Ep 53: What To Do When Organic Traffic Tanks

Apr 27, 2022

Have you noticed a significant drop in your organic traffic? That happens to everyone from time to time. So here's my game plan for exactly what you need to do.

Hey everybody. This is Jim Lastinger. Welcome to another episode of Marketing In 10.

So, today we're going to talk a little SEO. And one of the worst feeling that you can get as a marketer or a business owner is when you notice that your organic traffic has seen a sudden, but usually very noticeable declined. You're worried that something's gone terribly wrong. That your site's possibly been hacked. You think you might have been banned by Google or something along those lines.

Well, we've all been there. We've all have this happen. Some of us many times, it's all part of the game when you're relying on a third party, like Google, that you have no control over whatsoever to send business your way. And that's what I wanted to talk about today. Exactly what process you need to go through when you see a sudden decline in organic traffic. I'm going to give you a few concrete steps that you can take.

So the first thing and most important is don't panic. I know that's easy to say when you're not in that situation, but you have to understand that this happens to just about every site out there from time to time. I've had it happen to me on all of my own sites at some point. There isn't anything you can do about it immediately. It's completely out of your control. So there's no reason to panic and start making a bunch of changes without really thinking them through.

The first thing you'll want to do is take a look at your Google search console performance stats, and do a little bit of basic analysis. You know, did your traffic fall off in a specific date? Did your rankings change suddenly on that date or did the number of impressions change? Are the changes very broad across the whole site? Or did you really just see the declines across a couple of pages? Are the declines around just one or two keywords or does this seem to be everything? If you ask yourself these types of questions and gather that data, then you'll start to have a good picture of what's really going on.

If you can't pinpoint a specific page or a keyword that's been affected, it very well could be a Google algorithm update that went into effect. In that case, you'll want to take a look at some of the SEO blogs and see if they're talking about it. There are a bunch of SEO tools out there that track broad volatility in the search engine rankings. So they'll let you know something major is happening, and I'll put links to some of those, my favorite tools in the show notes. If there is a confirmed major update, it's going to take some time.

Link: MozCast SEO Weather Report

Learn as much as you can about what has changed. What types of sites have been affected and go from there. You typically don't get any guidance on what to do when an algorithm update affects you. So just go back to the drawing board and make sure that you're building the best possible site for your customers. That's always the golden rule of SEO at this point, is just make sure that you're building the best possible site that you can and taking your customers into consideration.

And stepping back a bit. If you do see a particular page or a keyword that has been affected, you'll want to take a look at the search engine results, pages yourself, and see where you are. See what pages have moved ahead of you and what they're doing differently. It could be a case of you just needing to update your page. It could even be a few little tweaks so that Google knows your site is alive and well. And that you're still trying to make the best possible experience for your users. Sometimes that's enough to get you back to where you were. Sometimes you need to put more effort into your revamping entire sections of your website.

If you've done everything I've already talked about, and it's been a couple of months in your traffic still down, you might want to get a good SEO audit. A quality SEO audit is going to look through your site with a fine tooth comb, find any potential issues that you might have overlooked. If you need help with that, reach out to me, I'm glad to help you out. SEO audit is one of my favorite things to do in the world of digital marketing. It's a great way to learn what people are doing right now when it comes to marketing, and what's really working in the SEO world too.

I like to learn, so I like SEO audits. All right, there you have it. That's the playbook that I would follow if you see a sudden decline in your organic traffic. Let me know if you have any additional recommendations or what you've seen in the past. You can DM me at Jimlast on social. So that's Instagram and Twitter. And I'll have show notes and a transcript for this episode at jimlastinger.com/53. And if you would please take two minutes to rate and review the show, no matter which platform you're listening to it on, that helps me grow the show, reach more people and be able to help them as well.

As a thank you for listening, I've created a free guide that shows you exactly how to manage your Google Ads accounts in 30 minutes a week. This is the exact process that I teach all of my coaching students and includes everything you need to be able to run a profitable ad account for yourself. You can download this for free at jimlastinger.com/guide. That's jimlastinger.com/guide.

That's all for this week's episode. I'll be back soon with another episode of Marketing In 10. Until then, take care and have a great day.

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