8 Most Important Google Ranking Factors in 2021
Did you know that there are over 200 Google ranking factors? Google is by far the most popular search engine in the world.
It dominates other search engines like Bing and Yahoo with over 5.14 billion searches performed on Google every day. So it’s no surprise that you want to rank higher in Google search results.
But with SEO (search engine optimization) changing from time to time, it can be difficult to implement and keep up with all the changes.
So, you might be asking yourself: which Google ranking factors are important for your website? Here we’ll discuss 8 factors in brief that can help you improve your rankings.
Let’s take a closer look….
Most Important Google Ranking Factors
When it comes to getting higher rankings, many website owners would like to follow all ranking factors. But what if we tell you that you just need to focus on a few of these factors?
To help you out, we’ve picked out the most important ranking factors you need to ensure on your website.
1. High-Quality Content
You already know that content is king. And in the case of Google’s ranking factors, this is definitely the king.
If you can create unique, fresh, and useful content for users, Google will rank it higher on their search engine results pages(SERP).
Google is particularly focused on the quality of your content. No matter how optimized your website is, if your content isn’t valuable you can’t expect higher rankings.
So, what’s content quality for Google?
Original, Unique, and Valuable Content
If you want Google index your content. then You have to create unique and new content that fulfill readers need and it could be valuable for your users.
If your content is similar or copy to other websites then you are just wasting your or user time. and it cause negative impact on your SEO. In this case Google will not rank your pages and will slow down crawling rate of your website.
So, when you’re creating content, make sure it’s different and better than other websites that are ranking for the search term.
Up to Date and Fresh Content
Another way to improve the quality of your content is to keep it up to date and fresh. By regularly updating your posts and adding new information, you send a positive signal to the search engine.
Freshness of content plays a big role if you cover topics that involve news or trends. For these topics, Google prefers pages that provide the latest information.
For example, if you are writing about the global health crisis, you would want your content to contain recent news and research. And an easy way to find the latest information to keep your content up to date is to use Google Trends.
Simply enter your search term into the tool and view the related topics. These are trending queries that can help you add value to your posts.
One of the questions we have often come across is whether content length is one of the Google ranking factors?
And the answer is yes.
According to different studies, the length of content has an impact on your ranking in search results. On average, articles of 1,890 words rank on the first page.
A better way to look at this is to create content that has depth and covers a topic in detail. This is because Google prefers pages that fully answer a user’s question and provide detailed solutions.
Content Structure and Organization
When it comes to the quality of content, your blog posts should be well organized and structured. This makes it easier for your visitors to read your posts and easily find solutions to their problems.
To improve the structure and organization of your articles, you can use multiple headings and subheadings (H2, H3, H4, etc.) to group your content.
You can also use HTML tags for bullets (ol) and number lists (li) to better organize your content. This is beneficial because Google picks up these listings and displays them as featured snippets for different keywords.
Thus, by working on the structure and organization of your content, you will increase its readability. As a result, you will improve the user experience of your site, which will indirectly increase your chances of being ranked higher on Google.
The second most important Google ranking factor after content is backlinks. They are an important part of Google’s ranking algorithm and this is how Google’s crawler finds your website for indexing.
In fact, content and backlinks go hand in hand, as web pages without backlinks hardly get any organic traffic.
So, why are backlinks important to your site’s SEO?
Backlinks or inbound links are like a vote of confidence for your website. Google adds up all of these votes and checks if your website deserves to be ranked in the top 10 results.
If you can get backlinks from high authority websites, you can increase your chances of getting higher rankings. This is because by acquiring these links you are sending a signal to Google that your content is trustworthy as different websites can attest to this.
3. Search Intent
Another important ranking factor for Google is that the matching the search intent with your content. Search intent is basically what a user want to search or is looking for.
Every keyword is different on Google and you need to understand the reason behind a searchers query.
For example, if you search the keyword best WordPress themes, you’ll see that the results in the top 10 include listicles.
