Webmasters commonly know that one of the most important keys to success in any online business is top organic rankings in the popular search engines. However, what is less commonly known are the specific organic ranking factors that indicate relevance and importance for SEO.
To really understand the methodologies that are used to achieve top rankings, we should first put ourselves in the shoes of the engineers at Google. When a user types a keyword or phrase into the Google search box, that user is requesting that the search engine returns a list of webpages that will provide the answer or information the user is looking for.
It is Google’s job to have a clear understanding of every website in the online universe and to instantly deliver a list of results that offers the most relevant and important websites on the subject. To do this Google uses simple programs called “spiders” that crawl and index every website in the known online universe, page by page. As these spiders index each page they apply an algorithm, a set of equations, that has been created to identify and score every aspect of a website.
Today’s search algorithms are incredibly sophisticated with hundreds of factors being taken into consideration. The more competitive an industry is, the more important it becomes that webmasters do absolutely everything right. However, some factors are certainly weighted more heavily than others and it is therefore most critically important to understand the factors that contribute to what is known as the “Relevance” and “Importance” of your site, as they relate to the keywords you want to rank for.
The following infographic depicts how Relevance and Importance affect SEO in the online universe:
Relevance is a term that describes the content of your site. Is your site relevant to the term being searched? Because algorithms are used to evaluate this, it is important to understand that content that appears as an exact match to the term being searched appears more relevant than synonyms or related phrases. However, by integrating synonyms and phrases that Google has already determined are somewhat relevant to the term being searched you can indicate that your page is thoroughly exploring the subject matter and not just keyword stuffing.
Importance is a term that describes how connected your site is to the rest of the web. These off-site factors are seen as referrals to your site and thus provide information to Google that is very influential when it comes to the decision making processes that create the SERPs. Just like real world referrals, it is the quality and reputation of the referring site that determines whether or not that referral will help you or hurt you.
Because webmasters are constantly striving to implement techniques to trick the search engines into giving them high rankings, Google takes these factors very seriously. Implementing strategies that Google finds to be aimed at artificially manipulating their rankings can come with heavy consequences can come at a price with penalties ranging from filtering your site out of specific SERPs to banishing your site from the search engine entirely. Therefore, it is critical that search engine optimization strategies are implemented in very specific ways.
Over the past decade SEO Inc has consistently delivered top search engine rankings for clients in some of the most competitive industries online. If you are interested in learning more simply follow this link and fill out the form and one of our SEO Consultants will be happy to take you through a free evaluation.
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