SEO important ranking features*

(*of 2016)

If you are interested in SEO, own a website, or are a business looking to improve your rankings then this is a must read blog post!

Whilst 2016 has passed you might be forgiven for the thinking that ranking features of last year apply to 2017 with any great degree of authority. This is not strictly true as ranking signals and trends of the previous year set a very good precedent as to what is likely to be both followed and occur during the forthcoming year. In this article we will explore some of the important facts and statistics.

So-called ‘usability factors’ play a big part in ranking features of websites. These include click through rate, bounce rate and time spent on the website. Google sees these as important because it gives a good idea how people feel about the websites they are viewing based on their behaviour. The study which came up with this report found that websites in positions 1 to 3 of Google’s rankings had a click through rate of more than 30%, the bounce rate for the whole of page one was less than 50% and time on site for first page websites could be more than 3 minutes.

Content has become an even more increasingly important ranking signal and so much so that the study has introduced a new metric to follow and track this. The study ranks content from 0 to 100 and has found a correlation between those pages at the higher end of this scale and those that appear higher in the search results. The length of content seems to be important with larger articles faring better than short ones – this is perhaps no surprise. Keywords in content is also important but the report makes clear that Google favours relevancy of content over stuffing with keywords.

SEO is a very technical world and these technical factors bring important and useful ranking signals.  Nearly half of search results in the first two pages have HTTPS status. Speed of pages is very important with under 8 seconds load time being achieved on the highest search results. Following from this the important of mobile friendly websites is highlighted with the top domains all displaying a mobile friendly layout and content.

Social media has been on the rise year on year and it is not surprising that sound social profiles attract better search engine result positions.  The most important of these providers seems to be Facebook although Google + and Twitter carry some weight also to determining this point.

This is a selection of some of the results found in the study. Further and full details can be found by clicking the link above to read more.

We have purposely broken down the report into simple parts and highlighted relevant areas so you can see easily what is important.

The aim is that as 2017 progresses, you can perfect your website to ensure that it complies with the above. The simple part has been done – finding out what makes a website rank highly in Google’s eyes. The difficult part begins now – making those changes!

If you would like to speak to us about how we can help with these things and make your website appear higher in search ranking pages, then get in touch with us using the details on the contact page.