Google’s search algorithm famously incorporates hundreds of on- and off-page factors to deliver results to users. This means that optimizing a site for search engines — or the practice of SEO — can be a complicated process.
Whether you’re looking to improve your current site or create an entirely new one, it pays to be aware of the possible SEO ranking factors that affect your chances of being found in search engines. In general, following these three rules of thumb will help improve your site:
- Make your website easy for GoogleBot to crawl.
- Provide a quality, user-friendly experience to your site visitors.
- Avoid any sketchy, corner-cutting deals or strategies.
While these three rules will give you a solid starting point, we’ve gone the extra mile and compiled a complete list of Google SEO ranking factors in 2015. It’s important to note, however, that while Google may go into detail about how GoogleBot reads websites, the company very rarely provides details about the exact ranking factors they use.
As a result, these factors can’t be 100% guaranteed (though they do have data behind them), and they may change without warning. We’ll keep our list up to date to provide you with the most accurate collection of Google SEO ranking factors possible.
Inbound links (also called backlinks) are one of the most important elements of a successful SEO strategy. Links from reputable websites show Google that you’re trusted by other site owners, which will help the linked pages and your overall site rank better in search engine results pages (SERPs). This philosophy was the foundation of Google’s creation in the 1990s, and links still matter today.
Quantity of Linking Root Domains
- The number of unique websites that link to you is one of the most important ranking factors in SEO.
Age of Linking Domain
- The age of domains that link to you appears to matter. Older domains likely perform better than younger ones.
Authority of Linking Domain
- Google prefers to see links to your site come from authoritative domains, meaning links from them likely carry more weight than others.
Authority of Linking Page
- The authority of a specific page that links to you may also play a role in your own page’s ranking.
Sudden Influx of Links
- A surprise jump in the quantity of links to your website may make Google think you paid or traded for links, which can bring on a penalty. This is also a negative SEO technique that competitors may use to damage your rankings.
Quantity of Links from Individual C-Class IPs
- Unique C-class (or C block) IP addresses can show that your links are coming from sources outside of your business, indicating that you have helpful, varied, and accessible information.
Quantity of Links from Same C-Class IPs
- Having a ton of links from the same C-class IP address may be a sign of blog network or affiliate linkbuilding, which can result in penalties.
Quantity of Total Linking Pages
- When you’re building links, the total number of other pages that link to yours plays a huge part in ranking well.
Links from Certain TLDs
- Though Matt Cutts has denied TLDs have different link power, links from .gov and .edu sites appear to carry more weight when linking to your domain.
Links from Competitors
- You and your competitors are always fighting for links. That means links from websites that share real estate with you in SERPs may have a greater impact on your ranking than links from non-competitors.
Links from Bad Neighborhoods
- If you get a link from disreputable sites that link to (and receives links from) disreputable sites, Google may associate your domain with poor sources. As a sidenote, you can request to remove these kinds of links with Google’s disavow function.
High Link Percentage from Low-Quality Sites
- Receiving lots of low-quality links from blogs, forum profiles, and other common spam accounts may earn a penalty from Google.
Links from Diverse Sources
- If you only get your links from one source, those links will likely carry less weight than if you have a varied link profile stretching several industries and fields.
Links from Relevant Sources
- At the same time, links from domains in a similar niche likely help you rank better than links from completely unrelated sites.
Linking Domain Relevancy
- Google penalizes sites with large quantities of links from irrelevant domains, as this is a signal of link schemes.
Links from Sites on Relevant Page Levels
- According to the Hilltop algorithm, receiving multiple links from “expert” pages can make you an authority, giving your domain an overall boost.
Links from Authority Sites
- Also from the Hilltop algorithm, receiving multiple links from “authority” pages will generally help the linked page and your site rank better.
Links from Wikipedia
- Wikipedia only uses nofollow links, but their brand mentions may still impact your site’s ability to rank.
Links from Hub Pages
- Establishing an internal link hub for different topics may help the rankings of your individual pages.
Links from Independent Sites
- Because blogs are everywhere, it’s highly possible that getting a link from independent, “real” websites help your site more than links from blogs.
Links from 301 Redirects
- Links from 301s are similar to direct links, though it’s possible they pass less equity.
Links from Forums
- In an effort to combat spamming, it’s possible Google values links from forum mentions less than average sites.
Google Penguin and Linkbuilding
- Google’s Penguin update penalizes sites that use black hat techniques to receive links and artificially inflate their SERP ranking.
