of your website all affect the placement number… not to mention the actual website and all those internal factors.

Next week we will look at the effect of personalized search data, rank averaging, and what you can do about it.