Part 2 of 3: Google’s Algorithm: What You Need To Know
As we mentioned in Part 1, Google’s algorithm is complex and changes as new technology becomes available. Google is purposefully vague on the subject, but at one point they claimed to have developed close to 10,000 “signals” and variations on those signals to determine where a page ranks based on the search entered. When it comes to SEO marketing, a general understanding of how the algorithm functions, is crucial to having successful campaigns. Below we’ll talk a bit about the things you need to know about the algorithm to be successful.
Google is for the customer
We should always remember that Google’s mandate is to help searchers, not web content producers. That means that SEO marketers need to put themselves in the shoes of potential customers when writing their content. Keywords should reflect what the public might potentially enter into a search, as opposed to the words that marketers want entered in.
Using Google throughout the years has trained us to type certain keywords into the search bar, and hope that a good list of potential sources comes back. As Google’s algorithm has gotten more “intelligent” and more complex, long-form keyword searches are becoming more common. People are asking questions, as opposed to simply entering those key words. Content producers need to keep making more original content that attempts to answer those questions that are being asked by consumers. Use formats on your webpages that have questions built right into the content. These can include Q & As, and Ask the Expert pieces. You can also have the titles of your post be in the form of a question, such as “Where can I find the best steak in New York.”
More, more, and more
Content is king, and it’ll have even more power going forward. The more good quality content a website has, the better it will fare as the algorithm evolves. Having more content means there are more pages for consumers to access your site, and provides more chances to hopefully answer those questions your potential audience is asking. Videos and infographics remain great ways to answer questions and get eyeballs on your site. Google has a host of free services that will also make you more attractive to the algorithm, so use them when appropriate. Google will continue to increasingly reward quality, so creativity and innovation will go a long way.
As mentioned, the algorithm is constantly changing and evolving. Make sure you notice when a change might affect your results, whether the difference is positive or negative. If you’re able to, check back on sites that show Google’s update history to see if there are any updates that correspond to changes in your results. If so, tailor your strategy accordingly.
Google’s algorithm is incredibly complicated, but that doesn’t mean that SEO strategies have to be. Make sure to be current and creative, and you’ll find success.
For the 3rd and final part of our series, we’ll talk more about the future of SEO, and what we need to know.