- Google has confirmed that sitewide links only count as one link, though they can still help in SERPs.
TrustRank of Linking Site
- If the linking site has a high TrustRank, they’ll pass more trust to you.
Quantity of Links on Linking Page
- The more links a page has on it, the less link authority (or “equity”) is passed to each link.
Link Anchor Text
- Anchor text isn’t as important to ranking as it once was, but it’s still an indicator of relevancy.
Similar Link Text
- If several links to your site have similar context before them, Google may better contextualize what your page is about.
- Link titles can act as a contextualization factor or signal for Google crawlers.
- Links in the actual copy of a page are more important than links on the sidebar, footer, and other locations.
Link Location in Body Copy
- Body copy is important, and links located higher in body copy are read first, meaning Google’s crawlers may consider it better than links further down in copy.
- Receiving links from domains with country codes may help you rank better in those countries.
- Google says they don’t follow links with the nofollow attribute, meaning you receive no link equity from sources that link to you using the rel=nofollow tag.
- Sites with positive link velocity (building more links than losing them) do better in SERPs than sites with negative link velocity.
Natural Link Profile
- Sites that have a natural link profile are ranked higher than sites that appear to buy links.
- Linking back and forth with a buddy domain will gradually reduce your rankings, and Google warns to avoid reciprocal links because they constitute a link scheme.
Temporary Link Schemes
- Google can detect and penalize sites involved in short-lived link schemes, even though they don’t last long.
User Generated Content Links
- Google differentiates between owners of sites and user generated content (like the official WordPress blog vs. a user’s blog on WordPress) when considering links.
Word Count of Page
- The more words a page has, the more credible their link is to you.
Quality of Page Content
- Google likes to see that high-quality sources are linking to you as a reference, which increases your credibility and ranking.
- Older links carry more weight than newer links.
- The closer you are to high-authority sites in terms of links, the more TrustRank they pass to you and the better you will rank.
Guest Blog Posts
- Guest blogs shouldn’t be used as your sole linkbuilding method, but they can still help your website.
Google uses outbound links as an on-page ranking factor. Similar to citing sources in an academic paper, you should also link to credible sources where appropriate on your website. The more credible, authoritative, and important the sources are, the better Google will rank your page. Just don’t overdo it or Google may think you’re spamming!
Outbound Link Quality
- If you link to credible sources, including those that have high authority, .edu or .gov TLDs, and similar subject matter, Google may be able to better contextualize and rank your page.
Outbound Link Quantity
- Outbound links can help your page rank — as long as you don’t overdo it.
Outbound Link Motif
- Crawlers may contextualize the links you use to determine the overall theme of your page so it ranks for the most relevant queries.
Excessive Use of NoFollow
- Matt Cutts says no, though Google may take manual action if they notice excessive amounts of spam that is nofollow.
Internal Page Link Quality
- When you link internally, higher-authority pages may pass more equity to your newer pages than if you link lots of new pages together.
Internal Page Link Quantity
- The quantity of internal domain links that go to a page can show that the page is relevant to a variety of other information on your site. However, too many internal links can create problems.
Internal Link Anchor Text
- Anchor text can contextualize internal links, though it’s not a critical part of the linkbuilding process.
- If you refer to too many broken links in tandem with other negative indicators, Google may decide your website provides a poor user experience and demote it accordingly.
Excessive 301 Redirects
- According to Matt Cutts, using roughly four or more 301 redirects chained together for the same page will make Google stop crawling your page.
- “Cloaking” is the process by which webmasters list a website under one context and then redirect a user somewhere else after a click. It’s a surefire way to get on Google’s bad side and even de-indexed.
- If you partner (or affiliate) with other properties and you link lots of them together to gain credibility, Google may penalize you.
Hidden Affiliate Links
- If Google finds that you’re hiding affiliate links on your page, especially through cloaking, you’ll be penalized.
Links to Bad Neighborhoods
- If you link to websites within a network of disreputable sources, you could be penalized for spam.
- Google demotes all domains that they believe engage in link selling.
Anchor text refers to the text you use when linking to another site. The more descriptive and concise you can be, the better the link will appear. However, Google’s crawler can also infer context based on the words around anchor text. That means that links to your site aren’t the only factor impacting your ranking — it’s also the words the link uses.
