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SEO 11 min read

The Eleven Highest-Ranking SEO Success Factors You Need To Know

Natalie Yelton photo

Written by Natalie Yelton

Content Writer @ Galactic Fed

Dallin Porter photo

Expert reviewed by Dallin Porter

Marketing Director @ Galactic Fed

Published 01 Sep 2021

Search engine optimization (SEO) determines how high your website ranks in search engines like Google.

Whatever industry or sector you operate in, whether you’re running a Software as a Service (SaaS) firm or flower shop, you should care about SEO. A successful SEO strategy is a powerful way to boost your company’s visibility online, engage new customers, and grow your business while increasing profits.

Your business being found online quickly and easily is crucial. Almost a third of consumers online in the United States use the internet to search for a local business daily:

Businesses' online visibility.Source: Statista

Firms that understand this are taking the necessary steps to consistently improve and maintain their SEO. How many of your firm’s web pages appear towards the top of Google’s search engine results page (SERP) reflects the actual visibility of your company’s website. 

Are you looking to score one of those top spots on your targeted Google SERP? Take a look at eleven SEO success factors Galactic Fed recommends, which will increase traffic to your website, help you reach new customers, and boost your ROI. From ensuring your website is chock-full of high-quality content to improving your page load speed and your website’s user experience, these are the vital elements that impact your firm’s SEO: 

Chart of SEO success factors

Source: SEMrush

  1. High-quality content 

The first success factor when it comes to your site’s SEO is high-quality content. What do we mean by high-quality? Well, your content should be evergreen. What’s evergreen content, you ask? It’s content that’s got a decent shelf life, for example, blogs about topics not linked to a specific event or day that can quickly become out of date and not as useful to your site visitors. 

Content in calendars should be refreshed regularly, and performing a site audit on a regular basis can help your firm identify any content that’s not high-quality and ready to archive. 

  1. On-page SEO

Next up is on-page SEO, which refers to everything within your control on your website. From metadata, alt-text for images, and strategic keyword placement, ensuring your on-page SEO is firing on all cylinders is vital to landing a top spot on your firm’s targeted SERP. 

Here are three on-page SEO elements to ensure your firm is on top of:

  • Intentional alt text for images 
  • Concise URLs
  • Intuitive web page navigation 

Check out Galactic Fed’s complete guide to on-page SEO vs. off-page SEO to really get your website in an optimal state.

  1. Effective Keywords

The third SEO success factor when it comes to your company’s SEO is effective keywords. SEO keywords can be anything from a single word like ‘fitness’ to complex phrases like ‘fitness equipment rental in Portland.’ 

Depending on the product or service your company provides, you’ll want to identify the most effective keywords and use them to shape the content of your website, ultimately increasing relevant, organic traffic to your site. 

People surfing the web will use the keywords when searching for something online related to your company. When effectively researched and optimized, SEO keywords quickly and easily connect your website to those who could benefit from your product or service. Our definitive guide to SEO keyword research is a great place to start if you’re entirely new to developing an SEO keyword strategy. 

  1. Useful links 

One of the most crucial factors that can impact your SEO is links, including to and from your website and internal links from various web pages on your site. 

Not all links are equal when it comes to boosting your visibility online. As explained in our introduction to link building, the value or ‘link juice’ of a link from one site to another varies based on many factors. 

Internal links are hyperlinks on one of your web pages that points to another webpage or resource on your website, such as an image, video, or document. This type of link allows your site visitors to navigate your website easily. It’s usually the homepage of your website that has the maximum number of internal links, which is why it carries the most link value. As it is passed on to other pages on your website, the link value will be divided among other links present in each of those pages. 

As links pass their link value on, more links to a particular post mean more value. Internal links also let Google understand your website structure. They help you build a site hierarchy, allowing you to add value to essential web pages on your website or blog posts. 

  1. Security

If your website isn’t secure, you can safely assume your SEO has taken or will take a hit because of it. 

