Find Trusted Info on Google SEO Ranking
Looking for information about SEO (search engine optimization) to get your website ranking on the first page of Google search results can be overwhelming. How do you know who to trust? Where can you find reliable information about the Google ranking algorithm that isn’t obsolete?
The best place to get authoritative information about the Google search engine is from Google itself. 87% of searches made around the world used Google (as of October 2017). No one can ignore what Google has to say about search results when it has such an overwhelming majority of searches every day.
What Does Google Say about SEO?
For your website to be optimized for the Google search engine, produce clear and helpful content: “Give visitors the information they're looking for. Provide high-quality content on your pages, especially your homepage. This is the single most important thing to do. If your pages contain useful information, their content will attract many visitors and entice webmasters to link to your site.” That is the foundational overall principle in search engine optimization. But what does that look like practically?
Google has made these free resources available to help website developers and digital marketers produce well-structured and high-quality content that is relevant for what people are searching for:
Google Search Console has the current Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Starter Guide, updated in December 2017. Each optimization technique is explained clearly and each section concludes with a helpful summary of best practices and what to avoid. [Previous versions of this guide may have outdated info: download printer-friendly version Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide (PDF, September 2010) or Google SEO Guide, one-page version (PDF, January 2013).]
This set of web pages clearly present how Google decides what is the most relevant information to display as search results. That’s the technical part. For the overall context, it’s helpful to understand that Google search follows these three guiding principles: focus on the user, empower website owners, and maximize access to information.
Good overview; a simple one-page explanation for the processes involved in serving up search results:
- Crawling: Does Google know about your website?
- Indexing: Can Google index your website’s pages?
- Serving: Does the web page have useful content that’s relevant to the search?
This is a definitive guide for how Google finds and understands your web pages, particularly on the technical aspects of how the content can be best presented and structured. The Content guidelines section gives specific details for optimizing content, covering topics like meta tags, images, mobile, and much more. The Quality guidelines section describes the bad techniques to avoid like hidden links, scraped content, irrelevant keywords, and more. Just as people have used these techniques in the past to manipulate Google ranking, engineers at Google are constantly refining their algorithm to penalize “black hat” behaviors.
Top-ranked websites have valuable content that can answer questions like these:
- Does the article provide original content or information, original reporting, original research, or original analysis?
- Is the site a recognized authority on its topic?
- Would you trust the information presented in this article?
See all 23 questions to guide how you can create great content that search engines like Google will love to rank higher. (source: Google Webmaster Central Blog, 2011)
Get this quick overview about SEO (the acronym for Search Engine Optimization) informs your decision for choosing the right people that can get the job done. You’ll want to know the risks involved, what promises are realistic or not, and learn how to tell if a consultant or agency knows what they’re doing. Get up to speed quick with this Google video about how to hire an SEO consultant (running time 11:37).
Google will not reveal its algorithm for ranking search results because that would give up their unique business value. What Google has revealed are the principles, guidelines, and thought process behind what kind of content gets top ranking.
Google has shared that its algorithm uses over 200 factors to determine how it ranks web page content in relation to search keywords. Google’s search engine ranking algorithm is constantly adjusted in an on-going effort. One reason for this is because 15% of searches on Google every day are brand new, that is, never searched on before.
How often does Google change its algorithm? One Google analyst, John Mueller, tweeted that Google makes changes almost every day.
Google doesn’t only rely on computers to crunch through signals from millions of websites; Google also has people that are actively evaluating and reviewing the quality of Google’s search results. The raters use these Search Quality Rater Guidelines to flag.
Staying Up to Date on Google Search
Google officially posts the latest Google Search information on its Webmaster Central Blog and in the Search section of the Keyword blog at blog.google. John Mueller, the Google Webmaster Trends Analyst, posts updates on Google Plus at plus.google.com/+JohnMueller.
Do you know any other trusted source about Google Search? Please add a comment to share.
Avoiding Fake News and Bad Content
What is truth? That’s an important question that guides our lives, decisions, and behaviors. The content published on the internet has become more accessible as search engines have improved over the years to identify quality content. But, the digital publishing platforms and social media have also made it very easy for anyone to publish content that perpetuates unreliable information, fake news, outrageous opinions, or worse. Unfortunately, that's the world we live in today, where cyber warfare is a part of life.
We believe that trustworthy and authoritative information about search engine optimization should be easier to find. We’ll do our best to keep this article up-to-date as Google technology continues to develop.
What Others Say about Google SEO?
We are checking out what other experts have learned about Google SEO. In an upcoming article, we'll share a good short list of trusted sources for the latest up-to-date SEO developments. Sneak preview: we've found someone that claims to have discovered the 3 top-ranking factors of the Google search algorithm. Stay tuned. Coming soon.
Feel free to add a comment or question; we'll try our best to answer.