How do search engines judge website value?

search engine value

The trick to a successful website is not solely based on the aesthetics; search engines also judge the value of a website based on functionality, usability, and domain authority. If a website is publishing fresh content daily, however, this is low in quality and difficult for the user to navigate through, the likelihood of your website ranking high in value will be slim. Search engines take into consideration several elements to determine the value of your website, including the likes of quality content, links to other high ranking sites and search engine optimisation.

The better your website is at working through the above tick list, the higher your website will hopefully rank in the search engine results page (SERPs) which can help drive traffic to your site.

Quality content – Search engines have complex algorithms which have been developed over
decades to analyse content for quality and key elements such as – does it answer the question the user is asking? The search engine bots look for more than length, they crawl through your site to ensure that you are using digestible language packed with keywords which would naturally appear when covering a specified topic. If you overly engineer this and use keyword stuffing techniques, the search engine will recognise this and penalise your site as a result.

Quality content explores each related area of a topic, within reason, ensuring that the user can access the knowledge they are looking for in one place – your site. Your content should engage the reader and thoroughly answer the question they are asking as this shows that you understand user intent.

For example, the current Covid-19 pandemic has opened the door for many businesses with an online shopfront to extend their bank of content to cover a Covid-19 context, as illustrated here by business recovery specialists, Real Business Rescue, who have developed a Covid-19 help centre as a response to Covid-19 enquiries.

Domain authority – This is an indication of credibility and authority and is highly judged by search engines. Domain authority isn’t an aspect which can be developed overnight, the journey is gradual and requires you to form links with other trusted domains to show verification that you’re a reliable source. If the information on your website is useful and cited by other quality websites, this helps increase your domain authority.

Putting it into perspective, if a news feature by the BBC is attributed to as a source by over 150 sites, this indicates to the search engine that the domain holds authority and credibility. Your domain authority will be influenced by the number of links pointing to your site from other high ranking domains. If you’re able to share your content with other quality sites, this can help move you up in the food chain.

In addition to creating links and producing quality content, search engines will also take a look at guest posts produced on other high-quality sites as this illustrates your interactions with other credible sources. Your roadmap to strengthening the value of your website will require a joined-up approach across your search engine optimisation, content and social media activity, a gradual journey which can prove fruitful in the long term.

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