Context of Anchor Text
- Google has a patent to read context for links. While it’s unconfirmed whether it’s active, this mechanism may send significant relevancy signals to Google’s crawlers.
Sentiment around Anchor Text
- Whether someone is linking to you because they like you or hate you is evident in what they write, and Google can possibly now gauge sentiment.
Branded Anchor Text
- Using a brand name in anchor text may send a strong signal to users and Google (but be careful not to over-optimize).
Spam Anchor Text
- Identical anchor text, suspicious exact-match links, and other indications of paid links can result in penalties.
The strength of your domain is a powerful SEO ranking factor. Essentially, your domain as a whole is considered when users enter search queries that relate to your website. The more credibility you’ve built through both on- and off-page factors, the more Google will prefer your domain.
- Domain age may not be hugely important, but it can definitely play a role in your rankings.
Domain Registration Length
- Domains that are registered for more than a year may be more credible since they’ve outlived the usual lifespan of doorway domains.
- Sites that have gaps in registration or questionable histories may have trouble ranking well.
Domain Authority of Page Host
- New pages on authoritative domains will likely rank better than new pages on lesser-known domains.
- Google can find parked domains, and they’re not ranked well since they provide a poor user experience.
Exact Match Domain
- If you host a quality website, an exact match domain can be helpful. However, Google introduced an update to penalize low quality EMDs.
Country-Specific TLD or Extension
- A country code (.tv, .cn, .de) may help you rank in that country, but it may also hinder your ability to rank globally.
Flagged as Spam
- If your domain is ever flagged for spam, it’ll likely negatively impact all of the sites on that server.
- Simple and descriptive URLs help Google contextualize your page.
- An easy-to-read URL sends positive signals to Google’s crawlers.
Public vs. Private WhoIs
- Public WhoIs can help keep your site in good standing. And although it hasn’t been addressed since Pubcon 2006, Matt Cutts said private WhoIs isn’t necessarily bad, but it can raise some eyebrows in conjunction with negative factors.
“Contact Us” Pages
- A “contact us” page may help a domain rank locally since it lists your name, address, and phone number — three of the most valuable ranking factors in local SEO.
- It’s possible that pages with microformat support rank better than those without support.
- The physical location of your servers may affect rankings in geographically-sensitive queries.
Site SEO ranking factors are all concerned with the elements that you have site-wide. This largely includes categories like infrastructure, stability, reliability, and more. If you want to maintain a strong position in SERPs, you have to make sure your site operates like a well-oiled machine.
- A site with clean, well-coded architecture is easy for Google to crawl and index.
- Websites that provide a smooth, intuitive interface for visitors commonly rank better than those that are clunky and difficult to navigate.
- If your site frequently crashes or experiences downtime, it may have trouble ranking well.
- If you have good reviews on sites like Yelp, you could rank better than if the reviews were negative.
- Google looks for over-optimization factors to determine if a site should be penalized.
Frequency of Site Updates
- Google likes to see new, unique, and “fresh” content routinely on sites.
Duplicate Meta Descriptions
- Duplicate meta descriptions can make it more difficult for Google to crawl and contextualize your pages.
Meta Description Spam
- Meta descriptions are important to show users what is on your page before they click, so Google will penalize sites that either spam or mislead users in their meta descriptions.
- Mobile-friendliness and responsive design are now ranking factors for Google. Websites that aren’t mobile-friendly can suffer in SERP rankings.
- Named for Hansel and Gretel’s strategy to escape forests, breadcrumb navigation makes it easy for visitors and Google to look through your website.
- An HTML sitemap makes it easy for Google to thoroughly crawl and index your website.
Site-Wide Content Changes
- Drastic changes to your site (like a site-wide redesign) may signal a helpful timeliness factor to Google, but it may also harm your rankings for any factors that you’ve changed along the way.
Time on Site
- If a visitor is active on your page for a few minutes, the page receives more credibility than if a visitor leaves after a few seconds.
Almost everything you add onto a page can influence Google’s perception of it, and following their recommended guidelines makes it easier for their bots to crawl your pages to find the information they need. The more thorough you are with your page construction, the more likely your page will rank well against your competition.
Page Loading Speed
- The faster your page loads, the better it will rank.
Coding and W3C Compliance
- Efficient coding and complying with W3C guidelines may not be strong ranking factors, but they definitely help. Excessively large pages may not even be indexed.
- While it’s controversial how powerful this is today, higher PageRank tends to correlate to more authoritative pages.
