Do you know the three main factors that Google considers when ranking results? Factor in these three factors and you will build your website’s audience. Those three factors are relevance, authority, and trust. Since Google is the undisputed heavyweight champion of the search world, let’s focus on this behemoth.
Relevance measures the content on your site. The more closely your content matches a particular search request, the more relevant your site is. Exact matches of words will score highest, while synonyms and key phrases that Google recognizes as also relevant will also help your relevance ranking.
Simple, right? Yes, but the next two factors are a bit more complicated.
Authority has to do with the trust with and influence over others that your website and/or content generates. There are hundreds of factors that search engines consider, but here’s the most important one: how many links there are to your content – this is numero uno. Also, the authority of the websites that link to your content can improve your authority.
Say someone wants information on 21st century widgets. If the top website in the 21st century widgets niche links to your content, your authority will rise. But if links come from less relevant sources to the widget field, say your content is linked in a blog post about canaries, your authority will increase less.
Other authority factors include how many mentions you get, how much your content is shared, how any fans you have… In essence, authority is a popularity contest. You can have the greatest content in the world, but if no one sees it, you will not be building your authority.
How do you build your authority?
A. Use more keywords. Keywords are king when it comes to SEO. Keyword stuffing is a practice than can boost your SEO. This refers to loading up a website with keywords that will improve a website’s SEO ranking. Be careful with this – Google penalizes sites that they believe are doing SEO manipulation.
The following infographic illustrates two newer SEO practices and it comes from kissmetrics.com:
Keyword intent refers to the intention of the searcher. The following infographic from Wordstream illustrates three search intentions:
Commercial intent keywords are those that attract potential customers. This topic will be the subject of an upcoming blog post here at tonyseel.com.
Long tail keywords refers to keywords and phrases that are more specific to your product and niche. Long tail keywords will typically draw a smaller audience, but will result in higher sales.
Yoast’s Marieke van de Rakt compares long tail keywords to a jukebox containing 10,000 songs. Only a small segment of those tunes may be regularly played, but over time, 98% of them will be played at least once. Only a small subset of internet users may be interested in a long tail keyword, but when the pool of internet users is over 3 billion, that small subset can be quite large.
B. Use social media to boost your authority and your SEO. Your site’s popularity on social media can boost your SEO and your authority. Be sure to communicate regularly for your business on social media and this will positively affect your SEO and authority.
Trust is difficult to measure, but Google does rank pages with longer articles and unique content that is regularly updated higher than sites without these factors.
External links to other trusted sites also improve your trust ranking. Video content will encourage visitors to stay on your site longer, and this will increase your trustworthiness.
Social media also affects your trust. How many Facebook likes and other signs of social media approval are you garnering?
This is just touching the surface of these three key factors in SEO. What would you add? I invite your comments and questions, your likes and shares.