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SEO: So your page is ranking for the wrong keyword. Here’s what to do next…

A big misconception in SEO is that you have to rank at all costs.

However, if your high-ranking articles aren’t aligned with search intent, you may rack up impressions and clicks, but you won’t get any real conversions.

This also happens when one of your articles ranks for a particular keyword, even though you have a different article that is “better placed to rank.” It’s what we call “cannibalization.”

What should you do?

Zoe Ashbridge has some good ideas for solving this problem.

Let’s check ‘em out…

#1 – Decide which page to rank. Analyze your articles to see which ones are ranking high or driving traffic, but aren’t bringing actual results.

Check the keywords they rank for, and see whether the content reflects the search intent. Then, check other SERP results.

For example, if other results show product pages while yours is showing a guide or a listicle, it means the intent is to buy instead of to educate, so… adjust accordingly.

#2 – Assign keywords to pages. Google will evaluate your page next to high ranking competitors, so make sure you use keyword data to cover your topic thoroughly.

You can start by using third-party SEO tools to see which keywords return the same type of content, look at how your competitors are structuring their articles, and work from there.

#3 – Evaluate ranking content with your desired content. Yep, it’s time for more espionage. See what elements your competitors use to make their pages helpful.

Do they include high-quality images, graphs, or videos? If they use them, you may want to have them too. But ultimately, you still want to talk to your customers in your own voice.

#4 – Remove keywords from the deoptimized page. Now comes the chop. Find out which high ranking keywords in the old article will cannibalize your new and better one, and remove them.

Or, rewrite the original article so that it ranks for keywords that suit it better.

#5 – Strengthen internal linking. Link to the new page from different articles on your website by using related keywords as anchor text.

Also, you should replace similar links from the old page and redirect it to the new one.

Now, submit the page to indexing in the Google Search console, and that’s deoptimization done! Now you can wait and watch the new article take over…

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