Do you have a website and want to boost your Google ranking? If so, you’re probably curious to find the right strategies to position yourself as #1 in the search results for relevant Google queries.
In this article, we’ll show you a couple of proven tools and strategies to boost Google ranking by addressing the most important SEO ranking factors.
What Are the Top SEO Ranking Factors?
There are hundreds of different elements that search engines account for when calculating the order in which they’ll display search results. Adjusting them manually could take up hours each day, which is why we decided to present you with the most important ones by leading SEO categories:
When it comes to website factors determining your Google ranking, different aspects of your website account for the value you’re providing and the accessibility to readers. In those terms, Google further accounts for:
- General site factors. In general, Google will pick up those websites that give an impression of the quality of both content and service. First, it will recognize whether or not your website provides quality content. Contact information, either through an ‘About Us’ or a ‘Contact Us’ page leaves an impression of a reputable website that is transparent about the identity of its owners.
In addition, Google ranks websites based on factors that signal trust, regular updates and maintenance, a sitemap, regular uptime, the availability of server location, SSL Certificate, privacy, and a Terms of Service page, breadcrumb navigation, mobile optimization, plus the absence of duplicate information, and other factors that speak of reputable, transparent website ownership and quality maintenance.
- On-site factors. You can safely say that Google hates spam more than anything. Google penalizes poor-quality content, links to spammy websites, unethical and spammy ads, redirecting pages, pop-ups, and overly optimized and keyword-dense websites.
Google prefers quality over generic, gibberish content. Doorway pages, misleading ads, hidden affiliate links and websites, and meta-tag spamming can all give an impression of a shady website Google won’t rank high.
- Off-site factors. In addition to the factors that showcase an unethical owner, a poorly maintained website that’s vulnerable to hacking, a sudden surge of links, a high percentage of low-quality links, links to unrelated websites, poor-quality websites, and other factors that showcase a website that isn’t properly maintained, can all be penalized by Google.
There are many factors that Google reviews in terms of your domain, such as:
- History. Your website background, like domain age, the length of registration, domain history, exact match domains, Whois reputation and penalties all affect your ranking.
- Domain keywords. Strategically placed keywords across your domain and subdomain name could give you a slight advantage.
Domain keyword appearance, the presence of the main keyword in the domain (desirable), and a main keyword present in the subdomain could help Google sort your website and recognize it as belonging to a particular audience and niche, hence identifying it as relevant.
- Updates and extensions. Google Exact Match Domain (EMD) updates and top-level domain (TLD) extensions will additionally help boost your ranking.
On-page SEO is perhaps one of the most significant factors that affect your Google ranking. Page factors include your on-page layout, content, keywords, and many seemingly irrelevant details that don’t catch immediate attention but help Google identify and sort your content. The most important elements of on-page SEO include:
- Keywords. Keywords should be moderately present in your title tag, description tag, and H1 tag (the title you see on the website), with a natural number of repetition across the content of the page.
While it isn’t true that having more keywords in your content means higher ranking, it is true that the number and distribution of keywords should suffice to constantly remind the reader of the page’s main topic (and tell Google what your page is about).
- Content. Content is among the most relevant ranking factors. Typically, Google's algorithm prefers medium-length content with extensive breadth and depth over short, generic articles.
The content should also be logically structured and broken into blocks for the algorithm to pick it up easier, including a richness of images, videos, and bullet points that are commonly featured in well-organized articles.
- Organization. Your website should be organized and structured in a logical manner, including your content. This is best done by introducing a table of contents into your articles, particularly for lengthy articles and blogs.
- Speed. Page-loading speed is also a relevant factor in a calculus of your website ranking. The quicker your pages load, the better the rank. Most of the time, the structure and design of the website, as well as the size of images and videos, affect the loading speed.
The 7 Secret Tools to Improve Your Google Ranking
Now that you understand the abundance of SEO ranking factors, it’s likely clear that going through all of them manually on your website isn’t really achievable unless you wish to spend hours each day doing it. For this reason, we compiled a list of necessary tools to monitor and adjust your website for better optimization and Google ranking:
1. Page Speed
There are numerous technical factors determining how long it will take for a page of your website to load. Anything from the page layout and the theme to the size of videos and images can slow down your website.
You should aim to design a fast-loading website that performs technically well. To test the specific factors affecting your page loading speed, you can use specific tools to measure the loading process. Tools we’d recommend are Pingdom Tools, PageSpeed Insights, and WebPageTest.
