Website Not Ranking? The Problem Might Not Be Your SEO

Search engine optimization (SEO) is not foolproof. There are no guarantees. Rather, it’s about continually improving your site, continually working to grow your site and climb the search engine results page. 

Sometimes it’s possible to do everything right and not see any improvement in your ranking. In situations like this, there are a few possibilities. First, you may not be targeting the right keywords or generating the correct topics for your audience.

In this scenario, it doesn’t matter if you’re producing compelling, high-quality content. It’s not targeted at your primary demographic, which means you’re pulling in traffic from users who aren’t particularly interested in your brand. The good news is that this is a relatively easy fix.

All it requires is that you do a bit of market research. 

First, take a look at your competition. Use a tool like Moz or Google’s Keyword Planner to see what keywords they’re targeting and give you an idea of where your own focus should be.   You should also draw on data you’ve collected from your own users, through their interactions with your site, your social feeds and any surveys you’ve sent out. 

It may also be that you are spinning content, or writing content that Google has identified as low-quality. Again, this is a fairly easy fix. Either shore up your own content marketing efforts or bring in a contractor who can handle that for you. 

The third alternative is that you have a branding problem. This one’s a bit more complicated. It requires that you first understand what’s wrong. 

Ask yourself the following questions: 

  • Are my competitors doing anything particularly unique or noteworthy that I’ve failed to address? 
  • Has my brand been involved in any recent scandals, such as a faulty product or a viral post gone wrong? 
  • Are consumers speaking negatively about my brand, or worse, not talking about us at all? 

Each of the above issues requires a slightly different approach. If you’ve been involved in a scandal, start making amends. Reach out to your audience, explain that you understand what you did wrong, and detail what you’re going to do to fix it. 

If your brand has grown outdated or is being outperformed by competitors, you’ll need to figure out what they’re doing that you’re not. Why have you fallen so far behind? What can you do about it? 

SEO doesn’t guarantee results. It never has. And it also cannot fix problems such as thin content, poor targeting, or a broken brand. These are all issues that must be addressed separately. 

3 Excellent Free Resources for Topic and Keyword Research

Keyword and topic research can be tedious and tiresome even at the best of times. However, it’s also a necessary step in the creation of high-quality, compelling content. While you’re likely to be well-served through an all-in-one platform like Moz,  don’t underestimate the power of the myriad free tools available online.

Here are a few we’d highly recommend if you’re suffering from a spot of writer’s block.  

Keyword Sheeter

Although it’s not quite as full-featured as Google’s Keyword Planner (which is also free), Keyword Sheeter mines Google autocomplete data to generate a huge list of possible search terms and phrases. It also includes filters to help you either eliminate irrelevant entries or narrow your search to entries containing certain words or phrases.

It can take a bit of time to generate a list for niche topics, but it’s nevertheless an excellent starting point. Note that the free version of the tool doesn’t show search volume or any other data about the entries. You’ll need to use a secondary tool in order to glean that information. 

Alternatively, you can purchase more comprehensive results through the platform, wither with premium currency or for a nominal fee. 

The Content Strategy Helper

It might not look like much at first glance, but the Content Strategy Helper is downright incredible. Developed by marketing strategist Daniel Butler, it searches across the web for content related to your keywords. The network of sites it pulls from is frankly almost overwhelming and includes Google, YouTube, Reddit, Hacker News, and How Stuff Works.

And that’s just the ideas tab. Source & Place leverages Twitter search tool Followerwonk to track down influencers and thought leaders related to your topic. Whether you’re looking to connect with people for their social influence or trying to track down guest post opportunities, it’s an invaluable addition to your repertoire.

Finally, if you’re interested in newsjacking, you can check out the Trending tab, which displays popular articles and news pieces. 


Created by the SEO toolkit developer topicseed, WikiBrowser is a bit more sophisticated than the other software on our list. When you enter a keyword, it provides a visualization of the topic’s outline on Wikipedia, while also generating a list of related topics and concepts that you can use to help spark your creativity. You can click on any of the generated topics to see topics related to them, and so on. 

What’s in Your Toolkit? 

The tools outlined above only represent a tiny cross-section of what’s available online. We chose three that we felt really stood apart from the rest, both in terms of what they did and how they functioned. We’re certain you’ll find them as useful in your own research as we did in ours.

What You Need To Know About Online Reviews and SEO

According to research collected by Statista, online reviews are a major deciding factor when determining what brands to support or what products to purchase. In the U.S., for instance, 62 percent of respondents indicated that online reviews were very helpful to them, with 36 percent of users aged 25-34 using them for research. Reviews are, in other words, a powerful marketing tool.

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How to Use Google Shopping Ads to Promote Your Storefront

Per research by digital marketing expert Adthena, Google Shopping ads generate 76 percent of retail search ad spend and generate 85 percent of all clicks on Adwords. Search engine marketing blog Search Engine Land rightly called it the largest growth opportunity of the year for online retailers. What we’re saying here is that if you’re in the e-commerce space, Google Shopping is a platform you should already be using. 

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How to Perform an SEO Audit On Your Website

One thing we consistently see people neglect where search engine optimization is concerned is auditing. It’s also one of the most critical stages in the process, though. A thorough understanding not only of what you’re doing right but where you’re going wrong is absolutely essential if you’re to succeed in creating a well-optimized, well-performing website.

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