In the last part of this series we looked out specific things you can do to rank a web page higher in the search engines. Today we’ll look at how to optimize your entire website so you’re more likely to rank for any keywords you want.
Many of these optimizations not only help Google rank your site but make your site easier to navigate and browse by visitors. As with the last list I’m sure there’s something here that you could implement today to improve your site. Let’s take a look at the top Google Ranking Factors for website optimization.
1) Contact Us Page – A contact page lets Google know that you are available to interact with your visitors. It’s possible that there is an added bonus when your contact page information matches your whois information.
2) Website Architecture – How you structure your website makes a difference to how it’s ranked in the search engines. A Silo Structure is thought to be best as your articles are grouped under sub-headings, allowing for easier navigation.
3) Updates – Updating your site regularly gives it a freshness factor that let’s the search engines know you’re up to date and on top of things.
4) Site Index – Having a site index makes it easier for the search engines to navigate your site and find all of your content.
5) Number of Pages – Bigger sites tend to indicate more authority. This isn’t always the case of course but adding more good quality content to your site is almost always a good thing.
6) Uptime – Keeping your site live is important if you’re going to be listed in the search results. Google doesn’t want to list sites that are down or broken.
7) Server Location – This may have an effect for geographic specific searches.
8) Optimized for Mobiles – Google do penalize websites in searches from mobile devices if they’re not optimized. In fact they also display a ‘mobile friendly‘ tag to sites that are optimized. Have a look at the graphic below to see where your site sits:
As you can see a responsive web design will serve the same URL no matter what device the viewer is using. All the website HTML will also stay the same. It’s not enough to keep the same URL and HTML of course, the site must display differently depending on what device is used and the screen size. Hence the term ‘responsive’.
9) Privacy Page & Terms of Service – Having these two pages on your website let’s Google know that you can be trusted.
10) Content is Unique & Useful – Unique content of course is a must but it also must be relevant and provide the answers that people are looking for.
11) User Reviews – Google now has a way of filtering out businesses that do bad business on the Internet. In Google’s Official Blog they’ve outlined how they are actively targeting business who generate bad reviews repeatedly.
12) Google Analytics and Webmaster Tools – Some have speculated that using Google’s online tools for your analytics data may help improve website ranking. Regardless of whether this is true it certainly gives Google more data to work with which could potentially help your site.
Hopefully these Website Optimization Ranking Factors have been helpful. In the next part we’ll look at Backlink Factors That Affect Rank.