Top 10 Factors Effecting your Ranking in Search Engines

There are at least 200 different factors that Google uses to determine your ranking. Here are the top 10 factors that we feel are the most important (and within your control) for SEO.

1. Is the website Good?
This might sounds like a funny place to start, but I think it bears mentioning. We can’t do SEO for a website that comprises just a few pages of flash, or a few pictures embedded into 3-4 pages. SEO is a major commitment. Before you start SEO, you need to have a professional looking site on a stable server. Without this, SEO is not going to give you the results you desire.
Importance: Necessary

2. Does the website have high quality, relevant and original content?
Again, this might not be what you were expecting. Search engine optimization will give your website exposure. But, at the end of the day, your website needs to provide visitors with some sort of useful information. Think of it this way. For traffic and rankings to stick, your website needs good, relevant content.
Importance: Necessary

3. Backlinks
Search engines generally figure out how relevant (and important) your website is based on the number of backlinks that you have. If you create high quality (or even medium quality) backlinks to your site, you will observe an increase in search engine traffic. There is generally a lag of about 2-3 months for this increase in back-links to translate into increased traffic. This lag is because before your ranking will improve, search engines need to first find the links and then incorporate these new links into their rankings. So, be a little patient. You’ll see results soon enough.
Importance: Extremely important (More backlinks = more traffic)

4. Quality of backlinks
Backlinks are popular enough to be mentioned twice. Ensure that the backlinks come from a variety of popular domains that are relevant to your website. Try to get links from all different types of websites (news, blogs, old, new, borrowed and blue (?). OK, maybe forget about the “blue”, but I’m sure you get the idea. If all your backlinks come from one small subsection of the Internet, Google might think that you’re very relevant to that subsection. Or, they might think you’ve using some devious and underhanded technique to get backlinks. All I can say here is “be careful”.

5. Keyword Analysis
All the SEO in the world won’t do you much good if you aren’t doing it for the right keywords. If you do SEO for a keyword that people aren’t searching for, then this keyword isn’t going to give you much traffic. Conversely, there are quite a few popular keywords with little competition.
Importance: Extremely important

6. Anchor Text in Backlinks
Google uses the anchor text in the backlinks to your website to help determine if (a) the link is from a relevant website and (b) what your website is about.
Importance: Extremely important

7. Meta tags and Page titles
These are used as snippets to describe your website in the SERP pages. They’re also used by search engines to figure out what your website is about. They need to be well written and unique.
Importance: Very Important

8. Internal linking
Internal linking is used for to (a) spread your pagerank around your website and (b) help search engines figure out what individual pages are about. It’s also necessary to help visitors navigate your website.
Importance: Very Important

9. Keyword density
For a page to be considered relevant to a specific keyword, it should have 300+ words of well-written text with a keyword density of 1-3%. If you don’t have a keyword density that is close to this range, search engines probably won’t realize that this page is relevant to your keyword (and it won’t show up in the SERPs).
Importance: Very Important

10. Number of Visitors to your website
Have you heard the old adage “It takes money to make money?” Well I took the quote out of context, but the same thing applies here. If your website has a great deal of traffic, then it’s probably important. We have noticed that high traffic websites are generally easier to do SEO for. That being said, high traffic websites also generally rank very high when judged by my checklist above. So, it’s possible that traffic helps SEO because in order to get the traffic, you must have done something that would benefit SEO.
Importance: Important

Other honorable mentions. These are important, but not as much so as the items above.
  Image optimization (this is sometimes in the top 10)
  Age of website
  Server speed
   Keyword in URL
  Visible to a text browser such as Lynx
  Relevant Domain name
  No duplicate content issues
  RSS feed
  Web 2.0 bookmarking buttons
  Ability for users to post comments to top stories
  Content updated on a regular basis
  Use of headers (H1 -> H6)


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