There are 200+ SEO ranking factors that help search engines determine which websites should show in search results and the way they ought to rank. If you would like your site to say the highest spots on SERPs (search engine results pages), you would like to optimize your online presence to cater to those factors.
The good news is that not all of the 200+ ranking factors are equal. Some ranking factors are more important than others. As you propose your SEO strategy, pay special attention to those 12 factors that impact rankings the foremost .
Before we dive into the highest SEO ranking factors, it’s important to notice that these factors can and can change.
Search engine and Google ranking algorithms are constantly changing. Some factors become more or smaller , and a few factors are introduced or removed. It’s important to remain up so far on the newest ranking factors and frequently use an SEO audit tool to scan your site to make sure that you’re following the foremost up-to-date SEO best practices.
Now, let’s check out the way to help improve SEO rankings by optimizing your online presence to appeal to 12 important SEO ranking factors.
The Top 12 SEO Ranking Factors
Here are the highest 12 SEO ranking factors (not ranked so as of importance).
- Site Security
- Page Load Speed
- User Engagement
- High-Quality Content
- The Right Target Keywords
- Optimized Content
- Structured Data
- Consistent Business Listings
- Backlink Profile
- Domain Age
1. Site Security
As far back as 2014, Google has discussed site security as a ranking factor. Now, it’s one of the foremost important Google ranking factors on this list. Site security refers to the utilization of HTTPS encryption. Sites with HTTPS encryption have SSL certificates that make a secure connection between an internet site and its users. It adds an additional layer of security that protects information exchanged between users and therefore the site.
Search engines want to drive users to the foremost trustworthy sites, and HTTPS encryption shows them that a site is secure. If your website URL begins with HTTP, not HTTPS, your site isn’t secure, and you ought to add an SSL certificate.
Search engines can’t rank a site if they can’t find it. That’s why site crawlability is such a crucial SEO ranking factor. Crawlability allows search engines to scan an internet site and review its content, in order that they can determine what the page is about and the way it should rank.
If you would like Google to rank your site, allow search engines to crawl your site properly.
Submit a sitemap to the highest search engines.
Check your index status in Google Search Console to review the number of pages Google has crawled on your site.
Properly use robots.txt to inform which search engines which pages they ought to access and which pages they ought to ignore.
Related Reading: How Search Engines Work: Everything you would like to understand to know Crawlers
Mobile-friendliness refers to how an internet site looks and performs when someone views it on a mobile device. Mobile-friendly sites provide a good user experience by employing a responsive design that adjusts the content in order that it’s good on every screen size. Because more searches are conducted on mobile devices than desktops (52.2% of internet traffic comes from mobile devices and therefore the number is on the rise), mobile-friendliness is vital to both search engines and users.
To see if your site is responsive, submit your site to Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test. it’ll report back any issues with the mobile version of your site.
4. Page Load Speed
Another SEO ranking factor that relates to user experience is page load speed. Slow loading sites provide a bad user experience. Search engines know that folks want to seek out answers as fast as possible, in order that they like better to show sites that will load quickly for users. this is often even truer for mobile sites, as Google announced that its Speed Update would make load speed a ranking factor for mobile searches.
To make sure that your site loads quickly, use a site speed checker. Try Alexa’s Speed Analysis tool, which may be a part of our full Site Audit, or Google’s PageSpeed Insights tool.
If your site is slow, take steps to hurry up your site by implementing website caching, compressing files, reducing the number of redirects, and taking other steps to hurry upload time.
5. User Engagement
Search engines look to users to assist them to determine which pages they ought to promote in search rankings. They consider how users interact with results to work out which pages are better and more useful to searchers. Google does this through a man-made intelligence tool called RankBrain. User engagement factors include:
- Click-through Rate (CTR): the share of individuals who click on an inquiry engine result when it’s presented to them
- Time on Site: the quantity of your time someone spends on a page after finding it via search
- Bounce Rate: the share of individuals who quickly leave after viewing just one page on a site they find via search
These metrics help search engines determine if an inquiry result’s valuable to users, so optimize both your site content and search snippets to spice up user engagement.
- Use high-quality website design and graphics.
- Use a siloed site architecture that’s natural and straightforward to follow.