Here’s another example. If someone searches fo the make banana bread, you’ll notice that the results consist of recipes and how-to articles along with videos.
So, if you need to create content on any topic, it’s important to match the search intent and create the right kind of content.
Now, the search intent may vary depending on the format and style of the content. For instance, in some cases, Google will only show videos and infographics in the best results. This means that you need to create a video or infographic if you want to rank for those keywords.
Additionally, search intent also shows that Are they looking for basic information about your products, want a tutorial like a how-to article, or are they in the final stages and ready to make a purchase?
By matching the search intent, you can answer these questions and create the content people are looking for.
4. Website Loading Speed
Among 200 different Google ranking factors, one factor you should focus on is page speeds. For the reason that starting May 2021, Google will make website loading speed a part of its Core Web Vitals.
These are a collection of factors that Google considers are important for user experience on your site. It will look at the speed, responsiveness, and how quickly different elements like images & fonts load.
you don’t have to beat your competitors with milliseconds of load time. But you should pay attention to how fast a page loads for users.
Google wants your website to load fast and provide a good user experience for your audience.
To check your website loading speed, you can use the PageSpeed Insights.
It will analyze your website, show a mobile and desktop score, show important metrics about your page load times, and highlight suggestions to make your site even faster.
Besides that, you can also take a look at these simple tips to speed up your WordPress site’s performance.
5. Mobile Friendliness
In addition to speed, you should also check whether your site is mobile friendly or not.
Since Google switched to mobile first in 2019, it’s essential that your website is mobile responsive. Mobile-first means that Google will now use the mobile version of your website for indexing and ranking.
Previously, Google used your desktop as the main version for indexing. But with 4.28 billion mobile internet users worldwide, it’s no surprise that Google has made this change.
So if you want to improve your ranking, now is the best time to make your website mobile friendly.
You can start by choosing a mobile friendly WordPress theme. Or you can use different plugins in wordpress to make your mobile friendly site.
6. Domain Authority
The domain authority (DA) of your website is the next Google ranking factor you need to work on. This is a ranking statistic that shows your site’s expertise on a particular topic and its ability to rank on search engines.
Domain authority is created by Moz and assigns a score between 1 and 100. The higher your domain authority, the higher your chances of ranking on Google.
There are now different ways to boost your site’s authority. You can start by acquiring high quality backlinks. But sometimes having a lot of backlinks doesn’t guarantee a better ranking.
This is where you need to create great content focused on your industry. As a result, Google will begin to recognize your site as an expert on the subject, strengthen your domain authority, and rank your pages in the top 10 of search results.
7. Website Security
Along with website architecture, your site’s security is now a key factor in Google ranking. This is where you need to make sure that your site is now over HTTPS, as it encrypts data between your website and your user’s browser.
HTTPS is now a ranking signal, Google confirmed that in 2014. So if your site doesn’t have SSL certificates and is over HTTPS then now would be a good time to update.
You can follow this guide on how to properly move a WordPress site from HTTP to HTTPS.
8. User Experience
The last Google ranking factor we have for you is the overall user experience of your website. Now, there are a lot of things that contribute to a good user experience.
But how does Google measure this?
It uses an artificial intelligence program called RankBrain, which incorporates other ranking signals such as:
- CTR (click-through-rate) – It’s the percentage of users who click on your website link in search results. By improving your CTR, you can boost your ranking, especially if you are stuck in the top 5 results.
- Bounce Rate – Having a high bounce rate is not good for your site. If a lot of people click on your site and then click the back button without interacting with your website, Google will think the page is irrelevant and will not rank for it.
- Dwell Time – This measures how long a visitor stays on your site after coming from Google search results. The higher the dwell time, the better it is.
So these are important ranking signals that Google RankBrain uses to process search results, there are many more. But since most of them are speculation at this point, we recommend that you stick to the 8 factors we have discussed above
We hope you liked our article on the most important Google ranking factors for your website. If you want, you can also check out our article on Link Building For SEO: How To Do It Right.