10 of The Most Important Google Ranking Factors for SEO

Discover 10 game-changers that can help improve your SEO rankings! Unlock the secrets to SEO with our simple ranking factors Infographic.

Estimated Read Time:  9 minutes

Whether you’re trying to spread the word about your contractor business or get your roofing website on the map, it all starts with having an SEO optimized website. But simply slapping together a website isn’t enough to rank at the top of the search results—you need to understand SEO for contractors and the strategies that contribute to ranking.

Our guide below lists 10 critical Google ranking factors for SEO that can help your contractor website show up on top of the search results so customers can find you.

Table of Contents

1. Quality Content That's Relevant to Search Queries

In the eyes of Google, content is king, but not just any content—Google favors high-quality content that addresses user search intent.

To produce valuable content, you need to understand what your users are searching for, and that’s where keyword research comes into play.

You can use keyword research tools like Google Search Console, SEMrush, and ahrefs to determine important keyword data that can influence and inform your SEO strategy.

A few things keyword research can provide:

  • Query: What words and phrases are people entering into the search engine?

  • Search Volume: How many people are searching for that query?

  • Difficulty: How hard would it be to rank on Google’s search results for that query?

When you take these factors into account, you can begin crafting content that satisfies your users’ search intent. For instance, if you’re an electrician and find that many users are searching for “electrician near me” and “electrical contractor” your content should match up with those terms to help it rank.

2. Crawlability and Indexability

Your website must be indexable, meaning Google can crawl your website, process it, and then index the pages to show in the search results. Indexing is crucial because the Google won’t direct any organic search traffic to your site without it.

To improve your website’s crawlability and indexability:

  • Ensure your robots.txt file is allowing Google to crawl your website
  • Do not place “noindex” tags on the pages you want indexed
  • Make sure your pages have “canonical” tags
  • Submit your sitemap to Google
  • Add internal links to your pages
  • Use the URL Inspection tool in Google Search Console to request page indexing

3. Linking Structure


Link building, which includes both your internal and external links, is another critical factor impacting your Google rankings.

Your internal linking structure is vital because it connects your pages to one another, creating a site architecture that is easy for your users (and Google) to navigate. For example, your HVAC website’s blog posts should have links to other important pages and blog posts you want to rank.

External links, also called backlinks, are links on other websites that link back to your website. When a well-respected, trustworthy site links to your website, it can help establish your own website’s credibility and authority.

Let’s say a well-known home improvement site links to your website’s “guide to roof installations”. This could provide your site with “link juice” or link equity. Basically, Google would see this as a vote of confidence and may rank your site higher because of it.

4. Content That Satisfies Search Intent

Satisfy Search Intent

Simply knowing what words and phrases users are typing into Google isn’t enough to rank on the top. You need to understand why they’re searching.

This brings us to search intent, which aims to determine the reason behind the user’s search query.

For instance, if a user types “roofing contractor” into Google, they’re likely looking for a roofer to get a roofing estimate. But if they’re searching for “How to replace your garbage disposal,” they’re looking for information on how to do it. Understanding the intent can help you provide relevant content that satisfies the users search and prevents them from jumping around from site to site until they find their answer.

Some factors Google uses to determine if your content compliments the user’s search intent include:

  • Bounce rate
  • Time on site/page
  • Pages per visit
  • Goal Conversion Rate

To help Google deliver the best answers and satisfy the user’s intent, make sure your content is aligned with what the user is looking for.

5. Duplicate Content is Bad

Duplicate Content

While taking cues from other high-performing content is important, there’s a difference between gathering inspiration from it and flat-out copying it. SEO matters, and Google will prevent you from cheating your way to rankings.

Google favors unique content because duplicate content doesn’t add value to the users search experience.

After all, if Google discovers duplicate content, it may filter out yours, preventing your page from ranking.

To avoid duplicate content issues make sure you:

  • Create content that differs from other websites
  • Write copy that offers something unique
  • Ensure your own website content isn’t duplicated or too similar to another website
  • Never use the same content with only a few word changes on different pages

6. Experience, Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness (E-E-A-T)


Google’s Search Quality Rater Guidelines use the concept of experience, expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness (E-E-A-T) to evaluate websites. However, rather than just assessing the website itself, Google also analyzes the attributes of the content creator.

