What does your agency consider to be the top-ranking factors are for 2023?

What does your agency consider to be the top-ranking factors are for 2023?

November 17, 2023

 

Written by: Ryan Walsh

Date: 17/11/2023

 

What exactly is search engine optimisation?

So, if you were to ask us, what we think are Google’s top-ranking factors for 2023, well we would say that they haven’t changed all that much over the last few years.

Google has always focused on putting quality content marketing on its first page, and now there is huge focus on each page meeting Google’s EEAT guidelines.

Google recently added “Experience” as something it looks for when determining if that page is quality and well written or not. As well as looking for:

-Expert
-Authoritativeness
-Trustworthiness

 

The quality of content marketing, mobile friendliness how many good quality backlinks (do-follow and no-follow) are still really important. Yet what getting more important than ever is user experience, or UX factors for short, such as how easy your website is to use.
So, an example some of the user experience ranking factors are:

– How fast a website is
– How high the bounce rate is
– Dwell time

 

What does your agency think, are Google’s top-ranking factors for 2023?

Link Quality (Backlinks)

 

The quality of a websites backlinks, and how many links your website has, are still widely been considered as the most important ranking factor in search engine optimisation (SEO). If your website has a lot of quality backlinks, and is likely to rank on the first page.

Google’s algorithm even since the days of “PageRank” still put backlinks as one of the, if not the most important ranking factors is.
If a website simply has quality backlinks, from a relevant website, and a good mixture of do-follow and no-follow backlinks, combined with anchor text, that has been written in a white hat way- well, this could help soar your business up the serp’s.

 

Quality of backlinks more important than ever

Don’t buy links, or try to get low quality backlinks, these will not ever, help to improve your SEO, they will damage your companies organic search engine optimisation.

To give you an idea of how bad idea it is to buy low quality backlinks, it can result in a business, obtaining a link penalty (manual action penalty or algorithmic) which can lead to your website ranking somewhere like 10 pages of Google! Exactly, no shoppers are going to find you there.

 

Avoid black hat SEO methods

If you do use black hat SEO methods, such as purchasing backlinks, then this can lead to link penalties from the search engines (Google Panda) penalties.

 

So how should you be building backlinks?

We would say that the best way of building backlinks, is to write high quality content marketing (Google EEAT). Write the work so that is really helpful, really useful that your customers will want to read.

Then if the work super helpful, it’s likely that other businesses and websites will want a link that work.

 

Trustworthiness and EEAT

So a lot of agencies, now believe that one way of proving trustworthiness (EEAT) and therefore improving your businesses EEAT, is to get high quality backlinks from high-quality websites.

 

Site hierarchy

You can use internal links and also anchor text within your website, for example from the blog post leading to the main pages. Obviously, the more links that lead to a few important main pages on your website, that’s a clear indication that they are the most important pages on your company website.

So, for example let’s say you are a law firm, and you have written over 100 blog posts. If out of all those blog posts, the majority of the internal links only lead to say seven main pages on your company website, then it is clear that out of all those pages / blog posts, the ones that get linked to the most, are likely to be the most important on your company website?

 

User experience

Dwell time

You obviously want to keep shoppers / visitors on your company website, for as long as possible.
The main reason for this is, it’s a clear signal, if the dwell time is high, to the search engines, that shoppers find the products or the advice that you giving valuable- that’s why they want to spend such a long time reading it or browsing the various items that you have for sale.

 

High bounce rate

On the other hand, if you hire web designers, that do a poor job of designing the website or the content marketing is poorly written, so much so that the average shopper only spans 10 seconds on the website, then this is a clear signal to the search engines (Google & Bing for example) that shoppers are not finding what they want, in terms of products or advice.

So lets say you run a ski-shop, and Google has placed you in 1st position for the keyword “ski-boots”.

Yet, its clear, after a period of time, the bounce rate is very high for that page, well Google’s RankBrain will notice it, and your business may after next algorithm update, rank say 7th instead. And that could be because the bounce rate is so high for that page.

 

So how do you lower a page / blog posts bounce rate’?

– Make the page faster
– Improve the content marketing
– You may want to rewrite some of the work
– Improve the meta title or description so it more accurately describes the product / service
– Consider embedding a Youtube video, to better explain the product / service, possibly helping to reduce the bounce rate
– Make sure the text is easy to read
– Add internal links
– Break the text up with titles

 

Make sure your content marketing is in-depth

It’s important, if you want to separate yourself from some of your direct competitors, and for your business to rank higher on Google, to write in-depth content marketing.

 

Yet there’s no point in writing say 3,000 words of total waffle, the work must:

– Be useful
– Follow Google’s EEAT advice
– Be white hat
– Not duplicated
– Be useful

So, for example, most of your competitors might be writing the thousand words of advice, for example on purchasing a dishwasher and which are the most energy efficient models.

