By Paul Morris
I enjoy investigating why websites rank well in the SERPS (search engine result pages) for certain keywords and also like to speculate how these SEO ranking factors will evolve overtime from the current overreliance on inbound links.
Google is clearly trying to sort this overreliance out by evolving its search algorithm to include parameters such as brand noise, positive reviews and social media mentions. Google is also penalising thin sites via its Panda update that have little quality original content. So if Google is starting to award high quality sites with improved rankings we need to figure out what constitutes a high quality site.
There are all the obvious things (page titles, unique content, number and quality of inbound links, social media mentions, good internal architecture, etc) that affect rankings but what about the upcoming factors?
I think Google will start to employ bona fide passion as a ranking metric!
What better parameter to add to the current algorithm subset than a ranking factor that rewards passion (both to the site owner in terms of improved rankings and the user in terms of better SERPS)? As a result I thought I’d put together a list of bona fide passion indicators:
Note: This bona fide passion SEO parameter will clearly work better in certain sectors e.g. travel than in others e.g. insurance.
· A large amount of evocative language
· Followed outbound links to authority sources that are on topic i.e. proving that the site does not care about geeky things such as link juice as is not trying to game the SERPS
· Geo tagged photos that make the article relevant for that location based search query
· A lack of agenda e.g. no affiliate links or AdSense on the page
· Positive experience is discussed in detail
· Use of the first person
· Knowledge about the website owner’s passion/ authenticity e.g. via the Google author tag, Google+, Google account or Blogspot (Google owns Blogspot hence has information about its users)
· Absolutely unique content thus providing the search engines with greater content diversity (thus supporting QDD – Query Deserves Diversity)
· Real life connections e.g. inbound and outbound links with LinkedIn, twitter, Google+, Facebook, etc
· Traffic source diversity coupled with good onsite dwell time e.g. multiple site and social media referrals