Dispatches from the Field

5 Things That Impact Your Website's SEO Rankings You May Not Know About

5 Things That Impact Your Website’s SEO Rankings You May Not Know About

There are many things that can affect your website’s ranking on Google search. In this article, we’ll go over some of the factors you may not be aware of.

The problem is many customers just focus on keywords, search-friendly page titles and descriptions, then leave it at that. They may even spend an inordinate amount of money on Google AdWords then are disappointed in the poor return on their investment.

However, there are a number of other things to consider when you are looking to optimize your website for improved Google search results.

We’ve compiled a list of SEO (Search Engine Optimization) ranking factors below you may want to think about.

Frequently Neglected SEO Ranking Factors

Quality Content is King

The days of keyword stuffing and content farms are over. The SEO impact and value of original, valuable content cannot be overstated.

Enter Google’s “Panda” update on February 23, 2011.

The Panda update was developed to boost higher-quality websites in the search results. It also demotes websites with low-quality and duplicate content along with web pages with very little content and content of low value to customers.

So take the time to ensure the content on your website provides value to your customer and be sure to add new, quality content on a regular basis. Check out our article “A Simple Plan for Consistently Delivering Quality Content” for more information on developing your content strategy.

Be Careful with Your Backlinks

Backlinks are inbound links on third-party sites linking back to your website via a clickable link.

The Google algorithm update dubbed “Penguin”, launched April 24, 2012. Penguin’s purpose was to reduce Google trust in websites using unnatural backlinking practices in order to improve their ranking in search results.

When a website with authority links to your website, Google sees that as a vote of confidence signaling your website is high-quality. Previously, getting a large number of links from small, unknown sites had the same effect as a few links from high-authority sites. As a result, many SEO service providers would engage on high-volume, link-building tactics, violating Google’s quality guidelines. Penguin aims to put a stop to that.

You can check your backlink profile here.

The Importance of a Mobile-Friendly Website

A big change to hit SEO was the mobile-friendly algorithm update referred to by some experts as “Mobilegeddon.”

In 2015 there were more searches on mobile devices than on desktops in the U.S. and Japan. Google warned webmasters for years to make websites mobile-friendly so users could easily browse on a mobile device. That warning came to fruition on April 21, 2015, when Google started giving mobile-friendly websites a ranking boost. Google says your site has to be mobile-friendly.

In addition, on March 26, 2018, Google began rolling out its “Mobile-First” algorithm update. This huge change in SEO means that Google is now ranking your website based on the way it renders on mobile devices rather than desktops. The future of the Internet is mobile!

You Need an SSL Certificate

A recent security-related Google algorithm update gave preference to websites with “https connections” over sites without them. You know you’re connected to an SSL-enabled website when you see the little “padlock” icon next to the browser bar with https:// at the start of the website address instead of a plain old http:// connection.

To qualify for the extra “https” ranking points, all you have to do is have a properly installed SSL Certificate on your website. All WP WolfePress sites are deployed with an SSL Certificate installed.

The Importance of “Above the Fold” Content

The 2012 Google algorithm “Page Layout” update demotes site rankings for websites without enough relevant content “above the fold.” In SEO, “above the fold” refers to anything that a customer sees when they land on your web page for the first time, without any scrolling action.

This update was motivated by Google’s obsession with optimizing the customer experience. For WP WolfePress, that means creating a REMARKABLE customer experience.

Your website needs to make a positive impression with your Ideal Customer immediately and you only have a few seconds to convince your Ideal Customer that you can provide the solution to their problem. So it’s vital to include your Unique Value Proposition (UVP) and a very clear Call to Action (CTA) above the fold to provide you with the best possible chance of converting every new visitor into a sale, inquiry, follower or subscriber.

Need help?

If you need help bringing your site up a notch or two in Google Search results, or you need us to build an SEO-optimized site for you, contact us today. We are here to help!

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