Yes, you read that right. Believe it or not, there are well over 200 factors that search engine algorithms look for on your site! Google and other search engines have developed complex algorithms that take into consideration an astounding array of factors, many of which you’ve probably never even thought about optimizing.
Web Mag recently published an extensive infographic that lists more than 200 factors that Google algorithms look at when ranking your website. We highly recommend checking it out. This infographic offers valuable insight into how search engine optimization works.Though it may seem extensive, Web Mag admits that there are likely even more factors at play. With so many factors to consider, hiring an SEO agency that is up-to-date on developing SEO-friendly sites and implementing all the proper SEO criteria is a strategic move that can set your business apart from your competition.
Here are a few ways an SEO Agency will help you optimize:
From your root domain, to page URLs, an SEO agency knows the optimal length and how to integrate keywords in a way that will get your URLs to rank.
- Proper domain registration
- Use of keywords in domain and URLs
- Short, understandable URLs
- Domain owner history
- Public WHOIS
Google and other search engines are increasingly looking for unique, quality content. Useful and relevant content is prioritized over content that is merely stuffed with keywords. In fact, sites that try to optimize their SEO with these outdated practices are often penalized. An SEO agency looks at dozens of factors when developing intelligent content that appeals to search engines for keyword terms related to your business.
- Strategic use of keywords (order of keywords, integration into copy, etc.)
- Readability and relevance, evidence of human editing
- Meta data, including title tags and meta description
- Use of bullets and subheads
- Inclusion of multi-media such as videos and images
- Image optimization, including alt text and image name
- Content length (longer is optimal, 1st page results are on average over 2,000 words)
- Unique content and use of canonical tags
- User-friendly sitemap and clean programming (no page errors or broken links)
- Recent updates on a regular basis
Beyond the content found on separate pages of your site, search engines look at your website as a whole, and determine how pages work together to offer value to customers. The more trustworthy and comprehensive your site, the higher it will rank.
- Inclusion of a sitemap, and intelligent site structure
- Contact page with real contact information
- Number of pages in your site
- Location of your servers
- Site speed and uptime
- Mobile optimization and overall usability
- Integration of Google Analytics and YouTube channel
- User reviews, particularly on Google Places
- Breadcrumb navigation
It’s long been known that linking is an important factor in how your site ranks. Historically, sites used ‘link farms’ to direct thousands of links to their site for an SEO boost. These days, link farming is blacklisted in the SEO community. The quality of links is much more important than the quantity. Generating relevant link backs from trusted sources, and including intelligent outbound links within your content is extremely valuable.
- Outbound links to relevant, useful content
- Incoming links from relevant, trusted sites, especially local sites, or sites related to your industry
- Content on the page linking to your site
- Links from .edu or .gov sites
- Links from sites with age and authority
- Inclusion in positive, trusted link neighbourhoods
- Inclusion of guest posts/blogs
- Anchor text linking to your site
- User-generated links, vs. self-linking
- Linked as a Wikipedia source
How your customers interact with your site helps Google and other search engines determine the usefulness and relevancy of your content. Sites that have higher user-engagement typically have a wealth of helpful content and authority over their subject matter.
- High organic click-through
- Low bounce rate
- High page views per visit
- High time on site
- Direct traffic and repeat traffic
- Number of comments posted on your site
A fairly recent development in the world of search engine marketing, social media links, shares and likes are now a crucial part of how your website gets ranked by Google and other search engines. Having appropriate social media channels set up for your business, and using them to share useful, relevant content frequently is a key factor in how your site ranks.
- Tweets linking to your site
- Facebook likes and shares
- Authority of social users who link to your site
- Verified Google Authorship
- Pinterest pins of your site
- Google +1s
- Relevancy of social content linking your site
- Reviews posted on Yelp, and other trusted review aggregators
As you can see, there is a lot of thought that must go into your site, content development and other external factors to give your site the best chance of ranking highly for keywords that are important to your business.For a more extensive list of all 200 SEO factors that help rank your site, read the full infographic at: http://webmag.co/200-seo-ranking-factors-google/. Hiring an SEO agency ensures your online presence takes full advantage of all these factors.
Eden Advertising is a Toronto online marketing agency that specializes in search engine marketing and SEO. For over a decade, we’ve helped businesses build smart websites with quality content and intuitive user experience that appeals to their customers and search engines alike.
To consult with us and find areas of opportunity to improve your website’s search rankings, reach us at 1-800-844-0106, or fill out our contact form.