- Use internal links to assist users easily navigate through your site.
- Use meta tag SEO to craft compelling titles and descriptions for your search results snippets.
- Optimize your content for featured snippets in search.
6. High-Quality Content
Another way to spice up user engagement on your site and appeal to look engines is by consistently publishing high-quality content on your site. Content is one of the foremost important SEO ranking factors. Search engines want to supply the simplest results possible, in order that they give top rankings to sites that have well-researched, in-depth, and well-crafted content.
Fresh content attracts search crawlers and boosts search visibility while supplying you with something valuable to share together with your audience, so it’s a win-win for your marketing strategies.
7. The Proper Target Keywords
Don’t go blindly into content creation. Strategically create content by performing keyword research to inform you what keywords to focus on and topics to hide. Keyword research is that the process of identifying popular keywords which will drive traffic to your site.
Consider how Google ranks keywords to assist you select the simplest keywords for your content.
- Target long-tail keywords. As voice search grows in popularity, more people are checking out long phrases and questions. Appeal to the present sort of search by finding long-tail keywords (keywords that are three or more words) additionally to shorter generic keywords to focus on in your content.
- Understand keyword search intent. Search intent is that the reason why someone searches (i.e., because they need to find out, buy, or navigate to something). Google boosts rankings for pages that have content that matches keyword intent, so make certain you understand how different types of keywords map to differing types of content, in several parts of the acquisition funnel.
- Target terms within your site’s competitive range. Some keywords are extremely competitive and can be difficult to rank for. specialize in keywords that are within your site’s competitive range. Use the Keyword Difficulty tool in Alexa’s Advanced decides to identify terms that are within your competitive ability easily. The tool considers your site authority and highlights keywords your site can rank for.
8. Optimized Content
To attract search engines to your content, you furthermore may get to consider on-page SEO factors. On-page SEO is that the process of optimizing each individual page on your site for a target keyword. By optimizing your content for one specific keyword, you tell the search engines what the page is about and what it should rank for.
Assign one unique keyword to every page on your site. (Never assign an equivalent keyword to quite one page on your site as this will confuse search engines and cause keyword cannibalization). Then, optimize the content for on-page SEO best practices.
Use an on-page SEO checklist to optimize your page, then check to form sure you didn’t miss any optimization opportunities by using Alexa’s On-Page SEO Checker.
9. Structured Data
Another way to inform the search engines what an internet page is about (so they rank it accordingly) is thru the utilization of structured data. Structured data, or Schema Markup, is microdata added to the backend of an internet page that tells search engines the way to classify and interpret the content (such as identifying an address, book title, recipe, or another sort of information).
10. Consistent Business Listings
Search engines rank the brands they believe are the foremost credible, authoritative, and trustworthy. The skilled a brand appears online, the more likely it’s that search engines will increase their search visibility. this is often why consistent business listings are a crucial ranking factor.
Business listings, sometimes mentioned as citations, are primarily an area SEO ranking factor. But all brands should perform basic citation setup and management and:
- Create a Google My Business page.
- Set up business profiles on industry-related directory sites.
- Ensure that their NAP (business name, address, and phone number) is employed consistently across their business profiles.
11. Backlink Profile
Backlinks are another signal that tells search engines that an internet site is credible and authoritative. the amount and quality of links pointing to your site is an off-page SEO factor that features a significant impact on your search rankings.
Next to content, backlinks are often considered to be the second most vital SEO ranking factor. If you would like your site to rank, you would like an idea for building high-quality backlinks for your site through practices like guest posting, link acquisition, digital PR, and other link building strategies.
12. Domain Age
The final ranking factor won’t be something you’ll control, but it’s worth mentioning. Domain age, or how old your website is, is usually considered a ranking factor. While Google doesn’t clearly state this together of its SEO ranking factors, research has found that older domains tend to rank better.
So if you launch a brand-new site, know that it’ll take time for your SEO efforts to kick in. With time and continual SEO work, your site will improve its search ranking, but it won’t happen overnight.
Is Your Site Optimized for All SEO Ranking Factors?
Now that you simply know what SEO ranking factors are most vital, it’s time to optimize your site.
Read more:- Importance of SEO for e-Commerce Website
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