What a Search Engine Optimization expert does is rank a website on the first page of a search engine result page. But it’s not an easy task as SEO is an extremely dynamic field that is evolving rapidly. It’s a myth how Google algorithm decides the ranking of a website but we are lucky enough to know that there are about 200 Google Ranking Factors that influence the ranking of a website.
Don’t be afraid of the number as not all Google Ranking Factors are equally important. But it’s better to have a minimum idea about all the ranking factors so you can understand which ranking factors are most important and which you can ignore. So let’s start the journey!
What is Google Ranking Factors?
Google Ranking Factors refers to components or signals that helps Google algorithm to determine the position of a website in SERP. Ranking factors play a very vital role in SEO and overall Digital Marketing strategies of a website. It’s very important to know, which ranking factors are vital for your website and also identifying the ranking factors that you have ignored but can help improve your site’s ranking in SERP.
200 Google Ranking Factors
To make it easy I have put all these Google Ranking Factors in different groups accordingly. So it will help you understand which ranking factor is applicable to which part of SEO.
Domain Related Google Ranking Factors
Domain Age: Google uses domain age as a ranking factor but its role is insignificant. For example difference between a six months old domain and a one-year-old domain is not that big at all.
Keywords in Domain: Once it was a major Google Ranking Factors but now it doesn’t give the boost that it used to. Although many SEO experts believe that having the keyword in the domain still acts as a relevancy signal.
Keyword as First Word of Domain: If you can combine your keyword with your domain name and put the keyword as the first word of your domain name then it can give your site extra edge over other sites that don’t have the keyword in their domain or have the keyword in the middle or end of their domain.
Domain Registration Length: Google’s Matt Cutts said: “To the best of my knowledge, no search engine has ever confirmed that they use the length of registration as a factor in scoring. If a company is asserting that as a fact, that would be troubling. The primary reason to renew a domain would be if it’s your main domain, you plan to keep it for a while, or you’d prefer the convenience of renewing so that you don’t need to stress about your domain expiring.”
On the other hand, a Google patent states: “Valuable (legitimate) domains are often paid for several years in advance, while doorway (illegitimate) domains rarely are used for more than a year. Therefore, the date when a domain expires in the future can be used as a factor in predicting the legitimacy of a domain”.
So clearly there is a debate about this ranking factor. Therefore to play safe you can have at least a multi-year registration on your domain.
Keyword in Sub-domain: This is an important Google Ranking Factors as Moz’s 2011 panel agrees that a sub-domain containing the keyword can boost the ranking of a website in SERP.
Domain History: Google’s ranking algorithm is very smart. It uses the domain history to decide if the site is good or bad. So if your site has a good record from the beginning then Google will consider your site as a good one and give higher ranking in SERP.
Exact Match Domains: Google has reduced the ranking of low-quality exact match domains in search engine result pages. But that does not mean that the importance of exact match domains has reduced. A quality site with exact match domains surely will give you an edge over your competitor.
Public vs Private WhoIs: It’s a controversial topic as Google has never stated which one is better than the other. However, Matt Cutts quoted while stating at Pubcon 2006:
“…When I checked the whois on them, they all had “whois privacy protection service” on them. That’s relatively unusual. …Having whois privacy turned on isn’t automatically bad, but once you get several of these factors all together, you’re often talking about a very different type of webmaster than the fellow who just has a single site or so.”
Penalty for WhoIs Owner: If Google identifies a particular person as a spammer; it also scrutinizes other sites that are owned by the same person.
Country TLD Extension: From local SEO’s perspective it’s a very important Google Ranking Factors. Having a Country LTD Extension (.cn, .pt, .ca, .uk) boosts search engine ranking for the particular country however it limits the website’s ability to rank globally.
On-Page Optimization Related Google Ranking Factors
Keywords in Page Title Tag: It is one of the most important On-Page SEO Techniques as well as a vital Google Ranking Factors. Having the keyword in the title is strong On Page SEO signal and it will boost your ranking in SERP.
