In our current digital climate, the Google search algorithm has complete power over which businesses are being shown and advertised and which are hidden from view. Whilst this may seem like a bit of a dictatorship, Google is quite vocal about how they are championing a brave new world where everybody is optimised for the digital age. Introducing new technologies and promoting tools that make you better for your consumers is what they are aiming for. Below you can find a few tools that may be the difference between you getting noticed or not.
You’ll probably be familiar with this phrase but not so certain on what it does and why Google is making such a big push for it. The “S” in HTTPS stands for secure but that doesn’t mean you’re no longer susceptible to hacks or attacks. What it does mean though is that your users data will be protected. It’s encrypted to ensure that outsiders cannot read the data, it cannot be corrupted whilst in transfer, and it implements an authentication process that ensures users are always interacting with the website they think they are. Reading this, it seems obvious as to why this would receive a mild rank boost as the more websites that implement it, the safer the internet will be for it’s users. What makes this different to other search signals is that Google is planning to lower the SERP for websites that aren’t using HTTPS. Search Engine Land has a great article about how this benefits you, your customers and how easy it can be to obtain. If you’re interested, you can read it here.
AMP is a new initiative to help fight against the slow, and tedious process that mobile web browsing can be. In the past, whilst your website had the capabilities to be optimised for mobile, it wasn’t necessarily built for it. This is what Google is trying to create; an internet optimised for mobile. Whilst desktop is still very popular, it is becoming very clear that mobile technology is where the world is heading and the mobile user experience needs to mirror this increased demand. What AMP is doing that other websites aren’t is instantaneous loading. There isn’t any great rush to adopt this to your website just yet as there aren’t any penalties being put in place for not having an AMP enabled website but if your website is built to AMP, you can expect to see a boost on mobile searches.
As was discussed in a previous blog post about Dwell Time, content improvement is what they’re really looking for now that machine learning is taking the lead on SERPs. Since its first inception, markers have always tried to use keywords to place highly and get people onto their websites. Whilst this is still the case, the keywords are only half the picture. The other half being how long people stay on your website to determine how relevant you are as a result. This is where content comes in. You need to to ensure now that what you’re putting on your website will be reflecting the needs of visitors. If not, Google will see your website as a poor result and lower you in the rankings. To have a guess at how this will affect you, look at your bounce rate and how long an average session is. What you should be aiming for is a high session time, and a low bounce rate. If that’s not what you’re seeing, it’s time to start re-evaluating your content and potentially rewrite what you have.
There’s three things that you should be keeping an eye on when it comes to your business online. Whether this is something you look into now or later is completely up to you, it’s just important to realise these are all for the benefit of the public, not at the detriment of you. Google has always been at the forefront of technology and their consumer first motives is what has really made them stand out from competitors and it is what will continue to put them ahead in the ever evolving market of technology innovation.