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How To Build High Quality Sites?

by DiTesco on May 9, 2011

high quality sites
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Building High Quality Sites

Building high quality sites is really not that new if you consider the countless amount of information available to you on the internet. As a matter of fact, I think that it is widely spoken about topic, the difference being that most of the information out there are just being said in several different ways.

The Panda algorithm change, has apparently given quality a new meaning. It is now all about “quality”. Quality content, quality links, quality websites, quality navigational structure, and so on. Come to think of it, was this ever really an issue? I don’t think so. It just gotten more attention now because “someone” decided that enough is enough, and those who were affected by Panda, now seems to realize that search results has always had only one main objective in mind, provide users with meaningful, useful and top notch search results.

Google, determined to provide a better and faster web, recently announced that Panda is just but one of the 500 search improvements they are expecting to roll out this year. If you were one of those affected by the devastating effect of Panda, then you should know that it isn’t over and continued efforts should be made to improve your websites quality (if needed) in order to protect yourself from any similar moves in the future. As a matter of fact, Google also mentioned that after Panda, several other tweaks have already been made and that up until now, many sites and users are assuming that changes in their rankings is still related to Panda, whereas, it is no longer the case.

As Google states:

Search is a complicated and evolving art and science, so rather than focusing on specific algorithmic tweaks, we encourage you to focus on delivering the best possible experience for users.

That said, and with the purpose of improving websites quality, Google has taken the time to create a shortlist of questions, one should be asking, about the quality of a page or an article, which are really the important components to assess the overall quality of a website.

What Is Considered A High Quality Site?

high quality sites panda algorithmAs I said before, there are many great articles out there that are indirectly giving you advice, where ultimately, contributes towards what is deemed to be a quality website. If you really want to stay ahead of the pack, and improve your rankings, then here is the shortlist that Google suggests to ask yourself about your site. This will help you step into Google’s mindset and provide you with guidance on how to build quality websites.

  • Would you trust the information presented in this article?
  • Is this article written by an expert or enthusiast who knows the topic well, or is it more shallow in nature?
  • Does the site have duplicate, overlapping, or redundant articles on the same or similar topics with slightly different keyword variations?
  • Are the topics driven by genuine interests of readers of the site, or does the site generate content by attempting to guess what might rank well in search engines?
  • Does the article provide original content or information, original reporting, original research, or original analysis?
  • Does the page provide substantial value when compared to other pages in search results?
  • How much quality control is done on content?
  • Does the article describe both sides of a story?
  • Is the site a recognized authority on its topic?
  • Is the content mass-produced by or outsourced to a large number of creators, or spread across a large network of sites, so that individual pages or sites don’t get as much attention or care?
  • Was the article edited well, or does it appear sloppy or hastily produced?
  • Would you recognize this site as an authoritative source when mentioned by name?
  • Does this article provide a complete or comprehensive description of the topic?
  • Does this article contain insightful analysis or interesting information that is beyond obvious?
  • Is this the sort of page you’d want to bookmark, share with a friend, or recommend?
  • Does this article have an excessive amount of ads that distract from or interfere with the main content?
  • Would you expect to see this article in a printed magazine, encyclopedia or book?
  • Are the articles short, unsubstantial, or otherwise lacking in helpful specifics?
  • Are the pages produced with great care and attention to detail vs. less attention to detail?
  • Would users complain when they see pages from this site?

What You Can Do Now To Improve The Quality Of Your Site?

If you are amongst those that feel were impacted by Panda, rather than looking for ways to game the algorithm, focus on improving your pages and articles based on the above list (those that apply) and pay special attention to this message given by Google. I think this is extremely important.

One other specific piece of guidance we’ve offered is that low-quality content on some parts of a website can impact the whole site’s rankings, and thus removing low quality pages, merging or improving the content of individual shallow pages into more useful pages, or moving low quality pages to a different domain could eventually help the rankings of your higher-quality content.

There you have it. While you may already be aware of this shortlist provided by Google, I thought I’ll share it anyway, in case you missed this one out.

Have you been affected by Panda? Was it positive or negative? Is there anything else you can add to help us improve and build a high quality site?

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+DiTesco is a Business and Inbound Marketing Consultant, and founder of iBlogzone.com. iBlogzone's main objective is to help startups and small business owners achieve success in their online ventures. | More About Me and my Consulting Services.

Francisco has written 708 articles at iBlogzone.com

1 Suresh Khanal@bivori May 9, 2011 at 3:27 pm

Now it’s been time to be real rather than extra smart. Yes Francisco, enough is enough. Its been too much tricking those dumb spiders but now they’ve got more intelligence and can better decide what is better for their customer (the search users)!

Its been time to turn to the real users and customers of the website to rank better than to learn nasty SEO tricks and black or gray hats.

2 DiTesco May 10, 2011 at 4:38 pm

Hi Suresh. Actually to be smart nowadays is really to be realistic about certain approaches that one knows will end up hurting themselves in the long run :) Black hat tactics, although can work, has a very short life span and will end up only hurting the credibility and reputation of a website.

Glad we are on the same radar, lol. thanks for stopping by.

