Search Engine Ranking Study: Why Backlinks Still Matter
SEO company Backlinko recently conducted a very extensive study of over 1 million Google search results to figure out exactly what Google wants — and how it decides which websites rank best.
Perhaps it comes as no surprise that Google loves backlinks. In fact, according to the study, “the number of domains linking to a page correlated with rankings more than any other factor..” What does that mean? It means having a large number of websites linking to yours will give your own website authority. Backlinks are especially powerful when they are spread throughout the web. According to the study, “it’s better to get 10 links from 10 different sites than 10 links from the same domain.”
This is in addition to the power of the links themselves. This is because Google wants good links connected to good keywords — and if you provide that, Google will reward you with a good ranking when your site is crawled.
Of course there’s more to it than that.
For example, the study also found that Google favors content that includes images. So if you’re publishing an article and include at least one photo with it, chances are your site will rank a lot higher than if you use no images.
Page speed comes close behind. A slow website will be penalized by Google and promptly removed from the first page of results, even if everything else on the website seems to be working fine.
Other things with a big impact on ranking:
– Websites with a low bounce rate rank better in Google
– So do websites that feature longer content. Surprised? The study found that content that averages around 1900 words ranks higher than shorter pieces
– Google also rewards websites with HTTPS, pushing them to the first page when possible
One important thing to keep in mind: Google gives priority ranking to content that is “topically relevant.” Google will scan a page to figure out if the keywords and the overall content of a page are a good match. Writing articles that don’t cover a topic in-depth — and instead only offer very general information — will result in Google penalizing you.
In the end, Google ranking is all about having a well-presented, working website that also offers the best content possible. Broken links, poor loading speed and SEO issues will all hurt your business in the long run.
** Does your website meet Google ranking requirements? Let us know by commenting here or sending us a message via Twitter @testomato.com