Every two years, those of us working in SEO await the results of Moz's detailed survey into Google's Ranking Factors. It's a chance for us to see what other professionals think about strategies, techniques, and best practices to follow for the months ahead.
Because Google's algorithm is constantly changing - and Google isn't fond of telling us how to do our jobs - the best way for us to keep up with what's new in search is to talk to others about what's working for them. The Moz survey is a great starting point, and we usually come away with new strategies to improve our sites.
If you don't have a background in SEO, it's still worth taking a look at the survey. If nothing else, it will give you an idea of how complex search engine optimization can be. Our 100+ Ranking Factors to Consider post is another good example of the complex thinking that goes into a good SEO plan.
In order of importance, here are the main ranking factors discussed in the survey:
- Domain-level, link authority features
- Page-level link metrics
- Page-level keyword and content metrics
- Page-level keyword-agnostic features
- User usage and traffic/query data
- Domain-level brand metrics
- Domain-level keyword usage
- Domain-level keyword-agnostic features
- Page-level social metrics
Each one of those is further broken down into various factors that influence Google's overall perception of a site's value and reputation.
What's more, the survey goes on to make predictions for the future of Google's algorithm over the next 12 months. It's no surprise that SEOs anticipate mobile-friendliness as a factor that will continue gaining importance, while social signals like Tweets and shares are likely to maintain their current value.
There weren't a lot of surprises in the 2015 Moz survey, but the result still give us a very important reminder: SEO takes time, effort, and a solid strategy in order to succeed.
We'd love to hear from you! Is there anything you would add to the 2015 Ranking Factors? Tell us in the comments below!