3 Tho Huynh May 9, 2011 at 3:52 pm

The best way to not worry about Google changes its Algothrim is to provide best quality content :)

4 DiTesco May 10, 2011 at 5:01 pm

I agree. Thanks and all the best

5

brian speer

May 9, 2011 at 4:27 pm

Great article. It can be annoying dealing with Google updates, but you provide valuable information to avoid even having to worry about it. I also had to ReRead google SEO page. It give a little more incite as to what they see as good seo practices.

6 DiTesco May 10, 2011 at 5:04 pm

Hi Brian, I hear you but unfortunately, if search is important to you, then dealing not only with Google but other major engines is something that we will have to coupe up with for the time being. Thanks!

7

Jane | Find All Answers

May 9, 2011 at 5:01 pm

I don’t find any better solution to slap the Panda than creating quality content. Content is King and it will be King forever. No matter how many black hats one tries to wear to cheat people and search engines, justice always pays off.

BTW read a similar post @ Traffic Generation cafe just now.

Cheers,
Jane.

8 DiTesco May 9, 2011 at 6:16 pm

Hi Jane. I hear you and that is what I was trying to say right at the beginning. Quality content has and always will be the critical factor for ranking on search engines. Consistently doing so will ultimately reward one for the efforts, specially in the long term. With more “mini” pandas underway, this is more likely to happen sooner than later. Thanks for stopping by and for letting me know about Ana’s recent post. As it so seems, we are both on the same radar :)

9 Online Opportunities May 9, 2011 at 9:25 pm

That’s a great and very informative article thanks for sharing.
Quality and informative content will always be the most important factor for a website to rank well on Search Engines because what Google and other search engines want is searchers who are happy who find exactly what they are looking for and as many as possible relevance information

10 DiTesco May 11, 2011 at 2:11 pm

My thoughts exactly. Only good and useful articles can make your users not only happy but also be wanting for more, thus providing all the benefits it brings. Thanks

11 gary ashton May 10, 2011 at 1:47 am

So is there any more info showing the realtionship between speed of load and the functionality of the site?
I use a java script on my site to enable real time chat, which the majority of site users find enhances their search experience, but it does slow down the load time. Do you have any idea of the emphasis Google is putting on site navigation, design etc and load time?

Thx

Gary :)

12 DiTesco May 10, 2011 at 2:54 am

Hi Gary. Anything that improves user experience is being given by Google some added importance. These includes navigation structure, design and load time. Specifically load time has been apparently one of the issues that Google is paying more attention too as proven by the release of their online page speed site. Real time chat is very interesting as it increases user interaction and if the community is right, decreases significantly your bounce rate. I have had problems in the past with load time too and was able to fix it by using CloudFlare. Might want to check that out.

Thanks for stopping by. Hope this helps.

13 Atulperx May 10, 2011 at 6:13 am

If you have unique and original content and little knowledge of keywords adjustments in content then you don’t have to worry about google . But points you have mentioned in this post are very useful and help users to buildup good authority site in future.

14 DiTesco May 11, 2011 at 2:56 pm

Having unique and original content is definitely the first step towards having a quality website. However, this alone unfortunately is not enough without applying basic SEO techniques. I am saying this because there are hundreds if not thousands of quality websites out there and one should do something extra to stand out. This obviously could be achieved in other ways, such as proactive engagement in the Social Web.. Thanks for stopping by

15 William King May 10, 2011 at 7:14 am

The whole summary of your can be explain from the one line which is also in the article but not by you :D by Google which is “Search is a complicated and evolving art and science, so rather than focusing on specific algorithmic tweaks, we encourage you to focus on delivering the best possible experience for users.”

This line very clearly explains how you can get the top rankings and what should be your approach to build a search engine friendly website. It is very clear now that Google will keep making changes its algorithms so building your site by according to the working of algorithms will may work today but may be not tomorrow you should focus on user needs and comfort. Make user happy and search engines will make you happy.

16 DiTesco May 11, 2011 at 3:32 pm

Hi William. Rightly said, “focus on users need and comfort”… Search is an ongoing process and what works today may not tomorrow, and that is actually a fact.For as long as you provide quality content and keep up with SEO basics (maybe the only ones that never change), you are good to go. thanks

17 Ashvini May 10, 2011 at 12:47 pm

Hi DiTesco,
If content is the king, then people who write great content will be the winners. In the era of competition from facebook, google is doing it right. It is attacking itself at all the weaknesses. Cluasewitz said that before enemy attacks you at weak point, you should do it yourself.
Hence people who write good content are going to benefit from it.
Thanks for the share.
Ashvini

18 DiTesco May 11, 2011 at 3:38 pm

You are welcome Ashvini. Part of doing it right is getting quality content out there. Users want it, and Google is hungry searching for them :) Thanks for stopping by.

19

Matt

May 10, 2011 at 7:55 pm

So as the guidance has always been – provide good content based around a thoughtful user experience. Can’t really argue with that, as this is how Google has maintained it’s top position by trying to deliver these types of sites to its users.

