I have been privileged to see several transitions of Google indexing rules, I’ve watched algorithms come and go, even some silent changes and tweaking happening on Google’s search result page. In all these, one thing has not changed, Google still loves to feature most relevant contents to search queries.
Before now, the concentration has always been on the content and bloggers/web owner got away with a lot of gimmicks like keyword stuffing (funny enough people still do this), targeted first paragraph, rewriting title tags, testing keyword density, asking to click search result multiple times to see it go up in rank, creating footer links of several blogs, using old domain to setup a blog and many more.
But now, it’s no longer about the bloggers or web owners, it’s about the users. Unfortunately, it’s even beyond how SEOed your contents are. It’s beyond the word count or quality of your contents. Google is returning power to the users visiting via search results, these metrics becomes the determinant.
For easy understanding, I will break this down into two: User Interface and User Experience (UI and UX)
The UI and UX has always been part of us. Infact any experienced website developer will understand that this must be checked on the list of a good website.
User Experience is simply creating a product or providing information that are meaningful and relevant experiences of your users. No too much grammar.
This UX in a way can help you generate more leads since customers finds it user friendly, gain more presence, and keep customers converting even without a landing page (though I recommend).
Away from the common terms and my effort to break this down… this is how Google understands user experience.
For Google, UX is measured and determined in 4 ways:
1) Your Time on Page (how long unique visits stays on your site/site)
2) Your Loading Time (measured via webpage size, scripting and http page request)
3) Your Bounce rate (how fast users switch to other sites from your website)
4) Your Content engagement (length, relevance and count/replies count, also measured via page authority)
Technically, all these factors are intertwined. This makes the measure pretty easy for Google because, if your loading time is high, there will be increase in bounce rate, hence, zero time on page and no content engagement. You see that? It’s easy to measure.
Let’s says some user were born with patience and they got past the loading time but your site isn’t easily navigated, time on page will be affected. The long and short of this is that one can affect the other.
To increase your user experience, i found some questions to consider:
* Who comes to this website?
* What problem do they need to solve?
* How will they use the information provided on the website?
* How would they like to get this information, and when do they need it?
* What mental model do they apply to understand the information?
* What do they want to get out of interacting with the website?
* How does delivering the information visitors are seeking also meet your business objectives?
Answers to these questions to would help you channel your blog information or product towards relevance which is exactly what Google wants on their search result page.
You might be wondering how I’m discussing contents and I’m not talking about keyword research and all the stuffs you’ve read online before now, well, that’s where the problem is. I’m thinking more as an SEO experimentalists while stating reasons you’ve great contents and stills not ranked. Like I said, Google is thinking more than just contents. Obviously, content is no longer king but user experience.
From my experience over the years, what ranks on Google ranks on other search engine. Especially if it’s on first page on Google, there’s possibility of having it ranked on first page (even if at the bottom) of other search engines. It’s obvious Google is the most used search engine and hence the attention and concentration for traffic. Culled.