The 10 SEO ranking factors you absolutely need to know
Knowing what are the factors that affect the positioning of a page on search engines is essential if you want to dominate the SERP (Search Engine Result Page).
In reality, no one can determine exactly what these factors are and how these factors affect ranking, as Google’s algorithms are always evolving and becoming more and more sophisticated. The only thing we know is that around 200 ranking factors have been estimated.
But why is it so important to know these factors and get a good ranking on the search engine SERPs?
Several studies have shown that the sites that occupy the first position on Google receive on average 30-35% of the traffic while those that are in the fifth position only 6%. According to these researches, traffic would drop dramatically from the second page onwards.
Having said that, we can say that the higher a website’s position on the SERP, the more traffic it will get from the search results (the ideal would be to rank at least in the top ten results). To check the positioning of your site on search engines, you can use various tools on the net. But let’s see immediately what are the main factors that affect positioning.
Factors on page
Google, to understand the content and evaluate the quality of a web page, analyzes a series of structural factors such as the Title tag, the H1 title marker and the meta description.
To optimize these factors it is useful to take some precautions: first of all, remember to place the keywords for which you want to position yourself at the beginning of the Title tag. The latter must be unique, as duplications damage the positioning of the site.
Use only one H1 title marker per page, while to provide a hierarchical structure you can repeat the H2, H3, etc. tags several times.
The meta description can instead be considered an indirect ranking factor, as if done well it can improve the click. -through rate of the page.
Content is king, Bill Gates said back in 1996.
This phrase is still extremely effective today, as it is known that Google tends to reward quality content, which must provide real value to the user.
Studies have shown that relatively longer and more complete content generally reaches higher positions, but remember that quality always beats quantity, so focus on the actual value of the content and not the word count.
Relevance and Authority
Reputable websites rank more easily on Google. But how does Google evaluate the relevance and authority of a website?
There are several factors that determine the Page Quality Rating, opening a thematic blog, for example, could help you to signal to Google that your business is related to a certain sector.
Another well-established fact is that more and more people use their mobile phones to access the web. In fact, 88% of searches take place via mobile devices.
Precisely for this reason it is essential that the website is conceived and designed for mobile devices right from the start.
Having a mobile friendly site, however, is not enough. A website must first and foremost be functional, therefore it is important to have an accurate UX design. It has been proven that there is a strong correlation between good UI / UX and page ranking on the SERP.
Google’s mobile-first approach has changed search results, especially with regards to local results, which are increasingly linked to geolocation.
In this regard, it may be useful to resort to structured data, ie codes to be added to pages to describe their contents to search engines.
The markup code helps search engines better understand specific text like addresses, phone numbers, recipes, reviews, and more.
Applying the markup to a store’s opening hours, for example, allows potential customers to find that store just when they need it and know if it’s open or closed at the time of the search. If you want to learn more about this aspect, I suggest you read this guide from Google.
In recent years, long-tail searches made by users with an increasingly natural language have increased. The semantic relevance of keywords to the content is a fundamental factor for ranking.
It’s important that the keyword or phrase you want to rank for exactly matches your users’ search query – that’s why it’s important to use natural language.
Also, the keyword for which you want to gain organic visibility should be placed in the first 100 words of the document. Excessive repetition and use of irrelevant keywords are negative ranking factors.
Keyword in the domain
Many industry specialists believe that pages that contain the keyword in the domain rank better and faster than those that don’t use keywords.
In reality, Google does account for keywords in the domain, but it has no proven impact on SEO rankings . The fact is that a website containing keywords in the domain name is definitely useful for improving search results, but that doesn’t mean the site will automatically rank for those keywords.
Google has publicly stated that the speed of the site (and consequently the speed of loading a page) is a ranking factor. Specifically, it seems that Google evaluates the loading speed of a web page by measuring the Time To First Byte (TTFB). Longer load times have been shown to negatively impact conversions.
But the loading speed of a web page is especially important for the experience as pages with a longer load time tend to have higher bounce rates and a lower average dwell time.
Links are perhaps the most important ranking factor on which Google’s algorithms are based.
Let’s see how the different types of links help to position a site on the SERP:
Internal Links (internal links): l ‘ optimization link interior is one of the few techniques available to tell Google (and users) that a particular page is relevant.
Outbound links: outbound links are links that go from your site to external pages of other websites. These links, in general, transfer part of the authority acquired by your site to the destination one.
Inbound links (backlinks): Backlinks remain one of the strongest ranking signals in Google’s algorithm. The more links you have from high authority domains, the greater the chances of your site ranking high.
It is important to get backlinks from relevant sites that preferably deal with the same topic as your website and above all to get external links from a large number of (quality) domains rather than getting many links from a single domain.