There is no denying that Google is the most popular and most used search engine on the web. Google has done an excellent job at dominating Yahoo, Bing, and other search engines and has more than 5.14 billion searches every day. This is why most businesses try to secure higher Google rankings.
Google has considerably evolved over the last decade or so. The search giant recently hinted that there are over 200 ranking factors. Additionally, approximately 30 percent of total searchesare being processed based on an AI method.
Google is capable of recognizing the concept behind the keywords used in the content. Apart from that, mobile-first indexing, HTTPS, and RankBrain were also introduced by the search engine giant.
Due to this, online marketers have to adapt these changes and keep up to date with the algorithm updates if they want to succeed. Let us briefly look at some of the most important Google ranking factors in 2021.➢ Domain Factors
Several experts in digital marketing firmly believe that domains, which begin with target keywords will gain an edge over domains that do not have the target keyword in the domain and over ones that use the target keyword in the middle or end.
That said, including a keyword in your website’s domain name does not give the same boost in SEO anymore. An interesting point to note is that including a Country Code Top Level Domain will help your website rank for that certain country, but it may affect the global scale.➢ Site-Level Factors
Websites that offer relevant and insightful content will be able to acquire higher ranks on Google. Google has made it pretty clear that they will be penalizing websites, which fail to offer unique insights or value to internet users.
Another crucial thing online marketers should note is that the search engine giant will prefer websites containing appropriate contact information. Digital marketers should also realize that lots of downtime due to server-related issues or site maintenance can hurt the ranking of your website. ➢ Page-Level Factors
Using keywords in the title tag was considered an essential requirement until a few months or years ago. However, experts claim that this practice is not exactly that essential now, but title tag continues to be a crucial factor when it comes to on-page SEO.
The expert panel of Moz states that title tags, which begin with a keyword, have a higher chance of performing when compared to title tags that have a keyword at the end.
Meta description tags will not be used as a direct Google ranking signal, but it is best to use them. This is because meta description tags may impact the click-through rate, a crucial Google ranking factor.
➢ Backlink Factors
Backlinks that are generated from aged domains will help your website to acquire a better rank. Backlinks from new domains will also surely help you improve rankings, but they are not as good as those from aged domains.
One of the important Google ranking factors ever since the early days of the search engine was the authority of the referring page. The good news is that it continues to be an integral ranking factor even in 2021. Another interesting point is that links generated from competitor websites may be more valuable than other links.➢ On-Site Webspam Factors
Most online marketers will probably be aware that websites containing low-quality content will be less visible in Google’s search results. This has been happening ever since the Panda update of Google.
We have several websites with distracting ads and annoying popups. If your website uses them, then it is best to avoid that approach. This is mainly because Google sees ads that distract internet users and popups that irritate them as signs of a weak website.
Website admins and owners should avoid displaying full-page interstitial popups on mobile devices. Google may penalize your website if you are displaying such popups to mobile internet users.➢ Off-Site Webspam Factors
It might come as a huge surprise to several digital marketers, especially newbies when they hear that Google may drop your website from the results page if the site becomes a victim of hacking. This has happened to the Search Engine Land website, as Google deindexed them for one day.
You may have probably seen websites with links from unrelated sites. Websites with a higher number of links from unrelated websites are at a higher risk of facing a manual penalty.
Similarly, backlinks generated to your website from low-quality sites or directories may also make your website vulnerable to penalties. Several marketers often try a quick link scheme (creating and quickly removing spammy links) to boost the rank, but this is also a bad strategy, and it should not be used.
Several websites have still not switched to HTTPS from HTTP. Most internet users will be hesitant to visit or do business from reliable and unsecure sites, which is why all websites need to buy and install a wildcard certificate to guarantee safety for your chosen primary domain and multiple first-level subdomains.
There are several Google ranking factors that you should consider in 2021 to gain a competitive edge. However, the most important ranking factors of Google are on-page SEO, quality of the content, number of backlinks, referring domains, website security, and mobile usability.