|Title Tags||The title tag is probably the most important factor on the webpage. Without it, it’s unlikely the page will ever rank. Search engines use this is a major guideline to determine what the content is about.
They use this to determine where to categorize the content in their search engine. This is why Google will show missing title tags in Webmaster tools.
|Meta Description||The meta-description is very important. Google often calls this snippets. By creating a better meta-description, a website can change its position in the search engine results page. Unfortunately, Google does not always honor this tag. They will often test other information on the page as a meta-description. This can be one the most frustrating experiences with webmaster who’s committed to quality meta-description.|
|SEO-Friendly URLs||The URL should be free of special characters, and stopwords.|
|Content 500+ words||Panda, penalizes websites that had “thin content”. Small particles with little or no value.|
|Content Quality||Panda penalizes websites that had poor quality content. These are fluff articles.|
|Website Loading Speed||In 2012, Google made website load speed a ranking factor|
|Returning visitors||Returning visitors themselves are not on page, but the content that keeps them coming back is an on page factor.|
|Click Through Rate||Google measures the amount of clicks on the webpage.|
|New Content-QDF||Query deserves freshness. Google has a patent on this.|
|Keyword Phrase||The keyword phrase is more than just a keyword. The words surrounding it are also relevant.|
|Headlines||Headlines are a major factor in conversion, more conversions means better user experience.|
|Font size||Larger font sizes rank better. 13 point is considered the minimum.|
|Footer Geo location||Google has determined that many quality websites have their name address and phone number in the footer. They correlate this information to the Google places listing.|
|Content above the fold||Google measures content above the fold. Better user experience above the fold, affects overall rankings.|
|Ads above the fold||Too many ads or large ads above the fold are negative ranking factor.|
|Duplicate content||Duplicate content is more commonly seen on shopping carts, where people use the manufacturer’s description of the product. It is a serious negative ranking factor.|
|Text color / hidden text||Hidden texts, is considered a black hat technique. Webmasters should be careful that the text color is high contrast. This also affects user experience.|
|Navagation||Poor navigation is a negative ranking factor. Navigation can affect the internal linking structure of the website.|
|Keyword placement onpage||Keywords placed near the top of the page have a different effect than those placed at the bottom.|
|Keyword in Domain name||Exact match domains are still effective content is high-quality.|
|Keyword Stemming||Google has introduced its own word stemming search technology. It basically means that on some queries, Google looks not only for the searched keywords, but also for their variants. They also have a patent on this technology.|
|Age of page vs. age of site||Newer pages can get different ranking.|
|Poor spelling and grammar||Google has said that this is a negative ranking factor.|
|Image names||Google uses the image names to give them a clue about the content of the page. Image001.jpg is not helpful.|
|Rich Snippets||In some areas rich snippets can improve the ranking of the webpage.|
|Comments||Comments on the webpage increase the QDT, and can enhance the user experience.|
|Keyword Stuffing||Keyword stuffing is a negative ranking factor. It is often practiced by inexperienced Seo people.|
|meta-keywords||meta-keywords are ignored by Google, and are negative ranking factor for Bing|
|uptime||Websites with hosting problems often experience negative ranking.|
|Broken links||broken links are for user experience and indicate that the webmaster is not paying attention to the website.|
|Alt Tags of Images||In some cases all takes can help Google understand more of the content on the page.|
The world is changed. Google has put in place a new system in the last 12-18 months. The system is known as Panda and Penguin.
These changes have completely upset the SEO industry, and millions of websites.
This is the biggest change in the last 10 years for online marketing. Aaron Wall has estimated that 90% of all websites in America have been affected by this change.
This is accurately titled a paradigm shift.
The way Google analyzes and judges a website, has changed completely. This new method that they use is very different than old methods.
Yet we have not seen a change in many other website owners thinking. They still seem to think that somehow we can use old methods to recover from these changes. The fact of the matter is, the old methods do not work anymore. And in some cases they can be very awful to a website.
Yet we have not seen a paradigm shift in website owners thinking. Many underestimate the extraordinary challenge the Google has placed before them. In some cases it means completely rebuilding a website. From investment point, this can be substantial. In fact in almost all cases, the investment required in this new era of Google is MUCH greater.
The priority and focus also has changed. They have changed from a push marketing model, to pull marketing.
What Google is not telling people, directly, is that they have to change from telling people all about themselves and how great their products are, to a model of helping people. A resource for people looking for answers to their problems. In some cases this is a big task that Google has saddled on the business owner.
Not only does it have to be a selfless model of helpfulness, but it has to be very well done. Google is measuring how satisfied people are with the website. The people who have a better “user experience”, meaning they like the website, then Google will send more traffic.
The old days of PR ranking, quality of links, quantity of links and many other metrics, now take a back seat to user experience. In some cases they become irrelevant and user experience becomes paramount.
So the website owner needs to understand this, and realize they have to make sweeping changes to their website.
In some cases that means a new business model.
Some website owners are just looking for some more talented SEO people to get them back in the game. They’re looking for a magic bullet.
While it’s true, it does take a much higher level of expertise in understanding to develop a strategy and succeed. But the whole focus needs to shift to content marketing.
What the website owner needs is someone who can develop a strategy, who can be their guide through this new system, and someone who understands the new metrics and can measure the progress.
But even with this new person, Google has set up their system so that there is not a rapid increase in traffic. It’s more about momentum now. SEO is now a Marathon not a Sprint.
These are the things Google is not telling directly. If you listen to what they say and read between the lines, then you can understand this is a extraordinary change that’s taken place, and that it has deep ramifications for business owners.
We have to react to these changes. We cannot do business the way we have in the past. We cannot reverse engineer Google’s algorithm to gain more advantage. That is now impossible. The game has changed. We have to change in response to that.
Please contact me today to talk about the strategic plan for your website.