Key Guide and Principles of a Google Search Engine Result Page
What is Search Engine Result Page (SERP)? This is a webpage that usually appears on a browser window when a user enters a keyboard query into a search field on a search engine page.
There is a list of results containing the links to pages that are usually ranked from the most popular to the least popular in terms of the number of hits they receive regarding that particular keyword.
This list produced will also include a short description and title of each page whose link is found on the results page. Anytime you do search on a browser, the page with the search results is the Search Engine Result Page.
Most search engine results pages contain different kinds of listings which include: algorithmic, images, contextual, maps, sponsored listings, definitions, suggested search query refinements and organic search listings.
These types of listings are commonly found in large search engines like Yahoo! and Google.com. These major search engines also offer users specific search engine results page that contain specific types of listings.
One of the most critical roles played by SEO professionals is the analysis of search engine results. In order to conduct a good analysis of these search engine results, one has to have a proper understanding of the specific components that make up a search engine result page listing.
Due to the continued expansion and innovation of Google technology, the information contained in the search engine results page has also expanded.
The following are some of the elements that B2B marketers should be aware of when evaluating their SEO performance.
1. Search Result Title
This information is greatly influenced by the HTML title of the web page. This is the reason as to why people are encouraged to use concise and unique HTML tagging on all their web pages as they target keyword information that is applicable.
Best Practices for HTML Title
• It is recommended that your title should have between 55-60 characters as this is the character space that is offered in a Google search results page.
The spacing placed between alphanumerical characters is also counted. You can use Moz tool to help you test title page visibility.
• It is a great idea to include the target keyword of your web page at the beginning of the HTML title when it is possible.
• It’s advisable for you to include your brand name at the tail end of your HTML title.
2. Search Result Description
A Meta description that has been properly crafted can often be found in the search engine results description element.
Though these descriptions don’t influence search engine rankings, they can influence click through rates tremendously when the web page appears in the search results for particular targeted keyword phrases.
Best Practices For Meta Descriptions
• It is recommended that you title does not have more than 160 characters as this is the length that is allocated in the Google search results
• It is important that you avoid using generic and universal Meta description data across your webpage properties.
3. Research Result Site Links
Sitelinks are usually generated algorithmically depending on the website and the search query that was entered.
The site owners cannot activate Sitelinks but they can restrict navigational elements from appearing by using the Google webmaster tools.
It is an important element to have a site navigational architecture that is concise if you would like to develop appropriate Sitelinks. Another important element is brand development.
4. Search Result URL Information
This is a pretty straight forward factor in the display of search results. You can clearly display URL information by implementing domain canonicalization and REL canonical tag on the individual web pages.
Marketers are not able to change the URL information directly but they can actually refine the keyword focus within a website through the adjustment of internal cross-link and enhancement of copy.
5. Search Result Rich Snippet Information
The rich snippet examples given by Google webmaster tools are unfortunately not commonly used by B2B marketers. They usually utilize the breadcrumb trail element.
B2B marketers who are at a higher level should really pay attention to the Google webmaster tools rich snippets optimization section as the library for micro-format opportunity is continually expanding.
The example only compiles information that is specific to traditional search results but it includes the impact of the following: blended search elements, local results, personalized search and knowledge graph.
The following is an example from Google’s layout:
1. Google one box: maps, pictures, definitions and local results
2. Results from organic searches
3. Google AdWords and sponsored links
What are the key elements commonly found on search engine results page
There are some search engines that cache SERPs that are frequently searched for and they display the SERPs that have been cached instead of displaying the live Search Engine Result Page.
This helps to increase the performance of the search engine. The SERPs will be updated periodically so as to account for any new pages and even to modify the ranking of pages on the Search Engine Result Page in question.
The refreshing of a Search Engine Result Page can take several days or even weeks which can lead to the inaccuracy of results or even the display of out dated results.
Advertising/ Sponsored Listings
Commercial search engines are able to fund their operations by incorporating advertisements in their SERPs.
These sponsored listings are commonly displayed on the right hand side of the page in the form of small classified style ads or even directly above the main organic search result which is on the left.
Different Types Of Results
Search engine result pages of the larger search engines like Yahoo and Google contain different types of results listings. They include the following:
• Listings of maps
• Listings that have been sponsored
• Listings from algorithmic searches
• Listings from contextual searches
• Listings of definitions
• Listings from organic searches
• Search refinements that are suggested by the search engine
Search Engine Result Page Conclusion
You are also allowed to undertake a number of special searches by these major search engines which include news searches, image searches, and blog searches.
These types of Search Engine Result Page offer users special types of results. You need to understand that there is so much more to search analysis than just the position your website receives.
You need to understand how you can impact each element of the search results so as to improve your performance regardless of which position you occupy on the list.
This will also help you to answer the question that most people ask which is why various information and experiences get to be displayed in the Search Engine Result Page for specific keyword targets while others do not.
It is important as an SEO professional and marketer that you understand what a search engine result page is all about.
You need to know and properly understand the features that are found on these pages so as to be able to understand how they affect your website’s SEO.
These are tools that will give you a leg up in your specific industry and thus help your marketing strategy perform better than that of your competitors.
I hope that the information we provided above was not overwhelming to you and it was easily understood. This information is meant to act as a guide to you through the process of analyzing your SERP results.