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June 20, 2022 at 2:57 pm #787DianaKeymaster
You want to build a website that ranks well in Google. In other words, you want Google to feel that YOUR web pages have the best answers to the questions searchers are asking.
Understanding how Google works, so that you can make it happen, is one of the most confusing and complicated topics you will ever study. This is called SEO, or Search Engine Optimization.
You don’t need to be an expert in SEO to make money online, but you do need to understand the basics.
Because… “if you build it, they will come” … is NOT true.
Three Functions of a Search Engine
Google needs to discover, understand, and organize content on the Internet, so that they can show you the most relevant results to the questions people ask. (Google is the dominant search engine, by a wide margin. Though there are search engines like Yahoo and Bing, Google is the one to focus on.)
There are three main functions. They:
- Crawl: Look for content
- Index: Analyze the content they find, then store it
- Rank: Organize the pages they indexed based on keywords and key phrases, by relevance. The greater the relevance, the higher the rank (the earlier in search a web page shows up.)
If Google cannot find your site, cannot figure out what it is about, or do not think it will be valuable to searchers, they won’t rank you.
How Search Works
Here’s a summary of the key factors that help determine what results are returned in the SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages) when you ask a question.
Meaning of the query:
What are you looking for, what is your intent?
Google uses language models to try to figure out what you mean.
They realize that synonyms and abbreviations exist.
They show you results in the language you used when you searched.
They understand that many searches have local intent, so when you look for “locksmith,”, you’ll get results for businesses nearby.
If you search for trending keywords, they’ll show you more recent results.
Relevance of content:
Does it contain the information you want?
This is why keywords matter – if your web page uses the same keywords that a searcher uses, it’s a signal that the content is relevant. But it goes beyond that.
Google looks at context. What are the other pages, pictures, and videos on your site about?
You may mention your Australian shepherd dog on a web page, but Google is probably not going to rank that page for “Australian shepherd dog” if the rest of the site is about your livestock farm.
Quality of content (reputation):
Is your web page truly helpful and authoritative? Is it a trustworthy resource?
One factor Google uses to determine quality is by the number and prominence of the sites that link or refer to your source.
If the sites that link to yours also rank well, are highly regarded, have been around a long time, have tons of information, are produced by reputable companies – that’s a good sign.
Odds are, they wouldn’t link to you unless YOUR info was good too.
Usability of webpages:
Is it easy to navigate the site and find information?
Page experience comes into play here, such as ensuring that your site is mobile-friendly and that it loads quickly.
Context and settings:
Where are you now, and what do you typically look for?
Google knows where you live and can tell what you’ve searched for in the past (unless you remove access to that data, which you can do so here: myaccount.google.com. Turn off Web & App Activity to disable Search personalization based on activity.)
This is how Google knows what to show you if you search for “chiropractor near me”.
Conclusion and Next Steps
The SEO training we offer here will help you understand the factors that influence Google rank. The tools we offer will help you prove to Google that you’re relevant (keywords) and reputable (backlinks).
Case Studies Expert | Google News Expert | Domain Expert | I Make Websites Work Harder
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