Mastering Google Ranking Factors, Creative Digital Marketing Company, Auxost, DV

Mastering Google Ranking Factors: Boost Your Website’s Visibility and Growth

Where do people turn to first when they want an answer, an idea, a product, or a service? The yellow pages? Please. At this time, not even to family and friends. Well, they Google it. Moreover, the majority of them do not go beyond the first page of the results. Search engine optimization, or SEO, is a multi-billion dollar industry because of this. The process of aligning a website with Google ranking factors is known as SEO. What exactly are these ranking factors, and how can your website be made more effective for them? Read on to find out.

Mastering Google Ranking Factors, Creative Digital Marketing Company, Auxost

Table of Contents

  • What are Google ranking factors?
  • Why Are Google Ranking Factors Important?
  • Types of Google ranking factors
  1. High quality content
  2. Choosing the right place to stuff keywords
  3. Optimizing image
  4. Niche expertise
  5. Page speed
  6. Mobile-friendliness
  7. Core Web Vitals
  8. Website architecture
  9. Site security
  10. Backlinks

What are Google ranking factors?

SEO involves optimizing your website in order to rank as high as possible in organic search engine results (and yes, you can aspire for the first page). We refer to unpaid search results as “organic” results when talking about search. This is different compared to paid results, which come from PPC advertising.

The organic rankings on Google are influenced by a complex algorithm that considers a wide array of characteristics and SEO metrics and these are your ranking factors.  

There are more than 200 Google ranking factors, and while we will never be able to know them all, we do know quite a few of them. We also know that, despite possible changes to ranking factors and algorithms, E-A-T, which stands for Expertise, Authority, and Trustworthiness, remains at the core of Google’s efforts to understand and evaluate web content.

Why Are Google Ranking Factors Important?

Google ranking criteria have significance because they affect where a website appears in search results. Higher ranks imply greater visibility, which will enhance organic traffic and maybe boost business growth in the daily billions of searches.

Businesses may increase their chances of ranking better on Google, being competitive, and drawing in more customers by comprehending these factors and optimizing for them.

Being knowledgeable about the most recent ranking factors is crucial for maintaining and enhancing online visibility as Google modifies its algorithm frequently.

Types of Google ranking factors

Google uses a complex algorithm to determine the ranking of web pages in its search results. While the exact details of the algorithm are closely guarded trade secrets, Google has revealed many ranking factors over the years. These factors include –

1. High quality content

The caliber of your content is the single most crucial element in Google ranking. This relates to the regular release of high-quality information, user interaction, and niche expertise.

So what makes great, useful content?

The content is reliable.

The content is thorough, factual, and helpful, plus it doesn’t contain any spammy links or comments.

It’s readable.

This implies logical organization, conversational writing, and not stuffed with keywords (which can actually result in penalties from Google). Include it naturally on your website and use it interchangeably with related keywords.

The content is fresh.

Even the most evergreen content loses relevancy over time. So in addition to writing new content, you should also be updating outdated pages with new information and new keywords that are relevant to today. This is the key to maintaining a good freshness score.

It is compatible with the keyword’s intent.

In addition to using keyword research tools to find out what your ideal audience is searching online, make sure to search the keyword on Google itself to make sure you understand what users are seeking when they perform that search.

2. Choosing the right place to stuff keywords

It’s crucial to place your focus keywords in precise locations on your webpage once you’ve decided on the ones you want to rank for.

This includes:

Title tag: The title that displays on the SERP is known as a title tag, sometimes known as a meta title.

H1 title: the page’s heading

H2 headings: Aim for at least two H2 headings

URL: Keep your URL simple and concise.

Meta description: The brief text below the title tag or meta title is known as the meta description. A compelling description should accurately summarize your page and encourage users to click. Even though Google doesn’t always use the meta description you submit, it’s still vital to do so.

The most significant keywords are by far those in the title tags, followed by H2s and URLs.

3. Optimizing image

This is significant not only due to the increasing significance of Google image search but also because regular search results are becoming more visually oriented, particularly on mobile devices.

Here’s how to make your photos SEO-friendly:

Give each image an alt text description: This is the only method for Google to “see” an image. Include the keyword in a short yet descriptive sentence. Additionally, this makes your website accessible to  visually impaired readers who use screen readers to explore the internet and will display if the picture cannot be loaded.

Compress & resize:

If you can, try to keep your image file sizes to 70–100KB or less by using an image compressor. Saving in JPG rather than PNG is frequently helpful. Additionally, photos usually don’t need to be wider than 1,000px. While a responsive website can indeed resize images automatically based on the user’s device or screen size, it’s essential to minimize the number of requests made to the server to improve page speed. By reducing server requests, you can enhance the overall performance and loading time of your website.

