Have you ever thought about how and if you can be found on Google?
- Would you also like to appear in the Google search results on page 1 or in the front ranks?
- Did you have a good placement in the past and have now slid far back?
- Are you wondering what basic requirements your website has to meet for this to be possible?
I received a call from a local service provider who was annoyed that his website was no longer found in Google, or very far back. With a look at his website, it was clear why this is so. Because the website met almost none of the criteria that would be important for good placement.
Optimize Your Website for a Better Google Placement
1. Fast loading time
It has been known for a few years that the loading time of a website has a great influence on its ranking on Google. This topic will also become more and more important in the future. Google is increasingly focusing on the charging speed of smartphones.
Apart from that, it will cost you, visitors, if your website loads too slowly. Internet users are impatient and if the page loads too slowly for them they are gone. A good guideline for the loading speed of your website is 1-2 seconds.
2. Optimized for Mobile Devices
The majority of Internet users (with an upward trend) are already accessing the Internet via smartphone or tablet. It is therefore important that your website is responsive. This means that it automatically adapts to all end devices and is also nice, clear and easy to read on mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets.
Really annoying when I’m on the go and want to quickly find the address, phone number or opening hours and then I come to a page that is not responsive. If I have an alternative, I look for a provider whose data I can readout on the go.
Blog articles and company websites are also increasingly read on mobile phones. No wonder that this is a very important ranking factor for Google.
3. User Friendliness
When you create your website, don’t just think of Google, but also of your visitors. If your website is user-friendly, visitors will stay there longer and may come back if your content is good. And that has a positive effect on your Google ranking.
A website is user-friendly if visitors can find their way around and find the information they need intuitively and quickly. This can be achieved, for example, by adhering to certain standards.
Habits, such as that the menu navigation is at the top, the start page can always be reached with a click (e.g. by clicking on the logo) and the contact details can be found on the contact page or centrally on the homepage, contribute to the user-friendliness.
Structure your content well and lay it out so that it can be found easily and intuitively. Pay attention to sufficiently large and legible fonts and a consistent, clear structure and look of your pages.
4. Contemporary, Modern, Attractive Design
The design of your website must look modern. Ask a few people who will give you honest feedback to get a feel for whether your design is appealing and also fits the service you offer. If your website is getting old or looks homemade, the customer will be less interested.
If your customers think you can’t afford a decent website, they won’t think you’re a successful company. The better your public image, the more your website sells for you and the more customers you attract. Google also notices this and evaluates it positively.
5. Exact Positioning
Think carefully in advance about what you want to be found for. Eg “Philips Hair Dryer”. With this wording, you should appear everywhere. In social networks, online directories, Google my business entry, etc. This makes it easier for Google to recognize you.
Of course, this also makes it easier for your visitors to recognize what you are about. As soon as I get to your homepage, I have to understand in a few seconds what you are about and what you can do for me.
6. Use SSL
It not only brings trust to your visitors, but Google also rates pages that are securely encrypted with SSL better. With the introduction of the GDPR, SSL encryption will become mandatory for most of us. As soon as user data is entered, a secure transmission must be ensured.
7. Install an SEO Plugin
An SEO plugin helps you to implement some things on your website more easily. You can use it to change titles and descriptions that appear in Google Search. You could redirect certain pages and get a sitemap that you can submit to the Google Search Console.
In case you use the Rank Math SEO plugin, you can see from the SEO score whether you have produced enough text or what else could be improved.
8. Good Content
So we are sure of one of the most important points. If you want to be successful on Google, you need good content. Only with good content can you keep your readers on your website longer. The longer your readers stay, the better Google evaluates. Your texts should, therefore, offer real added value, answer questions in advance and solve a problem.
Many older websites cannot compete because they either have too little text, are not tailored to the needs and interests of the readers and are usually created once and then the website stayed that way for years.
Wonder what content your visitors expect from you? What questions could you have? What questions do your competitors answer that have made it to the top? Make sure to keep your content up to date. A blog would also be ideal. Google likes regular, new content and you always have one more chance to land higher on Google and to be found by interested parties.
Good keyword research and optimization only make sense if these requirements are met.