A lot of people know that in order to be successful with your blog you need to get some Google love. While social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest are creeping up behind them, Google is still the king of traffic.
Whether we like it or not, we must play by their rules. The problem is that we’re not quite sure what the rules are. Google wants us to think that we should just create wonderful content and they’ll show their appreciation by giving us traffic. But if only it were that simple. Bloggers need to decipher the clues to determine what works and what doesn’t.
One thing is certain though, in order for Google to send you good traffic they need to trust you.
Here now are 5 things every blogger needs to do in order to increase their Google TrustRank and get rewarded with more traffic.
1. Domain Registration Length
A newly registered site is nowhere near as trustworthy as an older site. So what do you do if you have a new blog, other than wait?
One option is to purchase an existing site that’s been around for years. You can buy a neglected older site and take advantage of their domain age.
There’s a downside to this though because you are also buying their past history. For all you know, this site has done some shady things in the past such as spamming or is banned in Google.
Do your due diligence before buying an existing site. Type the domain into Google and see if their site ranks #1 as it should. Use the Wayback Machine to see previous versions of the website. These two tools go a long way in determining whether the existing site has a shady past.
It is also a good idea to register your domain for longer than one year. If your domain is set to expire in a few months it shows you might not be as committed as another site registered for another 5 years.
2. Linking To Other Sites
A reputable trusted site in Google’s eyes naturally links out to other sites and also naturally receives links back.
This means that when you write your pieces you should not be shy about giving out links to other sites. Many bloggers feel like when they give a link out they are leaking link juice from their site and sharing it with others. But it doesn’t work that way at all.
Linking to a trusted source does not damaged your site. Instead, it shows that you are doing your research and helping your readers by sharing a valuable resource.
3. Links Going To Your Site
One of the ways Google determines how popular you are is by the quantity and quality of the links going toward your site. But don’t just go requesting links to your homepage with the same anchor text. A good link profile is a natural one.
Get a good mix of links with different anchor text going to different pages of your site. Whatever you do, don’t pay for them though. The best links are those you receive naturally from other bloggers.
When trying to manipulate Google, odds are you’re going to slip up at some point. A natural back link profile gets links from small sites and big sites at a constant rate.
Google wants to send traffic to trusted sites. What better way to show you’re trustworthy than if others trust you enough to link to you.
4. Social Signals
Social media is playing an increasing role in determining Google rankings. This groundbreaking study by Branded3 showed that the number of retweets appears to influence rankings.
It makes sense. If Twitter users are mentioning your blog post, it must be pretty good.
It’s not just the amount of retweets that matter, but the influence of those who retweet your message. You can see your influence and those of others on Klout.
While other social media signals like Facebook likes and Pinterest pins may play a role in the search algorithm, Twitter shares seems to be the most important factor.
5. User Behavior
The way your visitors interact with your blog plays a big part in whether Google trusts your site.
Good blogs keep visitors on the site for a long time. Good blogs have visitors going to multiple pages on the site. Good blogs have users return back to the blog time after time.
Google has a few ways to track user behavior.
- Google Analytics: If you have installed Google Analytics to track visitors to your blog, Google knows everything they need to know to determine the quality of your site.
- Google Chrome: Google also has the Chrome web browser. They can track how users of Chrome interact with your site. They’ll know where you click, where you scroll, where the cursor moves, what pages you visit and how long you stay on each page.
- Google Adsense: If you monetize your blog with Google Adsense you’re inserting a code that Google can use to track visitors of your blog. They may use this data to determine if you have a quality site by monitoring user behavior.
- Google Search: Another important way Google determines the quality of your site is by seeing how Google search users interact with your site. If someone conducts a Google search, clicks on your site in the search results, then immediately goes back to the search results page, it’s a sign that your site did not have what they were looking for.
Did you find this post helpful? You could help me improve my own Google TrustRank by sharing this post on social media.