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Netmar.euGoogle Ranking Factors - SEO Checklist
There are "over 100 SEO factors" that Google uses to rank pages in the Google search results
(SERPs). What are the search engine optimization rules? Here is the speculation - educated guesses
by SEO webmasters on top webmaster forums. Various confirmed and suspected Google Search
Engine Optimization (SEO) Rules are listed below.
Google Ranking Factor Checklist
The SEO Rules listed below are NOT listed by weight, and not by any presumed relevance - THAT exercise is left up to the reader! Alleged POSITIVE ON-Page SEO Google
Ranking Factors (38)
(Keeping in mind the converse, of course, that when violated, some of these factors immediately
jump into the NEGATIVE On-Page Ranking Factors domain.)
The term "Keyword" below refers to the "Keyword Phrase", which can be one word or more.
Green rows confirmeted 08-26-05
First word is best, second is second best, etc.
Keyword in Title tag - close to beginning Title tag 10 - 60 Keyword in title characters, no special characters The Florida Update EVEN penalized for this, as part of the OOP. That was absurd, but effective.
Shows theme - less than 200 chars. (Was part of Google description meta Florida OOP) Google no longer relies upon this tag, but frequently uses it.
Shows theme - less than 10 words. (Was part of Google Florida OOP) Every word in this tag MUST appear somewhere in the body. If not, it will be penalized for irrelevance. NO single word should appear more than twice. If not, it is considered spam. Google purportedly no longer values this tag, but others do.
5 - 20% - (all keywords/ total words) Some report topic sensitivity - the keyword spamming threshold varies with the 2+ keywords)Keyword phrase Does order in the page match order in the query? Anticipate Most important at top of page, in bold, in large font Should describe graphic - Do NOT fill with spam (Was part of Keyword in alt Google Florida OOP - tripped a threshold - may still be in effect to some degree as a red flag, when summed with all other on-page optimizations).
Link should contain keywords. The filename "linked to" should contain the keywords. Use hyphenated filenames, but Validate all links to all pages on site.
Two clicks to any page - no page deeper than 4 clicks Intra-site linking Appropriate links between lower-level pages Google patent - Link only to good sites. Do not link to link Google patent - Should be on topic, descriptive Google patent - Avoid "Link Churn" Google says readily accepts 2-3 times that .edu seem to be given the highest status.org sites seem to be given high status Domain Name .com sites excel in encompassing all the spam/ crud sites, resulting in the need for the highest scrutiny/ action by Google. Perhaps one would do well with the new .info domain class.
Absolutely do not exceed 100K page size. Small files preferred <40K (lots of them).
Preferred method for indicating a space, where there can be no actual space One or two= excellent for separating keywords Hyphens in URL Four or more= BAD, starts to look spammy Ten = Spammer Google patent - Changes over time Newer the better - if news, retail or auction! Google likes fresh pages. So do I.
New pages - Ratio of old pages to new pages Stem, stems, stemmed, stemmer, stemming, stemmist, peculation, no proofKeep it minimized - use somewhat less than the 2,000 characters allowed by IE - less than 100 is good, less even better Larger sites are presumed to be better funded, better organized, better constructed, and therefore better sites. Google likes big Google likes LARGE sites, for various reasons, not all sites positive. This has resulted in the advent of machine-generated 10,000-page spam sites - size for the sake of size.
Age of page vs. age of other pages on site Note: For ALL the POSITIVE On-Page factors listed above, PAGE RANK can OVERRIDE
them all. So can Google-Bombing.
Alleged Negative ON-Page SEO Google
Ranking Factors (24)
Text represented graphically is invisible to The Florida update went after affiliates with a vengeance - flower and travel affiliates were hit hard - cookie-cutter sites with massive inter-linking, but little unique content. Subsequent updates have also targeted affiliates.
OP) Penalty for over-compliance with well- established, accepted web optimization practices. Since the Florida update, if you simply cannot achieve top position, your only alternative to first page SERP exposure may be Google AdWords (you pay for exposure).
Don't link to link farms, FFAs (Free For Alls) Don't forget to check the Google status of EVERYONE you link to periodically. A site may go "bad", and you can end up being penalized, even though you did nothing.
Don't immediately send your visitor to another page other than the one he/ she clicked on.
Including the you can't say on TV, plus the 150 or so that followed. Don't shoot yourself right straight in the foot. Also, avoid combinations of normal words, which when used together, become something else entirely - such as the word juice, and the word love.
"Links" in title tag, etc. Here is my listhis penalty has been loosened - many of these words now appear in normal context, with no problems. But watch your step.
