If you’ve ever thought about focusing solely on the technical SEO aspects of your website, and not paying as much attention to the content that is posted on it, you might want to rethink that strategy. Content is truly the basis of SEO and is something that search engines like Google use to determine how your website should rank in the search results. Let’s look at the ways that content can influence your website’s ranking.
Is Content a Major Ranking Factor?
When you think of the standard ranking factors Google uses, content might not be the first one you think of. You might think of links, technical SEO elements like title tags and meta descriptions, and even user experience – all of which are very important in their own right. However, Google does take a close look at the quality of your content and also compares that against what users seem to think about your content. This is measured through engagement metrics like how long a user spends on a page, if they exit the site on a certain page, and more. These content quality measurements are a heavy influencer of how likely your website is to rank in top spots on the search results.
Why Content is Important for a Website
If we examine what the internet looked like in the early days, it was clear that content was not a major ranking factor since websites could rank just by stuffing keywords on the page. This made the content nearly illegible and completely useless to internet users.
Since that time, Google’s algorithm has greatly increased in complexity and has been aimed at raising the standard for good content. Google’s algorithm is now able to read and fully understand content on a webpage, it’s semantic relationships, and even gauge its usefulness and quality through the use of Artificial Intelligence.
These algorithm updates have forced webmasters to create a forward-thinking content strategy that produces engaging information in order to be ranked in the search engine results. Not to mention, these updates have ultimately crippled websites that did not put quality content at the forefront of their strategy.
Google’s Opinion on Content
Representatives of Google have publicly stated that webmasters should focus on creating quality content. John Mueller, a Webmaster Trends Analyst at Google, has consistently emphasized the need for quality content on websites. He recently suggested to one webmaster that they take their site down entirely and start over fresh because of the lack of quality content. In another piece of advice for a different webmaster, he mentioned that having a technically sound website without good and relevant content will not get you far in terms of SEO. These statements have serious implications regarding the importance of a quality content strategy in SEO.
Setting the Direction for Your Website
Without good content on your website, Google has made it clear that you will have a hard time climbing the search engine results. Your optimization strategy should start with creating quality content that will provide valuable answers to your users’ questions, followed by all other SEO optimization techniques.
How to Optimize Your Website Content for Google
Even for the most experienced webmasters, creating engaging and informational content for a website can be a daunting challenge. If you need help creating content for your website, we can help! We have a team of experienced website and content experts that can help you optimize your website with a content-first strategy. Fill out our contact form today and one of our experts will get in touch with you to discuss a sound strategy for your website!