- Aged evergreen content that is appropriately targeted can rank highly for relevant keywords.
- Filed and relevant pages can get a leg up in rank, compared to those that are filed in irrelevant categories or unfiled.
Page Proximity to Homepage
- Though this is an old concept, it’s possible that a page’s distance from the homepage may impact its ranking.
- Citing quality references for a claim can signal quality on your behalf, or at least make you more trustworthy for visitors.
- An attractive, intuitive, and engaging page layout that shows the main content immediately — without intrusive ads — is important to your page’s rankings.
- The number of pages you have on a site isn’t critically important, but it can at least show Google that you’re not an affiliate site while increasing your number of indexed pages.
SSL / HTTPS
- Both of these certificates send positive signals to Google’s crawlers. This is one of the few 100% certified ranking factors disclosed by Google.
Popups and Distracting Ads
- Using spammy or flashing ads to distract users from a page’s content may make websites rank lower in SERPs.
Ads “Above the Fold”
- Google penalizes sites with ads and thin content in the upper portions of their pages.
- If you optimize your site with irrelevant or “toxic” assets, Google will penalize your individual page in SERPs.
- If most of your users click a link to one of your pages and then leave right away (causing a “bounce”), Google may view the page as low-quality and demote it in SERPs.
Content is king, and content is a valuable addition to any digital marketing strategy. These SEO ranking factors can also be some of the most fun to optimize since they give bloggers, designers, and other content creators the chance to discuss personal passions, related news, and more. If you produce content that is made for search engine users and provides them with a quality experience, Google will like you more.
- The length of content you have on a page reflects an attention to detail and quality, as opposed to shorter, less helpful alternatives.
Grammar and Spelling
- While their importance has yet to be determined in terms of ranking, proper grammar and spelling can at least help match keywords to user searches and show site visitors that you’re professional.
- Writing on a higher reading level may help establish you as a reliable authority on certain topics, though it’s important to also keep the tone conversational and accessible for your target demographic.
- Semantics are important, and if you use a variety of terms related to the keyword you want to rank for (instead of just repeating the keyword itself), your ranking may increase.
Quality and Usefulness
- Useful content may rank better than other content since it provides a better user experience for searchers and entices links.
- Content that shows thought and insight is the cornerstone of quality while also helping a page rank for the long haul.
- Having on-page content that is 100% unique tells Google that your page is quality and one-of-a-kind.
- In the event you have duplicate content on pages, rel=canonical will tell Google which page you want to show up in search results.
- The holistic approach to content covers topics by fully addressing them and similar issues for conveniently-packaged information, resulting in long, thoughtful, and helpful content pieces.
- Syndicated content has to be incorporated very carefully in order to rank well in Google searches. If it’s not modified enough, it can be viewed as duplicate content, which can cause problems.
Automatically Generated Content
- Autogenerated content is often penalized, and it’s a surefire way to lose rank in Google’s search results.
Additional Page Content
- Additional page content includes helpful on-site interactives like calculators and planners that give Google an indication of your page’s context, relevance, usefulness, and quality.
Timeliness of Content
- Google likes up-to-date content for time-sensitive or newsworthy queries.
Significance of Content Changes
- If you’re going to make a big change to a trusted page, it’s best to delete as little traffic- and conversion-oriented text as possible while adding more quality, in-depth text. Deleting large sections of valuable content can make you lose rank on SERPs since you’ll lose keywords, word count, and quality.
Frequency of Content Changes
- If you update your blog regularly, Google will more frequently index your site to look for changes, increasing the number of pages you can have on SERPs.
Google Panda and Content Quality
- Google’s Panda update penalizes low-quality content and demotes it in SERPs.
- Audio, photo, and video should all be properly titled, tagged, described so Google’s crawlers can properly read and understand them.
Image Alt Text
- Using descriptive and informative alt text helps Google understand the images on a page.
- Optimized images have relevant file names, titles, alt text, descriptions, and captions make them easier to read for Google’s crawlers.
- YouTube videos can rank in SERPs over other video hosting platforms, making it the best place to upload any videos for your site. Your YouTube account also doubles as a strong SEO presence since YouTube is the second-largest search engine in the world.
- Google demotes pages based on repeat DMCA complaints.
- Sites that acquire more direct traffic are more likely to be high quality sites in Google’s eyes, especially if site visitors are using Chrome.
