The introduction of the new search engine algorithm by Google known as Hummingbird has thrown up several questions as to how Google now rank websites and the laid down criteria it adopts while determining the page rank of websites and blogs.
This article aims at explaining the various factors taken into consideration by Google while ranking a website and a total of 205 of these factors have been identified which I would individually explain in a 10-part serial. These factors if well understood and the recommendations implemented would help any webmaster in establishing a solid web presence that would ultimately drive traffic to his website or blog and consequently increase sales and advertisement revenues.
These are factors that directly deal with the effect of keywords on your website and how they influence page ranking and search positioning on a search engine.
1. Keyword Density: This is the number of times a particular keyword appears on a webpage. This helps Google in determining the site’s topic and facilitates its appearance in search results.
2. Length of Your Content: When your webpage article contains a well written content of about 1000 words or more, then you stand a chance of that particular article been brought up in search results more frequently during a search. Webpages with a scanty content can harm your site’s search preference by Google.
3. Keyword Appearing in H1 Tag: H1 tags are tags that sends relevancy signal to Google on contents that appear on your site. That means that if your keywords appear on H1 tag, then the frequency of your content appearing during a keyword search is almost guaranteed.
4. Age of Your Webpage: If your webpage is relatively new, then other older pages with similar content may appear in preference to yours on a Google search
5. Parked Domains: In December 2011, Google decreased the search visibility of parked domains as a result of an algorithm update. Your domain must be active and live on the internet to achieve any appreciable visibility on Google search.
6. Sitemap: If your page gives priority to a sitemap via the sitemap.xml file feature, your page may have an advantage in ranking over WebPages on other domains without this file.
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7. Excessive Outbound Links: When your webpage has too many outbound links, it can harm its ranking potentials. Excess outbound links causes distraction and can seriously interfere in a users overall site experience.
8. Other Keyword Rank Quality: A page that ranks well on other relevant keywords gives Google an inkling that the site is of high quality.
9. Numbered Page Navigation: Google prefers pages with a numbered page navigation that makes it easier for readers and visitors to your site to benefit from your posts or articles.
10. Citing References and Information Sources: Articles and contents with links to sources or contents that cite relevant sites to support particular point or information is a sign to Google that the page is of high quality and relates to a research material which can be very helpful to visitors.
11. Domain Authority: Pages on an authoritative domain ranks higher comparatively. This is because such domains have gained popularity among web users and information posted on such sites can be vouched for as been of very high quality.
12. Length of your domain URL: It has been shown that sites with short URL tend to rank higher compared to URLs that are too long and often difficult to remember. So the secret is “the shorter the url, the better for SEO”.
13. Webpage Categorization: A webpage that is categorized wrongly during site submission to search engines may receive less traffic and lowly ranked.
14. Excessive Affiliate Links: Since Google frowns at spamming and black hat SEO practices; too many affiliate links appearing on a webpage can seriously hurt its rankings. So keep your affiliate links optimal and avoid Google panda!
15. Content Technicalities: A web content that contains too many technical details may prove difficult to read and comprehend by a large number of audiences. So sites and pages with basic or intermediate reading level contents tends to rank higher.
16. Broken links: when there are so many broken links on your site, it may be a sign of a site still under construction of an abandoned site. It creates crawl errors and can harm your page ranking seriously if not corrected.
17. Page Internal Linking: The total number of internal links on a site pointing to a particular page shows the extent of relevance of that page.
18. Links From Authoritative Domains: Links pointing to your site from authoritative domains is a major boost for gaining a higher page rank. This is because such domains are trusted and any link they point to must be of a high quality too.
19. URL Homepage Closeness: URLs that are closer to the homepage are often ranked higher and they receive more visitors. This progression of the amount of visitors received decreases as the URLs get further away from a home page.