With Google having close to 200 ranking factors it’s pretty tough narrowing down the ones that matter. The problem with having an abundance of information available is things can get pretty confusing and your the one that has to go through sorting out the value from all the junk. However, even when your reading content with pure value sometimes your given just too much information and it can get overwhelming. For example, here’s something I’m sure you don’t have a clear answer to anymore: How does Google rank your page? I’m sure by now you know they have close to 200 ranking factors. However, which ones are the most important? Hopefully I’ll be able to shed some light on this now…
Here are some of the major factors contributing to higher rankings within the SERP’s…
Keyword in Title
This is a very important on-page factor in SEO leading to higher rankings within the SERP’s. It gives identity to your content and creates an optimized environment. When Google first skims your content the title is going to be the displayed in the SERP results which is why it’s important to have the keyword embedded. When people perform a search it’s the title of your content that’s displayed. For example, here’s a quick search using the keyword “link building”…
You can see all the results have “link building” within the title.
Keyword in Content
Imagine having content around 1,500+ words and NOT having a way to describe your content to people searching. This is why keyword density plays a more important role than ever. For example, having your keyword paced throughout your content is a great way to let search engines know what it’s about. However, you have to be careful how often you scatter your keyword throughout the content because this can be considered keyword stuffing and have the reverse effect on your rankings. The rule of thumb is to have a keyword density of roughly 2%-4% using both exact and related keywords.
Remember, no matter how many times you use your keywords you have to ensure the smoothness remains the same.
Short superficial articles have destroyed the web and this forced Google to make extreme changes to their algorithm. What’s the alternative? Longer in-depth content that provides value to the end user so it’s important when you write you keep this in mind. Now those writing content 1-2 per month are easily out rankings those publishing content daily. It has everything to do with quality and what value you provide to the reader. The average word count of the top 10 first page results is easily 2,000+ words.
Google image search can drive enormous traffic to your page. Not only that, but images optimized correctly can have a dramatic effect on your SERP rankings. Google uses image alt-tag and name to understand the page better. Just like keywords embedded inside can describe the content, images play the same role providing Google with a better understanding of the content. For example, have you ever wondered why infographics rank so well within Google? It’s because they provide vast amount of information compressed in an image.
High PR Links
Even though Google has stated they will remove the PR system from the frontend, it still plays an important role in the backend for Google. They are NOT going to get rid of the whole system because it’s essentially the backbone of their algorithm. With that said, it’s important you have links from high authority pages pointing to your website. Value=value so it’s important to find ways to gain those high authority links. Keep the following in mind…
- Relevance matters
- Networking helps bring authority people to your blog
- Use Disavow tool to eliminate poor quality links
- Spread out links so they look natural
Anchor Text Matters
There has been a huge shift in the way anchor text helps in the SERP’s. I’m not saying that EXACT match doesn’t add value, but the changing search pattern is giving life to a new way of building links. For example, the keyword needs to be shifted and you should use long-tail, LSI and related keywords when building links because it adapts well to the user search pattern. Next,
Location of the link matters so you should be careful where you place it within your content. Above the fold helps while avoiding the footer and sidebar because they aren’t really part of the content as a whole.
It’s important to mention where links come from is very important. For example, things have changed so rapidly that you should try gaining links from different content formats. Social bookmarking, article directories, press releases, forums, blog commenting and guest posting are all awesome ways to gain high authority links. Just make sure they are from high PR relevant websites.