At the beginning of each year there is always a lot of ‘SEO News‘ about new SEO Ranking factors and what to look out for. Here is great article on 2018 SEO.
In 2006, before iPhones and Androids, a Google document mentioned the search engine uses “over 200 signals” for ranking. There are probably thousands of ranking signals now and we can’t pretend to know what they are. What we do know is how much of an impact optimising for the most significant ranking factors has – and how easy it was to get that done in the real world.
We work with almost 100 businesses internationally, tracking on average 15 competitors and 500 keywords per website. We took the 2015 Moz Ranking Factors study as a starting point (since we contributed to that anyway) and assessed what has become more or less important; what’s more important for the enterprise brands we work with; and what we can actually get done. If a change is easier for you to make – congratulations! You’ve got a competitive advantage.
View the study in full and rank factors by their ease and importance using this interactive asset below:
Top 10 ranking factors you should be optimising for in 2018
Page-level keyword and content based metrics – If your page isn’t relevant for the query – but more importantly doesn’t answer the user’s intent – you don’t rank. Most businesses from SME-size upwards use a content management system which should make this easier. It’s not all about publishing more – the biggest, quickest wins come from optimising what you’ve got.
Dwell time or long click metrics – When you put a page live, the question you should ask yourself is: “how can we absolutely guarantee that the searcher won’t click the back button?” You know more about your business and products than anyone and it’s time to demonstrate.
Existence/quality of verified real-world business info – The combined traffic driving power of voice search, the local pack, Google Maps and the Knowledge Graph is immense, and it relies on the accuracy of the information its being fed. You should absolutely clean and own your data across the web. Optimisation of WikiData and location data are not only hugely important, but don’t often require development resource or approval from compliance.
Use of responsive design and/or mobile optimised – This is not only a prerequisite of ranking on a mobile device, it’s also getting easier and easier to get buy-in. Brands without mobile websites in 2018 are at the tail-end of the “laggards” phase and it’s easy to quantify how much money you’re losing out on without a mobile site.
Uniqueness of content across the whole site – De-duplication of content across the website speeds everything up, prevents cannibalisation and makes better use of crawl budget. Most modern CMS systems feature some way to deal with this issue. You can even take some shortcuts in Search Console.
Page is mobile friendly – Mobile-friendly is a rare example of Google telling businesses, in a developer-queue friendly format, what they need to do to pass – and giving the seal of approval when the standards have been met.
Uniqueness of content on the page – Have the best possible answer on