Tuesday, April 08, 2008

SEO Tip #7, Google Algorithm simplified

Just wrote this on our SEO Blog at the MyTypes.com blogging platform, enjoy:

The Anatomy of a Search Engine

The link above will take you to the research paper by the founders of Google, it is hosted on the Stanford University website. It discusses in relative detail the problem that Google is trying to solve, and how it goes about doing so. Some of you are not technical SEO types, so you can pretty much ignore it. For some of you software engineer types, and the SEO Services people, it gives you real clues on what Google maintains as it’s core, which will never change, just enhanced. Those of you who want to know the intricate details of how the Google Algorithm ranks a page, it is explained in the above article. By in large the original system still is true within the Google back bone. 396730_27936030_sxchu-photo-blogs.jpg

What has changed is the ability of the system to understand, spam links and many other types of tricks the unethical SEO’s have implemented over the years. Anchor text section is still in place as the most powerful SEO Tip, and writing good quality content is still king. So we will attribute Anchor text in links from high PR sites as the SEO Tip #7, the most powerful SEO strategy.

I was going to leave this post as is after the preceding paragraph, but I did some more searches on the “Google Algorithm”, and decided to add more clarity on what I see to be more accurate right now. If you are an SEO Services provider, and/or searching for the keywords “SEO“, you see us in the top 10. But prior to us, the kid genius as they call him, and Jedi SEO Rand Fishkin from SEOmoz.org was always in the top 10. He has written a good post on what he thinks is the Google Algorithm, he wrote it on 10-16-06, here is the formula as he sees it:

GoogScore = (KW Usage Score * 0.3) + (Domain Strength * 0.25) + (Inbound Link Score * 0.25) + (User Data * 0.1) + (Content Quality Score * 0.1) + (Manual Boosts) - (Automated & Manual Penalties)

KW Usage Factors:

  • KW in title tag
  • KW in header tags
  • KW in document text
  • KW in internal links pointing to the page
  • KW in domain and/or URL

Domain Strength

  • Registration history
  • Domain age
  • Strength of links pointing to the domain
  • Topical neighborhood of domain based on inlinks & outlinks
  • Historical use & links pattern to domain

Inbound Link Score

  • Age of links
  • Quality of domains sending links
  • Quality of pages sending links
  • Anchor text of links
  • Link quantity/weight metric (Pagerank or a variation)
  • Subject matter of linking pages/sites

User Data

  • Historical CTR to page in SERPs
  • Time users spend on page
  • Search requests for URL/domain
  • Historical visits/use of URL/domain by users GG can monitor (toolbar, wifi, analytics, etc.)

Content Quality Score

  • Potentially given by hand for popular queries/pages
  • Provided by Google raters (remember Henk?)
  • Machine-algos for rating text quality/readability/etc

Here is the link to the full post: Google Algorithm Post by SEOmoz.org

**Based on my understanding of the Google Algorithm, Here is a simple break down, the small factors are not as important for most people, so I am ignoring them. Also, I don’t see most people doing all four of them well enough, this is all we focus on and we consistently get ranked in the top 10 for very very competitive keywords. If you are not seeing your self in the top 10 for your keyword, than make sure you do all of the bottom four well.

(.40) Actual keywords in the domain

( for example for keyword “Weddding Photos” weddingphotos.com would rank very high, as long as it has proper title Tags, but mycompany.com/weddingphotos is ok, and still better than www.NorthernLightsphotography.com) This example is courtesy of our friends who run the Seattle Wedding photographers site, I always use them as example because for WeddingPhotos.com they are ranked #1 in Google. But, for their own keywords they are targeting “Seattle Wedding Photographers“, they are not in the top 10.

(.40) Anchor Text Links

( “Business Blog” Linking to MyTypes.com would be much better for ranking in “Business blog” than, “best business blogs“).

(.10) Meta Tags and Heading Tags of site

(Meta Tags are almost a requirement, and if you don’t have your keyword in the title it’s difficult to get ranked in it, but it is possible based on the other factors).

(.10) Content on site

(The more content the better, blogs are great, just the mention of the words such as blogs, news, report, reviews and forums helps a ton).

So much for the Google Algorithm, all I can say to the average person, (the non-SEO Services providers), don’t worry about the Google Algorithm, write lots of blogs, and promote your blogs in wikis’s etc, with lots of anchor text of course, of course.

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