Whilst our previous SEO blog looked at the role of authority and how it applies to the success of web pages, this time we move onto the second tenet of Search Engine Optimisation which can affect your search engine rankings – relevance.
Because of the pace of technological change, Google uses hundreds of measures to determine the relevance of web pages. Some of these measures are known and understood, others not so much.
It is the role of the Digital Marketer, whether professional or working on their own website, to understand these as much as possible, develop content to maximise them and ensure it is updated regularly enough with appropriate information to creep up the search engine rankings. It is worth noting that this is usually a slow burn and it can take up to six months or longer before you start seeing traction from the application of Search Engine Optimisation to a new site. It is also clear that shortcuts do not work. This is one occasion where the work must be put in before any benefits are realised.
The measures used can be distilled into two categories:
- Relevance or context and,
The first job of a search engine is to analyse page content – text, pictures, etc before associating relevant topics with the page. Whilst this used to be the search engines’ primary task, remember that the main aim of search engines is to give you the most relevant and authoritative results for your entered search terms.
To do this, they now need to figure out how useful a page may be to the user. Once indexed therefore, the engine needs to look elsewhere to determine this.
Links are the most effective way to make an estimate on authority. The more good quality links you have to your site, the more effectively your SEO will work and the higher your search engine rankings, taking into account the relative authority and trustworthiness of each source.
The links to your page, like all your other content, have to be relevant to your chosen topic. If you are marketing your child minding services therefore, regardless of how many links you get to your site, you still won’t rank for searches relating to black holes.
This dichotomy of the power of links as a ranking factor and how relevance impacts on the value of a link in return, is key to understanding Search Engine Optimisation. The relevance of the linking page, and the linking site, impacts how valuable a link might be considered and hence your search engine rankings.
Fundamentally, what Google really wants is for you to make a great website, promote it effectively and enjoy the results which earn or attract you links.