Title Tag Starting with Keyword: The position of a keyword in the title tag is also very important. According to Moz Data, a title that starts with a keyword tends to perform better than those titles that have a keyword at the end.
Keywords in Meta Description: Nowadays there is no importance of Meta description but using keywords in Meta description provides relevancy signal and it makes a difference.
Keyword in H1 Tag: Google consider H1 tag as a “second title tag” and by placing the right keyword in the H1 tag you can boost the ranking of your website in SERP.
Frequently Used Keyword in Phrase Document: Using keywords frequently in content acts as a relevancy signal and it can boost your site’s SEO ranking. However, you have to keep in mind that Google does not like Keyword Stuffing and it can penalize your site for that.
Content-Length: Google loves long content. So the longer your content is the better your ranking will be in SERP. SERPIQ found that the content length correlates with the SERP position.
Keyword Density: Once a major Google Ranking Factors but not now. Even though, Google still uses Keyword Density to determine the topic of a webpage. Moreover, it provides relevancy signal that can boost your site’s ranking.
LSI Keywords in Content: LSI keywords help writers to come up with quality content. It also acts as a content quality signal. LSI keywords help Google to extract meaning from words and understand the content better.
LSI Keywords in Title and Meta Description: Using LSI keywords in title and Meta descriptions help Google differentiate between synonyms. It also provides relevancy signal and increases the ranking of a website.
Page Loading Speed with HTML: Page Loading Speed is a very important Google Ranking Factors. Search engine spiders can estimate the loading speed of a page. Normally page’s HTML code and image size affect the loading time of a page. Google doesn’t like those pages that take more time to load.
Page Loading Speed via Chrome: Google sometimes uses Chrome user data to estimate the page loading time more accurately. For that reason, they take into account server speed, CDN usage, and other non HTML-related site speed signals.
Rel=Canonical: It’s a very important tag. Using the tag properly will prevent Google from considering pages with similar and duplicate content.
Duplicate Content: Google hates duplicate content. So, identical content on the same site can have a negative influence on a site’s search engine ranking.
Image Optimization: Image optimization is a very crucial Google Ranking Factors. Optimizing images with a file name, ALT text, title, author name, description, copyright, and caption provides important relevancy signals and improve the ranking in search engine.
Recency of Content Updates: Google prefers Updated content for time-sensitive searches. So it’s very important to update the existing content from time to time.
The magnitude of Content Updates: It matters what kind of changes you have made to your existing content. Adding or removing an entire section is more noteworthy update than spinning around a few words.
The frequency of Page Update: How often you update your page? Daily, weekly, monthly, every 2- years? The frequency of page update indicates the freshness of content. And we know fresh and updated content is very important for ranking.
Keyword Prominence: You should put your keywords in the first 100 words of a page’s content. It provides relevancy signal and it’s vital for ranking.
Keywords in H2 and H3 Tags: Using keywords in H2 and H3 Tags are very important Google Ranking Factors. It also provides relevancy signal.
Keywords Word Order: It’s very important to maintain the keywords word order through the content. Because an exact match of a searcher’s keyword in a page’s content will generally rank better than the same keyword phrase in a different order.
Outbound Link Quality: A lot of SEO expert believe that linking out to authority sites sends trust signals to Google and improve the ranking.
Outbound Link Theme: Moz says that search engines inspect the content of the pages you link, as a relevancy signal. So if you have a page about cars and you create backlinks from movie pages then Google will think that your page is about movie cars.
Grammar and Spelling: Proper grammar and correct spelling is a quality signal and provides the best user experience for the reader. Although this ranking factor is not clear from Google but we all know how Google values the user experience.
Syndicated Content: The content you use for your site must be original. Google hate spinning content and can penalize the blog or website for using scraped and low-quality content.
Supplementary Content: According to Google Raters Guidelines Document helpful supplementary content increase the quality of the page and its ranking in Google. Some examples of supplementary content are currency converters, investment recipes, and loan interest calculators etc.
