One of the most important tasks you have as a webmaster is to consider how your website will rank on Google for those search phrases that are most important for your business. This article will walk you through the most important principles and guide you to sources for more information.
Periodically Google will crawl your website, examining your content as well as the way your content is formatted. The search engine will add your pages to its index for a number of potential search phrases. However, many other websites will also be in that index and they will also appear when users search for those specific phrases. It is important, if you want people to come to your website, to be ranked highly by Google, preferably on the first page of search results. Fewer than half of all searchers go to the second page of search results, and fewer than 10% go to the third page.
There are a number of factors Google uses to make this determination. You will be making important decisions about coding, content, and relationships with other websites based on Google's ranking factors. Some of those are decisions you are making on the page itself, others are based on what happens elsewhere on the web. The first thing you should do is make sure all your content is accessible to the search engines. This is based on the coding, navigation, and also on the format. As a simple example, if you have words that are actually part of a jpeg or gif file, Google cannot see them.
Next, highlight the words you have determined are most important. These can be placed in the page title, the header tags, the URLs, and part of the internal linking structure. Google needs to know what the content is about. Content that is focused on a particular topic will rank more highly for that topic.
What happens elsewhere on the Web is also critical. Google uses the PageRank algorithm to rank web pages, this algorithm is based on how web pages across the internet link to each other. Some websites are given higher authority, and when these websites link to a page, Google will assume that page is more important. This authority is also based on the topic. What this means to the webmaster is that you should obtain links from other websites that are highly ranked and that are relevant to your content.
Finally, you need to measure what people are actually doing on your website. Using a combination of Google's search console and Google analytics, you can track where people are coming from and what they do when they arrive on your website. This will help you make important decisions about revising existing content and creating new content. It can also help you as reach out to other websites for referral links.
We have given you a brief overview here. This is a starting point if you want your to see your website rank on Google.To get more information, go to Google's webmaster guidelines. There are also some very good reference sources out there, such as SEOMoz, Search Engine Land, and Search Engine World.