As you know, SERPs are the lists displayed in response to keyword searches in Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc. SERP lists include links to articles, websites, blogs and images that match or relate to the search term used.
SERPs typically include both paid and organic (non-paid) results. Paid results appear at the top of the list, and organic results are displayed below.
Most small businesses try to achieve first-page SERP rank through strategic search engine optimization (SEO), rather than purchased top-of-list placements.
Achieving this ranking can be challenging. To complicate matters, search engine criteria change constantly, which means tracking, monitoring and applying these criteria can be a full-time job.
If SERP rankings no longer matter, it could eliminate a frustrating, time-consuming and sometimes costly task for small businesses already stretched to the max.
An ongoing study by Slingshot SEO reveals fresh insights. It found that for any given SERP, 52% of users clicked one of the top 10 organic listings. Roughly one-third (35%) clicked on listings 1, 2 or 3.
It’s interesting to note that 43% of users click on listings 1 through 5, while only 9% click on listings 6 through 10. None of the SERP below-the-fold ranks (listings 5 to 10) received more than 4% of clicks.
This makes sense. A customer enters a search, scans the results and either clicks a link, conducts another search or abandons the effort.
Google and Bing provide SERP rankings tailored to geographic location, social-networking dynamics and a wide and ever-increasing array of personal factors, such as search history. The exact same keyword search will produce SERPs that vary from one computer or person to another, and these results shift continuously.
Knowing how you and your company perform in select keyword searches can be useful. Only you can decide whether maintaining or improving your company's SERP rankings actually matters.
The answers to a few key questions may provide a few clues. Are your sales up? Are qualified leads increasing? What are your customers and prospects seeking? When they seek, are you found? Is it due to SERP rank or something else?
Whatever metrics you use, remember: It's results, not rankings that count.