Multimedia in Content: Including images, videos and other multimedia elements in content increase its quality.
Number of Outbound Links: A large number of do-follow outbound links may leak page rank and can have a negative impact on that page’s rankings.
Number of Internal Links Pointing to a Page: A page with a large number of internal links pointing to it indicates Google about its relevancy to other pages on the site. This is a very important Google Ranking Factors.
Quality of Internal Links Pointing to Page: If a page gates internal linking from authoritative pages then it will have a stronger impact than those pages which got internal linking from low authoritative pages.
Broken Links: Broken links have a negative impact on ranking because Google considers broken links as a sign of a neglected or abandoned website. If the search engine spider finds too many broken links in a page, it reduces the value of the website.
Reading Score: Google estimates the reading score of web pages and put them in three levels: Basic, Intermediate, and Advance. Visitors prefer to read a simple language and Google tends to give higher ranking to those sites where visitors stay for a longer period of time.
Affiliate Links: There is no impact of Affiliate Links on SEO. But if your site has a large number of Affiliate Links then Google algorithm will take a closer look at other quality signals on the site to review whether or not, it’s a thin affiliated site.
HTML Errors: Google considers HTML errors and sloppy coding as a sign of low-quality site and decreases the ranking. Many SEO experts think it’s a very important Google Ranking Factors.
Domain Authority of Page Hosts: A page with higher domain authority will get better ranking in SERP than a page with lower authority.
Page Rank of the Page: This was the first algorithm that Google used to order search engine results but from April 15, 2016, Google has officially shut down their Google Toolbar PageRank Data to the public. So there is no importance of this Google Ranking Factors.
URL Length: Using small URL is good for SEO as it is easier to recall the small URL then long URL. Moreover, Long URLs badly affect search visibility.
URL Path: A page close to the homepage may get a slight authority boost and an increase in the ranking.
Human Editors: Although it’s not confirmed yet, Google filed a patent for a system that allows human editors and it can influence the SERPs.
Page Category: Always try to put your page or post under the appropriate category as it provides relevancy signal. A page which is closely related to the searched category gets a higher ranking than a page that’s filed under an unrelated category.
WordPress Tags: WordPress tags are important. They provide relevancy signal and boost the ranking of a website in SERPs.
Keyword in URL: It is one of the most important Google Ranking Factors. Using the keyword in URL provides very important relevancy signal.
URL Strings: Google read the URL so adding categories in the URL strings may provide a thematic signal to what the page is about.
References and Sources: Including the source links and references provided at the end of the article are signs of quality content. Google Quality Guidelines argues that reviewers should keep an eye on the sources when looking at certain pages. Although Google always denied that they consider external links as a ranking factor.
Bullet Pointers and Numbered Lists: Using bullet pointers and numbered lists help break up the content and make the content more users friendly to the readers. And we know that as long as the user/reader is happy, Google is also happy.
Page Priority in Sitemap: The sitemap.xml file gives Priority to a page and it may influence the ranking.
Numerous Outbound Links: Content with a large number of outbound links can badly affect readability. The Aforementioned Quality Rater Document Says, “Some pages have way too many links, obscuring the page and distracting from the main content”.
Page Age: Google likes fresh content but an old page with updated content may outrank a newer page.
The quantity of Other Keywords: If a page ranks for several other keywords then Google consider the page as a quality page and give the page a higher ranking in SERP.
User-Friendly Layouts: If the page layout is user-friendly then visitors tend to stay on your website for a longer period of time. It also enhances the ranking of a site.
Parked Domains: Google released an update in December 2011, and from than Google decreased the search visibility of the parked domains.
Useful Content: There is a difference between quality content and useful content. Google algorithm is very sharp and it can distinguish between “quality content” and “useful content”.
Website Level Related Google Ranking Factors
Quality and Uniqueness of Content: The content that you provide in your site must be unique and bring in a certain degree of freshness and newness. Because Google ignores site’s that lacks value and informative content. Google will hunt those sites and bring them down.
