Search Engine Optimization – The Five Factors Search Engines Use to Rank Websites

May 28, 2010 by  Filed under: SEO 

Search engine optimization (SEO) is an extremely challenging endeavor that focuses on increasing the flow of targeted traffic to a website by addressing the same five factors that search engines look at:

  • Maximizing its relevance to its target keywords
  • Boosting its authority for the content on its pages
  • Increasing its usability for the people who find it
  • Improving its accessibility to the search engine spiders that crawl it
  • Eliminating technical factors that impair its performance

In other words, SEO focuses on making a website better for users – relevance, authority, and usability are all about end-user satisfaction – and, at the same time, making a website better for search engines. And the people behind the search engines will tell you to focus on things in that order.

That is a lot easier said than done, however.

Complexity of Search Engine Ranking Algorithms

Search engines employ extremely complex algorithms that are meant to reflect both “user friendliness” – relevance, authority, and usability – and “search engine friendliness” – accessibility and technical factors – in order to rank the tens of thousands or millions of pages in their indexes that represent a fit to a searcher’s keyword query.

Google’s ranking algorithm is reputed to be made up of more than 200 different variables, each one of which is meant to address either user-friendliness or search engine friendliness (or, in some cases, both).

And the people behind the search engines are notoriously secretive about the variables that make up their ranking algorithms.

So not only do you have about 200 “boxes to tick” for every website you set out to optimize, you’re forced to make a lot of guesses about those boxes before you can relax.

And if you think you can ever really relax when it comes to your SEO efforts, think again. In their never-ending – and admirable -efforts to achieve greater “user friendliness” and “search engine friendliness,” the people behind the search engines are constantly tweaking their ranking algorithms. Google, in fact, is said to be planning about 550 improvements to its ranking algorithm in 2010.

At the end of the day, SEO requires a lot of extremely specialized knowledge, time, and attention – on an ongoing basis. But because a SEO effort can give a website’s rankings a dramatic boost in the search results – and there is a significant connection between search engine ranking and search referral traffic – it is well worth doing whatever it takes to develop the knowledge and to be able to invest the time and attention.

SEO Software to the Rescue

Not surprisingly, there are all kinds of SEO software programs that virtually eliminate your need for the knowledge and handle the time and attention issues for you. Most of the software programs do the thinking for you because they are designed to emulate the ranking algorithms of Google, Yahoo, Bing, and others, and can automatically evaluate a website against relevance, authority, accessibility, and various technical factors.

They can also take tasks that would drain hours or days of your time if you were to do them manually – such as analyzing the backlinks of competing websites – and allow you to carry them out at the push of a button in the background. So you can continue to do your productive work while the software handles the menial tasks.

And since the best SEO software programs tweak their ranking algorithms in response updates from Google, Yahoo, Bing, and others, you don’t have to worry about falling behind.

Finally, SEO software is dirt cheap.

So if you’re ready to finally start getting the kinds of rankings that will send a lot of highly targeted search referral traffic to your website – and you don’t want to spend dozens of hundreds of productive hours in the process – then it’s time for you to invest in SEO software.

Dawson Barber invites you to learn about “ruthlessly practical” ways to build your business and make money online through search engine optimization, article marketing, social media marketing, email marketing, hosting webinars and other online marketing activities by visiting him at the Online Marketing Business Builder, where you’ll find loads of useful information, how-to’s, videos, and so forth intended to teach you all about building your business and making money online – in a ruthlessly practical way.

Article Source:

Dawson Barber - EzineArticles Expert Author

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