Most Important Google ranking factors
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All of us are aware that lists of Google ranking factors are too long. They focus on listing every factor under the sun instead of those that actually matter.
Even worse, because nobody knows them all, most contain a lot of myths.
So today, we’re going to take a different approach. Rather than listing 200+ ranking factors, we’ll talk about the ten that we think most deserve your attention.
Backlinks were never ignored by Google search engine because they serve as votes from other websites. The content of the website with more votes is considered more credible, useful, and valuable by most of the search engines. Looking at the risk of using the black hat SEO strategy, Google now adds filters to its algorithms to concentrate on websites that have backlinks incorporated with target keyword in the Links anchor text and from an authoritative domain.
One of the most result-oriented ways to boost your backlink profile is to borrow or copy backlink ideas from competitors. Just launch SEO Spyglass. To access the same go-to SEO Spyglass>domain comparison>link intersection> enter the names of your competitors. Within a few minutes, you would be able to analyze your competitor’s backlink along with the gap where your website is lacking. Those websites linked to your rivals would serve as outreach targets and aid you in your SEO performance.
Content is the king in SEO activity and plays the most important role for search engines. However, with growing competition and changes in Google algorithms, it is important to create quality content as per the intent of the user. Here is where Semantic Saturation plays its role. It adds more meaning and value to the words in your content by understanding the intent of the user and presents it in an informative style. Therefore, when a user tries to find an answer for a query you must be in a position to answer almost everything related to that query.
For a successful semantic SEO the game lies in finding the accurate keywords and their correct application. For this, the best way is to do a smart analysis of the top-ranking pages of competitors with the help of the Website Auditor. Go to Content Analysis>Content Editor> enter the main keyword, and just receive complete SEO writing instructions. Then with the support of the SEO content Editor Tool get the exact amount of important keywords, their correct placement, and the suggested length of copy.
HTML tags send clues to various search engines about your content and about the bits of the copy, which are crucial, and need to be revealed on the screen. Incorporating SEO tags in HTML ensures better visibility in search engines. The search results are shown to the user in the form of title and meta description, so the content should be unique, descriptive, and well written in a useful style. Headings (H1-H6) are for splitting the copy into the section so that the user can easily scan and understand the page and even makes it convenient for the search engine to navigate. Google Images is the second largest search engine in the world. Therefore, with alt text, we can enhance accessibility and define images in search results.
On any website there would be pages, which are not optimized at their best. This may be due to a lack of knowledge about the problem with the HTML tags related to that page with a poor score. Using a Website Auditor would help to review bulk pages. Just go to Site Structure>pages>On-page and segregate the pages as per their search optimization score. Once you know about the page with a low score, click the same to get a complete report. Through this report, you would know the problematic HTML tags and thereby optimize them accordingly.
Core Web Vitals
First impression is always important. Core web vitals serve as an important metric for Google to measure the first impression and the overall user experience provided by the webpage. User-friendliness is measured in terms of mobile-friendliness, minimum load time, safe browsing, and visual stability. Vitals are not officially declared as a ranking factor but still should always be kept in proper form as they do play a role as a subset of Google ranking factors.
Google comes with optimization guidelines for almost every factor recommended by it. Such as for faster loading it recommends there should be good response times, lower render-blocking JS or CSS, and quick resource loading. When we talk about superb interactivity, it recommends for smart code splitting and minimum use of JS. For excellent visual stability, it recommends size characteristics for images and videos and most important loading the content from the top.
Though Google has not confirmed user behavior as its ranking factor there is no doubt that user behavior influences the organic searches largely. Content that is interesting to the user is very crucial to stay at the top of the major search engines. The metrics taken into consideration for user behavior are bounce rate, click-through-rate (CTR), session depth, and duration. Google Analytics and Google Search Console Accounts help to know the performance of user behavior metrics. Further, it also helps to create content that serves as a helpful and interesting response to the query.
Content plays a very important role when it comes to influencing user behavior. Users are highly engaged with high -quality copy accompanied with eye-catching visuals and internal links. Therefore, when we talk about CTR the page should have an impressive snippet and for bounce rate, session depth, and duration, it should have some fun element. The overall aim is to provide relevant content as per the service or product to earn more traffic and leads.
Structured data is not a direct ranking factor but it does play an important role in helping Google understand the entities and content of the page more efficiently. There are multiple tags, which help to convey the minute detail of your product or service to Google. Structured data is used to tag ratings, author, location, product highlights, and others.
Google’s Structured Data Markup Helper would work as a boon for those who are not so tech-savvy. To start first choose the type of markups such as highly recommended product, article, or local business or even submit a link to the page which needs to be enhanced. Next, highlight the bits of text and choose equivalent tags. Now save the HTML file and upload the same on your website. To check on the working of structured data you can take the help of Google’s Rich Result Test.
Google My Business Listing
Local search is mainly based on factors like distance, relevance, and prominence. A combination of these factors helps in getting the best match for the local SEO strategy. For good visibility on local SEO and enhanced chance to show up on Google’s local finder and maps, it is very crucial that you regularly claim, optimize, and maintain your listing in Google My Business. It turns your company as an entity, which serves as an asset for local SEO.
The first step is to list yourself in Google My business and create a very impressive profile with local content. Then by entering a few basic details, you can verify your ownership. Move to google dashboard to further increase your listing. It is recommended to include a brief description, photos of high resolution, business hours, CTA, and others to be more accessible to the searcher. Briefly, your listing should be appealing and active.
With a growing number of smartphone users Google’s mobile-first index is now rolled out. Google has now announced that websites would be judged on behalf of their mobile version irrespective of their desktop version. So mobile optimization would now be very important as it reveals how a particular page would appear and perform on small screens. Good mobile browsing experience is directly proportional to the ultimate user experience needed for successful SEO performance.
To check the mobile-friendliness of your pages one needs to just go to Google’s Mobile-friendly test and submit the URL. It would reveal a green light if the page is OK and would pop-up the necessary tips for any improvement. To make the process further easy there is Google Search Console, which enables you to check all the pages at once. Just Launch the tool>move to enhancements>mobile usability> to get the report along with a suggestion on improvements.
Google algorithm keeps on changing rapidly with the discovery of new ranking factors. Hence, to be at the top of the search engines we must have post or pages with value addition, relevancy, understanding of the intent, freshness, analysis of competitors, and recommendation from other sites. We should ensure that our website looks right on each device and owns a brilliant user experience.