Contact Us Page: You must provide your contact information so that visitors can make contact with you when necessary. Most importantly, if your contact information matches with your whois information then it will be an added bonus.
Domain Trust/TrustRank: It is one of the most important Google Ranking Factors. If your site got a large number of links from highly trusted seed sites then your site has a high domain trust. Domain Trust plays a very influential role in the ranking position of a website in SERP.
Website Architecture: A website with user-friendly architecture is loved by both visitors and Google. Moreover, it helps Google to thematically organize the content.
Website Updates: How often you add fresh content to your website is also matter. Google has soft spot for frequently updated website.
Page Numbers: A large website with a lot of pages may bring authority to your site and helps distinguish it from thin affiliate sites. But it also decreases the navigability of your site. So the best practice is to keep the important pages and increase the navigability of the site.
Sitemap: Sitemap is very important from SEO’s perspective as it helps search engines index your pages, posts easily and more systematically. It also improves the visibility of your website to search engine bot.
Website Uptime: This Google Ranking Factor plays a vital role in ranking. If a website takes too much time to upload or have many downtimes for server maintenance then it may hurt the ranking of a website.
Location of Server: Server location might have some influence on your website’s ranking for different locations as it is important for geo-specific searches.
SSL Certificate: Google use HTTPS as an important ranking factor and they also confirmed that they index SSL certificates.
Duplicate On-site Meta Information: Duplicate Meta information is very harmful to SEO and it will decrease the search visibility of the website.
Breadcrumb Navigation: Breadcrumb Navigation helps both visitor and search engines to know where they are on the website. It is a modern style of user-friendly website. More importantly, it’s a ranking factor.
Mobile Optimization: This is one of the most important Google Ranking Factors. For mobile search result, Google has started to penalize sites that are not responsive and mobile friendly. So make sure that your website is responsive and mobile friendly or it’s likely that your site’s ranking will decrease.
YouTube: Maybe that YouTube is owned by Google, YouTube videos tend to get higher ranking in SERP. Moreover, including YouTube videos in post increase the dwell time of your website.
Site Usability: If the site usability is not friendly then visitors will find it difficult to navigate resulting higher bounce rate. And I can assure you higher bounce rate is never a good sign for SEO and website’s ranking.
Google Analytics and Google Webmaster Tools: Some SEO experts think that including Google Analytics and Google Webmaster Tools on a site can improve webpage’s ranking. The logic behind this point is, these two programs will provide Google more data to work with (For example Bounce Rate, Organic Traffic etc.).
User Reviews and Feedback: Positive reviews and feedback play an important role in the Google ranking. If your site has a large number of positive reviews and feedback then there is a chance that your website will rank higher in SERP.
Backlinks from Aged Domains: Backlinks from an aged domain is more important and powerful than new domains. They help you rank high in SERP.
Number of Linking Root Domains: This is a very important Google Ranking Factors. The numbers of linking root domains play a vital role in the ranking of a website. This supported by both Google algorithm and Moz.
Number of Links from Separate C-Class IPs: Links from separate C-Class IPs tell Google that a wider range of sites is linking to your website. This factor has a great effect on SEO.
Number of Page Links: The total number of linking pages can boost the ranking of a website even if the pages are from the same domain.
Alt Tag/Image Links: Image links are important and Alt tag is the image’s version of anchor text. Using Keywords as Alt tag is very important from SEO’s perspective.
Backlinks from .edu or .gov Domains: Although it’s not confirmed by Google but many an SEO expert believes that backlinks from .edu and .gov domains are more powerful than normal backlinks.
Authority of Linking Page: We all know that there is no importance of PageRank in Google Ranking Factors. But backlinks from high PR page is an extremely important ranking factor.
Authority of Linking Domain: This is one of the most important ranking factors of Google. Acquiring backlinks from high authority domains will boost your ranking in search engine result page.
Backlinks from Competitors: It’s a great way to rank your website in SERP. If you can get backlinks from pages that are ranked for your keyword then Google will consider your page for that keyword.
