The importance of websites in today’s corporate marketing mix cannot be overstated. Where traditionally customers had to call or visit your premises during working hours, the web offers the world a 24/7/365 window on your company and valuable insight into the goods and services you can provide.
Whether you run a relatively static showcase company site or a full-blown, rapidly updated e-commerce store, the internet offers firms advantages and benefits that were previously unimaginable in the pre-internet days.
However, while having a corporate website is now a pre-requisite for companies operating in the digital age, just being online is only one small part of the story. If you’re to get true value from your site and a Return on Investment (ROI), your site needs to feature in Google – and preferably on the front page.
How search engines power the internet
The internet is the greatest library in history and now features more web pages than there are people in the world. However, while the wealth of information online is truly staggering, the only way we mere humans can make sense of this glut of sites, pages and data is by using search engines.
Search engines power the internet, allowing users to quickly search for and find the information they’re seeking. Without search engines, the web would be no more than a vast collection of unsorted, unworkable pages and virtually impossible to reference.
Google’s dominant when it comes to online search
In the last 20 or so years, one particular company has come to dominate the online search sector. Since it was founded in 1998, Google has evolved to become the world’s most-visited website and now commands over 92% of all search engine-generated traffic equating to a frankly staggering 75,000 search requests per second. Originally the brainchild of two Stanford students, Sergey Brin and Larry Page, Google has shaped (and is still shaping) the internet and, in many ways, modern life.
Why a Google listing is so important
In today’s digital, connected age the internet has become an integral and essential part of society, used by populations the world over as a source of information, media and entertainment. Indeed, the web is now such a fundamental part of our lives that it’s estimated around 72% of all consumer journeys start with a search. If you’re in business, it’s now more important than ever that your site features in Google’s Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs), preferably as high up the listings as possible.
While many factors contribute to a site’s position in the search listings, one of the best ways to ensure your site ranks high is to update and continually improve your website – everything from optimizing pages, images, text and graphics to make them more search engine-friendly to establishing inward links and tinkering with the underlying code of pages.
The breakdown of Google listings results
While being listed on Google is important, the breakdown of Click-Through Rates (CTRs) based on rankings may surprise you. While the results vary slightly between mobile and desktop users, there’s very clear evidence to show that a top-five listing is essential if you want to generate the most traffic:
Position 1: CTR Mobile 26.46% – CTR Desktop 32.49%
Position 2: CTR Mobile 14.40% – CTR Desktop 15.79%
Position 3: CTR Mobile 9.10% – CTR Desktop 8.57%
Position 4: CTR Mobile 6.17% – CTR Desktop 5.52%
Position 5: CTR Mobile 4.39% – CTR Desktop 3.74%
Below the top five, the figures decrease sharply ranging from 3.18% mobile/2.65% desktop for sixth place to just 1.07% mobile/0.93% desktop for 10th place.