If you’re looking for the top search engine ranking factors, the answer isn’t a million miles away. Google’s been clear on its top three:
C. RankBrain, or user experience
Let’s look at these in more detail.
Links are a crucial SEO ranking signal because they’re what the web is built on. When you’re talking search engine ranking, three types of links matter:
A. Inbound links –
links coming to your site from external web pages
B. Outbound links –
links from your web pages to external sources
C. Internal links –
links within your site to your own content
Inbound links help Google figure out if your content is relevant and authoritative. As we mentioned, if your web page gets a link from a site that’s already an authority, that link is more valued than a link from a low quality site.In contrast, low quality inbound links can hurt your search ranking, so keep those to a minimum. We’ll explain how to do that in a minute.
To find your inbound links with SEMrush, you’ll need to set up a project to track key metrics for your domain. Then go to SEO Toolkit » Link Building » Backlink Audit. This will bring up an overview report. At this point there are two things you can do:First, to find low quality backlinks, look at the Domains by Toxic Score section.Click on the toxic percentage to see suspect inbound links. SEO Agency in London visit Vivid SEO
Then you can choose to keep or whitelist those links (if they’re not really toxic), or remove or disavow them if they are. Google suggests website owners exercise caution with link disavowal.Here’s the second way to check out your inbound link profile:Go back to the main Backlink Audit report in SEMrush, and click on Analyzed Backlinks to see inbound links.
In terms of outbound links, it’s important to create links to authoritative sites relevant to your topic. This shows visitors and Google that you’re creating quality content. Often, you will find authoritative content when researching a content topic. Then you just need to make a note of it so you can add it to your content.
You can also increase the value of your own pages by interlinking your content to create internal links. An authoritative page can pass on search ranking or link juice to other pages on your site. So if you have an in-depth resource, you can link to it every time you talk about your topic.
Content is the second major SEO ranking factor, and is just as important as links. As we’ve said, relevance and quality are two crucial factors for search engine rankings.
There are several areas to optimize here. Aside from keywords, which we’ll look at in a later chapter, it’s essential to understand what people mean when they type in a search term. This is called search intent.Sometimes the intent is clear, like when they type in “compare” or “buy.
But at other times, you’ll have to think more carefully. For example, if you want to rank for “arizona real estate”, you might think it’s a good idea to optimize your content for people wanting to move to a house in Arizona. But it might turn out that the people searching for that term are realtors looking for property they can list.Optimize for the wrong search intent, and your page will never rank.
There’s one more thing. The research shows that the length of your content can also be important. That’s because content that’s more than 2000 words long tends to get more top ten places in SERPs.Longer content also gets more links (another ranking factor) and more shares. As we’ll see, shares can contribute to an indirect ranking factor: social signals.So, it doesn’t hurt to include longform content in your content strategy when you’re thinking about SEO.
3. RankBrain (User Experience)
The third major SEO ranking signal is Google’s artificial intelligence search ranking algorithm. The company calls it RankBrain, and it’s all about user experience.
There are three important aspects of RankBrain:
A. Clickthrough rate – how many people visit your site from a SERPs entry
B. Bounce rate – how many people bounce a short time after following a SERPs entry to your site. A quick bounce means they didn’t get what they wanted
C. Dwell time – how long they stick around on your site after arriving. Clearly, longer is better, as it means your site delivered what they wanted
Together, these tell Google how users interact with your site and if your content is relevant, which can affect search ranking. Learn more about RankBrain and SEO here.
Other SEO ranking factors include: accessible URLs, domain age (older is usually better), page speed, mobile friendliness, business information, and technical SEO. We’ll look at some of those ranking factors in more detail as we go through the guide.