Hear about new posts as they happen. Improve your marketing.

Today I learned that 62% of SEOs are less focused on #1 rankings than five years ago.

For years, search engine marketers and specifically SEO professionals have focused on getting their keywords to that ever-elusive and super competitive #1 spot in the search engines. Specifically, we have been hyper-focused on ranking #1 because we’ve believed that they get more traffic and therefore better leads/conversions. The search results are constantly in flux, though, as shown via Dr Pete’s Mozcast Metrics and Algorithm Change History. And recently Google removed the sidebar ads on desktop and implemented 4 top ads (just for hypercompetitive queries, they claim).

The good folks over at ConversionXL recently conducted a study about how searchers look at Google’s search results. Entitled F-Patterns No More: How People View Google & Bing Search Results, they tracked searcher eye movement across different search results. Back in the day, they made an “F pattern” in how they viewed the results:

f-pattern

Image Source

ConversionXL’s new study shows that in 2016 searchers no longer view the search results page (SERP) in this way as the SERPs have become more complex with different ad types, rich snippets, and more:

conversionxl-new-heatmap

Image Source

This study made me wonder if how SEOs think about ranking #1 has changed over the past few years. The algorithms have become more complex, user habits have changed, and mobile pushes the search results further down on the page, with some people even showing that ranking #2 or #3 on mobile may get more clicks than #1:

briggsby-mobile-viewports

 

Do SEOs Care As Much About Ranking #1 As 5 Years Ago

Five years ago was 2011. Almost exactly five years ago the Panda algorithm rolled out and turned the SEO world upside down. A little over a year later came Penguin, which turned the SEO world upside down again. Content marketing burst onto the stage as link building interest declined:

content-vs-links

Image Source

So I asked in a Twitter poll:

SEO friends – Do you spend more or less time focused on #1 rankings today than 5 years ago?

Here are the results:

I am amazed! 62% of SEOs focus less on #1 rankings, 12% focus more, and 26% focus about the same on #1 rankings. Here are some of the tweet replies I received, and I’d recommend you check out the follow-on tweets from the tweet as well because there were some interesting discussions.


So what about you? Do you care as much about #1 rankings in 2016 as you did in 2011?

Looking for tool and book recommendations?

Sometimes the hardest part of growing your company is finding the right tools to use to execute on your strategies. Tools are a dime a dozen, but the right tool for the job is hard to find.

Check out our recommendations for lead generation and SEO tools as well as the books we recommend reading as you grow your business.

1 thought on “Does Ranking #1 In Google Still Matter?”

Comments are closed.

More Articles

When should CPG companies start investing in social ads?

Posted by on December 5, 2018 in CredoCast/Social Media

There’s a lot of advice out there about investing in social media advertising and how it’s the new wild west of advertising, with cheaper clicks…

View Post
How to diagnose a website traffic drop

Posted by on November 29, 2018 in Marketing Strategies

Has your website traffic inexplicably dropped and you have no idea why or how to fix it? A traffic drop can be a scary thing…

View Post
What is Local SEO?

Posted by on November 13, 2018 in Business

Search engine optimization is a staple in any effective digital marketing strategy. It delivers people to your site who know exactly what they want, and…

View Post
Loading...