Social Shares of Referring Page: If the source page (from where you got backlinks) has a lot of social shares then it may influence the backlink’s value.
Links from Bad Neighborhoods: Black Hat SEO techniques are forbidden by Google so links from bad neighborhoods will badly affect your ranking in SERP.
Backlinks from Guest Posting: Backlinks from guest posting are very important for ranking. However, contextual links are more valuable than links from author bio area.
Links to a Domain Homepage: Backlinks from domain homepage may play special importance in evaluating a site’s ranking.
Nofollow Backlinks: One of the most controversial topics of SEO. Google’s Official words about nofollow backlinks are “In general, we don’t follow them”. This means in a certain condition they follow the nofollow links. Moreover, a site with a certain number of nofollow links differentiates them from a spammy link profile.
Diversity in Link Types: Backlinks from a single source (blog commenting, forum posting) is a sign of webspam. However, backlinks from a different source is a sign of a natural link profile.
Sponsored Links: Words like sponsors, link partners or sponsored links will decrease the value of backlinks.
Contextual Links: Backlinks from inside of a page’s content is more powerful than links found elsewhere in the page.
Excessive 301 Redirects to Page: Backlinks coming from 301 redirects weakens the ranking of a site in search engine result page.
Anchor Text of Backlinks: Nowadays anchor text is not that important and Google take it as a web spam signal. However properly used anchor text still provides a relevancy signal.
Internal Link Anchor Text: Internal link anchor text’s value is different from backlink anchor text but they also provide a relevancy signal.
Link Title Attribution: Link title provides a weak relevancy signal and it’s not a major Google Ranking Factors.
Country TLD of Referring Domain: Backlinks from country-specific top-level domain extension will help your website rank higher in that country.
Backlinks Location in Content: Links from the start of the content is more powerful than links from the end of the content.
Backlinks Location on Page: The placement of links on a page is important. Backlinks which are from page’s content are more powerful than those backlinks that are embedded in the footer or sidebar area.
Linking Domain Relevancy: Links from similar niche site are significantly more powerful than backlinks from unrelated websites. So it’s important to get relevant backlinks.
Page Level Relevancy: Another important Google Ranking Factors. If the linking page’s content is related to your page content then these backlinks are more powerful.
Text around the Link: Google understands whether or not a link provides a positive or negative review. Hence, links with positive recommendations carry more weight.
Keyword in Title: If the keyword appears in the title of your linking page then Google will give these backlinks an extra favor.
Positive Link Velocity: Website with positive link velocity tends to get higher ranking in SERP. When everyone is talking good about your site, Google likes it too.
Negative Link Velocity: This is very bad for your website’s ranking in SERP as negative link velocity suggest Google that your site is not good at all. So Google decreases the ranking of your website.
Backlinks from “Hub” Pages: Links from top resources or hubs get a special favor from Google. A website with this kind of backlinks gets a higher position in SERP.
Backlink from Authority Sites: This is a major Google Ranking Factors. Backlinks from authority sites will pass more link juice than a link from the small and non-authority site.
Backlinks from Wikipedia Source: Wikipedia links are nofollow links. But a lot of SEO experts believe that a link from Wikipedia gives your site a little-added trust and authority in the eyes of Google.
Backlink Age: According to a Google patent, old backlinks have more ranking power than new backlinks.
Co-Occurrences: The surrounding of backlinks is very important as it tells Google what the page is about.
Real Site Backlinks VS Fake Site Backlinks: Google gives more value to those backlinks that are from the real site. Google use brand and user interaction signals to distinguish between real and fake site.
Natural Link Profile: Website with natural backlink profile will have a strong and higher position in SERP. Moreover, they will not be affected by the Google update.
Reciprocal Links: Exchanging of backlinks between two sites is known as reciprocal links. A large number of reciprocal links is not good for ranking because Google takes reciprocal links as a violation of their Link Schemes.
