Monday, April 25, 2011

How Changes on Your Webpage Can Influence Your Search Engine Rankings

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It's no longer news that your ranking on search engine result page can be influenced by changes on your web pages. But, no one can say for sure the mode of search engines' reaction on the changes on our webpage, and what it is in particular that influences the changes in search results. Perhaps some answers may be generated from a new search engine patent.


A good number of search engine patents handle the changes that take place on your webpage.
Six years ago, a patent published by Google described how changes made to your webpage can influence your website ranks. Recently, another patent was granted to Microsoft that tells us the impact that changes on website have on how a site ranks in the search engine result page.

The new patent granted to Microsoft reveals the particular elements on your website that are likely to be monitored by search engines.

Now, what are your webpage elements that search engines monitor?

Here are the webpage elements that can be monitored according to the new patent:
  • Webpage featured keywords
  • Webpage related keywords
  • The anchor texts employed on your webpage links
  • How images or texts are positioned on your webpage
  • The sizes as well as colors applied on your webpage featured images
  • How frequent document on your webpage varies over time
  • How much of the content on your website has changed
  • The search terms that visitors are using to locate your page
  • Your webpage's assigned tags
How precisely, do the changes in these webpage elements influence the ranking of your webpage?
The patent revealed that searches are grouped into two; there's the 'informational' as well as 'navigational' search. The category or group to which a search query belongs determines the effect of the changes on the website. The query a searcher uses to find a named webpage is an example of 'navigational query'. For instance, a search for 'Harvard University' will take the searcher to the homepage of this university. On the other hand, 'how can I repair my lace wig' is an example of 'informational query'.

If a web visitor is searching for info relating to a recent event, websites that included the information recently are likely to be boosted in their ranking.

There may be a boost to webpages that have static content. This technique works excellently with certain websites but may become an issue for home pages that embark on regular content update.

What is the significance of this to your Webpage?

Microsoft got this patent, but from all indication, it is likely that Google employs related techniques. Search engines are not only concerned with the current version of a webpage. They also take cognizance of the webpage's status in the past. The changes on your webpage could mean that ownership of the site has changed, it may also mean that you are trying to make your site stay up-to-date. Search engines may also see changes on your webpage as a sign of spam etc.

So, do not embark on optimization of a web page that is already ranking high for any of your keywords. Instead, optimize a different page using the new keyword. Use different keywords to optimize different pages of your site, but ensure that the keywords are related. This proves to search engines that your site is relevant to a specific theme.

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