You’ve started up a new website for your company. You bought the domain, had the site designed, and added content. A month goes by and you notice that your site is nowhere to be found for searches related to your business. Another month goes by and the same exact thing. So you scratch your head asking yourself what’s going on. All of your competitors show up in Google, so why don’t you?
There’s several possible scenarios. And in order to find the root cause, it’s best to hire a professional to audit your site. But before you do, consider these common issues that could be the reason why your website doesn’t show up in Google.
1. Your Site is Too New
If you just recently bought a domain name for your company, then it will take some time for your site to start ranking. The reason behind this is that one of the factors Google looks at when determining which sites are relevant for searchers is the age of a domain. Sites that have domains that have been registered for years are more seasoned in the eyes of Google. Often times they’ll have more backlinks pointing to them too, since they’ve been around for a while.
New domains on the other hand, don’t have any type of track record. It takes some time for Google to see what it will develop into. That’s why you’ll notice that many of the sites that are ranking highly for your search terms have been there for a long time. So if you’ve just setup your site, give it some time, and make sure that you’re adding plenty of high quality content on a consistent basis!
2. Not Enough Content
Which brings us to our next point. You want to make sure that your site isn’t thin when it comes to content. If your site only has a home, about, and contact page, then your lack of content could be holding you back. Google has made it no secret that they prefer sites with plenty of content over thing sites with little to no content.
Sites with more content tend to offer more value to searchers, so Google wants to make sure that they show up higher for relevant searches. Keep in mind that it’s not all about the quantity of content, but also the quality. High quality content tends to earn more natural backlinks, and attract more visitors. A good way to start adding more content to your site, is to have individual pages for each service you offer. Also, consider adding a company blog that’s updated multiple times per month to keep a consistent stream of fresh content on your site.
3. No Meta Titles
Meta titles are essentially the titles of each page of your site. Every page SHOULD have a different meta title. You’ll be able to see meta titles in two places. When you do a Google search for something like this:
Or when you click on an actual page, you’ll see the meta title on the browser tab like this:
Meta titles help tell Google what a webpage is about. It’s one of the essential parts of on-page SEO, and can have a huge impact on your company’s search rankings. Here’s an example of the results we got for one of our clients whose home page meta title simply read “Home”. We optimized it with relevant keywords, and they got an instance increase in search rankings.
Make sure that the meta title for every page of your site clearly describes the content on the page, using relevant keywords. It can make a big impact.
4. You Have On-Page SEO Issues
So far, we’ve talked about issues that are fairly non-technical. But a lot of the times, there are technical issues with your on-page SEO that are preventing your site from being indexed, or stopping it from being properly seen by search engines. For instance, your robots.txt file could be blocking search crawlers from being able to access your site. Or you could have multiple versions of your home page:
When that happens, Google might not be able to determine which version is the correct one. It’s always best to make things as simple and clear as possible for search engines.
Some other common technical on-page SEO issues that could be stopping your site from ranking are:
Using dynamic URL’s
Using redirects incorrectly
Not having a sitemap, or having a broken sitemap
Most of these problems are things that are spotted during an SEO audit. We recommend having an experienced SEO company fix these issues instead of trying to tackle them yourself.
5. You’re in a Competitive Industry
Sometimes it takes a while to rank just because the industry or location you’re in is very competitive. For local small businesses, if you’re in a large metropolitan area like New York, Washington D.C. or Los Angeles, then it’s going to be a little more difficult than if you were in a smaller area.
Also, certain industries are more competitive because they actively take steps to improve their SEO. For instance, dentists, doctors, and lawyers are all industries that embraced SEO early on because they see the benefits. Therefore, there are more dentists, doctors, and lawyers all competing to rank for the same keywords, which makes it more difficult to get to the top.
There is no Single Solution
More than likely there isn’t just one thing that’s stopping your company’s site from ranking. It’s usually a combination of factors. But don’t be alarmed if you website isn’t seeing results right away. Make some of the changes we suggested, and be patient. If your site still isn’t seeing any growth, then it may be time to seek help from an SEO agency.
You have nothing to lose and a lot to gain by contacting NOVA. We’d love to chat with you and get a little bit of info about your business. Complete our online consultation request form and tell us what you have in mind. We’ll be in touch with you shortly to discuss ways we can possibly work with you and assist you in growing your business in Northern Virginia.