Google continually updates their algorithm and as this contributes towards your ranking, you will need to keep up to date. With this in mind, here are the most important Google search ranking factors you need to know.
First, let’s look at why it is important to reach the first page of Google rankings. Actually, it’s not rocket science it’s simple. To be successful in business you need customers and lots of them.
While once it was only bricks and mortar stores where customers flocked, now many choose to shop from home. In fact, according to Bigcommerce, 75% of people now shop online at least once per month and you could be capitalising on this.
Organic rankings are important
You can pay through ads to get your business on the first page of Google search. However, organic rankings are an essential part of any SEO strategy and go a long way towards obtaining high rankings.
Organic search is a term that is used to refer to unpaid search results, while pay-per-click is paid traffic generation. These results are found at the very top of the search engine results, above the organic results.
Organic search engine results shown when people search are determined by algorithms. This is something we talk about in a separate article.
Top SEO ranking factors to reach the number one spot
With our help, you can keep ahead and make sure your SEO is right up there. So, here is the information that will help you to reach the coveted spot you desire on Google search.
Not only are we going to tell you the top SEO ranking factors you need to know, but we are also going to show you how to optimise your website for them.
So, without any further ado let’s take a look at those all-important Google search factors.
The different types of Google search ranking factors
It is important to realise that there are different types of Google search factors to consider. There are three groups to think about and these are:
- On-page SEO – on-page SEO relates to the keywords and the quality of information on your website
- Off-page SEO – this type of ranking factor is determined mainly by the backlinks to your website
- Technical – this could fall under on-page SEO but it is technical. This type of ranking factor focuses on the overall performance of your website and not the individual pages on your site.
One of the most important things to remember when considering the top SEO ranking factors is that no one ranking factor works. Rather, you have to combine them to ensure you have a website that is SEO friendly.
On-page SEO Google search ranking factors
On-page SEO is specific to pages and posts on your website. So, let’s take a look at these all-important factors.
1. Targeting keywords for higher Google rankings
Keywords are essential and perhaps one of the biggest ranking factors to consider. We say this, as your keywords are what people searching for something online use when they search.
We could go as far as to say that keywords are one of the most important Google search ranking factors.
Therefore, before going ahead and writing content you should conduct keyword research or pay someone to do it for you. If you wish to drive new traffic to your website, identifying the right keywords is essential. Directive consulting reached this conclusion. By doing research you gain a better understanding of what people are searching for and therefore can reach those people.
You do this by implementing those keywords into the written content on your site. You post the content and Google picks them up and ranks your page against what people search for online.
The key to doing this is to include them naturally. Do not stuff them into the content and do not include them unnaturally. Google will penalise you for overstuffing keywords into the content. Writing high-quality content is essential, both for getting into the search engine rankings and for readers.
2. Don’t forget your title, header tags and meta description
While on the subject of keywords, you want to rank for in Google you should not forget to add them into your titles and header tags.
It is important to include them in your content; however, to make the most of them you can use them in the titles on your pages, your sub-headings and pictures.
Again, don’t overuse them. Add them in naturally into the content.
The meta description is the description that is displayed in the search engine when people search. There is the title of your content and then a short review of what the article or post is about. Google will use the meta description for featured results snippet if you are lucky.
3. High-quality content is among the top SEO ranking factors
Your content is what is going to bring visitors to your website, keep them on the site and hopefully, turn them into buyers.
One of the top Google search ranking factors is to write high-quality content that is relevant, interesting and answers what the viewer is looking for online.
Accuracy and relevancy are two of the most important factors in content. Freshness on your website is also vital. Therefore, you also have to consider your older content. Rewriting or refreshing old content can go a long way towards getting that older content to rank higher.
Off-page top SEO ranking factors
Now let’s move on to off-page SEO ranking factors that you need to consider.
As mentioned before, these types of ranking factors are outside of your own website, but they are just as important as on-page SEO.
4. Your backlinks
One of the biggest focal points of your SEO strategy is backlinks. Backlinks differ from the internal links that you make in your content.
Backlinks are links in content that link back to your website, hence the name. The larger the number of high-quality backlinks to your site, the more Google thinks of your website.
However, the keyword here is high-quality. You really only want links from relevant websites, these are sites related to what you offer. Backlinks say to Google that your website is of good quality and value.
So, with this in mind, you are going to want to know how to build these all-important backlinks.
You can get backlinks through writing high-quality content that provides value to those visiting.
You can also reach out to websites that have related content on them and ask if they want to post one of your articles on their website with your anchor text. This will be your backlink.
Another way is to take on the services of a link building company, which will do the hard work on your behalf and get you high-quality backlinks.
Building backlinks is a valuable part of any SEO strategy and one that goes a long way towards Google search factors to help you get better rankings.
Technical ranking factors
Now we will look into the technical Google search ranking factors. When Google crawls your site to index the information on it, some technical elements have to work properly. This is essential for your site to function.
Technical SEO is not the easiest of things and this is why it is often best to put your SEO strategy into the hands of a professional.
So, let’s move onto some of the technical strategies that can help towards improving your rank on search engines.
5. The speed of your website
One of the biggest technical ranking factors is the speed of your website. Visitors are not going to wait a long time for your website to load. In fact, most visitors will not wait more than a few seconds before they click off.
This not only means you lose customers; you also lose out thanks to the bounce rate. With this in mind, you need to ensure your website is as fast as possible. You can check the speed of your site using PageSpeed Insights.
6. Is your site mobile friendly
Google likes mobile-friendly websites and in fact, when crawling sites they use mobile-first indexing.
As the name suggests when indexing websites Google relies on the mobile version of the site instead of the desktop. Therefore, if your website isn’t mobile-friendly you are not going to rank very well.
The search engine giant does provide you with a mobile-friendly test or if you use WordPress for your website, you can test how your site looks directly from your dashboard.
You now have all the information about the most important Google search ranking factors that you need. However, it is important to bear in mind that there is no magic wand. If you take all of the above into account to optimise your site for better rankings in Google, it is not going to happen overnight. The process is not just one time either, you do have to keep on providing relevant and fresh content with links and keywords. Of course, you can put your website into hands of the professionals leaving you to concentrate on other factors of your business.