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Help! My website rankings on Google are dropping. What should I do?

April 21, 2017 SEO
« Au secours ! Mon site perd des places sur Google… Je fais quoi, moi ? »

Have you noticed a dip in your website’s search engine rankings? Are you desperate to fix this as soon as possible? Follow our advice to get your website back on track.  Before long, you’ll be back on Google’s first page.

If you want to stop your site from continuing to lose its ground on search engines (and hopefully reverse the trend), you need to determine what has caused the change.  Only then will you be able to adapt your solution.

Scenario 1 Your website is backsliding because you’re not putting enough time into it.

On the Internet, you can’t take anything for granted.  If you want your website to rank high and stay there, you need to put forth effort every day.  Natural SEO takes work. It can be time-consuming to keep up with techniques that will ensure your website ranks high on search engines.  You’ll have to be consistent about choosing the right keywords, optimizing your website content, keeping your texts and photos up to date and building inbound links. Otherwise, your website’s position will suffer.  The good news is, it’s never too late to act (and be proactive).

Scenario 2 Competing sites are taking over.

Sometimes the competition gets tougher! If your website has dropped in search engine rankings, it might be because it is being surpassed by stronger, more current websites with better SEO.  To reverse the trend, it’s up to you to activate the tools available to you (choice of keywords, optimizing tech and content, quality links, registration in Google My Business and specialty directories, social media presence and more!) If your efforts aren’t yielding results, don’t despair! You can use paid ads that will instantly improve your visibility. But be aware these results are only temporary.  You can also outsource a web professional who will target your SEO or come up with a plan to redo your website.

Scenario 3 Its position has fallen because Google’s rules have changed.

Or maybe you are continuing to systematically apply the tried and true techniques that up until now, placed your website in a solid position on Google. But somehow your website’s results are still falling.  How does something that worked so well yesterday suddenly become ineffective overnight? The algorithm Google uses to rank sites has probably changed.  What the old algorithm might have liked might not be effective for the new one.  If your site continues to follow old guidelines, its rankings may never improve.  Then what’s the solution? Get to know Google’s new rules and start to follow them! But stay on the lookout for the next change in algorithm!

Handy Tip

Google’s algorithms (Google Panda, Panda 3.10, Google Penguin 2.0, etc.) consider more than 200 criteria to determine how to rank websites.  Though you can do your best to figure out all the rules for yourself, nothing will replace the expertise of an SEO professional.

Scenario 5 Google is penalizing your website

If Google thinks that your website has broken its rules, the renown search engine might penalize you by downgrading your website.  Worst case scenario, you could even be de-indexed, which means your website could disappear entirely from search engines.  You especially need to avoid:

  • Duplicating content from other websites
  • Recycling your own content
  • Overoptimizing your content by repeating keywords excessively and trading links with other sites.

For Google to accept to re-examine your case and eventually lift its penalty, you need to proceed with the necessary changes.

Key Points to Remember

  • There are a number of reasons why your website’s search engine results may be lagging. It might have been penalized by Google, or perhaps it doesn’t meet the criteria of Google’s new algorithm. Or you might not be putting enough time into it. Or your competition might be getting stiffer.
  • If you want to improve your ranking, revisit your natural SEO strategy. (A professional can help you out).
  • If your efforts to regain your position yield nothing, it might be time to look into a complete website redo.