SEO’s Most Important Google Ranking Factors

seo ranking factorsSearch Engine Optimization (SEO) is entirely based around speculating what factors search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing use to determine which website ranks over another when someone searches. Below, I’ve given the 5 ranking factors SEO pro’s believe to be the most important.

The beauty is, no one really knows. Search engines keep their formulas secret because it means no one can take advantage of or manipulate the rankings (which I’m personally very much for).

Ideally, your website should just be set up well with honest links in, accurate descriptions, helpful information, and well laid out, thereby helping search engines to see you for what you are and deliver traffic accurately.

So, how do you get ahead on the search engine Serengeti and survive another season?

For a couple of years now, SEOMoz, an industry search engine optimization leader, has published a list of what SEO leaders they surveyed believe to be the most important factors in search engines ranking your website.

The idea is that these factors seem to make the biggest difference. Follow these rules and you’ll likely come out ahead of 95% of other sites.

  1. Keyword Focused Anchor Text from External Links
  2. External Link Popularity (quantity/quality of external links)
  3. Diversity of Link Sources (links from many unique root domains)
  4. Keyword Use Anywhere in the Title Tag
  5. Trustworthiness of the Domain Based on Link Distance from Trusted Domains (e.g. TrustRank, Domain mozTrust, etc.)

Check out the 2009 full report here.