Search engine optimisation is far from a straightforward topic, and the deeper you dig down the more complicated it can get.

When it comes to your website’s Google rankings, hundreds, if not thousands, of factors are taken into consideration. In order to make things that little bit easier, we’ve compiled a list of the top 20 ranking factors you need to be aware of, which you can download at the bottom of this page. Whether you’re new to the world of SEO or are just need a little refresher, it can lend a hand.

For those that don’t have time to read the full list, we’ve singled out 20 that feel are often overlooked. Assessing your website in relation to these factors could have a significant effect on how it performs in Google search results.

So, let’s jump in.

1. Starting the Title Tag with Your Keyword: Having a page’s target keyword in the title tag is a must, but placing it towards the beginning is likely to have a much more significant impact.

2. Content Length: Google doesn’t favour content that it sees as short and superficial. Lengthier content suggests extra depth – but just make sure you aren’t unnecessarily padding pages out!

3. Regular Content Updates: We all know Google favours fresh content. Making regular updates and reassessments to content will signal to Google that you’re making sure to keep it up to date.

4. Multimedia: Research has found a link between the presence of multimedia elements such as videos and images on a page and it’s Google Search ranking. It also helps break up lengthy content as well.

5. URL Length: An overly long URL is likely to damage your page. Not only can it lower its Google ranking, but it can also hinder user experience, being harder to read.

6. Bullet Points and Numbered Lists: It’s no secret that bullet points and lists help break up content. This improves readability and makes content more visually pleasing.

7. Page Age: While fresh content is favoured by Google, an older page may also have an advantage, having had time to build up authority.

8. Insightful Content: Content that offers insights that can’t be found elsewhere is likely to do much better in Google results than one that regurgitates old information.

9. Contact Us Page: Google rewards websites for having clear contact information available, and a dedicated contact us page is the best way to do this.

10. Backlink Anchor Text: What’s more useful than a backlink? One with anchor text that accurately describes what your website is all about.

11. Backlinks From Unrelated Websites: A high number of backlinks from sites that don’t relate to your site is very likely to be penalised by Google.

12. 301 Redirects in Backlinks: Backlinks that are 301 redirects are likely to hold less weight than direct ones.

13. Linking Page’s Word Count: Being linked to by a page with depth is much more beneficial than a page with shallow content. No matter how reputable the overall site is.

14. Repeat Visitors: A high percentage of return users will positively influence your site, acting as a quality signal to Google.

15. Dwell Time: Relating to the previous point, visitor dwell time can also positively influence a page’s ranking. So, give users to stay on your site.

16. Geo-Targeting: It can be easy to forget the importance of geo-targeting when it comes to Google rankings. Understandably, you’ll rank higher for searches local to your businesses.

17. Social Media Presence: Google rewards businesses that have a social media presence, with an official LinkedIn page acting as a quality signifier.

18. Quality of Social Media Accounts: Similarly, having “dodgy” social media accounts associated with your business can have the opposite effect.

19. Distracting Advertisements: While there’s nothing wrong with ads per-say, if they detract from the user experience then it’s likely to adversely affect your website’s ranking.

20. Autogenerated and Duplicated Content: Content quality is key. Any content on your site that Google identifies as autogenerated or duplicated will negatively affect your ranking

To read the full list of recommendations, download the PDF here.

If you’d like further help with your site’s performance, please get in touch with Noble Performs and see what we could do for you.