The complex system that is the Google search engine algorithm may seem like a secret recipe similar to that of Coca-Cola. However, search engine optimization experts have started to crack the complicated code. Before you begin to strategize for SEO, you need to understand some of the most important things Google looks for in terms of search result rankings.

With the seemingly infinite amount of information available on the internet, Google’s ranking systems are designed to sort through hundreds of billions of web pages in a fraction of a second to present inquirers with the most useful and relevant information.

While you cannot control the meticulous process that Google uses to rank search results, you can do quite a lot to boost your website’s chances of ranking higher in search results.

This article will tell you about some of the most important ranking factors Google uses and how you can use these factors to your advantage.

1. Backlinks

According to research by many industry experts, backlinks are considered one of the most important (if not the most important) ranking factors for Google. In short, a backlink is a link from one site to another.

When the Google algorithm sees backlinks, it considers the content to be noteworthy and will sequentially provide the content with a higher ranking in the search results.

With backlinks as one of the most influential factors on ranking, you might be eager to get as many backlinks as possible associated with your site. One quality backlink from a reputable site can be better than ten backlinks from ten low-quality sites, so keep this in mind when strategizing.

Here are two of the easiest strategies for securing quality backlinks:

  • Guest Blogging: Come up with a relevant topic to your business and industry, write an interesting article about it, and find a reputable site that allows guest blogging. If you are up to the challenge, feel free to cold-email other professionals and organizations in your industry to see if they’d be willing to let you write a guest post.
  • Broken Link Prospecting: This strategy can be used in two ways: conducting searches specifically to find broken links or using broken links to your advantage when you come across them organically. If you come across a broken link on a popular blogging or news website, reach out to the author to let them know. When you reach out, mention that you have relevant content on your website and that you would be happy for your link to be replaced by the broken one.

2. Site and Page Speed

This factor is just as crucial for Google’s rankings as it is for anyone that visits your website. As technology continues to advance, society as a whole has become less patient when it comes to the internet, and nobody wants to wait more than a few seconds for a page to load.

You don’t have to be a technology expert to improve your website’s speed by using Google’s free PageSpeed Insights technology. You can determine what you need to fix. During this step, remember to test both your desktop and mobile sites.

3. Mobile Usability

As of 2021, researchers believe that over 60% of Google searches occur on mobile devices, with that percentage increasing every year. With the popularity of mobile searching, Google has incorporated mobile-friendliness into their search ranking factors.

If you haven’t already developed a mobile-friendly version of your website, now is the time to do so. No matter what goods or services you offer, there is an extremely high chance that potential customers are using mobile devices to search for them.

To determine whether or not your website is mobile-friendly, you can use Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test. Upon completion of this test, Google recommends changes you can make to make your site more mobile-friendly.

4. Keywords

Keywords go hand-in-hand with SEO strategies, making it critical for you to conduct keyword research before creating any content for your website. Not only does keyword research help you employ better tactics in your marketing strategies, but it also teaches you more about your audience and what they are looking for.

Once you have identified the related keywords that you want to target, you need to incorporate them naturally into your website’s written content. Always write for the reader, not the search engine, as you could be penalized for what is called “keyword stuffing.”

Always remember to proofread your content before publishing it, especially when you are using targeted keywords.

5. Title and Header Tags

Once you have identified the most important keywords for your website, you should insert them into any title and header tags on your page, but only if they make sense. Google uses these title and header tags to determine what the page is about to index the website properly.

Title and header tags are shown most prominently within search results, which can also affect the probability that inquirers will click on your result.

Ready to Improve Your Ranking?

Here at Paton Marketing, we have experienced all of the changes Google has undergone in the past few decades, including all of the changes Google has made to its search ranking algorithms.

Optimizing your website and your website’s content through search engine optimization has proven to be one of the most effective ways to drive traffic to your website, and Paton Marketing knows all of the best ways to do it.