Does Google apply different algorithm to the results on different positions – this question has often dogged people’s mind. Google’s spokesperson, Matt Cutts recently clarified on the same. In a video released recently, he denied outright any such differentiation and reiterated that no matter what the position the site has in the search results, each site is ranked with the same algorithm.
Contrary to the belief that maybe Google reserves the 1- 3 according to the freshness of the content , 4-6 focused on backlinks and 7-10 focused on social; Google applies the same algorithm to all the sites, whatever the ranking. They are sorted in order as per relevancy and repetition and ranked accordingly. And so there is no question of any position being reserved for any kind of site- like for instance, position 9 reserved for site with backlinks or anything of that sort. The same algorithm generates that particular search results.
With that cleared, now let us look at what factors do the Google Algorithm scan to come up with the ranking for the results.
Content of the site: Content of the site has to be relevant, informative and of excellent quality. Does the content of the site do justice to the subject of the search; how relevant is the keyword to the site; how often is the content on the site updated- is it stagnant or is fresh content being added regularly- these are closely monitored to arrive at a ranking.
Number of Visitors: How many visitors access your site; how many return to your site, how many new vistors- all this will help to derive the popularity of your site and ranking relies heavily on that.
Linking: How many sites link to your site; which sites does your site link to; are these linked sites of high quality or are they spammy and bought links- Google algorithms analyze this before ranking your website in its search results.
Social Media: The social media activity directly contributes to the popularity factor of your site which plays a major role in the ranking of your site.
Other factors: The anchor texts of the links; the images used on the site and their size and positions; the relevancy and density of the keywords used on the page, what kind of queries lead to the page, the metatags are some of the other factors which help to determine the ranking of the site.
All these factors and many more are taken into consideration by the Google algorithms to decide the position of your site in its search results. And the same algorithm is applied to all sites without any distinction to the places on the search ranking.