If your site doesn’t have HTTPS in your URL, not only will Google punish you with a weaker ranking, but site visitors could bounce immediately off your site when they land on it in an attempt to protect their personal data. 

Site visitors need to see that your site is secure and trustworthy, and adding HTTPS in your URL is the fastest and easiest way to ensure they can and do. 

Google developers explain step by step how to secure your site with HTTPS.

  1. Crawlability 

Crawlability sits within technical SEO and refers to all the ways in which Google can crawl and index pages on your website. There are a few things that prevent Google from crawling and indexing pages of your website. They include: 

  • Robots.txt files.
  • An HTTP header containing a status code saying a page doesn’t exist.
  • Robots meta tag on specific pages. 

This chart from Yoast may help you understand the process the Google bots follow when attempting to index a page on your website:

The indexing process of a specific page by Yoast.

Source: Yoast 

Technical SEO can be, well, technical. Galactic Fed recommends partnering with an expert to ensure your site is crawlable before tinkering around with code on your own. 

  1. Load speed

Speed is critical when it comes to the success of your firm’s website. It’s so critical that Google has made it a ranking factor. Over the years, Google has taken action to improve the loading speed of all websites by providing a set of tools for webmasters and developers. One of these tools is Google Lighthouse - an automated tool for measuring the quality of your web pages. 

As a first step, head over to Google PageSpeed Insights and put your URL into the empty box near the top of the page. Google tells you how fast your website is across mobile and desktop while also providing instructions on remedying a slow page load. 

  1. User engagement 

According to HubSpot, user engagement is the new SEO.

So how do you ensure your firm’s site is engaging users in the best way possible? 

There are several ways to improve engagement on your website, from adding interactive elements to using AI and sprinkling your site with lead magnets. 

A simple starting point to enhance user engagement on your site is to include more video content. Video is easier for your site visitors to process, and it can encourage them to stay on one of your web pages 2.6 times longer.

  1. Site Authority 

Your website domain authority impacts your ranking and shouldn’t be ignored. Domain authority tells Google your website is credible and can be trusted as more and more reputable websites link back to your site. Backlinks are just one way of improving your site’s authority.

If you’re a start-up, it can be a challenge to build up your site’s authority, but there are steps your firm can take to improve it over time and develop domain authority from the ground up. 

Our beginner’s guide to improving your company’s domain authority will help you get started. 

  1. Mobile-friendliness

With almost half of online shoppers using their mobiles as the first point of contact to start a search, it should come as no surprise that mobile-friendliness is a major ranking factor when it comes to SEO. 

Websites that are mobile-friendly tend to outrank non-mobile-friendly sites in mobile search results. To make sure your site is mobile-friendly.

Creating Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) is a quick and easy way to ensure that the mobile versions of every page on your website checks the three mobile-friendliness boxes:

  • Responsive design
  • Enhanced user experience
  • High mobile page load speed
  1. User-friendliness  

And that brings us neatly on to our last factor - user-friendliness. Google has emphasized the user over the past few years, making changes to improve users’ access to the web. 

Its Core Web Vitals update early this year is an example of this. Ensure your site is a joy to navigate for as many people as possible. Make sure you are up to speed on Google’s newest updates

You can also check the accessibility on your site by using the free WAVE tool that provides clear instructions on improving the usability of your firm’s website. 

A simple checklist for excelling at SEO

And there you have it! By ensuring your site hits each of these eleven SEO factors, you’ll drive more traffic to your website, engage new and repeat customers, all while boosting your profits. 

If you want an SEO expert to join your team to help get your website in the best state possible for SEO, reach out to Galactic Fed. The folks here have years of experience improving SEO for client’s websites and would love to assist you in getting that coveted top spot on your targeted search engine results page through effective SEO.

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Natalie Yelton photo

Natalie Yelton

Content Writer @ Galactic Fed