- within the same C block (IP=xxx.xxx.CCC.xxx) If you have many sites with the same web host, prolific cross-linking can indicate more of a single entity, and less of democratic web voting. Easy to spot, easy to penalize.
Stealing images/ text blocks from Copyright violation - Google responds strongly if In body, meta tags, alt text, etc. = demotionTargeting too many unrelated keywords on a page, which would detract from theming, and reduce the importance of your REALLY
Google patent - Google is now switching
between a "Newer" cache, and an "Older" cache,
frequently drawing from BOTH at the same time.
Page edit - can reduce consistency This was implemented to frustrate SEOers. Did your last edit substantially alter your keywords, or theme? Expect noticeable SERP bouncing.
Problematic - know pitfalls - shorten URLs, Don't use for redirects, or hiding linksMost (all-?) SE spiders can't read Flash content Provide an HTML alternative, or lose out.
A red flag - one reason only - a sneaky link.
OK - No penalty - Google advises against this. All over the place - but nothing is ever done. (The text is the same color as the background, and hence cannot be seen by the viewer, but is visible to the search engine spiders.) OK - No penalty - . Google used to reward these pages. Multiple entrance pages in the top ten SERPs - I see it daily. There they are at #2, with their twin at #5 - the main page gets pushed down, 6 months now. Reported numerous times. OK - No penalty - . Google picks one (usually the oldest), and shoves it to the top, and pushes the second choice down. Currently a big issue with stolen content - the thief usurps your former position with YOUR OWN content.
HTML code violations (The big G Doesn't matte does not even use DOCTYPE Unless of course, the page is totally FUBAR. Simple HTML verification is NOT required (but IN GENERAL, this works pretty well to keep controversial, I would like to add webmasters in line. The fallacy of this is that this comment: There are many even the casual observer can readily observe things that Google would LIKE to continuing, blatant exceptions to these official have webmasters do, but that they pronouncements. SPAM reports elicit no simply cannot control, due to response, unless specific-case, knob-tweaking penalty imposition is authorized. There are many anecdotes about GG "taking care" of a problem. Google states that they do not provide hand- violation of their "suggestions" tweaked "boosts", but are silent about hand- tweaked demotions. They occur, fer shure. To demotion. (This is somewhat dated believe otherwise is naive. Wouldn't YOU swat - G is getting around to fixing these the most obnoxious flies? I would. Avoid any things.) Alleged POSITIVE OFF-Page SEO Google
Ranking Factors (43)
Based on the Number and Quality of links to you Google link reporting continues to display just a SMALL fraction of your actual backlinks, and they are NOT just greater than PR4 - they are mixed.
In Yahoo search, type in:linksite:www.domain-name.comlinkdomain:www.domainname.com What Google used to count (report). Now, what Google reports from PR4+ pages seems almost random, frequently changing.
Acceleration of link popularity Google patent Link acquisition speed boost - speculative Too fast
= artificial? Sandbox penalty imposed if new site? Contains keyword, key phrase? #1 result in SERP does NOT EVEN need to have the keyword(s) on the page, ANYWHERE!!! What does that tell you? (Enables - search for change of anchor Google patent - Not good. Why would you do that?textPopularity of links on referrer Fewer is better - makes yours more importantpagePosition of link HUGE boost - it is said that Google's directory comes STRAIGHT from the DMOZ directory. You MUST get into dmoz. Be careful who you approach with the old spondulix. It is almost impossible to get into DMOZ. This site cannot get in, after waiting over 2 YEARS (28 months). Not even in the lowest, most insignificant category, "Personal Pages". I guess I just don't "measure up" to the other 20,000+ sites in this category. Theme fit category? General or geographic category? Both are DMOZ category? possible, and acceptable.
Site listed in Boost? Another great vote for your site.
Directory listing boost (If other RESPECTED directories link to other directories you, this must be positive.) Google patent Boost for long-established sites, new pages indexed easily The opposite of the sand box.
Site Age - Very Temporary boost for very new sites - I estimate that this boost Influences SERPs - logical, consistent, conventional Previously, many pages preferred - conferred authority upon site, thus page. Bigger sites = better SERPs Now, fewer pages preferred, due to proliferation of computer-generated pages.
Site exhibit theme? Use many related terms? Have you used a Page Metrics - User Behavior - Currently implemented through the Google tool bar? Google patent - How often is a page clicked on? Google patent - Relatively long time = indicates relevance hit Page Metrics - User Behavior - Currently implemented through the Google tool bar? Google patent - # of visitors, increasing trend = good Relatively long time = indicates relevance hit Add brownie points.
Google patent - Domain Expiration Date Register for 5 years, Google knows you are serious. Register for 1 year, is it a throw- Registration Time away domain?Are associated Google patent - No spam, ownership, etc.
