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Thursday, August 14, 2008

Google Reveals Major Elements of their Ranking Algorithm

Posted by @ 9:15 pm

Google have revealed some important elements of their ranking algorithm and given advice on how to improve your sites positioning in natural search results. The unusual post was made on the French ‘Inside AdWords’ blog, which is strange considering AdWords listings have nothing to do with natural search. I’m sure posts like this will continue to raise speculation on the connection between paid and natural listings – but that’s another story. Lets look at Google’s ranking tips:

Google’s first tip covers site structure:

  1. Organize your pages with a clear hierarchy and internal links for good navigation. This means structuring your website into major categories, with suitable sub-pages and subcategories under each. Google also recommend using a sitemap.
  2. Use Google Webmaster Tools. These are a free set of tools that are easy to use and can give you information on who links to your site and which queries people are using to find your web pages.
  3. Give your pages titles which are relevant – avoid titles such as “Welcome to my site” or “homepage”. For more advice on titles, visit our blog post.

Google’s second tip concerns both incoming and outgoing links:

  1. Think about the quality of your incoming links. To increase the popularity of your site, aim to acquire links from other sites with common themes.
  2. The outgoing (external) links from your site also play a role in determining your ranking. When adding a link, ask yourself, “Will this link be useful to my visitors?” or “Will my visitors click this link?”. Do not participate in link exchange networks that go against the Google quality guidelines and they will have a negative impact on your ranking.

Google’s final and third tip concerns content creation:

  1. It is important to add original content to your site on a regular basis for many different reasons:
    o It will encourage visitors to return to your site often
    o It will encourage the Google robots to go back to your homepage regularly
    and attract more links from other sites.
  2. Think long term. Keep adding original content with a clear structure between your pages for the best results.

So there you have it: Google’s insight to improve your ranking in natural search results. Again, I find it confusing this was posted on an AdWords blog, but I’m sure most webmasters will agree this type of advice is too valuable to pass up. If you’re site is lacking in any of the above areas, its time to start optimizing!

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Matthew Elshaw Matt is a marketing professional at, an international search marketing firm. Matt's passion for online marketing began at university and has proved invaluable in steering product development and marketing initiatives at the company. Matt is a regular contributor to the ineedhits search marketing blog.

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Discussion (10 - comments)

Good tips but probably nothing we didn't know already. IMHO, this tip is perhaps the most useful:

>>Use Google Webmaster Tools. These are a free set of tools that are easy to use and can give you information on who links to your site and which queries people are using to find your web pages.

By Brad Masterson - August 15, 2008

Apart from where the post might have appeared, it is in my humble opinion that most of what is listed here has been the foundation towards having pages ‘optimised’ for natural organic listings for some time. When a site is new with an infant domain, people will turn to Adwords in order to give the new site a fighting chance of getting the ’tills to ring’. The learning curve from working with the Adwords tools is also providing site owners with the necessary ‘organic fuel’ to optimise the areas of their page to achieve that objective.
I would agree that many MDs I have engaged with along with in-house website marketing managers, have not come across Google Webmaster tools or the importance surrounding the rules of inbound or outbound links. The real problem out there is we have thousands of website builders and graphic designers, but a limited number of people with the online marketing skill set necessary to deliver websites that not only need traffic but must achieve ‘page conversion’. Even the poor old marketing graduate qualifying today is not coming into this industry with sufficient enough knowledge to hold down the role of being an online internet marketing champion. Our company and our brothers around the globe such as INEEDHITS, are only now coming into their own, because it is only now people are realising there is more to having a website than just throwing pages up onto the internet. And whilst there are website builders hung up on being ‘overly creative’ with their design, take a look at Google, take a look at other top sites, such as Amazon, the big supermarkets and others and look at how search engine friendly they are and pay close attention to product level pages and how they are laid out to achieve visitor conversion. Hey a long post, but ICT just want to see more than just website mechanics, bring on the SEM marketer in you.
Cheers everyone

Brian Mathers Usability and Website Marketing Professional at ICT ADVISOR.COM

By Brian Mathers - August 15, 2008

This is nothing new.

By Anonymous - August 15, 2008

Why there is no links of site on Google that had page rank 3 and suddenly disappeared from google about August 10th

By Vojkan Nikodijevic - August 19, 2008

Isn’t this what we have all been doing for years? I didn’t learn anything that doesn’t appear to be common sense!

By Elly Russell - August 19, 2008

Thanks for the tips. Good to remind me the core of SEO tasks

By Tripolar Furniture - August 23, 2008

This is basically the same information and advice they have promoted. Their toolsets are easy and free to use and likely to help optimize your pages for their crawler, the primary search tool. That’s just reality.

By drhmarketing - August 23, 2008

Actually, a lot of this was useful to me, I’m fairly new to the whole website thing!


By Maria McCarthy - August 24, 2008

It is reassuring to know that Google is advocating common sense methods that we are all using.


By Wendy - September 4, 2008

I recently bougt ,but I can not get up page rank from two. Any helpfull idea ?

By Vlada - September 15, 2009

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