Search engine marketing professionals love to talk about ranking factors. Sometimes they get a little too deep in the weeds. But I like what Danny Sullivan has done at Search Engine Land in creating The Periodic Table of SEO Ranking Factors.
I like that he kept is simple and that he made it visual. That’s a big leap forward in terms of learning SEO for someone new to the game. Let’s highlight a few things.
- First, notice that on-page factors are really important for SEO, and the most important ranking factors are the quality of your content and the quality of your keyword research.
- In terms of HTML, title tags are the most important ranking factor.
- And for site architecture, making your site crawlable is extremely important.
- Off-page factors that are important including link quality and anchor text at the very top with trust and authority also important. Country and locality are important on the “personal” scale, though I must admit I’m not sure what he means by that.
For negative factors, if your site is blocked often in the search engines or through social sharing, then you will lose rank. Also, cloaking and link buying are big no-nos.
While I’m aware that every SEO will have his or her own preferences, I for one at least agree with Danny on the big picture. The most important things to think about in terms of SEO are quality content, quality links, and building trust. If you do those things you’ll go a long way to earning search engine ranking status and you won’t have to chase the algorithms.