How to Get to the Top of Google’s Search Results
If you run a business, you’ll want your website to appear at the top of Google’s search results when people search for certain keywords. Because appearing at the top usually means more traffic, leads, and sales. But how do you get your website up there?
Google Search Algorithms
To find users the most relevant and useful results for what they are looking for, Google Search algorithms look at many factors, such as meaning of the query, relevance and quality of the content, and usability of web pages. So, let’s take a look at that and think about how we address them.
Meaning of Query
Google’s ranking systems present results that match users’ search intent. If words like ‘cooking’ are used in the query, it realizes that displaying recipes may best match the search intent. What is the takeaway message then?
It is important to align your content with users’ search intent. The four types of search intent are “informational”, “navigational”, “transactional”, “commercial investigation”. Now, top results for “transactional” searches are either category pages or product pages. Therefore, if you run an e-commerce business in the fashion industry, and want to rank high when people search for “little black dress” (which is a transactional search), your task is to align the content with the type and format of a category or product page.
Perfect. But is it really the keyword you want to target? Open an Incognito window and enter “little black dress” into the search box. From the search results on the first page, you’ll realize how intense of a competition you’ve got yourself into – you’ll be competing with multinational companies and global brands (whom Google deems more authoritative). Check the Keyword Difficulty (KD) score with reliable SEO tools and you can now be sure that the work you’re going to put in is not the easiest.
One way to turn this around is to simply target another keyword, one that has a lower KD score but still, with high volume. And “style little black dress” is not a bad alternative. If you want to rank high when people search for “style little black dress” (which is an informational search), it is smart to align the content with the type and format of a blog page. You can write a blog post about styling little black dresses and integrate Pinterest-worthy pictures of models rocking those looks. The best part is that you can turn any text or images into links, and bring people from the blog to the product page. Now, they may even put more into the basket because they’re also buying the blazer and loafers, thanks to the styling advice you gave on the blog.
Relevance and Quality of Content
Google’s ranking systems analyze content to assess whether it is relevant to what users are looking for. The most basic signal that content is relevant is when it contains the same keywords as the search query.
That is why if you want your website to rank high when people search for “coffee shop”, incorporating keywords such as “coffee shop”, “coffeehouse”, and “café” in the headings or body of the text is a good idea. Wait, why do “coffeehouse” and “café” work too? Because Google has a sophisticated synonym system and it knows that they mean the same.
To gain more insight into making the content more relevant to your target keyword “coffee shop”, it is nice to check out those web pages which have already ranked high in the search results. One thing I observed is that they usually provide information on the concept of the café, what to order, the address and opening hours. So, if you’re planning to only put the menu along with some photos up there, you better don’t.
Google’s ranking systems aim to prioritize content that seems most helpful. One signal that content is helpful is when it demonstrates expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness. Consequently, you’ll want to earn some quality backlinks. When other prominent websites link to your content, it gives Google the signal that the information is well-trusted.
Work with our SEO team at New iMedia, we create quality content that Google finds relevant to your target search query and prominent websites find useful to link to. We also handpick quality backlinks pointing to your website.
Usability of Web Pages
Google considers the usability of web pages. In cases where there are many relevant and quality pages, page experience can be much more important for visibility. Google checks if your page is mobile-friendly, secured with HTTPS, and accessible to users – to name a few. Page speed is one important ranking factor as well.
Don’t worry if it’s getting a little technical now. Leave it to us and you’ll be in good hands – we’ll upgrade your page’s responsiveness, mobile usability, interstitials, navigation menus, and many more. Contact us now to kick start your SEO campaign!