User-Generated Content Links: Google is smart enough to identify links coming from UGC vs. the actual site owner. This can be a major factor when it comes to Google ranking.
Links from 301 Redirects: Google’s Matt Cutts says that a 301 redirect is similar to a direct link. However, a massive number of 301 redirects can affect your SERP ranking.
Schema.org Microformats: One of the most important Google Ranking Factors. Pages that support Microformats may rank above pages which do not. This is a direct boost. Moreover, pages with Microformats have a higher SERP CTR.
DMOZ Listed: Not confirmed but many SEO experts believe that Google gives DMOZ listed sites extra preference and better ranking in SERP.
TrustRank of Linking Site: Backlinks from trusted sites determines how much Trust Rank your site will get. Trust Rank improves the ranking of your site in search engine result page.
Number of Outbound Links on Page: PageRank is finite. A page with a large number of outbound links passes less PR than a page with few outbound links.
Profile Links from Forum: Because of spamming, nowadays Google started to devalue links from forum profiles. So use this Off-Page SEO Techniques carefully or your ranking will be affected by this.
Word Count of Linking Content: Number of the word in content is important. A link from a 1000 word post is more valuable and powerful than a link from a 50 – 100 word post.
Quality of Linking Content: Links from poor and spam content doesn’t pass any link juice. Moreover, it can harm your ranking in SERP.
Sitewide Links: Sitewide links are counted as single links. It is confirmed by Matt Cutts.
User Interaction Related Google Ranking Factors
Organic CTR for a Keyword: It is a major Google Ranking Factors. A page that gets more organic traffic or CTR may get a ranking boost for that particular keyword.
Organic CTR for All Keywords: A pages organic CTR for all keywords provides a human-based, user interaction signal. It’s important for ranking.
Bounce Rate: Some SEO experts think bounce rate is important for ranking while others have a different opinion. Google use visitor’s data as a quality tester for a website. So a website with a higher percentage of bounce rate will be counted as a low-quality site by Google.
Direct Traffic: A website with a large number of direct traffic has a great value to Google and it is confirmed that Google uses data from Google Chrome to determine the direct traffic of a website. Google consider Direct Traffic as a quality signal.
Repeat Traffic: Repeat traffic means the percentage of visitors that visit a site again. Website with a large number of repeat traffic may get a better ranking in SERP.
Blocked Sites: Google closed the feature “Blocked Sites” in Chrome. Although Google Panda Algorithm uses it as a quality signal.
Chrome Bookmarks: I have stated before that Google collects Chrome data. So pages that are bookmarked in Chrome might get a ranking boost in SERP.
Google Toolbar Data: This is a very important Google Ranking Factors as Google confirmed that Google uses toolbar data as a ranking signal. A part from page loading speed and malware, it is unknown what kind of data Google gathers from the toolbar.
Number of Comments: Comments may use as a signal of user-interaction and quality. So a page with lots of comment might get a ranking boost in SERP.
Dwell Time: Dwell Time means how long a visitor stays on your site or page when they come from a Google search. A higher percentage of Dwell Time means your site is a quality site and it will get better ranking in SERP.
Algorithm Rules Related Google Ranking Factors
Query Deserves Freshness: Google prefers freshness so they give new quality sites a ranking boost for certain searches.
Query Deserves Diversity: Google sometimes adds diversity to SERP for ambiguous keywords.
Browsing History: Visiting sites while signing in Google can give that site a ranking boost in SERP.
User Search History: Google uses search history data for later searches. For example, if a visitor searches for reviews in general and then for dishwasher, then Google would more likely show dishwasher review sites higher in SERP.
Geo-Targeting: Websites with local server IP and country-specific domain name extension will be given special preference for that country.
Safe Search: If safe search turned on then Search results with curse words or adult content won’t appear on the result page.
Google+ Circles: Including website to Google+ Circle will give a ranking boost for the website in SERP.
DMCA Complaints: Google decreases the ranking of a page or site that gets DMCA complaints.
