Google is the most powerful search engine in the world because it always looks for new ways to provide a better and more accurate service. When we talk about SEO, we’re talking about Google.
Reports show that 93% of the entire web traffic comes from a search engine, with Google keeping the vast majority of the market share with almost 90%. What made this search engine so dominant for so long?
The answer lies in Google’s algorithms since the platform is constantly changing and improving the way it filters search results. Back in 2018, they reported an incredible 3,234 algorithm updates — an average of almost nine per day.
Now, the most important question for you as a webmaster is this: How do I use Google algorithms to promote my website in 2019? Our job is to help you with that, so keep reading to see nine ways to get over Google’s algorithm changes.
Google Algorithms: Definition and Evolution
If you want to stay on top of the trends, you need to understand the concept of algorithms and how Google changed them over the years.
By definition, an algorithm is a set of rules designed to solve a problem in a finite number of steps. The definition applies to every algorithm, including Google’s, which basically means that the platform uses a highly specific formula to identify the most appropriate search results for each query.
Given the fact that Google typically changes its algorithm 500 to 600 times a year, it is essential to track progress and react promptly. It’s impossible to explain the entire history of Google algorithms in one post, but we can point out the most important updates:
- Google Panda: Google released the Panda update in 2011 to reduce the influence of low-quality websites and boost the ranking of pages serving top-notch content. The point was to undermine sites with lots of duplicate content, low value, ads, and so on.
- Google Penguin: Google released the Penguin update in 2012 to focus on sites with a huge number of irrelevant inbound links. From this point on, it was much more difficult to boost ranking by buying backlinks or generating them artificially.
- Google Hummingbird: Google released the Hummingbird update in 2013 and it turned out to be the most influential change of all. Namely, the new algorithm has been designed to accurately interpret user intent and the true meaning behind search phrases, thus enabling Google to find better results and improving ranking results.
- Google Pigeon: Google released the Pigeon update in 2014 with a highly specific goal in mind and that was to improve location-based search results. The algorithm takes into account maps and local directories to give more precise location-specific information.
- Google Fred: Google released the Fred update in 2017 but refused to make any comments about it. Jake Gardner, the SEO expert at the professional essay writing service, says the update is surrounded by controversy: “However, we can say that the change affects low-value websites that concentrate on making a profit instead of providing quality content.”
9 Ways to Take Advantage of Google Algorithm Updates
Now that you understand the basic rules of Google’s algorithms, it is time to focus on the most important aspect of the post. Of course, we are talking about ways to stay on track and build a high-ranking website. Although there are many different solutions to the problem, we selected the nine fundamental tips here.
1. Create top-notch content
After everything we’ve mentioned so far, it is clear that only top-notch content can end up on the first page of search engine results. You must provide real value in your posts and give users a reason to enjoy the content.
First of all, make sure to create long-form articles that cover themes from all angles. A study shows that the average Google first page result contains 1,890 words. It’s a general rule of thumb you need to respect because only longer posts can impress readers.
Secondly, your opinions should be backed by relevant data, statistical findings, and research. It will make the content look more credible and authoritative in the eyes of your audience and Google, respectively.
2. Mixing Different Formats
The second piece of advice is also content-related. Although most creators focus on textual posts, you should make use of other formats to improve the quality of your content. What makes this tip so important?
Well, it turns out that Google loves multimedia content because it boosts engagement. For example, the average user spends almost 90% more time on a website containing video content. Another report mentions that blogs with images earn 94% more views.
The bottom line is that you should make the website versatile and add many different types of content to it, including podcasts, videos, infographics, animations, and similar.
3. Optimize Your Website
This one goes without saying, but we can never overestimate the influence of SEO on website ranking. As a webmaster, you probably know lots of optimization tricks already, so we will mention the essentials only:
- Keyword research: There is no better way to identify keywords than using Google Keyword Planner. The tool will present you with a full list of search terms, phrases, and synonyms that suit your topics the most. At Intricate Digital Marketing, we use Ahrefs Keyword Tool Primarily, and all these tools are fairly similar, choosing the best that works for you.
