It would be nice to be able to say that rankings don’t matter. But as we all know, they really matter especially when it comes to the bottom line of most companies. The difference in traffic between the first spot in organic results and the fourth spot in organic results can be four or five times depending on the keyword. Credit this to the nature of our world where everyone wants answers really quickly and why click on 10 results when the first one will get you what you want and within seconds.
As you probably know, Google doesn’t rank the best sites, it ranks the best optimized sites. So you could have the most expensive website design, with the most expensive photos and sliders and fireworks in the background, but if the site isn’t optimized (both on site and off site) then it will not be ranked and it will not be found. For those that want to put their finger on the pulse of their site, there are any number of programs you can buy that will track the rankings of your keywords for as few as one to many thousands. Doing this by hand can be quite laborious, and the automated services can do this in a matter of seconds. Other than curiosity and traffic, you can also use this ranking data to determine the efficacy of a SEO campaign, or how a page converts depending on where it ranks. This information becomes invaluable when you consider where you want to marshall your resources for the greatest impact on your bottom line. For more information on ranking, check out the video below from Google Webmasters.