- If users return to your page, you’ll likely receive a boost in your rankings.
Number of Comments
- Google may view the quantity of comments on a blog or article as an indication of its worth and engagement.
If you want your site to show up in the results for searches related to your business, you have to use keywords. These are the words that Google users type into the search bar to find what they want. In general, targeting your pages to certain keywords is a great idea. But, as with other forms of optimization, just make sure you don’t overdo it.
Keyword in Title Tag
- Keyword-rich title tags are essential to ranking well. Use them to your advantage.
Keyword Starting Title Tag
- When writing your title tags, keep your keywords as close to the beginning as possible with clear, concise language.
Keyword in URL
- Keywords directly in URLs send helpful relevancy signals to Google.
Keyword as First Word in Domain
- Keywords beginning your domain name can be helpful, but they aren’t critical — in some cases, brandable websites can be better.
Keyword in Domain
- It’s not as important as it used to be, but keywords in domain names can still send a relevancy signal.
Keyword in Description Tag
- Although not as important as it once was, keywords in meta descriptions can also send helpful relevancy signals.
Keyword in H1 Tags
- A page’s H1 is basically a chance for a second, less important title tag.
Keyword in H2 and H3 Tags
- Keywords in H2 and H3 tags can also signal relevancy to Google, though they’re not weighted as heavily as H1 tags.
- It’s likely that using a keyword more often than other phrases sends relevancy signals.
- Instead of spamming your keywords, Google prefers if you intercut them naturally throughout your content for a more user-friendly appeal.
- Keywords in important page locations help the page rank for those terms.
Exact Keywords vs. Partial Keywords
- Exact match keywords may better reflect a user’s intent and relevancy, so they could rank higher than partial.
- Latent semantic indexing keywords may help contextualize your page.
LSI Keywords in Title and Description Tags
- It’s possible that LSI keywords in important tags can help Google determine relevancy.
Quantity of Other Ranked Keywords
- If your page ranks well for keywords on your site, it may signal quality so you can rank for new pages as well.
Organic Keyword CTR
- The number of clicks a page gets based on a query can reflect the quality of your user interaction.
Organic CTR for All Keywords
- If all of a site’s keywords have a high organic CTR, Google may view your site as quality.
The jury is still out for a lot of social media SEO ranking factors. They’re some of the newest ranking factors incorporated into Google’s search algorithm, but that doesn’t mean you can’t use these social media strategies to your advantage. While the direct impact they have on SEO is minimal, the idea is that social media makes your company accessible — and Google likes accessible companies.
Social Media Verification
- Verifying your social media accounts establishes trust with your followers and may result in favorable rankings from Google.
- Page-specific social shares may be growing in importance for page rankings.
Social Signal Relevancy
- It’s likely that Google looks into the relevancy of social accounts and their links as a way to avoid spam.
On-Site Social Signals
- Social signals throughout your site may increase authority and visibility.
- Companies with Google+ accounts often rank better in local search results.
- Google may tailor results to users who have certain authors and businesses in their Google+ circles.
- Though Google claims they have no direct impact on SERPs, Google +1’s have a higher correlation with positive search ranking than every other factor except page authority.
Google+ Account Authority
- While the information is slightly dated, it’s possible that Google weighs links from high-quality, authoritative users more heavily than fresher accounts.
- Though authorship is no longer a direct ranking factor, it’s possible that some form of it still exists to reflect the authority of well-known bloggers, journalists, and other content creators.
- Twitter profiles with sizable followings (and more tweets) may indicate popularity and quality.
Twitter Account Authority
- It’s possible that tweets from Twitter accounts with large followings impact the rankings on SERPs more heavily than tweets from newer accounts.
Number of Tweets
- It’s also possible that the quantity of tweets a page has influences its SERP ranking, though Twitter can also be used for marketing on its own.
- While Google’s confirmation of social signals in SEO is dated, Facebook pages with lots of likes show a brand’s popularity, which may send signals to Google.
Facebook Account Authority
- Authoritative accounts or authors may impact your SEO when posting links to your site.
Number of Facebook Likes
- Facebook Likes may mildly impact SERP position for a page.
Number of Facebook Shares
- Facebook shares may also influence a page’s location on SERPs position.
- Google owns Feedburner, one of the most popular RSS feeds, so it makes sense that they would access and utilize the data that it acquires.
LinkedIn Company Pages
- Company LinkedIn pages can help make your brand more visible.