Domain Diversity: The Bigfoot Update has added more domains to each search engine result page. It makes a negative effect on search ranking.
Transactional Searches: Google shows a different result for keywords that are related to shopping.
Local Searches: For local search result Google shows Google+ Local results above the normal organic search result.
Google News Box: Google news box plays a vital role in the search result and it affects the ranking of a website in SERP.
Brand Preference: After the Vince Update Google started to give big brands a boost for certain short-tail searches.
Shopping Results: Google for certain types of search, sometimes display Google Shopping results in an organic search result.
Image Results: Google use organic listing for image search and it does affect the ranking of a website.
Easter Egg Results: Google has more than 12 Easter Egg Results. For example, if you search for “Atari Breakout” in Google image search, the search results turn into a playable game.
Single Site Results for Brands: Brand related keywords will show you several results from the same sites and it plays vital role in SERP ranking.
Social Media Signals Related Google Ranking Factors
Number of Tweets: The number of Tweets for a page can play an important role in SERP ranking.
Authority of Twitter Users Accounts: Tweets from aged and high authority user profile with a huge number of followers has more impact on ranking then Tweets from new and low-influence accounts.
Number of Facebook Likes: Google considers the number of Facebook page like as a weak ranking signal.
Facebook Shares: Facebook shares are similar to backlinks and they are more powerful then Facebook page likes.
Authority of Facebook User Accounts: This Google Ranking Factor is similar to twitter user accounts. Like and share from high authority Facebook user account has a stronger influence on better ranking.
Pinterest Pins: Pinterest is a very popular social media account with lots of public data. For that reason, Google considers Pinterest Pins a social signal.
Votes from Social Sharing Sites: Google consider shares from Reddit, Digg, and StumbleUpon as a social signal and they can influence the SEO ranking.
Number of Google+1’s: Google said that Google+ has no direct effect on ranking, but it is really hard to believe that Google would ignore its own social network.
Authority of Google+ User Accounts: Similar to Twitter and Facebook, Google values the high authority Google+ user accounts more than low authority account.
Known Authorship: Google has shut down the Google+ authorship program. But Google for some certain condition uses some form of authorship to determine the best and influential content for ranking boost.
Social Signal Relevancy: Google also considers the relevancy of social signal as a ranking factor.
Website Level Social Signals: The social signals of a website can increase the overall authority of the site resulting search visibility for all of its pages.
Brand Names Related Google Ranking Factors
Brand Name in Anchor Text: Including brand name as an anchor text is a very strong brand signal. It is also an important Google Ranking Factors.
Branded Searches: People always search for brands. If people search for brands with keywords, then Google will directly take them to the site.
Brand Website with Facebook Pages and Likes: Brands with Facebook pages normally have a lot of likes and shares and it boosts the identity of the brand.
Brand Website Having Twitter Profile with Followers: Twitter profiles with a lot of followers may boost brand popularity and it affects the ranking of a site in search engines.
Official Linkedin Company Page: Most real businesses has a company page on Linkedin. It increases the trustworthiness of the brand.
Employees Listed on Linkedin: Individual LinkedIn profiles that say they work for your company can boost its brand value.
The legitimacy of Social Media Accounts: A social media account with a lot of interaction with its follower is more legitimate than a social media account with less interaction with its followers.
Brand Mentions on News Sites: Google news site always mention the big brand names. In fact, some brands have their own Google News feed on the first page.
Co-Citations: Sometimes brands get mentioned without getting linked. Google also consider these non-hyperlinked brand mentions as a brand signal.
Number of RSS Subscribers: Google owns the popular Feedburner RSS service and they could use the RSS Subscriber data as a popularity or brand signal.
Office Location with Google+ Local Listing: Real businesses have offices and Google checks the location data to determine whether or not the site is a big brand or not.
The website is Tax Paying Business: According to Moz report, Google may look at whether or not a website is associated with a tax-paying business. And it also counts as a brand signal.
