How to improve the credibility of your website
Credibility is an important ranking factor. The more credible a website is, the better it will rank on Google. How do search engines measure the credibility of a website and what can you do to improve the credibility of your own site?
A) Proven elements that influence the credibility of your website
There are several elements that search engines have been using for a long time to determine the credibility of a website:
- Backlinks: the links that point to your website greatly contribute to the trustworthiness of your site. If your website has mainly automatically created low quality links then this won’t have a positive effect on your rankings. Links from reputable websites will have a positive effect on the credibility of your own site. You’re better off having one link from a website with a Google Page Rank of 5, than 20 links from sites with a Page Rank of 1. Always check the Page Rank of site before requesting a backlink.
- Links to other websites: if your website contains a lot of links to irrelevant websites then this can have a negative influence on the credibility of your site. If your website mainly offers affiliate links or if many of the links to other websites are broken then this might also have a negative influence. We’ve found if you have LOT of links to low quality websites it can bring down YOUR Page Rank, as well we’ve found the likely hood of you have a link to a 404 Error Page (page down) is more likely.
- Error-free pages: search engines won’t find your website trustworthy if it contains a lot of errors. Your web pages shouldn’t contain broken links or missing images. A lot of spelling mistakes can also be a sign of a low quality website. Be sure to PROOFREAD your pages, and if you’re using WordPress get the Broken Link Checker Plugin.
- Many website visitors: Google has many ways to track the number of visitors that a website gets (Chrome, Analytics, etc.). A website that gets many visitors seems more trustworthy than a website with only a few visitors. – I call this “The Cart Before The Horse” effect; Get more visitors and Google will rank you higher. Really?
- Good web page navigation: a clear website navigation that makes it easy to find pages is an indicator of a good website. If people find what they’re looking for on your web pages, search engines will give these pages a boost. In addition, a good website structure helps search engines to index all of your pages. Along with having a sitemap.xml for the GoogleBot, you should also have a SiteMap for your website on the front end like this one: SiteMap – Built using a simple sitemap builder plugin for WordPress.
B) New elements that can influence the credibility of your website
In addition to the proven elements above, there are some new elements that influence the credibility of your site.
- The number of social mentions: the more often your web pages are mentioned on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and other social media websites, the more credible your website can be.Of course, only real mentions from real people will have a positive influence. Fake likes and mentions might have a negative influence.
- Verified authorship: web pages with a verified author that has a good reputation can get better rankings on Google. At this time, the effect of a verified authorship on the rankings of your website seems to be low.
A credible website is important if you want to have a successful online business. In addition to higher rankings on Google and other search engines, people tend to buy much more on credible websites.