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SEO Ranking Factors – Which are the important ones?

Marcel Casella December 14, 2015


SEO Ranking Factors – 
The Key To a Successful e-Commerce Business

Many marketers out there, especially offline enterprises or amateur entrepreneurs altogether, still consider that e-commerce, also known as internet marketing, can be a scary and intimidating unknown world. It is rather a relief to become aware that any business aiming to get into the internet marketing field just needs to have its website’s SEO ranking factors carefully assessed (usually by an SEO services agency), being this the key towards building a successful e-commerce business. However, how do you make the most out of SEO ranking factors without failing terribly in the process?

The search-engine ranking of your site is determined by several SEO ranking factors, including how your site is coded, how you use specific tags or keywords, how many authoritative or recognized sites link back to yours, and how often users select your site from the batch results on the search-engine pages. Clearly, though, not all of these factors are within your range of action. Bummer!

However, there is a list of factors that are indeed under your control, and each one of them has its own weight in the overall evaluation Google makes on your website in order to rank it. There is even a periodic table of Google factors that helps visualize each factor and explains how much each factor affects your website. Planning your website by having these factors in mind can certainly improve your chances of having traffic come to your site, so consider these as an addition to our social media marketing tips.

We have put some of them together, along with their relative weight. There is a scale that goes from -3 to +3. Each factor has its own relative weight that goes from -3 (very harmful) to +3 (very effective), which will tell you where to focus your SEO efforts in order to reach that coveted first-page rank. On the other hand, it will also tell you which actions are considered a violation by google standards.

Among these SEO ranking factors tailored for reaching a successful e-commerce business status, there are ‘on-page factors’ and ‘off-page factors’.

On-page factors are the elements that are in direct control of the publisher. These are:

Content

Quality – well-written pages, which have a substantial quality content. [+3]

Research – carefully weighed keywords people may use to find your content. [+3]

Words – use of words and phrases for which you hope your page will be found. [+2]

Fresh – pages with fresh content and about “hot” topics. [+2]

Vertical – pages with images, local news, video, or other vertical content. [+2]

Answers – content turned into direct answers within search results. [+1]

Thin – “thin” or “shallow” content, and lacking substance. [-2]

Architecture

Crawl – pages that allow search engines to easily “crawl” throughout the site. [+3]

Duplicate – sites with a good management of duplicate content issues. [+2]

Mobile – sites that work well on mobile devices, and make use of app indexing. [+2]

Speed – sites that load quickly. [+1]

URLs – URLs that contain meaningful keywords to page topics. [+1]

HTTPs – utilization of HTTPs to provide a secure connection for visitors. [+1]

Cloaking – content presented to the search engines that differs from what is shown to humans. [-3]

HTML

Titles – HTML title tags that contain keywords relevant to page topics. [+3]

Description – Meta description tags that describe what the pages are about. [+2]

Structure – pages that use structured data to enhance listings. [+2]

Headers – headlines and subheads that use header tags with relevant keywords. [+1]

Stuffing – excessive use of words for which you want the page to be found. [-2]

Hidden – use of colors or designs that “hide” words for which you want the page to be found. [-1]

Off-page factors are the elements influenced by readers, visitors, and other publishers. These are:

Trust

Authority – links, shares, and other factors that make the site a trusted authority. [+3]

Engage – pages where visitors spend time reading, instead of “bouncing” away quickly. [+2]

History – sites or domains that have been around a long time, operating in the same way. [+2]

Identity – sites that use means to verify its identity and that of authors. [+1]

Piracy – sites that have been flagged for hosting pirated content. [-1]

Ads – ad-heavy content, especially “above-the-fold”. [-1]

Links

Quality – pages with links from trusted, quality or respected websites. [+3]

Text – use of links pointing at the page with words for which you hope your page to be found. [+2]

Number – many links that point to your web page. [+1]

Paid – purchased links in hopes of better rankings. [-3]

Spam – links created by spamming blogs, forums or other places. [-3]

Personal

Country – the country in which the searcher is located matches that of the site. [+3]

Locality – city or local area in which the searcher is located matches that of the site. [+3]

History – sites regularly visited or socially favored. [+3]

Social – sites that visitors or their friends have socially favored. [+2]

Social

Reputation – content shared on respected social networks (Facebook, Twitter, Google+, etc.). [+2]

Shares – content with many shares on social networks. [+1]
It is relevant to point out that all these SEO ranking factors work together, therefore, they are all important. However, those factors marked with [+3], carry more (positive) weight than [+1] or [+2], and in this particular scenario, the more the merrier. Nevertheless, no single factor guarantees top rankings or successful e-commerce business status, but having several favorable ones, definitely increases the odds. On the other hand, negative “violation” factors [-3], [-2], [-1], can evidently harm your chances.

Follow these steps thoroughly, and your page’s ranking will climb all the way to the top.