1. Country Top Level Domain extensions: Websites built with TLD extensions like .gov, .ng, .edu will most likely rank higher in a local search. For example, any university with .edu.ng extension will most likely rank higher in Nigeria than another university with .org extension. However, a website with a top level domain extension might not rank high globally.
2. HTML Errors/ W3C Validation: Websites built with a lot of html errors will be identified by web spiders as a poor site. Such websites will definitely not make the ranks as Google patent seeks to promote quality.
3. Use of WordPress CMS to design website: WordPress is a rank friendly content management site that possesses a feature that is not prevalent in most content management sites. Reasons being that it relates one piece of content to another, a group of posts to another and is responsive by default, hence, it builds threads that help web spiders link and rank websites accordingly.
4. Latent Semantic Indexing Keywords in content: To break this down, let’s take apple for example. Apple is a fruit and also an IT company. You will find out that the mentioned words are semantically close. This feature helps the search engine extract meaning from words with more than one meaning. Aso rock and White house are other examples. Someone searching these keywords is not expecting results for an igneous rock located somewhere in north-central Nigeria or any house painted white respectively.
5. Image Optimization: Search engines crawls over images in a website and retrieves information about the image as regards their file names, alt text, description and caption. This is basically for two reasons. First, to check the originality of the graphic content on your site. This is a sign of quality. Secondly, to check whether the description and title of the images on the site matches the description of the site. This is a sign of legitimacy. It tracks spammers on the loose.
6. Recency of Content Updates: Websites that are constantly refreshed, updated and redesigned are most likely to be regarded as active websites and are rewarded with prominence. Google caffeine update favors recently updated content, especially the time sensitive searches. Also, identical content on a site can impair the site’s search visibility. However, Rel=canonical tag, when properly used, will prevent Google from considering the pages as duplicates.
7. Helpful Supplementary Content and Google Plugins: These are indicators of quality. Examples of supplementary contents include currency converters, loan interest calculators. Google plugins like YouTube are engineered to boost website content. Some movie and media companies may prefer to optimize their video search to gain greater visibility among and content lovers.
8. Use of Google analytics and Google webmaster tools: These are features that do not only increase a web page’s indexing, but increases its ranking as web analytics on a site speaks volumes about a site’s reputation. Still on reputation, user reviews also enhances a site’s reputation and subsequently, ranking.
9. Responsiveness: A website is said to be responsive when it can be viewed from mobile devices without the quality being diminished. Recent Google terms and conditions has categorically stated that non-responsive website will not be visible on mobile. That’s a bad news for businesses still operating on non-responsive sites as research has shown that more than 75% of Google searches are made from mobile devices. Now, who wants to optimize a non-responsive site?
10. Page Loading via Chrome: Google may rely on chrome browser user data to estimate server, html speed signals and most importantly, data usage. Heavy sites might load slowly and that is not an indicator for quality.