How to change your ranking page & get an indented listing

closeThis post was first published 3 years 6 months 3 days ago. It might make references to techniques or tactics which no longer work or which I no longer endorse so please proceed with caution.

Here’s the situation- you rank for a keyword. Great. But the wrong page is ranking. Not the end of the world sure but just like with a PPC campaign making sure the most targeted page is ranking for any particular keyword is the easiest way to improve your conversion rate. Also if you find you’ve got the wrong page ranking chances are with a bit of work you can also go for a second indented listing.

I see this happening ALL THE TIME with big travel and ecommerce sites and its such a quick win if you’re not looking at this kind of stuff you’re throwing money away.

I’m going to demonstrate how I do this with a real example.

Keyword: Ibiza 2011

So a few weeks ago I found my Ibiza jobs page was ranking for the keyword ‘Ibiza 2011′. Bit of a random one but its a strong page and it had a mention of 2011 somewhere on it so not entirely unusual.

But if anyone arrives on this page they’re likely to bounce right off because its

a) Not really targeted to the keyword

b) Pretty thin on content at this time of year

So what I really want is for my Ibiza 2011 landing page to rank on Ibiza 2011 cos anyone searching at this time of year for that keyword are going to be looking to book an early holiday for next year right, which means…. $$$$$:-)

So the first thing I do is make the best of what I’ve got and do a bit of work on that page that’s already ranking to make it a bit more targeted for the keyword and to push traffic and rank onto the correct page so I tweak the page title:

ibiza 2011 page title

Then the H1 and the copy to add a nice big hotlink through to the Ibiza 2011 page:

h1That nice prominent link with the keyword in the anchor text is the best signal you can give the search engines that the rank for this page should be passed onto the target page. Its also going to cut down the bounce rate.

I also tweak the meta description so when that page gets reindexed the SERP’s going to look a bit tidier and hopefully get a better click through rate:

But I still really want to either replace that page or ideally get a second listing for the correct target page so what I do next is to point as much internal link juice at the target page as possible. Because its a newer page you have to send a strong signal to Google that, although its new, its important. The first thing to do is to add a big prominent homepage link to the target page:

And a sitewide link in the footer should help as well:

sitewide link
So give it a few days and the target page has started to rank for the keyword and we’ve got that indented listing as well. The wrong page is still on top but this is a good start:

Now its probably only a matter of time before Google figures out that the indented listing for the target page is getting the higher CTR and puts that top but to speed things up I personally go out and try to build a couple of external links with anchor text to the target page. Nothing too sophisticated as the page is already ranking it just needs a bit of a nudge. Again give it a few days and hey presto…

ibiza 2011

So there you have it a nice double listing with the right page ranked first (now we just need to get it to number one, but thats for another day!)

And as predicted the bounce rate for the target page on that keyword is about 7% lower

So simple steps, for a big pay back- that’s the kind of SEO I love!

1 Comment How to change your ranking page & get an indented listing

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