What Google Really Cares About?

What does the mammoth search engine Google really care about? This is a very important question if you plan to get traffic from the largest search engine.

In a nutshell, they care about giving visitors the best search results possible. This ensure people keep using Google and makes Google wealthy.

But how does Google determine which site have quality information and which site don’t? While Google’s algorithm is constantly being refined there are a few things that stay pretty consistent.

Thank to Google Analytics and Google Adsense they are able to track visitors behavior on almost every website on the Internet. (Sound scary right?)

They track how long the average visitor stays on a given website. The longer a visitor stays, the better the content must be.

They track how many pages the average visitor visits before leaving. Again, the more pages the better unless the visitor went to many pages in a very short amount of time. This would indicate that the visitor couldn’t find what they were looking for or the content didn’t capture the visitor’s interest.

Google also tracks bounces. A bounce is where a visitor leaves a site after visitng only one page. Too many bounces are harmful to site’s rank in Google.

Google records your IP address when you visit a site and therefore can tell when you return to the site. Google keeps close tabs on return visitors. Return visitors are a major indicator that the website has useful and relevant content that is most likely updated regularly.

Some of the sites with the biggest number of return visitors are news related sites like digg.com or social sites like facebook.com etc.
Google also favors site’s that have information added to them on a continuing basis.

People have known this for a while and in some cases have tried to keep their website updated regularly by putting up content that was copied from another site. In response to this Google has developed a duplicate content filter which does a pretty good job at determining if content is unique or if it was copied from another site. If content has been copied to several sites Google can usually determine which first site first posted the content and will frequently ignore the sites that copied the content.

Feel free to read up our post about Content Theft [Security] How to protect WordPress from content theft?

So the morale of the story is this: If you want to rank high in google and get traffic then make a site that has useful information not copied from somewhere else. Give people a reason to stay at your site and look around. Give people a reason to come back. In short, provide visitors with something of value. The more value you provide, the higher your rank.

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