Search engine optimization keeps changing from time to time. Every year, there are new and modified rules that Google expects all webmasters to abide by.
So, every webmaster has to keep informed and be abreast of all Google’s rules that have to do with managing his site and content, otherwise, he may risk losing his present rank while those that take note of the rules and apply them will rank higher. So your website’s strength and ranking on SERPs depends upon knowing and applying the rules.
Ranking factors are very important to how Google rates you and sends relevant traffic to your site. All webmasters that work hard to promote their sites are very conscious of Google’s ranking factors so that they do not lose their rankings to their competitors who keep working inexhaustibly to be favored by the algorithm updates.
Why You Should Focus on Important Algorithm Factors
There is so much information available on SEOs, some of which may be simple and straightforward to follow, and some of which may seem so confusing that you are not so sure about what will be the right thing to do. And we know that if you do not act according to the right information, you will be in trouble with Google.
Many professional players in the field will advise you to focus on the relevant ones because the ranking factors keep increasing and growing such that you will hardly be able to catch up on doing everything right. That is why you should not think that you should get it all right.
Do the few you can but make sure that they are the most important ones that can make a lot of difference to your rankings. Note that every ranking factor is important but while some will make a lot of difference to your ranking, some others will affect your ranking in a very little way.
For instance, if you focus on just 20% of the ranking factors, especially those factors that can affect every website, you can achieve about 80% success with increasing your rankings.
How Do You Know Which Ranking Factors to Focus On?
We should take a look at some factors that are very important to Google ranking.
This is one important ranking factor to focus on. Google always shows supports for sites that have good quality backlinks over those ones that are of poor quality.
If you want to have high-quality backlinks, then you should have your audience as the center of focus and produce content that can meet their needs and add value to them. And you need to get your site promoted as often as possible.
Try and reach out to a large number of audiences using different but appropriate means of promoting your content to them. That is what will help you to get authority sites to link with your pages.
Having backlinks from authoritative sites will tell Google how relevant to the audience your site is, and by how high it is worth ranking.
Google will analyze your site based on the number of backlinks on your site, the authority of the pages that are linking to it, and the diversity of your backlinks. You need to know how Google scores your links.
2. Link Score
It will score you based on the quality or scores from your incoming backlinks and the number of backlinks that your website has. This means that both of these types of scores are very important as you build your backlinks.
When you have many low-quality backlinks on your site, you may just end up hurting its rank instead of promoting it. And when you have several links from the same domain, the links will not have much relevance to Google so, you need to work on different and high ranking Domains linking to your site.
3. The Relevance of Incoming Anchor Text
The anchor text of the incoming links has to be relevant to your site. There is not much use of getting backlinks from a site that your users are not going to be able to benefit from. Google will be able to tell the level of authority of a site from the kind of content and the target keywords that it contains.
So you should get natural backlinks for your site and have relevant backlinks from different Domains. If you have a backlink with a low authority on your site, it is better for you to get it removed or you disavow it.
3. The Length of Your Content
This really matters. The type of topic can determine the length of your content. Google often penalizes sites with short content. You can show how relevant your content is by the type of value that your audience can derive from it.
Make your content have details that will help the audience to solve some problems, let it be able to engage and captivate the audience and let it be possible for them to share with others if they need to.
On search engine results, you will find out that results with long content usually perform better. The length of the content should tally with the relevance of the content. There is no use having long, boring, and highly irrelevant content.
If your content is long and relevant, it means that it is really detailed that your audience can get as much information as they need from it without navigating to another site. Longer articles have also been known to get more engagement and make your content more visible on social media than short articles.
When people find your content relevant to them, they get to share them with their social networks and followers. The quality of your content will not only add value to your audience but will also help you to get the right backlinks. So you need to have articles of the right length that solve problems for your followers.
4. URL, Domain Age, and Authority
Ahrefs found in their study that about 60% of the top 10 SERPs are at least three years old, and just very few were less than a year. So, the age of a site does matter in achieving a high ranking.
Also, websites that contain Domain names with target keywords and even Exact-Match Domains can boost their rankings. So also do sites with high authority get higher chances of getting ranked higher.
5. User Experience
This is another very important factor that affects how you rank on Google. What kind of experience do users get when they are on your site? Does it take a long time for your content to be viewed?
Do you spam your site with so many adverts that it becomes difficult to navigate your pages? Can your audience give some good recommendations about your site if asked?
These and much more contribute to your users’ experience on your site. If users do not have a welcoming experience on your site, Google’s RankBrain algorithm can de-rank your site.
Google also gives importance to “mobile-first indexing” which has to do with giving preference when crawling websites for sites that are mobile-friendly. To give your users a pleasurable experience, it is important to increase the page speed for your websites to load faster.
It should not take more than two to three seconds to load. If your site loads slowly, even the search engine will not be able to crawl many of your pages.
Most users use their mobile phones to search for information online so it is important for your site to be mobile friendly otherwise, it won’t get ranked high in mobile searches. You can go to your Google Search Console to evaluate and make corrections to make your site friendlier for mobile users.
6. Click-Through Rates (CTR)
CTR is derived by dividing the number of clicks on your website’s search results by the number of views or impressions. Google measures the success of your site through the Click-Through Rates. A high CTR means that your site is attracting the attention of a lot of internet users so it is performing well on SERPs.
High CTRs can often be converted into leads or sales for you. Click-Through Rates are very important for your site. You can achieve this by having the right title tag and meta-description. The higher the ranking your site can attain, the more the CTRs that you will get.
Other technical signals including HTTPS Encryption, H1, and H2 Headings, interstitial Ads all show the structure of your content and how secure your site is. This boosts the confidence of users when they visit your site.
Following Google’s prescriptions is very important to help you to rank high on SERPs. Remember that your competitors are also working according to Google’s stipulations, to be favored in the ranking by the Google algorithm.
Even though you cannot achieve everything that Google stipulates, you should work on the most important ones that can get you the highest scores. Remember that the higher you rank, the more traffic you can get on your site and the more sales you will make.
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