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The Web Doctor

Brian Platz
The Web Doctor
Salem, Oregon
(503) 373-4728

How to improve your search engine ranking

Google's Rank Brain

I was preparing for a talk on Web Sites and SEO this week and thought I would share some of the SEO factors I spoke about. I have been developing web sites since 1998. Back then there were 2-3 dozen search engines, but these days there are really only 2-3 you need to worry about (Google, Bing, Yahoo), with Google providing the majority of visitors to most websites. Google ranks a page according to a large number of factors. Exactly what these factors are is a trade secret, although there are a number of well-known things that contribute to the ranking of a page. In addition to just some of the factors listed below, I found this very creative one page document in my research - Periodic Table of SEO Success Factors and wanted to share (Note: it may be on the advanced side of SEO topics). Anyone really interested in this SEO Topic will find that PDF useful. Kudos to the author (Search Engine Land), very creative.

Below is a list of just some important items you should be considering or working on when it comes to improving your search engine ranking.

  • META TITLE Tag - Should be Unique for each page
  • H1 Title - Unique title that readers see on the page
  • META DESCRIPTION Tag - Should be Unique for each page
        Quantity and Quality   
        Compelling and Useful 
        Easy to Read  
        High Keyword Density
        Avoid duplicate content
        Your Pages must have the words you think people will search for (ie: your keywords and phrases)
  • Alt Tags for Photos and Images – Avoid using a lot of images – not visible to Google
  • Proper Use of <H1>, <H2>, <H3>, <H4>, <H5>, <H6> tags
  • Use of Keywords with Title Tag, Meta Description, H-Tags, and Content.
  • Your content should answer or solve a problem – Relevant Content
  • Be The Expert in your line of work when it comes to content
  • Longevity (Age) & Trust of the web site
  • Establish Your Name, Address, Phone Number Profile (NAP)
  • High Click-through Rate
  • Low Bounce Rate
  • Mobile Friendly
  • Google My Business (Google Business Listing – Verified and Complete)
  • Google Reviews (quantity and quality) - allows you see how Google sees you pages and provides and any issues it may find
  • SiteMap.xml – Make your site easy for Google to navigate and find pages
  • SiteMap.html – Make your site easy for your visitors to find pages
  • Robots.txt - Your control of what pages or directories you don't want scanned
  • Backlinks – Relevancy and Authority of those links and wording of those links (use keywords)
  • Cross-Linking - Good use of relavent keywords in Links (Anchor Tags)
  • Videos as Content
  • Competition – Low or High competitive categories
  • Growth Rate – Normal growth
  • Connecting to Social Media – Potential powerful customer engagement
  • Customer, Vendor, Partner Testimonials
  • Relative Domain Name  -  relative to your keywords
  • Frequently updated, fresh content
  • Unique Content
  • Sharing Content on Social Media and Likes and additional shares
  • Use of SSL  (https:) - less of a contributing factor as before


Other Tools that should be considered

Additional Links


Watch out for Deceptive / Shady SEO Practices / Black Hat
SEO Companies who guarantee number 1 rankings are lying to you.

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