Ranking – in search of the perfect site

We go to Google, open the search bar and write our request. That as a result, we all know so well, a huge number of sites that can give us the necessary and not very information. Have you ever thought about why these leading sites are at the top of the results, and not those below?

03 April 2024
what-is-ranking

What is search engine ranking?

Ranking is the process by which search engines, such as Google or Bing, determine the order in which websites appear in search results based on certain user needs. The purpose of ranking is to show the most relevant, useful, and high-quality pages in response to a search query. Search engines use sophisticated algorithms that analyze hundreds of factors to assess the relevance and quality of web pages. These algorithms are constantly updated and improved to provide users with the best possible search experience.

Google, as the leader of the search industry, keeps its ranking algorithm secret. The company does not disclose the full list of factors that influence the positions of sites or their exact weight to prevent manipulation of search results. However, experienced SEO specialists can make an approximate ranking algorithm using empirical research to bring websites to the top and help them maintain their leading positions.

The importance of ranking for website owners

The-importance-of-ranking-for-website-owners

What’s the point of a website if it doesn’t sell, doesn’t generate revenue, and doesn’t meet user needs? Is it just there for show? In this case, why did you need to spend resources, efforts, money, and nerves to create this site? In order not to waste all your efforts, there is SEO-promotion that will help your website become visible first of all to search engines and then to users.

With a properly configured and optimized website, you’ll be able to attract organic traffic. Since the higher the website is, the more authoritative it’s in the eyes of potential buyers, and the more likely it’s to be visited. This increases the likelihood of conversions – orders, purchases, subscriptions, etc.

Regular presence of the website on the top positions for relevant queries increases brand visibility, makes it more familiar and recognizable to the audience. This helps build loyalty and long-term relationships with customers.

Factors that influence the ranking

First of all, you need to identify the factors that affect website crawling and ranking. Google mentions more than 200 conditions in its official publications. It makes no sense to list them all, because their importance may vary depending on the type of query, niche, region, and other variables. Moreover, search engine algorithms are constantly updated and improved, so the information may be outdated. However, the general principles remain the same: search engines strive to provide users with the most accurate and useful results. That is why today we are going to talk about the main ranking factors that have the greatest impact on page crawling and indexing.

Domain ranking factors

  • First, we check the authority of the domain, i.e. its age, the number and quality of backlinks, and mentions of your brand.
  • Secondly, we analyze the domain’s history, transparency, and the presence of search engine sanctions.
Domain-ranking-factors

Content ranking factors

  • The main ranking factors are the quality and relevance of the content. Its uniqueness, expertise, usefulness, and relevance to the user are carefully checked.
  • Structured presentation of content, namely headings and subheadings, tags and snippets, which improves perception and readability.
  • Availability of diverse and multimedia content such as videos, images, and infographics.
Content-ranking-factors

Ranking factors for the entire website

  • Technical parameters include loading speed, mobile adaptability, code correctness, HTTPS, etc.
  • Website structure – logical organization of sections, categories, and pages that is understandable for users and search bots.
  • UX/UI design – professional, attractive design and intuitive layout of navigation elements improve the user experience.
  • Website security – the presence of a correctly configured SSL certificate, the absence of malicious code and other threats to users.
Ranking-factors-for-the-entire-site

Linking ranking factors

  • The more high-quality, natural links from reputable websites, the more trustworthy the site is in the eyes of search engines.
  • Having a natural anchor list with different variations of keywords and LSI phrases has a better impact on rankings than similar anchors
Link-ranking-factors

Behavioral ranking factors

  • High CTR, that is, the ratio of impressions in search engine results to clicks on the website link.
  • Low bounce rate, which indicates that the content is relevant to user requests.
  • Time spent on the site, which includes clicks on internal links, dive depth, scrolling time on pages, etc.
Behavioral-ranking-factors

Social ranking factors

  • The influence of social networks on business promotion makes website owners pay attention to them and attract visitors from social media. It improves the behavioral performance of the website, demonstrates its popularity and usefulness, and thus increases trust among the target audience.
Social-ranking-factors

Ranking mechanism

  1. First, the site is crawled by special robots (crawlers) that follow links to view web pages and add them to the search engine index.
  2. Now, when a user enters a search query, the system analyzes it and determines the main topic.
  3. After that, the algorithm searches the index for the pages that best match the query, taking into account keywords, topic relevance, and website authority.
  4. As a result of the ranking, the found links to pages are sorted by various factors (loading speed, usability, content quality, etc.) to determine the best order of results for the user.

The ranking process is constantly being improved through machine learning and algorithm updates. The system analyzes how users interact with search results and adjusts the results to better meet their needs.

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Optimization techniques to improve rankings

Since no one knows the exact ranking algorithm except Google, we can only modernize the site to make it easier for search engines. There are a few basic optimization techniques to improve page crawling, which we will discuss below.

  1. Keywords and content optimization
    • The first thing to do is to collect the semantic core, which includes researching and selecting relevant keywords and LSI phrases. Based on this stage, existing content is optimized or new content is created that will be unique and more useful to the target audience. Headlines and snippets are optimized for keywords for search engines.
  2. Technical optimization of the website
    • Technical optimization of a website includes improving the page loading speed, adapting it to mobile devices, and building a logical website structure, as search engines pay attention to this most of all when ranking pages. It is also important to customize the robots.txt file and the sitemap.xml file for better site indexing.
  3. Internal optimization
    • For optimal website ranking, it is better to use H1-H3 headings and optimize the size of meta tags. For example, you can check the length of titles or descriptions in specialized calculators. You should also add relevant anchors and use the canonical attribute to properly configure page linking. And don’t forget about image optimization, their weight, and the alt attribute.
  4. External optimization
    • Last but not least, you should create a link profile. It is necessary to build natural, thematic backlinks by placing guest posts on authoritative resources. You can also use the crowd marketing method of link building. For high-quality external optimization, it is better to turn to SEO specialists who can build an effective link building strategy to increase the link mass.

These techniques are only the basic foundation for successful promotion. It is also necessary to constantly monitor and analyze the results, namely: tracking the site’s positions for targeted queries, analyzing traffic and behavioral factors.

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Conclusions

Investments in optimization are returned in the form of an increase in the number of visitors, building trust and brand awareness, and increasing conversions and sales. High-quality SEO is a long-term strategy that, if properly implemented, can become a reliable foundation for online business development. After all, understanding the principles of ranking and competent work on key factors is the key to high rankings in search results.

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