Thank goodness Google has complete control of our online lives… no, seriously. It used to be so much worse…
Google used to be the puppet for many copywriters and content creators- “black hat” tricks like hiding white text in the background of pages loaded with keywords. Along comes 2011’s web crawlers, indexes the page, and BOOM! To the top of the search results it goes. The result? Spammy, useless websites could easily land on top of the results page, while actual useful content would be found on somewhere around page 26.
Now, you actually have to have something of value. Each year, Google has become exponentially more advanced in understanding what a page is about, it’s quality, it’s content, etc. Yes, keywords still play a part, but a significantly lower one- now it’s about how people interact with the page, how useful it is, how easy to navigate it is and how clearly and concisely it is written. Why?
Because Google isn’t just about helping you find websites. It’s purpose is to “organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful”. Therefore, if your website doesn’t really contain useful information, don’t expect Google to make it accessible to others. In other words, gone are the days of Google being the puppet. It is now pulling the strings and can no longer be easily faked, manipulated or plagiarized. You have to have useful, interesting content to rank on Google. Period. Google pays attention to info such as how many clicks your website gets, how long people stay there, how many times people return, how many people link to your site, etc. in order to show it’s value to others. Along with keywords, meta-tags and other behind the scenes elements, Google now calls the shots.
So… Ready to start making a website that Google wants to show the world?