Alleged NEGATIVE OFF-Page SEO Google
Ranking Factors (13)
Have you paid a company for web traffic? It is probably low quality traffic, with a zero conversion rate. Some providers of traffic for traffic's sake may be considered "bad neighborhoods". Can Google discount your traffic (for true popularity), because they know it's mostly phony? Have you read about In a nut shell, old links are valued, new links are not. This is intended to thwart rapid incoming link accumulation, accomplished through the tactic of link buying. Just one of the sandbox factors. Query meaning changes over time, due to current events You MUST have at least 1 (one) incoming link (backlink) from some website somewhere, that Google is aware of, to REMAIN in the index. Link-buying (Very good Google patent - Google hates link-buying, because it IF you don't get caught, corrupts their PR model in the worst way possible. 1. Does your page have links it really doesn't merit? 2. Did you get caught, the penalty isn't tons of links in a short time period? 3. Do you have links worth it.) Google promises to Ban! (Presenting one webpage to the search engine spider, and another webpage to everybody else.)Google says that incoming links from bad sites can't hurt you, because you can't control them. Ideally, this would be true. However, some speculate otherwise, esp., when other neighborhoods, affiliates associated factors are thrown into the mix, such as web rings.
Should result in IMPRISONMENT, forthwith! Grand Penalties - resulting from Theft, mandatory minimum sentence. The criminal Domain Hijacking (work COPYS your entire website, and HOSTS it elsewhere, with . . . a few changes.
WMG is the worst offender - gobbles up tons of Google server time by nervous Nellie webmasters. Google even mentions them by name. I think that Google will spank you when you cross the threshold, of say, 100 queries per day for the same term, from the same IP. Google can block your IP. Get a Google API. What is your uptime? Ever notice a daily time when your server is unavailable, like about 1:30 AM? How diligent must Googlebot be? This is the worst reason to get dropped - you just aren't there! An ISP maintenance interruption can cause delisting.
. Bull! Google now has over 8 Gigs of indexed being dropped from large pages. Thousands of pages are disappearing from various huge websites, but I think that it is G just cleaning house, by dumping computer-generated pages.
Rank Manipulation by Competitor Attack(1. Content theft causing Impossible by Google definition (except for a few nasty you to get a duplicate tricks, like making your competition appear to be link spammers) Ideally, there SHOULD be nothing that your competition can do to directly hurt your rankings. the original - Google has However, an astute observer noticed that Google changed their website to read : Old verbiage = "There is nothing a competitor can do to harm your ranking ." New verbiage Latest= "There is a competitor can do ." An obvious concession that Google thinks that at least some dirty tricks work! Of course, there will always be new Bouncing Ball Algorithm At least 2, and often 3 identifiable Google Search Algos are currently in use, alternating pseudo-randomly through the data centers.
GOOD LUCK NOW on trying to figure things out! IN ADDITION, some the above factors are being "tweaked" daily. Not only are the "weights" of the factors changed, but the formula itself changes. Change is the only constant.
An algo change can boost or demote your site. I put this in the negative factors section, because your position is never secure, unless of course, you are huge (PR=7 or greater). If you simply cannot achieve top position, your only alternative to first page SERP exposure may be Google AdWords (you pay for exposure).
Today, I searched for an extremely competitive "2-word term", and I found that NOT ONE of the top ten Google SERPs had even one of the words on the page.
YOWSA!Today's theory - when it doesn't matter, anybody can get #1 in a second, if they know the on-page rules. BUT, after a certain "commercial competitive level", the "semantic analysis" algo kicks in, and less becomes more. The keyword density rules are flipped upon their noggins. I think that we are witnessing the evolution of search engine anti-seo sophistication, right before our very eyes. Fun stuff.
Recent Updates -
What's the Buzz?
"multiple small updates"
Novem. 5 - Jagger 3 Update
Nov.10 all done - settling out.
October 26 - Jagger 2 Update
More SERPs churning - OLD is highly valued.
October 17 - Jagger 1 Update
Recent Links, Recent Sites = SERP Turmoil
Google has declared war on phony links
Devaluation of reciprocal from unrelated-subject pages
Devaluation of links from "link houses"
Devaluation of purchased links
Big allinanchor changes
Large companies thrust to the top of the SERPs
Lowering of sandbox threshold - re-sandboxing
Too fast link accumulation - links acquired too quickly
Deeper sandbox (longer - over 6 months)
Some suggest that one's site really had to be online before January 2004,
in order to avoid most ramifications of the sandbox.