Experience: This looks at the content creator’s life experiences that make them qualified to cover the topic. If they have the appropriate background, then the content is often regarded as more trustworthy or authoritative.

Expertise: Does the content creator have the necessary knowledge or skills to write about this topic? After all, some topics require a certain degree of expertise to be accurate.

For example, if a licensed plumber were to write an article on how to fix a broken pipe, it would be more favorably evaluated than if a lifestyle blogger with no plumbing experience wrote the same article.

Authoritativeness: This one addresses whether the content creator has made a name for themselves writing about this topic. Are they a go-to source?

Trustworthiness: Experience, expertise, and authoritativeness all ladder up to the level of trustworthiness of the content creator, the content, and the website as a whole.

7. Up-to-Date Content

Content can get stale. Even if your content was once ranking well, it could lose its rankings if you don’t refresh it.

Google values up-to-date and relevant website copy.

Don’t just update content for the sake of updating it.

Make sure your content is relevant and current. Maybe a new roofing product is on the market or there’s a new way to repair a heater. If your content does not include these new trends it needs to be updated.

If you answer yes to the following questions, your content may need refreshing:

  • Has it been a while (months or years) since you first published it?
  • Does the content include irrelevant or outdated information?
  • Are people no longer linking to the page?
  • Are you seeing lower engagement rates on the page?

To refresh your content:

  • Make sure your content still aligns with search intent
  • Determine if there are new topics to include
  • Revise or remove outdated information
  • Remove unnecessary or irrelevant information
  • Republish the content with a revision date

8. Click-through Rate (CTR)

Click-Through Rate (CTR) measures the percentage of people who click to your website from the Google search results.

The higher the CTR, the better.

While an improved CTR may not impact your rankings directly, it can have other added benefits.

An improved CTR can mean more:

  • Eyes on your content
  • Natural backlinks to your content
  • Potential leads
  • Higher engagement on your website

Here are a few ideas to improve your CTR:

Meta Title Tags: Write engaging meta title tags (the clickable headlines on the search engine results page) that encourage users to click on them.

Meta Description: Craft compelling meta descriptions (the brief summary under the title tag) that match the user’s search intent. Even though Google rewrites most meta descriptions, this is still important.

Rich Snippets: Rich Snippets, are Google search results with additional data displayed. This extra data is pulled from structured data found in the website code / HTML.

9. Website Speed

A slow website is one sure way to make people leave fast.

Page speed is a confirmed ranking factor. That said, addressing page speed isn’t always a walk in the park and requires technical knowledge.

If LCP, FID, and CLS are all foreign to you, then it may be best to turn to a search engine optimization company for help improving your page speed.

However, if you’re willing to do some tinkering on your own, consider:

  • Selecting a hosting solution designed for speed
  • Investing in a caching plugin like WP Rocket
  • Leveraging a Content Delivery Network (CDN)
  • Optimize your image file size

10. Mobile Friendly

Mobile Friendly

Mobile-friendliness is another confirmed Google ranking factor.

In fact, Google will likely rank your website based on the mobile experience.

Make sure font sizes and other graphics all display properly on mobile devices.

Keep in mind that you want your users to use and navigate your website on all their devices—not just their mobile phones.

That means your website should also be designed for desktop computers, tablets, and laptops so everyone can easily use your website.

Here are a few tips to ensure your website is mobile friendly:

  • Use a responsive layout and design
  • Make sure font sizes and other graphics all display properly on mobile devices
  • Remove pop-ups and graphics that don’t fit well on mobile
  • Optimize your page speed

10 Google Ranking Factors for SEO - Infographic

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Google Ranking Factors Infographic

You’re welcome to use this infographic on your website, as long as the appropriate attribution is provided.

Click here to download the infographic

Aaron R CEO

Aaron R. - CEO

Entrepreneur with 20 years experience launching and managing successful web design and marketing companies. As seen in New York Times,, Smashing Magazine, Home Advisor and other various mainstream media.

Passionate about #seo #marketing #webdesign #socialmedia #blogging #family #texasbbq

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