Skip to main content

You might not be surprised at how popular Google is on the Internet. Needless to say, it currently takes over 90% of the search engine market share. 

As a business target ranking SEO to position itself in the digital market, you definitely want to get all of the updates on Google. Hence, this guide gives you the latest list of 10 Google ranking factors in 2023. 

By mastering these, your business will gain great competitive advantages in enhancing brand awareness, listing on top search results, and more. 

What Is A Google Ranking Factor?

Google SEO ranking factors are criteria or signals the search algorithm uses to determine search results’ ranking order. Each Google search ranking factor plays a unique role in benefiting your page, such as content quality, mobile-friendliness, backlinks, etc. 

By setting these evaluating elements, Google aims to provide the most relevant and high-quality content to users based on their search queries.

10 Google Ranking Factors In 2023

The real question is, how many ranking factors does Google have? 

In fact, Google changes its ranking factors quite often to diverse page ranks, potentially refreshing new search experiences for users. Until now, there are over 200 Google ranking factors, which the most common include: 

  1. Query meaning
  2. Relevance content 
  3. Quality content
  4. Page speed
  5. Mobile-friendliness
  6. Domain authority
  7. Keyword research
  8. Sitemap
  9. Website security
  10. Backlinks
google ranking factors - ROI Digitally
  1. Query Meaning

Type this in your Google search: “What is a pizza?”

What does the result show? Definition and history of Pizza on Wikipedia, tutorials on how to make pizza, facts about pizza and its origin, and many others related to pizza. 

Search results for “What is a pizza?”

You see? When you ask a question about pizza, your search results are all about pizza. This stated the algorithm behind search results: it understands your search query.

By establishing the intent behind your query, Google can provide you with the best answers that directly pertain to your point and its relevant content. 

In fact, Google has built language models to demonstrate the relevance between your search phrases and the most useful content available.

Google language models also analyze some words you enter and match them with the most helpful content available. This involves recognizing and correcting spelling mistakes or using a synonym system to find relevant info, even if they don’t contain the exact words you typed. 

  1. Relevance Content 

Next on the Google ranking factors SEO checklist, we have the relevance of your content. 

Google systems analyze the content to determine its relevance to your search intent. The most visible signal of relevance is when the content contains the exact keywords as your search query. 

For example, if those keywords appear on a webpage or in the headings or body of the text, the information might be more relevant.

Google displays all the relevant results about the definition of pizza on the top result page when asking: “What is a pizza?”

Besides, Google’s algorithm also evaluates other on-page SEO factors to check for relevance. Most of the time, they would use aggregated and anonymous interaction data to check if search results align with queries. This data helps improve Google’s machine-learned systems’ ability to estimate relevance.

However, be aware that Google’s system prioritizes quantifiable signs to evaluate the relevance and mostly avoids concepts about the page’s viewpoint or politician. 

See more: How to find keyword search volume?

  1. Quality Content

Isn’t it apparent how the quality of content is consistently listed among the top Google ranking factors?

Once Google identifies relevant content, its algorithm prioritizes how helpful your page is to users. Most of the time, the search bot pays attention to the top three content elements, including expertise, authority, and credibility.

One of the signs to determine the trustworthiness of your content is the number of links or mentions your page receives. Moreover, it checks for feedback during Google’s search quality evaluation process to further dive into how helpful your content is to readers.

And in case you wonder how Google can evaluate if the content is constantly updating? No worries because Google’s system will continuously recognize and measure all. This case ensures the search algorithm maintains the right balance between relevance and authority to keep the website’s credibility with its users. 

  1. Page Speed

The better the user experience, the higher the ranking of your website. This is undeniable.

Page speed is the Google ranking factors SEO checklist that significantly impacts user experience on your website. This factor refers to how fast a website loads and how responsive it is for users, both mobile and desktop versions.

Be aware that besides measuring the overall loading time of a page, Google also checks the displaying speed of website elements like fonts, pictures, etc. In fact, optimizing loading speed also means optimizing detailed factors on a webpage. 

The goal of page speed optimization is not to simply outperform your competitors by shortening milliseconds of load time. Instead, it’s about meeting a minimum standard for page loading time, resulting in a good user experience. In contrast, slow loading time can risk drop-out or bounce rates.

If you are using a WordPress website, try to use a content delivery network (CDN), which helps shorten loading time for both domestic and global users.

PageSpeed Insights – Google’s tool evaluates your page speed shown on search results.
  1. Mobile-friendliness

How frequently do you use your phone to access a website? Most of the time, right?

With the massive amount of mobile phone usage, no wonder this search engine prioritizes mobile-friendliness as its Google ranking factors 2023. 