20 DiTesco May 11, 2011 at 3:42 pm

As you said, really no pint of arguing that Google’s objective has always been to provide quality search results for users. The Panda and whatever it is that comes next is their way of saying that… Love it or hate it, but unless they keep doing this, their reputation for providing the best possible experience for users will be deeply compromised. No one really likes crap, right?

21

James Pruitt

May 10, 2011 at 8:03 pm

I have always largely ignored google and focus on the people reading my site. as long as I focus on giving people what they want, and go looking for links from sites that will give me quality direct traffic to my sites, I win. Usually, when I do that, I get higher rankings than If I try to do SEO.
Great Post DiTesco.
As far as Panda, across the board my sites went up. the down side was I went up on some terms totally unrelated to my niches on some sites.

22 DiTesco May 11, 2011 at 3:46 pm

Hi James. Well said and I won’t even argue with you. Keep it that way and there is a long and beneficial path ahead of you. As far as ranking for unrelated terms, that is a kick… It is interesting that for certain type of searches, Google returns your site :) I for example, get a lot of impressions for the single term “productivity”. I have only one post that has that word and yet Google decided to give me its good graces… go figure

23

Daniel Snyder

May 11, 2011 at 2:11 am

When I’ve really put my all into the SEO aspect I find that I’m often less successful then when I just write a high quality article. I’m a natural writer so when I try to optimize for SEO my articles lose something… Some of my most popular articles as far as being discovered organically are not at all optimized for SEO.

24 DiTesco May 11, 2011 at 3:48 pm

Hi Daniel. So seems that doing both (writing quality and optimizing content) is not always the best approach. Its odd though as they should really be working in tandem. Strange, but it goes to show you that the 200+ ranking factors that Google applies is something that changes a lot overtime. All the best

25 Nishadha May 11, 2011 at 6:34 am

Trust is a comparative things and this gives a advantage for well established sites. You are more likely to buy something from Amazon, although you can find a better quality product from some other not so established site.

26 DiTesco May 11, 2011 at 3:52 pm

Hi Nishadha. Ah, the power of a Brand. You are right though. Amazon is a perfect example of a site that has established trust and one that provides quality information for a user to get well informed before buying anything. Although they might in some and many occasions not be the best choice, users in general feel more comfortable, for example, paying a bit more for the assurance of prompt delivery, good customer support, etc.

27

nazimwarriach

May 11, 2011 at 12:25 pm

My blogs are not still affected by Panda as I always try to publish only quality content. I would praise such revisions by Search Engines so the users and producer of real content; both can take advantage.

28 DiTesco May 11, 2011 at 3:53 pm

I’m with you Nazim and the fact that you have not been affected by Panda is a reflection of your commitment to only provide good content. Keep it up and thanks for stopping by.

29

John

May 11, 2011 at 5:02 pm

Heard too much about Google panda but i found still a myth. I think it does not exist yet. It just content of site which make its good for search engines. Site must be created keeping in mind that’s its for users rather than for search engines. Good site with quality contents are always best for users and as well as for search engine ranking.

30

Alex Aguilar

May 11, 2011 at 7:26 pm

I welcome Google’s Panda initiative and any similar future initiatives taken clear out all the spam and drek from their search results. I think we can all agree that the internet is overflowing with unoriginal rewritten content whose only reason for existence is to artificially improve their search engine rank through strategically placed keywords and other SEO trickery.

Any moves by Google, Bing or Yahoo that improves their search results by filtering out the spam sites has my full support. If you provide valuable, original content that people want to read then you should embrace Panda.

31 Frugal Living May 11, 2011 at 10:38 pm

I think the most important thing that goes into building a quality website is providing excellent content for the website

32

Diana Simon

May 12, 2011 at 10:16 am

Thanks for sharing the shortlist of questions from Google. I haven’t really paid attention to algorithms etc because I am a super new blogger so this list you shared here is extremely useful. I have always been advised to write quality posts and content for your readers and not only search engines. It is clear that Google values this too so I am not worried.

All the best,
Diana

33 DiTesco May 12, 2011 at 12:08 pm

Hi Diana. Welcome to my blog. Actually being a super new blogger has its advantages. Knowing what it needs to provide a good experience for your users beforehand is great and all you need is just to implement it and you are good to go. Good luck and if there is anything I can do to help, let me know. Thanks for stopping by and hope to see more from you here in the future

34 Maxi Malone May 28, 2011 at 11:31 am

Thank you for this article.

Does the article describe both sides of a story? That point helps me; makes me realize I may need to work on that one.

35 International ntiaging Systems June 28, 2011 at 10:24 am

Hello DiTesco,

As everyone know Panda update is a big issue now a days but i saw so many site who took content from article site and mentioned content resources But they ranked well and cache on daily basis. Please let me know what is that ?

36

Ron Smith

July 13, 2011 at 7:55 am

Has been said long time ago: “quality always win”

Your article is very useful, it can be a guidance question for me to build my site, especially when making a content. Really appreciate that, thanks!

37

Kayla

July 30, 2011 at 2:41 pm

Great article! Just got one question… when you mentioned navigational structure, is this something that Google will only consider in a lesser weighting than other aspects of a website, like unique content and internal and outbound links?

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