Employee LinkedIn Pages
- When employees join you on LinkedIn, Google may read that as a legitimacy and relevancy signal.
- It’s possible that Google considers Pinterest a social signal, based on the network’s popularity.
Social Sharing Sites
- Links from Reddit, Digg, and other post-based sharing sites are often nofollow, though some high-ranking links are followed.
As a site owner, some SEO ranking factors are simply out of your control. This is because Google works for individual users, to the point where they request volunteer feedback and employees who specialize in usability. That means that your site, even though you’ve worked hard to show up in Google’s search results, may not display at all depending on the data Google has extracted from certain users. Some of them may see different results from users who aren’t logged into Google properties, and others may use Google properties so much that their search results are customized to their interests. These factors make SEO a little tricky.
- Google loves displaying timely results to the point where they might start showing tweets in users’ search results for time-sensitive queries like news. This would remove valuable real estate from SERPs and push your listing further down the page.
- Google may attempt to show results that include diverse, high-quality results, as opposed to pages from the same domain, depending on user queries.
User Browsing History
- If a user is signed into Google properties while browsing websites, Google will record history data as user preference for SERPs.
User Search History
- Google tracks the queries that users type as a personalization measure, which may factor into the results that users see on SERPs.
- Google will change SERPs based on perceived user intent, especially for transactional queries.
- Google Shopping results sometimes display in organic SERPs reflecting transactional intent, which can push your site listing down.
- Google pushes down organic rankings to show strips of images for common queries, reducing the likelihood of sites showing up at the top of SERPs.
- Queries that reflect a strong tilt to a certain domain may result in SERPs that only have one website listed, eliminating you as a possibility even if you’re in a related field.
- Google won’t show adult or profane material when users engage SafeSearch.
- If a user enters a query for a specific brand, Google will show results for it first, even if you rank for keywords that are similar.
It’s important to remember that when it comes to SEO, we’re working in Google’s world. They can introduce updates and algorithm changes at any point, even temporary adjustments that can impact SERPs for a brief amount of time. These are a few of the different features Google uses in its algorithm and on its SERPs that can change a page’s ability to rank.
- “Google Dance” is the unofficial term for sudden, short-lived changes in SERP rankings. It’s not an actual Google property, but it’s suspected that Google shuffles ranking criteria to check for domains that use black hat strategies.
Google Webmaster Tools Warning
- Google will notify site owners about unnatural links. Typically, the owner’s site will drop in rank until the problem is addressed.
- Google’s sandbox is used for new sites that receive an unnatural amount of links after their creation, which could be indicative of link schemes. Google limits the visibility of these domains on SERPs in spite of their apparent popularity.
Big Brand Preference
- Larger, more well-known brands may receive preferential treatment since they’ve established reputations for quality.
Brand Mentions in the News
- Brand mentions that include news results may receive preferential treatment in SERPs.
Google News Box
- News-related queries, or queries that have a lot of relevant and new pages, will activate the Google News Box to give preferential treatment to recent updates.
- Businesses with Google Places listings in a user’s area will show up above non-local competition.
- Google’s localization prefers sites with IP addresses that are country-specific to the user.
- After the Bigfoot update, the number of unique domains on a SERP dropped in favor of relevancy.
Easter Egg Results
- Google’s Easter eggs may change or completely revamp SERPs based on hoaxes, gags, or other fun additions.
Google Chrome Bookmarks
- Google pulls data from Chrome users, so it’s possible that frequently-bookmarked pages receive a boost in SERPs.
Google Toolbar Data
- Google collects data from its browser toolbars and incorporates it into SERPs. What they exactly collect and use, however, is unconfirmed.
- Google has a patent to use human editors to manually edit search results, filed all the way back in 2000.
- Similarly, Google has handed out manual penalties
- Filing a reconsideration request allows Google to re-examine your site and determine whether or not to remove a penalty.
With hundreds of factors playing into the search results for every query, it’s critical to carefully comb through your site to check for any elements that may not be optimized or — worse — lead to a penalty.
As SEOs, we may not have definitive confirmation from Google that these are the exact factors they use, but it’s the most comprehensive list of SEO ranking factors we have so far. The data and correlations behind each factor is enough to determine that these factors should be primary considerations when you’re working on your website.
As SEO changes, we’ll update this list to reflect the most accurate representation of Google’s ranking factors.
Good luck out there — and happy ranking!