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Google’s top 3 ranking factors

Search engine optimisation (SEO) changes a lot and keeping up is challenging.

For small business owners staying on the ball is near impossible. But here’s the thing, everyone is using keywords, meta tags and other basic SEO best practices. But they continue to become less important. The worst part is that they are not even Google’s top-ranking factors.

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I’m not saying to stop doing these things because they are important. But as a Small Business owner put your limited time for SEO into the top three ranking factors that Google cares about most.

In this article, you’ll learn exactly what they are and how to optimise for them.


Google said that RankBrain is their third most important ranking factor. I bet you haven’t heard of it and definitely aren’t trying to optimise for it. It’s a pretty complex thing but here’s my ‘RankBrain for dummies’ explanation. It runs algorithm tests to try to improve search results for Google searches (all by itself, no humans). For example, RankBrain will increase or decrease the importance of things like keywords and links and see if this improves the user experience.

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To optimise your site for RankBrain, you need to improve user experience signals. Here are the three steps you need to follow:

  • Improve your click-through-rate – By revisiting your page titles (headlines) and make them more compelling. Include numbers, like ‘10 ways to do …’ and power words like ‘10 jaw-dropping …’.
  • Reduce your bounce rate -By pushing your important content above the fold (what people can see when they land on a page) and breaking up big chunks of text.
  • Increase the time people spend on your site – By writing long-form content (over 1,000 words) that is valuable and covers up to eight topics that match your target keyword.


As I mentioned, long-form content is key to your SEO success in 2018. And you can’t write 2,000 words of crap. It needs to be awesome.

Backlinko discovered that content with over 1,800 words ranks better in Google:

So, if you want to rank in Google, short, low-quality and keyword stuffed content doesn’t work anymore. A nice little trick to write super relevant long-form content is to go on a website like Udemy and then:

  • Search for your target keyword.
  • Find a popular course (so you know people already like the content).
  • Use the course curriculum to structure your content.


If you know anything about SEO, you’ve probably heard that you need links. But not any link! If you want to rank on the first page of Google, you need high-quality links. And the best way to get high-quality links is to create long-form content like mentioned above. And funny enough, Google confirmed that content and links are their top 2 ranking factors.

An easy trick to hit two birds with one stone is to create a freaking amazing blog post around 2,000 words long. Make sure you cover six to eight topics and within each topic have actionable techniques.

Here’s the link part. Get a designer to turn your blog post into a beautiful infographic. Then ask top blogs in your space if they’d like to use it on their website. To get a better response, offer to write a 200-300-word introduction to go with the infographic. If you do all the work for them, you have a much better chance of getting published.

And that’s how you can score a nice high-quality backlink. The best part you can use the same infographic for several websites.


Put your time where it matters! Get the basics right but then starting working on what’s actually going to have a big impact. Start optimising your website for RankBrain, create some awesome content and build links to it.


Source: SmallVille

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