However, if your business does go the extra mile, and your articles are more in-depth, and better written than your direct competitors, let’s say 3000 words plus, plus you embed YouTube video, plus you create infographics, so it’s clear that your offering helpful, useful and well written advice. Well, it’s this quality work that is likely to give you the edge over your direct competitors SEO, therefore your website might rank higher on Google or Bing.

 

You do need to consider “Web Core Vitals” specially page speed

Web core vitals, is something that Google, created to improve the overall user experience of the company website.
Google’s Web Core Vitals looks at how fast the company website loads, the interactivity and also what is called the visual stability.
In a nutshell basically what your business needs is a really fast company website, because even if it’s a fraction slower to load than some of your direct competitors, than this could mean that your businesses search engine optimisation is put at a disadvantage.
So, your business will need super-fast hosting, to ensure that your company website is fast.

 

Semantic SEO

Semantic SEO is a bit different than other types of SEO, because instead of say an SEO purely focusing on optimising a company website for certain words and phrases, semantic SEO is different.

That’s because Google’s algorithm now a much better understanding of the words, or the entities that have been written on the page.
So, for example let’s say that within the title of you work, you mention “Queen”, then within the blog post there are numerous mentions also of say “electric guitars”, numerous dates where rock concerts where held.

Is is therefore obvious to the search engines, such as Google that the article is about Queen the rock band, rather than the monarch.

 

Content marketing

Crawling and Indexing

It is really important that all of the pages and blog posts, that you want to appear on Google, can be crawled and indexed.
So, for this to happen, Googlebot will need to be able to crawl the page.

Sometimes Googlebot can’t index the page, that could be something as simple, as the “no-index” has been accidentally switched on, or somebody is written in the robots.txt to not index that page or blog post, when instead you want it to be indexed.

This obviously needs to be fixed, if you want that page or that blog post to appear in Google results.

 

What is “link juice”

So, let’s say there are seven core services on your website, these are what your business specialises in offering to customers. So, for example, let’s say you run a law firm, and all your main services, are listed there.

So, when you do earn a high-quality, do follow backlinks, and the company that is linking to the work, asks which page shall we link to?

Well, it’s far better to have the backlink, link to an important page on your website.

Because more potential customers are likely to see that page / blog post because it’s likely to rank higher in Google if a lot of quality backlinks link to that page.

That’s because backlinks are still one of the most important ranking factors, well at the time of writing at least. So, if a page has a lot of “link equity” leading to that page, well, its likely to rank higher on Google.

What you don’t want a see all your best backlinks leading to an unimportant blog post.

That’s because those blog posts may rank high on Google, but they may not sell any products, so may not help your business to increase sales.

So, let’s give you a real-life example, let’s say your business specialises in selling powerful vacuum cleaners.

Rather than sending all of the link equity to a blog post, which explains how the cyclone technology works in your vacuum cleaners, what you can do is send link juice instead, to the main page that sells your vacuum cleaners.

Therefore, that product page is likely to rank higher in Google’s SERP’s, therefore you might be able to sell more products.

What you don’t want to do is send potentially millions of shoppers to a blog post, which doesn’t actually sell your products, because you might not sell as many more items, you want to get

 

Work hard to reduce your company’s bounce rate

You should most definitely, work hard to reduce the bounce rate, (you can see the bounce rate for each page in your Google Analytics account).

Its especially important to lower the bounce rate for the main pages, such as the homepage.
For those that do not know, the bounce rate is simply expressed as a percentage, it shows how many visitors have visited just one page on your website.

If a lot of shoppers just visit one page, then it could be an indication that they are not interested in the products that you sell.

You obviously want a shopper to go on and visit say 10 product pages, and have a look at a range of items you sell, because that shows that they are interested in what you are selling.

 

Written by an expert (Google’s EEAT)

We would highly recommend that your blog posts / articles and main pages on your company website are written by an expert. Someone who really knows what they talking about, can cover the topic they are writing about, in a way that’s in-depth, and therefore the work is likely to be helpful to the reader.

This will improve your businesses organic seo, so we would recommend that the work is written solely by an expert, or the digital marketing company, works closely with experts, to create good quality written work.

 

Social media

Lastly, do set up social media accounts, say on Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn to promote your business
it’s important to have social media accounts for your business, and to be active on them, not to post and leave a huge amount of time, before you post again.

Social media, such as Facebook can help your business to generate more brand awareness
By regularly posting say on Facebook, promoting your business locally, nationally or internationally this can help to improve brand awareness.

For example, you might manufacture vacuum cleaners, and you’ve just launched a new product.

A brilliant way is to advertise that product, and your business is on social media like on Facebook, then people who are interested in vacuum cleaners might look at the page and then go to your website to purchase that product.

 

Do you need help to improve your SEO?

If your business needs help to improve its SEO, then why not call us?

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