Popular Russian search engine, Yandex, has recently been subject to a leak revealing 1,922 different ranking factors that can affect the outcome of a website and how it ranks on the search engine.
From independent research, Google is identified to have similar algorithms and ranking factors to that of Yandex. So, while these factors aren’t going to completely echo Google’s sentiments, they are a great guiding tool for what really makes the difference in the world of search engines.
So, we here at Aloha Digital have done our due diligence and research and have compiled a list of ranking factors that you might not have known about!
Credits go to Alex Buraks for all the images; thank you!
If an individual with the same session data in a given month has opted to visit your website more than once, be it on the same page or a different one, they are counted as a returning user. The number of returning users contributes as a significant ranking factor, and sites with higher returning users tend to rank higher.
How often do you see fully capitalized titles come up in your search on Google? Not a lot, right? Well, the amount of capitalization you have on your title can greatly impact your ranking. Therefore, try and only use capital letters when they really count. A title case converter is an excellent way to ensure this isn’t an issue in your content.
Ideally, you should include up to 3 words from your search query directly in the slug. For example, if your main keyword is best places to travel in Mexico, your slug should at least have “best places Mexico” within it somewhere.
If a user stops searching right after visiting your website, a search engine will consider this as a good sign assuming that they’ve gotten the content they require from your particular website. So, try and ensure that your URL should be the last search session for that particular user.
Having traffic referred to you from Wikipedia greatly increases your chances of ranking. This is because Wikipedia is considered an authentic source of information. So, when your site is cited within the website, search engines consider your site as a reputable source of information as well.
Crawl depth is an important ranking factor. In essence, pages that you deem important should be 1 click away from your primary page (home page). On the other hand, important pages should be less than 3 clicks away from your primary pages.
This can be easily done through the help of proper categorization, which ensures that search engines don’t have to necessarily fish for your content.
The more the amount of users that add a URL as a bookmark, the more high-value it is considered thereby increasing its overall ranking. So, create original memorable content that users would want to save for future reference.
This is more of a double-edged sword than anything else. If you embed videos on your page, be it from YouTube or some other video-sharing site, your content is considered of higher value. On the other hand, if you have broken embedded videos, your site’s ranking factor is significantly reduced.
If you’ve wondered whether one bad egg can ruin the entire basket, the answer is yes. Having poor content on one URL can affect the relevancy of your entire site as a whole. So, if you have bad content, it’ll slowly trickle down and affect your entire rankings.
Therefore, consistently go on purges, and quality checks and ensure that you only are getting the best quality content possible on every occasion.
The number of advertisements there are on a specific page also contributes to rankings. Generally speaking, the greater the number of advertisements, the worse a website scores in this particular ranking factor. So, try and establish a balance between advertisements and content.
Yandex is not exactly like Google. However, we’ve seen Russian SEO experts use the same whitehat SEO techniques they’ve used for Yandex to be quite effective with Google as well. Therefore, while these ranking factors may have different weights, its clear that they do hold their merit on Google as well and they must be taken seriously.