How to Really Tick Google’s Boxes

6 November 2014 | | Marketing

It’s been established for a while now that art of SEO nowadays is about ensuring Google loves your website and all it has to offer. By reverse engineering this thought and looking at what is really happening, Google is simply looking after themselves and require decent websites to show their users in order to remain top trumps ahead of their competition.

Gone are the days when a search engine was happy to show their darkside, featuring spammy or spammy looking search results, or even search results that are not relevant to the user. The pristine, do-no-evil, holier-than-thou character  of Google is what us SEO teams have to play with.

And that’s OK.

As an SEO company it is easy for us to fall into the trap of ticking off a list what we know Google likes. This does work well to a degree, and there are certainly gains to be had by following the ‘rules’, but by looking more closely at what Google actually wants to achieve themselves, we can get a better vantage point and become more creative in our online marketing activities, whilst adhering to the rules, pleasuring Google all the more.

Prior to the existence of the major search engines (and of course I mean Google here), linking to another website was the only way your website got noticed and got traffic. Online directories, which is basically what a search engine is, is where people found you online. At this time, a link was obtained in the same way.

So what does Google really, really like?

Links.

Google loves links. As do all search engines worth their salt.

It’s useful to think of a link much like a reference at the back of a text book.

 

classic-academic-citation

 

Academics add these citations to the end of there work to show an authoritative source of information as a back up for some point they are making. as well as this, they believe the site they are linking to would be valuable to its visitors on their site, and by sending these users (temporarily) away, they are building their relationship with these users.

It is not hard therefore to images that if Google is willing to let it’s users be temporarily distracted away from their facility to yours, then they want to make sure your site is exactly what the user wants!

So how do they measure whether your page is a good for them to link to? There are two major methods they could use:

Google are constantly testing their algorithms in an effort to improve the quality of the results. They know that improved quality helps them build stronger relationships and higher levels of activity with their users, and ultimately, this leads to greater revenue for Google.

  1. An analysis of on-page content to evaluate its quality. Some of the core concepts of this are covered in this article by Cyrus Shepard: “More than Keywords: 7 Concepts of Advanced On-Page SEO.”
  2. An analysis of user interaction with your content to determine how they like it. Some ways that this could be done are discussed in this Microsoft research paper.

So which methods do they use, and how do they weigh them? I don’t know. no one really knows outside of Google.

Complete User Experiences

We know delighting customers works, (even with a dental practice businesses), by giving them something not too out there but that is unexpected and well, delightful. the art of website design and user experience is getting the right mix between functionality, clarity, a user path and adding that little something that sets your website experience apart from the rest.

You have to start thinking about providing a complete user experience to your visitors. Think of it this way: If 100 visitors come to your page after searching on your target key phrase, what percentage of them will be happy with what they see?

For example, if you had a site that sells shoes, and someone searched on “women’s running shoes” and then arrived at your site, what might they be looking for? Here are some examples of things you might need to cover on your page:

  1. Some shoes to buy
  2. Different sort orders, such as by price, size
  3. Types of running shoes (e.g. track, cross country, etc.)
  4. Different brands
  5. Product descriptions
  6. Pricing
  7. A shopping cart and option to check out now
  8. A privacy policy
  9. An about us page
  10. Trust symbols

100-person-refinement-model

 

Your text on the page should reinforce the page’s ability to address a breadth of needs. Not every need is on the one page, of course. In many cases, people should be able to obtain different variants of their needs by clicking through to other pages on your site, or even off to other sites. The bottom line is that the search engines want to know that your site does a better job of satisfying users than the other sites out there.

Accomplishing this is hard. You will need to continuously invest in improving the pages of your site to get there.

However, know that this is a deep topic that needs more than a few hours of your time. Creating an awesome website has to become a compulsion, and yes, it’s an SEO ranking factor, one way or another. To find out more about how Dental Design can achieve your delightful, Google friendly dental website call 01202 677277.

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