On-Site Web Spam Related Google Ranking Factors
The Panda Penalty: After the panda penalty update Sites with low-quality content are now less visible to search engine result page. Websites with poor quality content are affected by the panda penalty.
Linking to Bad Neighborhoods: Backlinks from bad neighborhoods will seriously affect your ranking in SERP. For example loan sites, pharmacy websites etc.
Redirects: Sneaky redirects are forbidden by Google. If your website gets caught then there is a chance Google can not only penalize but also de-indexed it too!
Popups or Disturbing Ads: Google consider a website with Popups or Disturbing Ads as a low-quality site and it can negatively affect the ranking.
Over Optimization of Site: Over optimization of a site like a keyword stuffing, excessive keyword decoration, header tag stuffing can adversely affect the ranking of a site in SERP.
Over Optimization of Page: Google Penguin algorithm targets individual page, so over optimization of a page can decrease the ranking of a website in SERP.
Ads above the Fold: It is a very important Google Ranking Factors as Google penalizes sites that have lots of ads above the fold.
Affiliate Sites: Google does not like affiliates sites so websites that monetize with affiliate links are under extra inquiry by Google.
Hiding Affiliate Links: Hiding affiliate links is a very bad idea and Google can penalize your website for that.
Auto-generated Content: Google can penalize or even de-indexed a website that has computer generated content on it.
Excess PageRank Sculpting: Another very important Google Ranking Factors and it can decrease the ranking of a website in SERP.
IP Address Flagged as Spam: If the server’s IP address is flagged for spamming then it may hurt all the sites on that server.
Meta Tag Spamming: Keyword stuffing can happen in Meta tags too! If Google thinks you are spamming the Meta tags to game the algorithm, then they can give your site penalty.
Off-Page Web Spam Related Google Ranking Factors
Unnatural Influx of Links: A sudden and unnatural link influx is an evidence of phony links. It will badly affect the ranking of a website in SERP.
Penguin Penalty: Websites that are hit by Google penguin are significantly less visible on search engine result page.
Link Profile with High Percentage of Low-Quality Links: If a website has a high percentage of low-quality links then its ranking will decrease from SERP. This is also regarded as a very important Google Ranking Factors.
Linking Domain Relevancy: A study from MicroSiteMasters.com shows that websites with a high amount of links from unrelated sites are more vulnerable to Penguin Penalty.
Unnatural Links Warning: Google sent warning through Google Webmaster Tools about unnatural links detection and it can cause a ranking drop of a website.
Links from same class C IP: A large number of backlinks from the same server IP is a sign of PBN link building. And it affects the ranking of a website in SERP.
Manual Penalty: Manual Penalty does exist and Google is well known for the Interflora fiasco.
“Poison” Anchor Text: Having “poison” anchor text like pharmacy keywords is a sign of spamming or a hacked site. It can hart your websites ranking very seriously.
Selling Links: Selling links is prohibited by Google and can decrease the ranking of your website.
Google Sandbox: Google puts new sites that get a sudden influx of links, in the Google Sandbox. It temporarily limits the search visibility of the website.
Google Dance: The Google Dance can temporarily shake up the search ranking in order to find out if any site is trying to game the algorithm.
Disavow Tool: This is a very useful tool as it can remove any manual penalty or algorithm penalty for sites that have been a victim of negative SEO.
Reconsideration Request: If your site hit by any Google penalty then a successful reconsideration request can lift you the penalty and make your website visible in SERP.
Temporary Link Schemes: Google finds out that people create and quickly remove spammy links. They also caught people doing this and penalize them. So for the betterment of your site never try to apply this method or the consequence will be severe.
Finally, we are done with 200 Google Ranking Factors. We all know that SEO is a complex and ever-evolving Method. Moreover, Recent Google algorithm updates made it hard for websites to rank higher in SERP. So in order to get higher ranking in SERP and stay there for a longer period of time, you must follow the Google rules and ranking factors. So understanding these Google Ranking Factors will help your website rank on 1st page of search engine result pages.