How to Rank Better in Search Engine Results

  • 20 March 2013
How to Rank Better in Search Engine Results

How to Rank Better in Search Engine Results

Content is always good, right? Maybe not.....

Content can, literally, make or break your website….just as good content drives traffic to your website, bad content not only drives traffic away but…here comes the important part...it could lead to your website being penalized!

Yes, you read it right. Google plans on launching a crackdown later this year to look at the quality of websites and to make sure that low quality websites do not rank higher in the search results. According to Danny Sullivan, Founding Editor of Search Engine Land, this isn’t the first time Google has done a crackdown. In his article, ‘Bad Merchant? Google May Drop Your Rankings Later This Year’, Sullivan talks about how in the year 2010, Google incorporated an algorithm into its search rankings to detect the merchants that were providing an extremely poor user experience but were still ranking quite high in their search results. Google did not reveal what factors it used to issue the penalties but said that users were going to get a better search experience as a result of the algorithmic solution.

This got me thinking as to how people can ensure that they rank higher in search results without being penalized based on their websites’ content. I recently read an article, Lessons from the Pros: Rank better in Google and Bing in which the author highlighted the key points covered during an interactive presentation by a panel of leaders in the search engine world; Google, Bing and Search Engine Land. The author talked about how ‘one should make website content the ingredients for a good search engine recipe’…a nice analogy, I must say! Throughout the article, the author stressed the importance of good content; be it the words you use, the links you have, or the meta tags and descriptions you have in your website.

So, content is good only if it is done right.

In the spirit of welcoming Spring, here are a few tips to spring-clean your website and make sure that it moves to the top of the search rankings without the risk of being penalized:

   1. Choose Quality as opposed to Quantity

The Social Media Gurus talk about how important it is to have a lot of content so that you cast a wide net that will enable your content to show up in search results. However, a lot of low quality content is good as no content at all. With Google's impending policy changes such poor content could prove detrimental to your website. The best thing to do is to delete such low quality content from your website and have fewer high-quality pages. This could actually help to drive up your ranking.

Run a spell check on the content you are posting. Many times, when we receive emails with poor spelling and punctuation, we regard it as a danger sign and dump the mail in our spam folders. This is the impression that users will get if they see too many mistakes in your content.

This tip applies to the links on your website too. Incoming links are a great way to maximize your SEO but the quality of the websites you are getting the links from matters quite a bit. Therefore, have a few high quality links on your website instead of crowding all your pages with useless links that search engines disapprove of.

   2. Delete duplicate content

Google only shows the most relevant and original content in its search results and omits duplicate content. So if you are directly posting from other links, chances are your content will not feature in the search results. Focus on having original content to rank higher.

   3. Focus on Relevant content

What does your user want? What do you think they are searching for and how can you make sure your website appears in their search results? These are the questions you should keep in mind when filling out your meta descriptions so that you have the correct keywords that describe your organization.

Search engines are constantly changing their algorithms to provide the users with the best experience because it is a competitive market for them too and they need to stay on top of their game. The above tips are a few ways to help your website’s ranking in search engine results but there are other techniques too. Do you have any other tips? Share them with us! ~Ramya

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