There are more than 200 positioning factors that, as the name suggests, make our page appear in one position or another in the pages of Google results.
These factors are constantly changing and are divided into two types: internal factors (on-site) and external factors (off-site).
We already know that a search engine first collects the list of pages that are on the web and then orders it according to its algorithm but, what does it depend on that we appear first in Google?
1. External factors
The external factors (SEO Off-site) are those that we can not control directly. They indicate to the searchers the authority that a website has, that is, whether it is trustworthy or not. Nobody knows exactly how the authority of a website is established exactly, although it is likely that there are numerous factors that define it. The behavior of the user, the quality of external links and social signals are some of the most important:
- The quality of external links This works like in real life: suppose that tonight you have that long awaited dinner and you need to bring a good wine. Where would you go to buy it? To the store that you have recommended 4 expert tasters or to which you have recommended 40 people to whom you have asked randomly on the street? If you have decided the first option you have chosen the correct one. Well, exactly the same thing happens to Google, instead of taking into account the number of external links that direct a website, it gives more importance to the quality of the webs that direct to that link.
- User Behavior Depending on the behavior of a user, such as the pages you have visited previously and how often, search engines can display one or other results. It also influences the user’s location. The results shown for the same term will be different depending on the place from which the search is performed. We can optimize chips in Google my Business, but never control from where they look for us.
- Social signals In search engines, mentions in social networks influence when designating the authority of a domain. Both the shared links on Twitter and the shared pages on Facebook can decide if a page appears higher or lower in the search results.
2. Internal factors
The internal factors (SEO On-site) are those related to a web, that is, those that we can control directly. Its main objective is to make life easier for search engines when they access our pages. The quality of the content, the web architecture and the HTML code are the most relevant factors of a website.
- The content The content of our website is the most important factor to position in Google. If we offer an original and interesting content for the user that we appear in the first positions will be sewing and singing. Google Panda is responsible for establishing whether a content is original or not. The content must have at least 300 words. However, it is being observed that texts whose extension is between 1000 and 1200 words position more easily. Before generating content, it is important to carry out a previous keyword research and choose which keyword we are going to focus on, include that keyword (naturally) throughout the text and offer updated information on this term.
- Structure Once the bots or spiders of Google access our website, they send all the information they track to their servers. That is why it is important to facilitate tracking as much as possible. Having a good structure of URLs not only favors this but also helps usability and favors user navigation. Charging time is also essential. We must bear in mind that the loading time factor not only worsens the user experience but also influences the ability of search engines to index all the pages of your website.
- The HTML code The bots that access a website read mainly their HTML code, so it is essential to have it well structured and optimized. Search engines use certain HTML tags to display content information in their search results. We explain some of these labels that influence SEO positioning: Tag title: Only visible in the HTML code of the page. It is the blue title that Google shows in its results. Search engines use it to more easily identify what the page in question is about. Meta-description tag: Like the title, it is only visible in the search results. Search engines do not take it into account when positioning. However, a good meta-description can make your page receive more or fewer clicks. Header tags: These are tags <h1>, <h2>, <h3>, etc. that show in a hierarchical way the different titles that can be found in a content. It is advised that there is a single <h1> that defines the main title of the text. Structured date is becoming increasingly important in search results. They offer search engines more detailed information about the content of a website and show additional information that does not teach the title or meta description, such as the average rating in the form of stars or the number of opinions of an article.
And what about the User Experience?
The user experience (UX) plays a very important role in the SEO positioning of a page. Although Google has confirmed that it does not influence the rankings of results, at least in searches made from the desktop, they mention it constantly in their guide on how to evaluate the quality of a website.
However, mobile is different: since the user experience is the basis of the last update of the search engine, the results offered on mobile devices do take into account the user experience of a page. This was stated by Gary IIlyes, Webmaster at Google:
On mobile, sure, since UX is the base of the mobile friendly update. On desktop currently no. (Gary Illyes: Google, May 2015)
A design that shows a false content (cloacking), suspicious links, malicious downloads, a massive generation of content (posts or comments) or a low quality content will cause Google to consider if the ratio of experience of a page is optimal or not .
Although there are numerous factors that affect the SEO positioning of our website, having the technical aspects well optimized will help the search engines to identify a result sooner or later.
However, having unique and original content is a key factor for SEO positioning. In the end, it will be said content that will decide if a page appears in some results or others.