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Advanced Search Engine Optimization (SEO): What Really Matters to Search Engines

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Customer Paradigm


used to be enough to just have relevant text on your site,
and get a few inbound links. These still matter.

other factors are also incorporated into the overall decision
for how your site ranks for specific keywords.

more below >>

of the Flatirons in Boulder, Colorado.
(Photo by Jeff Finkelstein)

Engine Optimization Advanced Strategies:
Really Matters to Search Engines?

SEO MathWhat
Really Matters to Search Engine?

really matters to a search engine like Google?
Here’s a breakdown of the most important factors:

Trust / Authority of the Website / Domain:

a quarter of your search engine ranking is based
on the overall trust and authority of your website
and domain name. If your site has original content,
doesn’t appear "scammy" or "fly-by-night"
and other people rely on your site as a resource
for information, you’ll have a strong page rank
and trust score.

Rank (named for Larry Page, co-founder of Google)
assigns a numerical ranking to your site. Ten
is the best — and only a handful of sites have
a Page Rank of 10. Page rank 9 is reserved for
top sites like the New York Times, CNN.com and
others. Denver Craigslist is a 6, as is the Customer
Paradigm site. Many sites have a zero page rank,
especially if the site is new or doesn’t have
much relevant content. Want to know your site’s
Page Rank? Email me back, and we’ll let you know.

Links to the specific page:

does not mean any link to any page on your site
(i.e. the home page). This measures how many inbound
links you have to the specific page you rank for.
The more inbound links to the page, the better.

said, not all links are created equal. A single
link from a highly trusted domain (see above)
can be worth more than hundreds of inbound links
from less relevant sites.

CNN.com or NYTimes.com (both Page Rank 9 sites),
for example, linked to my wife’s site, www.AdventureRabbi.org,
this drastically boosted the overall relevancy
of her site.

Anchor Text of External Links:

having a link isn’t enough. Another 20% of your
ranking is based on the words inside the link.
You need the words in the link to specifically
use keywords that matter.

For example a link that simply says, Click Here,
ranks for the words, "Click Here." Not
very helpful.

a link that reads – Visit here for Expert
Magento Developers
, ranks for "Expert
Magento Developers."

On Page Keyword Usage:

is still king. The words that you use on your
page still matter. If you don’t have content on
your site that matches what people are searching
for, you’re likely not going to be ranked for
those terms. Title tags are critical. H1 Headings
show search engines what content is most important.
Boldface text helps. Meta keywords, though, are
just ignored.

7%: Traffic and Clickthrough Data:

might think that it’s enough to have relevant
text, a strong domain name, and great links pointing
to your site. But if people "bounce"
back to a search engine after briefly looking
at your site, then your rankings will be diminished.
Google and other search engines want to display
the most relevant search results possible, and
they track any time you:

  • Type
    in a search query

  • Visit a site

  • Hit the "Back" button to return back
    to the search results page

is what is known as a "Bounce" in search
engine marketing. In email marketing, bounces
are when an email address doesn’t exist.

Social Media Metrics:

percent of your search results rankings are based
on social media metrics. For example, if there
are a lot of people on Facebook or Twitter who
post links to your site, this will help.

of it as a high school popularity contest. If
everyone is pointing to you (via tweets on Twitter
or "Likes" on Facebook or +1 on Google),
then you’re considered the popular person, and
seen as the authority. Google and other search
engines reward you as a result.

expect social media metrics to play an increasingly
prominent role going forward in search engine

Registration and Hosting Information:

and other search engines value websites that have
"Withstood The Test of Time." Funny
for an industry that’s only about 12 years old.
But in order to prevent someone like me from registering
a domain today, building a website tonight and
stuffing it with keywords, Google places about
5% of your score based on domain name factors
such as how old your domain is. A domain that
was registered in 1999 will often outrank one
that was just registered last week. In fact, many
sites won’t even show up in Google’s index for
six months or more. This is known as the Google
Sandbox, although there are ways to have your
site appear faster.

level domain name extensions matter. In the US,
.com is considered the best for businesses. A
.biz, .ws, .us or .net domain name is often secondary.

your site is hosted matters, too. If your site
is hosted in Russia or China (the source of many
shady businesses), you may be ranked lower than
someone else who is hosted in the same country
their business is located.

Google and other search engines look to see if
all of your inbound links are coming from sites
that are hosted at the same hosting company. For
example, if all of your inbound links are from
similar IP addresses, your site may not be perceived
as relevant.


are many factors beyond relevant text and inbound
links that matter to search engines.


help with your CPC Advertising or Lead Generation?
Can Help!
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or 888.772.0777 to speak with a real person.
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hope you found this case study helpful – please let me know
if you’d like help with your online marketing.


Jeff FinkelsteinFounder, Customer Paradigm

Jeff Finkelstein
Founder, Customer Paradigm



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