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SEO Article Writing: How Can I Get A Higher Ranking For My Articles In Google?
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Reader Question:

I’ve done a fair amount of article marketing and have often had good results, appearing on the the first two or three pages on Google. However I notice the articles do not hold their position and fall down the rankings, sometimes quite quickly. Is there anything I can do to retain article page rank over time?


Thanks so much for asking this question, because it gives me the opportunity to correct a very common misconception that people have about article marketing.

And I can totally see how the misconception occurs–it seems logical to assume that the power of article marketing comes through the articles themselves and that getting a high ranking for the article is the key to your success.

But actually, that shouldn’t be your main focus. What you should be really focusing on is an increase in search engine results rankings for the keywords associated with your website. That is what the aim of an article marketing campaign is. Rather than to try to get the articles themselves to appear at the top of the rankings (which is certainly an added bonus when it does occur), the real payday comes when your website is listed at the top of the rankings for your keyword terms.

As an aside, the reason why you may get new articles not holding their position is simply because it’s new content – longevity is one factor the search engines consider.

While new content can be displayed more prominently to start with, simply because it helps Google keep it’s own content feeling fresh and up to date for its users, once the content is no longer ‘new’ older content based on the same keywords may begin to outrank it again.

However, you may notice over time that your articles start to climb up the rankings again, especially if it’s recognized as good quality content that people are spending time reading.

To help indicate quality, Google measures how long someone spends on a page they have clicked through to, before clicking back to search again. If they quickly click back again, it can indicate low quality content that no one wants to read, and Google’s results will reflect that.

The converse is also true, and this is why we emphasize time and time again that the results from quality content far outweigh poor quality, unreadable gibberish (luckily a declining number of people still believe the latter is a useful approach).

So, back to your main focus, when you’re doing an article marketing campaign, I would advise you track two stats–

1) Search engine rankings for your keywords.

This may sound technical, but it really couldn’t be simpler:

Go to and search for one of your keyword phrases. In the results list, look for your own website. Where does it sit in the rankings? If it is the first result on the first page, then you’re in the highly coveted #1 position for that particular phrase.

Chances are though, unless you’ve been marketing your site consistently, your site will be a little (or a lot) further down in the rankings.

If you can’t find your website in the rankings for that keyword term, don’t be too alarmed. All that means is that you’re in the beginning stages of marketing your website. After you’ve been submitting articles consistently for a while, you should start to notice your website appearing in the rankings and slowly making its way up month by month.

When you find where you site is listed in the rankings, make a note of it. Then move on to your other keyword phrases, for each one jotting down the ranking for that keyword phrase for that particular month. Do this exercise every month.

You may wish to do this with Google and also Yahoo and any other search engines that you’re interested in (they will likely have varying results). I track for Google, Yahoo and Bing.

Please note: in order for article marketing to work at its optimum, you will do keyword research and then use your keywords appropriately in your article titles, your articles, and also your resource boxes.

2) Your website traffic.

The primary stat to track is your website’s ranking for each of your keyword terms, but of course the end result you’re going for is increased traffic to your website.

The higher your website is ranked for your keyword terms, the higher the corresponding traffic. You see, when people do searches, they will usually pick one of the first sites in the results lists. Think about how you search–you may look down the first page, but you probably don’t go all the way to the 10th. The higher ranking sites are the ones that get your business.

The same is true for your own site. The higher it goes in the rankings, the more traffic it will get.

So, keep in mind that you will see results in your website ranking for your keywords before you see an increase in the traffic to your website.

Don’t be overly concerned about the rankings of the individual articles, although many of them are still likely to do well and bring you traffic over time (also note search engines aren’t the only way in which individual articles are located) — focus on the ranking of your website for your keyword terms. Your goal is to be as high as possible, that is where the most dramatic benefits are.

Related Resources:

How To Write An SEO-Friendly Article

NOTE: Please be aware this content may now be outdated. For the latest quality content on how to build massive publicity for your website, please go to The vWriter Blog - Helping Businesses Grow Traffic, Build Engagement, and "Be Everywhere"

7 Responses to “SEO Article Writing: How Can I Get A Higher Ranking For My Articles In Google?”

  1. Great article writing. Could not have said it better myself. I have been in the article writing business for a few years now and one thing that you need to get from your clients is their keywords. Many people pick to broad keywords. For instance if you sell bikes you wont make an article on bikes. Its to diverse and it will get lost in the rankings. You would narrow it down to “Mountain Bikes” then perhaps “off road mountain bikes” etc etc. As you add more detail to it the less competition their is, the less traffic however the more targeted your article becomes. Traffic is ok but targeted traffic is gold!
    wishing you nothing but the best and good health
    - Prestigious

  2. Thanks Steve for that clarification on SEO Article Writing. I have noticed that when I search at Google my website keywords, my site ranks 2nd only when the keyword is put in quotation marks as in “home business ideas”. But when I remove the quotation marks, it’s nowhere to be seen.

    I’m concerned because most of the internet users do not insert keywords in quotation marks when they are looking for information. Any clarification on this?

    Secondly, my website has in less than 2 weeks improved greatly in the Alexa ranking by over 2.6 million. Its rank currently is 1,062, 815. Does that give some hope as regards the traffic ranking?

  3. Steve Shaw says:

    @Charles Kiyimba: Hi Charles,

    The reason for the difference is simple … competition. There are far fewer sites containing the exact phrase “home business ideas”, and out of 1,820,000 possible sites for that search, you’ve zoomed right to the top, and is a clear indication something is working.

    For a broad search, there are (when I’m searching anyway) nearly 83,000,000 competing web pages, and it’s going to take longer and be tougher to clearly indicate to Google that your site is a central hub for home business ideas, and one they should put to the top of the listings.

    However, winning the exact phrase game can often be a precursor to rising up the rankings for broad matches too … so you’re certainly heading in the right direction! Your traffic levels are a similar indication that you’re heading in the right direction and as you continue article marketing, you are likely to see that continue to rise.

    Hope that helps!

  4. I ditto what Mels and Charles have said above. Thanks for such useful information on Article Writing. We know that Article Writing itself plays a vital role in making the best ranking of our business. This is useful information, again. thanks

  5. Very nice. I am wondering about reusing articles. Will google smack you if you post your article on your site first get it indexed then submit it to the directories as is?

    While here, have you or do you post articles to places like Craigs list?

    Thanks for the tips given.

  6. Steve Shaw says:

    @Haggard Ryder: Hi Haggard,

    If you publish the article on your own site first, it is best to totally re-write the article before submitting it as a free reprint article to be published on other sites. The reason for this is that you want the content on your own site to be unique.

    And even if the content on your blog is indexed first by Google, you have no control over whether Google will continue to see your site as the originator of that content. For example, if the same content is published by or any other site, Google could decide that this other site is instead the originator, even if the article was published on your own site first. Keeping the content on your own site unique is key.

    Here’s a post that offers more info on this that may be helpful to you:

    Can My Articles Be The Same As Content On My Own Site?

    Have a great weekend!

  7. Hi Steve,
    I’ve recently done a new keyword research list for my business. Now, I’m armed and ready to write (again) and now know how to track these keyword results. I’ve used many of the same keywords for years and since I’m in the beginning phase of incorporating some new ones, it’s the perfect time for me to monitor the results.
    Thanks for the encouragement that it’s not about the ranking of the individual articles, but the long term effects of how we rank for the keywords. I don’t remember reading this before.
    Your article is very timely for me. A BIG thank you. – Cheryl

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