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How to Make Your Website Appear on the First Page of Google in 2023

Every business owner dreams for their website to appear on the first page of Google, and for good reason. Making an appearance on the first page of Google gives a business an incredible amount of visibility and credibility. 

This means that appearing on the first page can drastically increase organic traffic and potential customers to a website. Luckily, while getting on the first page of Google isn’t easy, it’s certainly not impossible. And boy, is it worth it!

In this blog post, we’ll give you some helpful advice to help your website appear on the first page of Google this year.

4 things you need to get a chance at page one of Google

Research has shown that websites on the first page of Google receive up to 95% of all search engine traffic. Further, websites on the first page of Google are seen by customers as more reputable and trustworthy than those buried on a search engine’s second, third, or fourth page. But how does someone get there?

We wish we could break down Google’s algorithm and give you the exact formula to end up on the first page; sadly, we haven’t done any corporate espionage. But here are four things that are non-negotiable to get a chance at page one.

Helpful, unique content

It’s been said before and bears mention again: content is king. This is especially true in light of Google’s Helpful Content Update from August 2022, which significantly emphasizes “high-quality content.”

But what constitutes high quality? High-quality content is primarily written keeping the audience in mind and not simply to rank in Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs). Content that is too SEO-focused is often seen as lacking a human touch. 

This doesn’t mean that you don’t need to optimize for keywords. You absolutely do, but the essence of content creation should be delivering value to the user, which can measure in several different ways. For instance, if the audience receives relevant, helpful information from your content, the time spent on your pages will be high.

Our philosophy? You can’t go wrong with people-first content.

Technical SEO

Now, let’s say you’ve created the most valuable, interesting piece of content for your audience—we’re talking the holy grail of copy here. Your audience will still need to find it on Google to benefit from it, and they’re not going to scroll for long to find it, either.

For that, you need technical SEO. Give your content a solid foundation to live on. Optimize content with keywords so that your content can be found. Make it scannable for the user, tag subheads with the appropriate header tags (H1, H2, H3), and write meta descriptions for the SERPs. 

Users hate slow websites. Ensure your website loads fast, navigates smoothly, and includes a search feature. One way to improve your website’s load time is to make sure all the images on your web pages are compressed. 

Make sure your website is indexed, crawlable, and the pages interlinked. Fix broken links and remove duplicate content. These things are easy to do but go a long way. You’re on the right path when you bolster that holy-grail content with technical SEO. 

For extra advice, here’s a list of more things you can do for your SEO. If you are dedicated to serving your audience but find the SEO side challenging, leave it to the experts—SEO is what Ranq does best

A mobile-friendly website

With an overwhelming majority of users accessing the web through their smartphones, it’s understandable that Google has shifted to mobile-first indexing. Before this recent update, Google bots primarily relied on crawling the desktop version to index a website and determine its relevance.

Now, mobile is the mold. If you want to ensure your website appears on the first page of Google, you need to make it mobile-responsive. Google offers a free online mobile-friendly test that you can easily use to check your pages for responsiveness. 

While most websites have a desktop and a mobile version, Google stresses that data and user experience be comparable on both versions. In effect, there’s no way to just optimize the mobile version according to mobile-first indexing best practices.

High-authority, relevant backlinks

Backlinks are a vote of confidence that the linking web pages confer upon the linked-to web page. It tells Google that the information on a particular page is valuable. However, its long and dark past complicates the state of backlinks today.

When Google algorithms weren’t as strong, marketers would use black hat SEO techniques, creating hordes of backlinks using shady methods such as link farming, link-buying, and automated link-generating tools. 

As Google algorithms evolved, it cracked down on those kinds of marketing tactics and downgraded the number of backlinks as a ranking factor. Some marketers sulk to this day, thinking backlinks are dead. 

We’re here to tell you that backlinks aren’t dead; however, the focus has shifted from quantity to the quality of those backlinks. If you want to get on Google’s first page, abide by these when it comes to backlinking:

  • Relevance: The backlinks must be relevant to the content on the page.
  • Contextual anchor text: Link to “Technical Seo tips” rather than “click here.”
  • Domain authority of linking site: One backlink from one high-authority website beats multiple backlinks from low domain authority or irrelevant websites. 

How to check page position on Google

Now that your website has checked those four boxes, you may be wondering, “Are we there yet?” Here’s how to check if you are.

Check manually with a private browser

To check where your webpage appears on the SERPs, type in your keyword in the Google search field of a private tab. This is because Google customizes your results based on browsing history and saves cookies, so you might get skewed results if you carry out this search while logged into Google. 

Search in an incognito window to get a better and more accurate picture. Type your keyword and hit search. Scan the first page, move to the second, and so on if you don’t find your website there. If it doesn’t show up by the third page, you have some serious work left to do.

Use the Google Search Console to check in bulk

The Google Search Console is a great place to monitor your website and check various metrics regarding its health and performance. You can check the page position of your website here, too.

On the left-hand panel, click on the preference tab and search for your average position in the data that shows up. It’s important to note that this number will measure your average position on the SERPs (i.e., the sum of positions on the SERPs divided by the number of keywords you rank for). 

Extra SEO marketing tips to raise your ranking

Whether your website is on the first page or not, if you’ve implemented the above tips, you’re already ahead of the curve. Here are some extra SEO marketing tips to boost your chances of appearing on the first page even further:

Make full use of structured data

Structured data helps Google better understand and index the content of your page. The better Google understands your page, the more chances it has of being visible on the SERPs. 

Using structured data on your website will make it easier for Google to include it in its search feature like content carousels, videos, featured snippets, knowledge panels, FAQs, and many others.

Google provides a free tool to check if your page supports rich results. If you find that your pages don’t support rich results, you can add schema markup to your page with Google’s Structured data markup helper

Implement multiple kinds of content

For some reason, we automatically think of text whenever content is mentioned. In reality, content is a massive range of things: images, videos, podcasts, slides, infographics, presentations, and even spreadsheets. 

Every type can—and should—be leveraged to engage with your audience. Users, especially in the Millenial and Gen Z age range, prefer the option to listen to your blog. They’d love to know the steps to a tutorial, but it’s more helpful to see it in a video. 

So, use images in blogs, descriptions under videos, and show notes for podcasts. Just remember to follow the SEO best practices for each platform or else it won’t matter.  

Have plenty of internal links and few external links

Internal links play a part in how Google determines your pages’ SERP rankings. This is because how you link your website pages determines their navigation structure, and its navigation structure determines how easily crawlable it is by Google bots.

In fact, how your pages are internally linked tells Google which pages you consider to be more important than others. Representatives of Google have even hinted multiple times over the years that a website’s internal linking scheme, in addition to anchor texts, can be considered to be a ranking factor.

Also, just so Google and readers know you’re presenting quality information, make sure to throw in a couple of external links, too.

Get to the first page of Google with the help of Ranq’s SEO experts

To get a crack at appearing on the first page of Google, evaluate your website to see if it meets our four checkboxes: high-quality content, technical SEO, mobile-first indexing, and high-authority backlinks. Once those are settled, you can focus on leveraging structured data, diversifying your content type, and enhancing your site’s internal navigation structure. 

Ranking on the first page involves balancing content creation and SEO over an extended period. If you’re not able to handle that tug-of-war on your own, let Ranq help! Our all-inclusive marketing services pack the content punch you need with the technical SEO knowledge to back it up. With Ranq at your side, there’s no stopping you. Contact us today to see how you can reach the first page in no time.

Author avatar
Diksha Chauhan

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