In google search console, for my website, when the number of impressions increased (red trend in google search console), then the ranking in google search decreased (green trend in google search console aka "position"). Then, when the number of impressions decreased, then the ranking in google search console increased.enter image description here I thought that when my website links are displayed in google search at a better position, there should be more impressions because users don't click to visit subsequent google pages. They usually click on the links on the first page.

As you can see at the end of the trend, the impressions increased by at least 3000 and meanwhile the average position lowered by at least 20 and vice versa.

  • It seems to me that these metrics do not correlate directly. Not unless you are within the top 10 consistently. Then I can see your argument. Otherwise, I would expect the effect you are expecting to be small and possibly imperceptible. – closetnoc Jun 8 '17 at 15:39
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    It looks to me like the green line is inverted on the graph. . – Stephen Ostermiller Jun 8 '17 at 16:03
  • I also can't find any keywords in my accounts with graphs that look like that. Most of my keywords have fairly steady rankings (flat green line) with weekly variation in the red line (lower on weekends). Some keywords for which I don't rank very well have periodic green lines with corresponding spikes in the red line. – Stephen Ostermiller Jun 8 '17 at 16:12
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    If you mouse over the line, what values does it report for individual points? – Stephen Ostermiller Jun 8 '17 at 20:24
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    If you search for that term today, does it match the most recent position reported on the graph? – Stephen Ostermiller Jun 8 '17 at 20:28

This is a typical CTR issue! From the same place in Search Console enable the CTR as well!

Google pays much much interest on CTR. You might have a lot of impressions, but a few clicks, because Google thinks that your CTR is low, which means that users are more likely not to click on your page!

Try optimizing your titles and description to achieve better CTR. Make it both human and robot friendly, engaging, etc.. Read a little bit about how to optimize your CTR.

Thank you! Gev.


Could be that you've started ranking for new keywords for some reason (for example, if you added new content or changed titles). If these new keywords are lower ranked than your average (at least initially), your average ranking would go down even if the number of impressions increases.


increase in impressions while the decrease in clicks happens when your title is not enticing or convincing enough for users to click. If Google is not rewriting your titles and showing them as they are, it's best experimenting with a few to check what works better. Also, review the title for your competitors which are ranking high to get an idea. Read HTML Title Tags

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    "decrease in clicks" - Although that is not what the question is asking. The OP is seeing a decrease in "ranking position", not necessarily "clicks" (that is not mentioned). – MrWhite Sep 10 '18 at 12:44

Increase in impressions corresponding to a decrease in position can mean two things: There might have been a spike in impressions for your lower ranked (lesser spotted) keywords, increasing impressions but lowering the average rank for the day...or...There's an authority 'cap' on your site, meaning as impressions for keywords peak, their value outstrips your authority to rank (theoretical) so you get bumped down until the rush dies off a bit. We've seen this ourselves, frequently, but not as intense as yours.


I have done regression analysis for daily data on four different pages and by all pages for all the time they existed between position and impression. All but one of them resulted in no statistically significant correlation between positions and impressions, even when testing several different forms of data transformation So this problem is not just the results. So I think that the problem mentioned by the question is broader than what he posted. And the answer right above this one is too narrow to explain it.

To me this remains a mystery. It seems that Google is controlling the impressions independently of the positions. And the only way I can think that they can do that is by the statement above: "here's an authority 'cap' on your site, meaning as impressions for keywords peak, their value outstrips your authority to rank (theoretical) so you get bumped down until the rush dies off a bit." But I don't think we have the answer to this question nailed down.

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