For years people have been debating and having misconceptions about what makes search engines tick. Every business owner wants to make it on top of Google’s search results. There are also many instances where business owners what they’re doing wrong and whether or not they got the factors for Google ranking on point. In this article, we will discuss the common factors that are thought to be helpful to advance site rankings but are actually unnecessary for your site’s success.
- How Long Your Site Has Been AroundA lot of people seem to think that age matters a lot even when it comes to websites. However age is really just a number. Google doesn’t care how long it has been since you registered your website. All Google ever cares about how helpful your content is and your links and authority signals are done right. Of course, when your site is pretty aged, you would have made many links and established authority. Since these are things that Google cares about, most sites that have been around for a long time also has better rankings.However, the age of your site by itself, is not directly relevant to your ranking. To drive this fact deeper, there is also a huge probability that sites which achieved links and authority within a short period of time would be treated more favorably by Google.
- Using Google Services and FeaturesThere are also a lot of people who worry that not using Google applications and services would somehow affect their site rankings. Google does not monitor your application and services usage before ranking your website, so there’s nothing to worry about.Whether you use Google’s features and applications religiously or you’re not using any of it at all would not affect your website’s ranking in any way.
- The Number of Comments, Likes and Shares on Twitter, Facebook and Google PlusYou probably have a counter on your site that shows how many times your page has been liked and shared on various social media platforms. Even if you have thousands of shares, unfortunately, Google doesn’t mind that. Google does not use that data in order to rank your website on the search result list. Only when those shares and social media activities result in other things like organic links, click-through and search activity, as well as branding in general can they be beneficial for your quest to improve your ranking.
- The Time People Spend on Your SiteWhen you check the numbers on your site, you might be alarmed when you see that the average time spent on your site is lower than the average. You might worry that this will hurt your rankings because many people have told you that people MUST stay on your site longer. You need not worry: Google won’t care about that. The reason why this is irrelevant is because some sites load faster than others which causes visitors to absorb the information quickly so they don’t spend much time on such sites. What you want to avoid instead is people going back to the search result list and choosing other results to find the information they are looking for because your site does not provide it.
- Using Certain Defaults on Your robots.txt FileYou might want to add specific links and tags such as “rel=follow” inside your robots.tst file and href tags to let Google know that it can basically crawl all over your site. However, this is an unnecessary effort. Google already does everything by default as long as you don’t have disallows and exclusions. In fact, you don’t even need to have a robots.txt file and meta robots tag on your pages – Google will follow the links and crawl everything anyway.
- Using H tagsSome people have this misconception that the lower the number you use in your H tags, the lesser importance it would be from Google’s point of view. It’s actually not such a big deal for Google and it’s more of a design issue. Therefore, there’s no use stressing yourself too much regarding whether or not you should use H1, H2, H3, or H5 on your heading and subheadings.
- The Type of Hosting Service You HaveAs long as your website pages load quickly enough, the type of hosting you choose would not matter to Google. It doesn’t matter if your new hosting service is cheaper or even shared – as long as your site can load well.
- Separators in the TitleIs the type of character you choose as a separator in your title a big deal for Google? The answer is no. Whether you use a pipe, hyphen or a colon will not make your search result ranking any higher or lower. You can just choose the type of separator you want according to your preferences.
There are definitely many people who are confused about the things that affect the site ranking on Google. It is very easy to become paranoid about which things you should keep and which ones you should get rid of to improve your site ranking. It is better to know which are the legit ranking factors and focus on that, rather than spending so much time and effort on items that will not benefit your site ranking on Google’s search results in any way.
There might be other things apart from these nine factors that are commonly misconceived as important ranking factors. Do you have some of your own? Feel free to share it with us!