With the use of page speed tools, you’ll see what changes are necessary to improve the website’s loading speed, like the optimization of text, images, keywords, widgets, or layout. The number and depth of tested elements varies with each individual tool. In most cases, it will be enough to pick one of the available tools online and simply paste your website link to fully evaluate the page loading speed.
2. Mobile Performance
Does your website perform well on mobile devices? On most occasions, websites will need mobile optimization in terms of organization and layout to secure convenient mobile use. Fail to do this and your mobile users may not enjoy your website. Google picks up on this information, favoring websites that are well-adjusted to mobile use over those that aren’t.
To check whether or not your website is optimized for mobile use, you can choose one of many available checkers. Similar to the previous, it will be enough to paste your URL into the checker, and you’ll get a full report of changes that are necessary for a mobile-friendly website. Try Google Search Console’s Mobile-Friendly Test.
3. Backlink Tools
Links from and to your website, if used thoughtfully, can connect your website to the relevant ones, positioning your website with similar sites in a logical manner. This can greatly improve or worsen your ranking, depending on the quality of backlinks.
Backlink tools will scan the number, background, and quality of your backlinks to check if they’re good quality and beneficial for your website. A backlink checker will tell you whether there are any suspicious links to remove from your website, whether you should add more backlinks, or perhaps remove the excess number.
Try out the free backlink checkers from Majestic or Ahrefs.
4. Keyword Tools
Keyword analysis is perhaps the most daunting task when it comes to planning website content. Keyword tools will analyze the number, percentage, and saturation of the most frequently found words and phrases on the pages of your website, helping you check whether or not these match with your intended keywords.
You can also use keyword tools to analyze most popular phrases and terms in regards to your website audience, which will help you find the best blog ideas and keywords to include in your content. Our article on keyword research tools will assist you with tools to use; we’ve included free and paid options.
5. Site Performance Tools
Website performance tools measure various technical aspects of the website performance, covering a number of factors that affect the quality and cost of performance. These tools cover website safety, optimization in terms of theme, layout, widgets, media, content, as well as mobile optimization and coding.
If you run a large-scale website, having a performance issue may result in loss of audience and profit. For this reason, it would be wise to subscribe to performance-measuring tools that will warn you in case of any technical issues.
For example, performance tools like Pingdom Tools, WebPage Test, and others will help you stay on track with load speed, rendering, error rates, bounce rates, and other relevant metrics. Knowing how your website performs will ensure timely repairs and adjustments to prevent slowing your business and losing the audience.
6. Google Analytics
Google Analytics is a tool provided by Google for you to observe your website traffic, keywords, content, and structure. The tool will take some getting used to and a bit more advanced knowledge, but it will help you monitor the efficiency of your website, number, and location of clicks, audience structure, and many more.
7. SEO Performance Checkers
How well is your website optimized? SEO performance checkers serve to evaluate whether or not your website has all the elements needed to rank well. There are many tools to choose from, some free and others paid.
We recommend using multiple tools like Google Search Console, Ahrefs, SEMRush, and others, as they measure and display different parameters, including keyword density, page optimization, performance factors, and others. Simply put, SEO performance checkers let you know whether or not there are necessary changes so that search engines pick up your website more easily.
How to Check Your Ranking - Here’s How to Use a Google Rank Checker
Now that you know what it takes for your website to rank well on Google, it’s time to learn how to check whether your hard work on optimizing your website yielded any result. For this, you will need a rank checker.
What is a Google Rank Checker?
A Google Rank Checker is a tool that helps you track how well your website ranks for specific keywords, searches, and locations. A tool such as this will show you the positioning on your website in terms of relevant searches, as well as positioning in terms of different geolocations.
How to Use a Rank Checker to Rank First on Google
Using rank checkers is pretty simple. All you need to do is to subscribe to a service, link your website, and start analyzing the information. Combining a rank checker with other tools will help you plan your SEO strategy and track how your pages perform in terms of keywords, searches, and geolocations.
For example, if your information shows that your pages rank low in the U.S., where you want them to rank high, you can adjust those specific pages by improving the SEO to suit the needs of U.S.-based visitors.
Ranking well on Google is neither easy nor simple. While there are hundreds of factors to account for when it comes to boosting your website rank, we will leave you with one simple tip: Be organized, specific, on-point, and logical.
Adjust your website to respond to the needs of your audience, and be transparent about your identity online. Crafting quality, logical content that does nothing more than inform the reader on the topic with sufficient attention to key terms will yield a happy middle in terms of keywords, while the addition of carefully chosen structure, organization, images, and videos, gives the reader a strategic insight into your website.
Use the tools suggested in this article to track the website elements that need tweaking, and you’ll boost both the website ranking and the experience of your readers!