Okay, maybe it’s everything you need to have a highly ranked site. What it is though, is one of the most important aspects of the site when it’s being ranked for search. SEO today is more than stuffing pages with the right keywords and generating tons of content. Google aims to offer the best search experience possible to its users. Their reputation rests on the experience users have not only during the search but also once they click through. So you better believe if your site doesn’t offer a great experience Google doesn’t want it on page one. So if you want to get to the top and stay there here are five things to focus on.
- Content Quality Counts.
High-quality content is essential to a great user experience. Not only must it be well written and appropriately target your audience, the user must find it useful in the context of their search. Google’s Panda ranking algorithm treats generic or heavily syndicated content poorly.
On the modern web, the problem is not lack of information but rather an overabundance of it. When a user searches for something, what they want is specific useful information. This is what Google aims to provide in their results. So research your niche well and provide clear answers to the questions your target audience is asking.
- Play Nice With Page Layout
Now that you have your content under control it is time to look at presentation. First lets look at ads. Concerning yourself with SEO means you’re trying to monetize your site and probably have a few advertisements on your page. One of the new algorithms applied to search rankings looks at not only how many ads there are on a page but their type and location on the page.
The page layout algorithm penalizes pages which load out the top of the page with ads forcing the user to scroll down to find the content. This doesn’t mean you can’t have any ads at the top just be reasonable. Users are looking for your content so make it easy to find.
- Make it Mobile
As the number of mobile internet users continues to outpace desktop users, this one should come as no surprise. How mobile-friendly your site now affects your ranking. Mobile friendly does not mean having a redirect to a separate less feature rich version of your main site. No, users today expect a full functionality when surfing on a smartphone or tablet.
What this means for you is that every aspect of your site needs to be fully responsive. If it calls for some serious redesign work, it will all be worth it. Mobile search is especially true for anyone using a website to draw customers to a brick and mortar business. Over half of mobile searches are local and three-quarters of those lead to sales.
- Live in the Fast Lane
Every day the world puts more demands on our already stretched time. The average user is no different. They want what they are looking for, and they want it yesterday. While technology is not quite to that point, it is fast enough that users won’t spend much time on a slow loading site. Search engines like Google now preload top results prior to the click through.
All this emphasis on speed means one thing. Your site better be optimized for load time. Google knows users won’t wait around on slow pages for long. Therefore, if your page takes too long to load they won’t rank it highly. A good place to start is to figure out where your site’s performance poverty line is and go from there.
- Emphasis on Engagement
Engaging your audience is what the user experience is all about. An engaged user is more likely to spend more time on your site, visit more pages and more likely to convert. That is why Google has put so much emphasis on it with Panda.
Give users great content in a smooth mobile friendly layout that loads in a snap and you are well on your way to the big leagues. For more tips on improving page rank check out Dark Peak Digital.