Once you’re ranked in the search engines, the game isn’t over. Ranking in the search engines isn’t a one-time endeavor. You need to keep working on your rankings to make sure that you can and do improve your traffic.
If you aren’t regularly working on improving your rankings, your competitors will be able to overtake you. By the time your competitors actually outstrip you in the rankings, they may already be way ahead of you in backlinks and other factors.
To prevent this from happening, you need to proactively maintain your search rankings. Here’s how.
==> Maintain a Steady Backlinking Strategy
Marketers often put huge pushes into getting backlinks when they want to achieve rankings, then completely neglect getting backlinks once the rankings are established.
Instead, once you’ve gotten your rankings, it pays to continue putting a small amount of energy into getting backlinks. You don’t need to get as many as when you’re striving for rankings, but you should still keep your link building efforts active.
For example, instead of shooting for 100 links a month, you might just shoot for 10. Enough to show Google that you’re still active, without tasking too many resources.
==> Keep Adding High Quality Content
Continue to add content to your website. It’s much, much easier for a static website to lose rankings than a website that’s constantly being updated.
When you add new content, you get new visitors. You get new pages to get ranked. You get more backlinks as more and more people find your site and link to it.
Also, Google wants to show people websites that are active. When given the choice between a three-year old website that hasn’t been updated and a website that’s constantly adding new content, Google will choose the latter, all else being equal.
==> Stay on Top of New Ranking Factors
The search engines are constantly updating their algorithms. By and large, it’s not hard to figure out what their latest updates are.
For example, in 2011 social media suddenly started playing a part in rankings. How often you’re tweeted about and your Facebook likes can now actually help your rankings.
Furthermore, Google and Bing came together to create Schema, which allows you to embed data structures into your website that helps search engines figure out what your content is about.
Stay on top of developments in the search world and make sure your website is taking advantage of all the new ranking factors.
These are a few smart ways to maintain your online search rankings. Remember: if you don’t actively maintain your rankings, sooner or later your rankings will drop. It’s much easier to proactively protect your rankings than it is to try and chase them back once they’re gone.