Add worth:

If you can, use screenshots, samples, charts, and illustrations that convey concepts in place of empty stock photos and graphics in your blog posts. This raises the content’s quality and increases user engagement.

Use the keyword:

Not just in the alt text, but in the file name. Furthermore, to avoid your CMS replacing spaces with “%20,” which creates an untrustworthy-looking image link, replace them with dashes in the file name.

4. Niche expertise

Indicators of expertise in your niche include both the quantity and quality of the content. You can use the hub and spoke strategy (also referred to as pillar page and cluster content) to build out your niche expertise. By using this technique, you develop a hub/pillar page on a specific topic, typically a broad, popular keyword. This serves as the main resource for that topic, and your numerous H2s cover various child keywords inside that topic.

Then you have your spokes (or cluster content) which are the additional pages that dive deeper into each of the aspects (child keywords) covered in the pillar page.

5. Page speed

Page speed is a crucial ranking factor since users expect a painless surfing experience. Your bounce rate will rise and your ranking will drop if your pages take too long to load. With GTmetrix or Google PageSpeed Insights, you can check yours.

6. Mobile-friendliness

In 2019, Google announced its intention to shift towards mobile-first indexing for all new sites. This means that when assessing the ranking of a website, Google primarily considers the mobile version rather than the desktop version. Subsequently, in 2020, they revealed plans to extend this practice to all websites, and by 2021, mobile-first indexing became the standard for all sites.

This shift emphasizes the significance of optimizing websites for mobile devices, as even if the desktop version appears flawless, a poorly optimized mobile version could adversely affect search engine rankings. To ensure mobile-friendliness, many content management systems allow users to preview and make adjustments specifically for mobile or smaller screens. Additionally, Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test can be utilized to assess a website’s mobile compatibility.

Despite these tests, it remains essential to manually preview and test web pages on actual mobile devices. Certain aspects of mobile optimization may not be fully captured by automated code assessments, making real-device testing crucial for a seamless mobile user experience.

By embracing mobile-first indexing and prioritizing mobile optimization, website owners can enhance their online visibility and improve user satisfaction across various devices.

7. Core Web Vitals

Ranking criteria rarely vary, even though SEO trends come and go. However, as part of the page experience update in 2021, Google created a new ranking factor called Core Web Vitals. The experience a visitor has on your page determines if and how they interact with it, and Core Web Vitals measure that experience.

They consist of:

LCP (Largest Contentful Paint): The length of time it takes for a page’s visible elements to load

FID (First Input Delay): The amount of time it takes for the first click or tap on your website to be registered.

CLS (Cumulative Layout Shift): if there are jarring popups or unexpected motions, by using lazy loading, code minification, image compression, and other techniques, you can improve your Core Web Vitals.

8. Website architecture

As was previously said, search engines function by crawling and indexing various pieces of content on your website. Any link that leads to another page on the same website is referred to as an internal link. The more points of access you build to any given page and the more organized and tightly-knit your internal linking structure is, the simpler it will be for search engines (and people) to discover what they’re looking for.

It enables search engines to quickly comprehend and index the content. From the perspective of the user experience, topic clusters are also advantageous. It makes your information simpler to navigate, and readers will understand they don’t need to visit several websites to discover what they’re looking for.

Your website probably already receives routine maintenance to look for issues like bugs or server faults. Every few months, you should perform a technical SEO audit of your website to look for issues like broken links, redirect loops and 404 errors.

9. Site security

Ever wonder what the s in https (instead of just plain old http) stands for? It stands for secure. Obtaining an SSL (secure sockets layer) certificate is how you convert your website from an http site to a https one. There are several ways to obtain an SSL, and the price is based on the level of protection you require as well as your hosting setup.

10. Backlinks

Last but certainly not least, there are backlinks. A link to your page that comes from another website is known as a backlink. A page with a large number of links leading back to it tells Google that the page in question offers excellent value and originates from a reliable source.  However, a single link from a high-quality domain is far preferable to numerous links from numerous low-authority websites.

How do you then get backlinks? The following 3 link-building techniques can be useful –

Original and excellent content

Your content will produce backlinks on its own if it is of a high standard, distinctive, and beneficial to your audience. Choose unique, data-driven items that are thought-provoking and irreplaceable.

Cold outreach

Since it takes years to establish this kind of authority, you’ll also want to increase your backlink profile by finding related content and pitching your pieces to the author for a link.

Guest posts:

Guest blogging is another way to gain backlinks. Offer to write an article for that website rather than merely asking for a link. A backlink to your website can be included in the post or your author bio.

As a marketing company, we focus on leveraging Google ranking factors to optimize our clients’ websites, improve visibility, and drive organic traffic. We create high-quality content, choose the right keywords, and ensure technical SEO excellence. Additionally, we build a strong backlink profile through various strategies. Our commitment to staying updated ensures our clients’ online success. Get in touch with us today to boost your online presence!