May 19, 2008
Unravelling the Google Algorithm – Introduction
Google is now the world’s leading search engine and the yardstick that most SEO companies use when undertaking SEO programs.
For this reason, understanding how Google’s patented algorithm works is critical to improving search engine performance.
From the outside however, I’d like to point out that the exact makeup of Google’s algorithm is a tightly guarded trade secret. Google have patented what’s included in their algorithm, but not how it all comes together. As a result of this, no-one (except those high in the Google hierarchy) knows for sure how search results are ranked.
This makes it nearly impossible for individual webmasters to be able to undertake SEO with any degree of certainty whatsoever. SEO companies basically learn what works through educated guesses and past experiences. As a result of this, a well-established SEO company, such as Reload Media, get as close as anyone outside of Google is going to get to determining how the algorithm works.
Many people are familiar with the notion of PageRank, Google’s way of ranking websites but this is just one part of the way Google organises its search results. Google’s overall ranking equation takes into account over 200 factors, way too many to dealt with in depth in this article but the main ones will be dealt with over time in our ‘SEO Tip of the Week’ section.
The important point to take away from this is that no SEO company can truthfully claim to knowing the inner workings of Google’s algorithm. It changes constantly and this makes it almost impossible to nail down. An SEO company’s usefullness then comes from their experience and proven track record in being able to predict how a certain change will affect one’s search engine performance.