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Top search engine ranking, now what?

By Andy Beal
Posted Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Congratulations, your website is at the top of the search engines and your traffic is at record levels. Sales are up and your boss is grinning like a Cheshire cat. No doubt, as the person in charge of marketing your website, you have either spent hours researching great sites such as Search Engine Guide or Search Engine Watch and have achieved the results yourself or, more than likely, you have employed the services of a search engine marketing company. Either way, you now proudly sit at the top of the search engine results for the golden keywords you wanted.

Don’t get complacent

So now that you are at the top of the search engines, you can sit back, relax and enjoy months of great positioning, right? Wrong! The effort it took to get your website top positioning is nothing compared to the effort needed to keep it there. Now that you are on the top of the world looking down, you need to make sure that you remain in great shape. Granted, some search engines do not need the same type of effort to keep your website at the top, but you are still looking at a full time job and a constant battle to ensure that your website doesn't start slipping down to ranking oblivion

Changing face of search engines

Your first challenge is keeping up-to-date with the changing face of the search engines. Search engines are relentless machines, constantly looking for new enhancements and modifications to make to their results. Popular search engines such as Google, AltaVista and Lycos are forever competing against each other for the crown of “best search engine”. Subscribe to SearchEngineGuide.com’s newsletter and you will repeatedly read news and propaganda from different search engines claiming to have either the most accurate algorithm or the highest number of visitors. It is this battle for bragging rights that drives the search engines to improve their results and keep ahead of the competition. With these changes happening on a more than occasional basis, constant monitoring and tweaking of your website are vital to ensure that your #1 position today, does not become a #30 position tomorrow.

Your competition wants revenge

If your website has managed to obtain top position on the search engines, you can bet that you have dethroned one of your competitors to get there. Do you think they will sit back and be happy with their lower positioning and less traffic? Of course not. The very reason you wanted to move up from obscurity is the same reason that your competition is not going to be happy with their site dropping down the rankings. Consequently, they are likely to be hurting, both emotionally and financially. They are going to want their #1 position back and quickly. Therefore, you can bet your life that they are going to be coming at you with a vengeance. More than likely, they will curse themselves for getting complacent and seek professional assistance to find out why they dropped down the rankings and how it can be fixed. Pretty quickly, they will have either hired their own search engine consultant or read every search engine resource they can find in an effort to get back their top search engine position. Either way, they are going to be working hard to ensure that the coveted #1 spot they once held is again in their possession.

With the proliferation of articles and reports on the importance of search engine marketing, it is easy to be lulled into a false sense of security. Most of the advice that I see and hear seems to concentrate on techniques and tips to achieve top search engine positioning. In fact, a lot of search engine marketing companies only make a one-time fee to achieve initial positioning and fail to offer any type of maintenance service. Hopefully now, more people will recognize that, while it is important to obtain top search engine positioning, it is just as important to ensure your website stays there. Without constant supervision, any top rankings are open to being lost.

About the Author
Andy Beal is Vice President of Marketing for Keyword Ranking, specialists in search engine marketing. Highly respected as a source of search engine optimization advice, Andy has had articles published around the world. Under his guidance, Keyword Ranking has grown to become one of the larger and more successful search engine marketing companies. They were one of the first companies to offer guaranteed levels of success using spam-free methods. andy@keywordranking.com