You may have seen or heard of the topic SEO or Search Engine Optimization. It has been a very important factor when trying to increase traffic or improve the quality of traffic coming to your website. Search engine optimization has become a tactic used for many years and strategies are always changing. Search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo, and many others constantly change to create better search results for the user. But how does Google and other search engines improve the quality of search results for our end users? The short answer is that they improve and change their algorithms.
What is an algorithm?
Think of an algorithm as an equation that provides you with various results. Based on the details you put into that equation, determines your results. Keep in mind that Google, Yahoo, and other search engines have slightly different algorithms, but are similar in many ways.
Website Loading Speed
For instance, one of Google’s determining factors is that your website should load quickly. Now, just because you have 100MB internet speed and can download anything at lightning speed, does not mean your website automatically loads fast. We are talking for the average user. But what on earth could be causing your website to load slowly? There are many factors that could slow your website down, but I will name just a few.
- Large image file sizes
While some images may look small when they render in your web browser, they could very well be HUGE in file size. Large image file sizes could easily slow down the loading of your site, especially if you have a gallery of 12 images all trying to load at once.
- Small / Weak Server
Your web server typically hosts all of your website’s files including its images. But your server doesn’t only limit the number of files you can upload. Your server can also limit the amount of connections or users that come to your website at one time. So if you have too many people trying to access your website all at one time, it could dramatically slow down your server, if not make it crash completely. Slowing down the server means your website could load slowly to the end user.
Domain Name Age
Another determining factor that Google looks at when indexing your website in it’s search results is how long your domain name has been active. Your domain name is the address to access your website. For example, www.yourwebsitename.com or www.yourwebsitename.net. Now why would Google be more in favor of a site that has been up for 10 years than a website that has been up for 10 months? In Google’s eyes, they look at a company that has been up for 10 years as being more active or more experienced than a company who has been in business for 10 months. Your domain name age isn’t the only determining factor when it comes to indexing your website above a competitors’, but it does help.
Mobile Device Friendly
Another huge determining factor to getting better search results in Google is whether your website is mobile-device friendly or not. In the past few years, Google’s latest algorithm favors a website that is mobile-friendly over a website that is only desktop friendly. Today, websites should be designed and developed to respond to any device that the website is being view on. This is called Responsive Design. Whether you are looking at the website on a desktop computer, a laptop notebook, an iPad or Google Tablet, or some type of mobile phone, your website’s design should respond to the device accordingly, WITHOUT the design aspect breaking and still providing the user with the content that they need.
While there are many strategies in search engine optimization, these are a few to look at if you are attempting to better your search results for your website. Remember, SEO is also something that takes time and effort and is never an overnight result. Most of the time, it takes at least a month to measure real results. That is why SEO services are often charged at monthly rates. If you have any other questions on search engine optimization, please feel free to send me an email through my contact page.