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Myths and facts about SEO Ranking Factors and their Relevance.

3 min read

In 2023, it’s common knowledge that a website’s online visibility hinges on SEO. Achieving the top position in the SERPs is an attainable goal through effective SEO practices.
However, a prevalent trend in marketing is consumers steering clear of SEO services due to widespread misconceptions. Nevertheless, SEO has evolved over the years.
Google’s direction is clear: they aim to reward websites that naturally provide the most pertinent and well-received solutions to specific queries. The majority of their ranking factors remain consistent.
You don’t have to delve deep into this; we’ve already done it for you. Numerous things need to be corrected regarding what does and doesn’t boost your search engine rankings. It’s essential to discern which SEO strategies yield the most significant impact.

 

301 Redirects and google rankings

When making a permanent move from an outdated website to a new URL, the use of 301 redirects is imperative. These redirects seamlessly guide users to their desired content, even if provided with an old URL, ensuring a positive user experience.

A 301 redirect is a server-side redirection employed for URLs that have undergone permanent changes. This redirection is used in the following scenarios:

    1. When transitioning from HTTP to HTTPS.
    2. When migrating from an old domain to a new one.
    3. When optimizing the URL slugs of current posts and pages for efficiency.
    4. When your pages undergo modifications during a transition to a new website platform.

 

In July 2021, Gary Illyes recommended maintaining 301 redirects for at least one year to provide Google ample time to ensure that ranking factors are correctly directed to the new URL.
Google’s Advanced SEO guidelines consistently emphasize the importance of proper redirection practices, with a preference for server-side redirects. These 301 redirects serve the crucial purpose of directing both Google and search users to the intended content, even though they may not directly influence the rankings of your web pages.
Moreover, when transitioning to new URLs, they safeguard the preservation of ranking signals embedded in the previous ones.
It’s essential to remember that just because something isn’t considered a Google Ranking Factor doesn’t diminish its significance. Redirects still require meticulous management and technical issues like redirect chains should be vigilantly avoided.

 

ALT Text and google ranking signals

Alt text is the descriptive text that appears in place of an image on a webpage when the image fails to load due to usability or accessibility issues. Due to its significance for Google and users alike, it is a confirmed Google ranking factor.
From everything we’ve heard and tested thus far, it’s clear that ALT text undeniably influences Google’s rankings.
Crafting meaningful and non-spammy Alt text is essential if you want your images to be featured in Google image results. Hence, we confidently refer to alt text as a confirmed Google ranking element, supported by statements from Google representatives and the substantial evidence we’ve gathered.

 

Bounce rate 

As measured by Google Analytics, bounce rate quantifies the proportion of single-page sessions (those without any additional interactions) relative to the total sessions on your website.
For over a decade, Google has consistently affirmed that bounce rate does not influence search engine rankings.
In the words of Matt Cutts on February 2, 2010, from Google Search Central: “Google Analytics is not employed in any way to determine search quality for our rankings.”
In summary, Google does not utilize bounce rate as a ranking factor. Bounce rate is not a reliable indicator of a webpage’s relevance, and Google has repeatedly stated that it is not a consideration in their search engine ranking algorithm.

CTR (Click through rate)

The assertion that Google utilizes Click-Through Rate (CTR) as a direct factor in search rankings lacks substantial supporting evidence.
Hence, there’s no practical rationale for attempting to manipulate CTR, as Google has already addressed this issue.
Should you track and strive to enhance your organic CTR? Indeed, it is one of the metrics helpful in assessing your content’s performance.
Nevertheless, it won’t contribute to an improvement in your Google ranking. Nonetheless, an increase in website traffic is always a positive indicator.
For ranking considerations, CTR is deemed too unpredictable, disorganized, and susceptible to manipulation to be regarded seriously.
It’s advisable to focus your SEO efforts on numerous more promising areas.

 

Lastly Is content a google ranking factor?

Content plays a pivotal role in your digital marketing and SEO strategies, as it is the foundation upon which these efforts are built. SEO simply cannot function without something to present on your webpages. You cannot deliver value or engage your audience effectively without text, images, audio, or video. But does Google’s search algorithm consider content as a ranking factor?
Indeed, Google regards content as a key signal for search ranking.
However, having mediocre content won’t suffice, as Google assesses this information from various angles to determine whether it provides the best answer to a given query.
To ensure your content performs well in search results, focus on the aspects that render it distinctive and valuable.
You can’t afford to remain static in the ever-competitive landscape of search engines. Each day brings forth new claims about what constitutes a ranking factor. The most effective strategy is to create content that answers the questions your niche audience seeks and to provide clear pathways for them to access the content you’ve published.