- Optimize titles and descriptions: Google’s algorithms will closely examine webpage titles and descriptions, so don’t forget to optimize the two elements.
- Images: Users often look for visual content and you also have to create appropriate image tags.
- Also, if you are interested in learning more about Ahrefs Keyword Tool’s Alternatives, click here.
4. Increase Website Load Speed
Do you know that 53% of the web surfers leave pages that take longer than three seconds to load? Content consumers demand efficiency and you need to indulge them if you don’t want to lose visitors.
Needless to say, Google pays special attention to page load speed and penalizes slow sites. This is why we recommend that you use Google’s Page Speed Insights to analyze website performance.
It takes this platform only a few seconds to analyze the URL and you’ll get a comprehensive overview of the most relevant metrics. Besides that, Page Speed Insights will give you practical suggestions on how to improve load times.
5. Optimize for Mobile Experience
Another major algorithm update focused exclusively on mobile-powered web browsing. Bearing in mind that over 50% of Internet traffic is mobile, it is natural to see Google penalizing websites that don’t take care of smartphone users.
For this reason, it is essential to optimize your site for mobile usage and ensure effortless experiences. As usual, Google offers you help with that. Namely, you can conduct a mobile-friendliness test to learn how your site performs on smartphone devices.
Such insights will help you to improve the design of your site and boost ranking in Google searches long-term.
6. Identify and Fix Broken Links
Google (and all other search engines) hate broken links. It is one of the worst features in the SEO universe that can ruin years of hard work and optimization efforts. In such circumstances, identifying and fixing broken links becomes mandatory.
Fortunately, there are tools such as Broken Link Checker to help you speed up the process. A platform like this one automates website monitoring, so you can react quickly and replace it with a functional alternative. This will improve the quality of your website and save you from possible ranking downfalls.
7. Customize URLs
You don’t have to be a website optimization guru to notice the difference between good-looking and poorly-designed URLs. Let’s say that you are writing a post about entitled help with my assignment and now need to choose between one of these two options:
Which one is better?
The answer is obvious because the second link is clear and understandable. Google’s algorithms take URL-friendliness into account when indexing and ranking pages, so don’t forget to design beautiful and straightforward links for your posts.
8. Create a Google My Business Account
We have already discussed the importance of optimizing content for local searches, but the feature becomes even more significant if you are running a physical store. In this case, it is fundamental to create an account on Google My Business, a directory containing information about the physical branches of various organizations.
What’s in it for you?
The idea is clear – by creating your Google My Business account, you make the site easily discoverable in location-driven searches. This is a big thing because over 80% of smartphone shoppers conduct ‘near me’ searches.
Your job is to keep the company info fresh and up to date, adding all the relevant details such as the address, opening/closing hours, website address, phone numbers, business categories, and so on.
9. Use Optimization Tools
As a webmaster, you don’t have to do everything manually. There are tons of incredibly useful tools to help you with content optimization, so we strongly recommend that you test the most valuable platforms and plugins. We showed you a lot of interesting solutions in earlier paragraphs, but you can also check out some other tools:
- SEMRush: It’s an all-around marketing platform with hundreds of SEO, customer service, and sales features.
- Best writing company: A team of content creation professionals can help you to write amazing blog posts and articles.
- Headline Analyzer: This platform will show you how to create the most attractive headlines for your posts.
- Ahrefs: No matter what you want to do SEO-wise, Ahrefs will help you to do it faster and more efficiently.
Google is the most dominant player in the search engine market because it always finds a way to provide better service to its users. The platform has changed its ranking algorithms thousands of times over the last few years, so webmasters have to stay alert and learn how to get over this problem.
In this post, we discussed the fundamental algorithm changes and showed you nine tactics to make your site competitive. Do you keep an eye on the evolution of Google’s algorithms? Are you ready to react?