How to Increase Organic Listing Click Through Rate

Written by Nick Stamoulis

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It stands to reason that if you’re ranking well organically in the search engines for priority search terms, that you’ll also be generating organic search traffic. But what if we told you that there are things you can do to increase that traffic even more? After all, as we’re always saying, SEO results aren’t just about rank. It’s about building organic traffic from the search engines over time. And it drives us crazy to see websites that rank well but aren’t making the most of their search engine results page real estate by taking steps that will increase their click through rate. Here are a few simple ways to increase organic listing click through rate:

1. Re-visit your title tag

Even if you followed SEO best practice by incorporating a priority keyword into the title tag, is it enticing? Does it look good? Does it make someone want to click? The title tag is really what people notice the most in the search results. It’s larger, bright blue, and what you click on to go to a web page. If your title tag is “Blue Widgets for Manufacturers” that’s a good, optimized title but think about the actual person looking at the result. Does that make them want to click? And you always want to avoid the dreaded “…” in the title tag, which means that it’s too long. The whole title tag should be able to appear in search results, no matter what device is being used.

2. Write a meta description that sells

We see so many websites that totally waste the meta description tag. Either they leave it blank and let the search engine fill it in with whatever it pulls from the page, or it’s some basic filler text that’s hardly exciting. The meta description isn’t a ranking factor but it’s important for click though purposes. If the search results page shows a bunch of pages with “Blue Widgets for Manufacturers” or similar titles, it’s the description that can set your website apart from the others to get the click. Think of it as your sales pitch for the page. And be sure to write a description that won’t get cut off for being too long, either.

3. Consider adding rich snippets

Rich snippets are the “snippets” that are sometimes seen as part of an organic listing; things like ratings, reviews, product prices, etc. While not every website is going to want to utilize rich snippets, simply because it doesn’t make sense, for certain websites it can be what helps them stand out from the rest.

It’s true that the higher you rank, the more organic traffic you generally get, but there are certainly exceptions to the rule. Even if you’re not in the top spot, it’s certainly possible to “steal” traffic away from the websites in the top spots just by having a better, cleaner, and more engaging listing.


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