Where does your website rank on Google? What is its average position? Do you know how to check your website ranking on Google?
Can you answer these questions without hesitation or are you scratching your head?
As a small business owner, knowing where your website ranks in search engines is crucial for any SEO strategy, whether you are doing SEO yourself or you hire a professional to help you.
How can you know which path to take if you don’t know where you are? This is applicable to life in general and it also applies to SEO.
Whether your website is several years old or whether it’s brand new, it’s important to know where you rank on Google. How can you grow your business if you don’t know your starting point?
There are lots of SEO tools to find out what page and position your keywords are on but let’s leave keyword positions to one side. First, let’s go back one step to find out what the average position of your entire website is.
So, how do you check your website ranking on Google for free?
Here are two ways you can check the average position of your website.
1. Do a manual search in Google
Let’s say you are a sustainability consultant in London and you want to know which page your site is on. As you know, Google likes to give you personalised results based on your search history, whether or not you’ve visited a site before, your physical location, your device type and your social connections.
Even if you don’t include a city in your search term, Google will likely show you results for sustainability consultants near you. This is going to give you skewed results.
So, how do you get around the personalised search issue?
The way to get more accurate results is to open an “incognito” or “private” tab. These windows don’t save history or cookies, so your own preferences won’t influence the results.
Now that you are in private or incognito mode, put in the term you want to be found for.
Have a look down the first page to see if your company website is there. If it’s on page one, congratulations are in order. If it’s not, don’t despair. Go to the next page and the next until you find your website. Your website might be on page 10 or beyond so this can be a bit time consuming but it is an exercise worth doing.
2. Google Search Console
The next way to check your website ranking on Google is to use Google Search Console. You may have set this up a long time ago and forgotten about it. If so, it’s time to start using it again because it will give you a lot of information. But, first things first, let’s look at how to find your website’s position using this tool.
- Log into Google Search Console
- Click on Performance on the left-hand side.
The metric you want to look at here is the “Average Position”. “Average position” is the average (the sum of positions divided by the total number of keywords) of your positions for every keyword you rank for. It shows the average of your positions for every keyword your entire site ranks for.
Google shows 10 results per page. So, this website is the 2nd result on the 5th page.
You can compare time periods
If you want to dig a little deeper into the numbers, you can compare your position now with another time period. Click the +NEW button and add in the timeframe you want to analyse.
Has your position improved or declined in the time period you have chosen? Bear in mind, there are over 200 Google ranking factors so don’t expect miracles overnight.
If the graph is a bit overwhelming, you can deselect the other boxes just leaving the average position data.
Now you know your starting position
Don’t start your SEO strategy until you know your starting point. Whether you are on page 1 or on page 100 there’s always work to do. SEO is a journey and there’s a lot of trial and error along the way. So use the data to help you. Knowing your website’s position is a good place to start.