Brief Google Algorithm Update List -
2005 - Sept. - the "False" Update (Sep.22 - Big update, many changes)
2005 - May - Bourbon Update
2005 - Febr.- Allegra Update - Feb.17, 2005, Some sites released from the sandbox, but many
2004 - Feb.- Brandy Update
2004 - Jan.- Austin Update
2003 - Nov.- Florida Update
2003 - June - Esmeralda Update
2003 - May - Dominic Update
2003 - Apr. - Cassandra Update
2003 - Mar. - Boston Update
The Google Sandbox - The Single-Biggest SEO
Ranking Factor for New Sites
Google is clearly fighting spam by sacrificing SERP newness for higher SERP
HOW IT WORKS
thinking was, NO NEW SITES new sites.
get good ranking, until they prove themselves. Spammers generate thousands of new pages Adwords or Adsense program, in daily, along with millions of new which case your pages get spidered in March 2004
MINUTES. Your site will be checked initially with an algo or human "smell THE GOOGLE
test". If you smell good, you're in. SANDBOX In March
ranking ability on new (recently Good rankings will follow (provided appearing?) sites, by deprecating of course, that you have good on-page the new links, for 2-4 months. If SEO, and a few good backlinks).
filter, now referred to as the domain and backlinks have "The Sandbox". This partner ("approved"), then you are not domain, just for it's longevity, and old backlinks. Many have bought up old domain names for this purpose. This Over time, the newly generated may work right now, but the rules will eventually the sandbox effect is Good luck! Notes to the Above 118 Google Ranking Factors:
1 I have tried to summarize the best opinions of many webmaster forum posters. 2 There are no published rules - this is my continuingly changing compilation of SEO chatter. 3 If your keywords are Rare and Unique, then Page Rank doesn't matter. 4 If your keywords are very Competitive, then Page Rank becomes very important. 5 The fewer incoming links that you have, the more important on-page factors are. There are a million ifs, ors, buts . . . I am attempting a concise summary. Exceptions to EACH of the POSITIVE ON-Page factors are frequent and many. However, I feel that it is important to 6 score highly on as many factors as possible, since factor weight and even factor consideration are changing constantly - CYA. Not to mention the other SEs. A few words about the LANGUAGE used on the Google site - in a phrase - "soft spoken". We see it everywhere these days. I am referring to understatement, sometimes even to the point of confusion. "significant", "may", etc. For example, when Google states that maybe it might not 7 be a good idea to do a particular thing, what they SOMETIMES really mean is "If you do it, you are history". Some Google suggestions are actually commands (STRONG HINTS) in disguise. At some point, you begin to realize this. Google just can't tell us everything, literally. Soooooooooo, LISTEN UP! Read the rules. Read between the lines. Carefully.
Differentiate. Project. Guess real hard for your situation.
Webmaster Guidelineshttp://www.google.com/webmasters/guidelines.html 8 http://www.google.com/webmasters/4.html Google Facts and Fictionhttp://www.google.com/webmasters/facts.html Search Engine Optimizershttp://www.google.com/webmasters/seo.html "These optimization opinions are too strong - Too much speculation - I wanna see your SEO data! Disclaimer
NOT A Google, Inc. Site
2 In no way, did this data come directly from Google, Inc.
This page consists of a compilation of public information, commonly available on the 3 internet, at multiple sites, as well as public webmaster forums, and simple manual tests.
4 The opinions stated above are merely the often misguided personal opinions of the author.
5 I am not privy to any inside information.
6 This information is continually changing, and may not be relevant when you read it.
Although the author makes every effort to verify the information on this page, no information 7 on this page is guaranteed to be correct, and any data contained herein may be erroneous.
Google-Related Webmaster Links
-Hosted by developers, not politicians - digitalpoint.com My Favorite SEOChat Google Forum -Hosted by developers, not politicians - seochat.com FREE (Google approved - get your own Google API key in seconds) Page Rank Tool ind your PR, no PC needed - rankwhere.com Ranking Factors 118 factors Google uses to rank websites Find your rank for a given search term - googlerank.com Search Engine - Danny Sullivan - Complete SE Info - SEW (somewhat hidden) - An excellent source - sitemap.html Google Adsense Stop Words - Avoid these words to avoid PSAs. A review chart of some popular Google Webmaster SEO Forums
JAMES A. SIMON, MD, CCD, NCMP, FACOG PUBLICATIONS 2007-2010 Original Papers in Refereed Journals: 1. Gorrindo T, Lu Y, Pincus S, Riley A, Simon JA, Singer BH, Weinstein M. Lifelong menstrual histories are typically erratic and trending: a taxonomy. Menopause. 2007 Jan-Feb; 14(1):74-88. 2. Ferrell RJ, O’Connor KA, Holman DJ, Brindle E, Miller RC, Rodriguez G, Simon JA, Mansfie