Google evaluates how your page fits in a mobile version for indexing and ranking. That evaluation includes mobile-friendly design, size, responsiveness, and more. 

While it is not hard to choose a good template that perfectly matches the screen, it requires more effort to optimize it for a smooth mobile-using experience.   

  1. Backlinks

In off-page SEO, Backlinks are incoming links from other websites to yours and carry much weight in Google’s ranking algorithm.


Without enough backlinks, your web pages will lose a huge advantage among competitors, resulting in less visibility and lower traffic.

So, why are backlinks important for SEO?

There are two primary purposes of backlinks: to improve organic traffic and to build a website’s authority. 

When other third-party links to your content, it notifies Google that your website is trustworthy and valuable. Then, Google will evaluate these links and score your website’s relevance and authority.

Not all backlinks are created equal, though. Backlinks from high-authority websites hold more value and have a more substantial impact on your rankings than links from lower-rated sites. Hence, don’t only pay attention to the quantity, but the quality also.

Building a strong backlink profile requires actively seeking opportunities to earn links from relevant and authoritative websites. This can be done through outreach, guest blogging, and establishing a network with other professionals in your industry.

  1. Domain Authority (or Domain Rating)

Regarding Google SEO ranking factors, domain authority (DA) or Domain Rating (DR) is a metric you definitely don’t want to miss out on performance evaluation. This indicates how well your website displays its expertise in a specific field and its potential to rank higher on search engines.

DA’s concept was first established by Moz, an SEO company. It assigns a website score ranging from 1 to 100. The higher your score, the greater your chances of appearing on Google’s search results for keywords related to your expertise. On other tools like Ahrefs SEMrush, Domain Authority is called Domain Rating, basically the same metric. 

Domain Rating on Ahrefs, similar to Domain Authority on Moz

Most of the time, the score is determined by the quantity of high-authority backlinks your page receives. It’s important to note that simply having many backlinks doesn’t guarantee better rankings. But high-quality links do.

To improve your website’s domain authority, it’s recommended to focus on developing your website and blog content around one major topic. By doing so, you establish yourself as an authoritative source within that niche, contributing to a higher domain authority score.

  1. Keyword Research

With the importance of keyword research, it isn’t surprising to see it is one of the Google search ranking factors. Why?

Using the right keywords to target the right audience is the first and most essential boost to your on-page SEO process. 

Keywords, as one of the on-page SEO checklist factors, are specific words or phrases users enter into the search bar. Google used these exact keywords to display relevant search results that best match users’ search phrases. 

However, it’s not just about incorporating keywords randomly. There must be detailed analytics and evaluation to choose the right keywords. But no worries, let the technical tools do it for you.

Ahrefs is a great tool for keyword research. Or Google Keyword Planner, SEMrush.

Additionally, how to rank for a keyword is one of many steps in keyword research. Monitoring them is also important. This involves keeping track of how well your website is performing for specific keywords. By regularly checking your keyword rankings, you can identify issues and make adjustments if necessary. 

  1. Sitemap

Ask yourself: Would you call a site with everything on display a friendly website or one you must find and search? The answer is quite obvious. 

Being one of the top Google ranking factors, your webpage’s sitemap determines how easily users and Google crawlers can access and index your pages. That’s why it is listed among Google search ranking factors. A simple structure with fewer subdirectories can help them understand your site more efficiently. 

Besides the general sitemap, you can also create specialized sitemaps for specific types of content, such as videos or news articles, using plugins like All in One SEO for WordPress. This can give those particular types of content a boost in rankings on Google search.

An example of a sitemap build on Miro.

Or try to optimize your WordPress robots.txt file. This file provides instructions to Google bots on how to crawl and index your site. It points out which pages should be crawled and avoided, such as admin pages that are unnecessary for search engine indexing.

  1. Website security

To your wonder, yes, Google highly values website security as its ranking SEO factor. Why?

Website security measures how protected your website is from cyber threats and unauthorized access. All aim to build a safe digital environment for your users.

Because for sure, a secured website ensures that user data is protected, reducing the risk of data breaches and unauthorized access.

To enhance website security, it’s essential to implement measures such as using SSL certificates to encrypt data transmission, regularly updating software and plugins, and suggesting users create strong passwords.

See more: How to find long tail keywords?


Are you feeling overwhelmed by all these Google ranking factors? Though understanding these algorithms takes time and consideration, the benefits are worth it. That’s one thing we can assure you. 

Hence, there is nothing to be afraid of. We are glad that you at least have a desire to know more about these ranking SEO elements. That’s proof you are on the right track in positioning your brand in this competitive market. 

As the leading Michigan SEO service, we are sure you will be fine. So, enjoy the process and try your best!