Know the Purpose of Your Pages
Google’s guidelines stress over and over again is the importance of matching your content to the user intent. The main purpose of your website should be to have relevant information for which the user is searching for.
Google wants to you to ask What brings visitors to your site? What are they trying to accomplish on your site? What do they want and need from you? And most importantly how can you help and support them in achieving what they set out to?
Thinking through these questions will likely turn up a few pointers on how to further improve your content and better serve your audience.
Make Content “Front and Center”
When talking about user intent, the reason why visitors come to your site in the first place is, in all probability, your main content. Whether that’s a blog post, or a product page — nobody is on your website to gaze at sidebar widgets.
Therefore, it’s only natural that the main content functions as the focus of your page, something that is also stressed in Google’s guidelines. In fact, functional page design and user friendliness is emphasised almost as much as overall content quality.
In particular that means:
• Place the main content above the fold — Don’t make visitors scroll for it
• Eliminate distractions — Make sure the main content takes center stage
• Separate ads from content — Advertisement should be easily “ignorable”
Keep in mind that this is more about user friendliness and guidance than design. A page can be ugly but still comfortable to use and thus receive a positive rating.
Produce High-Quality Content
This line might be one of the most overused phrases on the Internet, right after “Content is King. However, the difference is that with the new guidelines in hand, we now know exactly what Google considers high-quality content.
Google does not like content to be:-
• Spun, poorly-written, thin, unsatisfying and otherwise useless
• Scraped and/or duplicate content
• Keyword stuffed to the point of being unreadable
• Too focused on monetisation
• Containing “sneaky redirects”, i.e. links to low-quality pages that have nothing to do with the original content
• Pages with distracting or unhelpful supplementary content (see below)
• Sites and pages overrun with spam or that are otherwise useless content
• Outdated and/or abandoned websites
Google likes content to be: –
1. Original, well-written, in-depth content
2. Keeping it up to date by regularly adding new and relevant information.
3. Making the content the main focus of the website
4. Balancing information and monetisation.
Provide Supplementary Content
Of course there is more to content than the main part of a web page. Very few pages only consist of a blog post or product page and nothing else. After all, most of us want to get our visitors to do interact with our sites in a specific way.
In Google speak, everything outside the main content is called “Supplementary Content.” Among others, this includes:
• Navigation elements
• Images and other media
• Related articles
• Sidebar content
The guidelines specifically talk about how this type of content can be “a large part of what makes a High quality page very satisfying for its purpose”.
This means align your supplementary content to connect and link with your main content
The Google Search Quality Rating Guidelines offer a unique view into the inner workings of the search giant. Main point being – Make it all about the user. To Google, high-quality content is that which understands exactly what searchers are looking for and goes above and beyond to deliver it.
Instead of trying to cheat Google algorithm, it is best to concentrate on building websites for people, not machines. By concentrating on usability and value for your visitors, you can not only serve your customers but get onto the good books of Google as well.
Google search quality rating guidelines:
• Your main pages are held to the highest quality standards and need to make an extra effort to fulfill your client needs and Google
• Expertise, Authoritativeness and Trustworthiness are markers of high quality
• Google loves sites that address and meet the user intent
• Mobile-friendliness is no longer an option but par for the course
• Each page on your site should be goal oriented
• Put your main content “front and center” and support it with supplementary content
• Focus on producing original, high-quality and up-to-date content
By heeding the above advice you can make sure you create exactly the type of content Google would like to see in 2016.