When it comes to Google and business, it can be a make or break relationship. Being considered an authority site on Google is an all-time priority. But here’s the rub, you can’t BUY authority. You have to earn it. And just think from the perspective of a “searcher” on Google — don’t you want to TRUST the results you get? Of course you do – and what’s the point of creating some illusion of authority if it doesn’t ultimately convert to new customers?
So to make the cut, here are the essential ingredients to becoming an authority site.
Links is the first and major off-page ranking factor, so it’s important that you get this right. The way it works is that search engines crawl the web and look for links pointing back at your web site. But of course, bots are smart and they don’t count all links equally. A link from a comment in an insignificant blog won?t be taken as seriously as a link from the body content of the Financial Times. More weight is given to links that are considered better and from higher authority sites.
So what is a good authority page? What should you look for when looking at a link building strategy?
Look for authority sites within your field. You should know which ones they are. They must be dominating your industry?s news, must be well known by your customers and competitors. The higher on the scale these sites are the more reputable they will be and the more weight a link from them will have.
Alternatively, look for neighboring sites. These are typically sites that are relevant to your industry.
Avoid seedy links from low authority sites that have nothing to do with your business. These will not help your authority rankings, just the opposite. Trying to be too clever with this type of linking strategy can result in a Google penalty.
Your goal here should be to be featured or quoted as a resource with a link back to your site. Here’s something you need to know about links. As I said, not all are created equal. There are do-follow and no-follow links.
Nofollow links attributes do not allow search engine bots to follow link.That means if the website owner is linking back to you with nofollow attributes, it does not pass on link juice. Only Humans will be able to follow the links. Though some time back Google made it clear that they don’t consider nofollow link attributes but weightage of such links are really less.
Example of Nofollow Link:
<a href=http://www.google.com/? rel=nofollow?>Google</a>
Dofollow links allow google (all search engines) to follow them and reach our website. Giving us link juice and a backlink. If a webmaster is linking back to you with this link both Search Engine and Humans will be able to follow you. The best way to give someone dofollow love is allowing keyword in the anchor text. This means when you are linking to any website or page, use the targeted keyword as anchor text.
Example of Dofollow Link:
Recently Google have said that they will still count the nofollow link as an outgoing link in terms of the distribution of page rank from your page. Though again it also depends on where that nofollow link is places. Placing a nofollow link at the bottom of the page has least impact and when placed at the top of the page, it carries some impact.
Source: Shout Me Loud
Guest posting is a great way to obtain some quality backlinks for your site, while working on your reputation as a reliable source of good content and developing relationships.
Find websites that accept guest posts, reach out to the domain masters or editors of the site and pitch your idea. Here is a breakdown of the steps:
- Identify good websites that accept contributions. You can easily do that by asking people on your networking profiles, performing a twitter search for phrases like blog for us?, ?writers needed?, guest blogging? etc. Alternatively, you can do a quick Google Search for your niche + blog + submit post?
- Reach out to the owners/editors of the site. Instead of sending a generic email to their info@ address, it will be much more effective if you do a quick search online and find out who are the people in charge of content and getting in touch with them personally.
- Once you have found the right people to talk to, pitch your idea. What kind of content would you like to contribute with? How is your article offering value to their readers? Does your post fit in with their style? Also, don’t reach out to them with too long of an email. A short message has better chances of being read. Something down the lines of: Hi (First name of blog owner)? I have a great piece of content on the topic of ?. I think it would be a great addition to your library and would be of interest to your readers. If you are interested, let me know?
Onsite content is an essential piece of the authority puzzle. Along with the latest Google Panda update, came the emphasis on content, and more specifically high-quality, up-to-date, top-of-the-class content.
As Google attempts to behave more and more like a human in terms of the search results it brings back for different queries, the dedication to showing quality content has grown massively. Many low quality websites that were using shortcuts in their content strategies (e.g. used duplicated or thin content) were hit by penalties so that only quality-content sites were shown as results of search queries.
So what is good content? High-quality, informative posts. Longer andmore in-depth analytical content is much better than short pieces of content that only touches the surface of a subject. Try not to cram in too many keywords just for the sake of SEO, instead focus on fewer longer-tail keywords that cover topics more thoroughly.
At all costs avoid duplicated content. Your content should be first and foremost original. Think about how well you cover the issue discussed? Is your information insightful and knowledgeable, up-to-date and valuable?
A great suggestion would be to subscribe to Google Alerts and have relevant keyword driven content delivered to your inbox. This way you can stay on top of your industry?s news, find inspiration for content you can create, or generally see what Google deems good content.
The overall user experience on your site is an important element to the Google Authority equation.
Here are the basics you need to cover:
- Contact information – make sure you have this information up-to-date
- Usability and accessibility – how would you rate your overall website experience? Make your site easy to navigate with key pages and features easy to find.
- Loading time – did you know that 47% of people expect a web page to load in two seconds or less and 40% will abandon a web page if it takes more than three seconds to load. (Econsultancy)
- Time spent on site – The longer visitors stay on your site, the better. What can you do to entice people to stay longer? Add a video, perhaps?
Social media signals are taken into account when considering authority ranking. The bigger and more engaged your social media audience is, the better. You can achieve that by staying consistent with your posts (none of that posting once in a blue moon), engaging with followers and always ALWAYS responding to their queries, comments, complaints or any other form of feedback via social networking sites.
Complete your social profiles fully and similarly to your site, make sure you have updated contact information and all the relevant information for people to get in touch with you.
Over the years Google algorithm has been rapidly and Google never really discloses the exact formula that calculates individual sites authority ranking. Nevertheless, covering these bases would result in better search engine performance and ultimately, more visitors to your site.
About the author:
Didi Zheleva – Content and Digital Marketing Executive at InTouch CRM?- a web based sales and marketing software provider.I am committed to helping small businesses grow and passionate about all things digital. Good marketing doesn’t need to be too costly or too complicated!