2 Simple Ways to Rank on Google, and 1 Trump Insult

A quick Google search of, “content marketing,” or, “SEO” will tell you two things. Firstly, there is a lot of information out there and secondly, it’s almost impossible to understand what is good and what is… shall we say, financially motivated? I’m not saying that we don’t want your money, and if all you are trying to do is give it away, then please, feel free to flick it our way. If however you are looking for something more substantial, this page exists to (hopefully) offer you some clarity.

If you are looking for the meaning of a particular term, you can skip this drawn out conversation and access our SEO glossary here

Firstly, it’s important to understand why Google (and Bing, but let’s face it – Google) does what it does. It’s not the intention of any search engine to offer a simple and effective way for every single human being on earth to create a blog and get it ranking on page 1 even though they have done nothing to earn it.

It’s not the intention of any search engine to offer a simple and effective way for every single human being on earth to create a blog and get it ranking on page 1 even though they have done nothing to earn it.

Otherwise, the front page of Google would be constantly changing every time you refreshed it, and idiots like me would publish random things just to see what would happen. Google is smarter than me. I’m not saying that to be self-depreciating, it’s just that Google is smarter than everyone. Also, it can read way better than you can. The reason this is important is that Google doesn’t just look at websites anymore, it reads content, comprehends it and relates it to relevant search queries. This is why when Google was first released to the public, a search would yield an accurate, yet useless, result.

Ahhh, the good old days –  when children could play safely in the streets and a search of “restaurants in New York” would give results including five porn sites, a hairdresser and one actual restaurant that chose to do what everyone else did – put “restaurants in New York” on their site 45 times, because it’s a popular search term…probably, nobody knew.

Now, in the age of semantic search, Google wants to answer your questions, not just reply back to you with the exact phrase you just said. Google wants to be your friend, and what kind of friend just repeats what you say, and then finds other people who also repeat what you say over and over again?

A bad friend.

So complex algorithms were introduced by search engines, and now when you create that incredible post about why your Pokémon collection is way better than mine – it’s not – Google uses calculations and rules to determine whether the content is good or not.

Now, this is not a great thing for a business who prides itself on its SEO techniques to say, but we don’t know all the rules. In fact, we probably don’t even know most of them. And not just us, everyone in the entire world apart from a few senior engineers at Google and probably a few cleaners who sift through the senior engineer’s computers.

You know those cool kids in school who got invited all the cool parties?

That’s not us. We are sitting outside the window, staring at all the cool people and hoping Mary Ballantyne will notice we’re there and fall in love with us.

Sorry. Disregard.

But it’s not all bad news, we know a few of the rules. We know that Google is trying to provide the best possible experience for users, and so gives preference to content that is –


There we are, a conclusive guide for any content marketing or SEO practitioner. Google wants to provide its audience with content that is relevant to the search result, and it wants that content to be yours. As long as you are trustworthy. And you’re not.

Backlinks are the trust juice of search engines. Google and it’s ugly cousin Bing, figures that if good sites are connecting to you, then the content you produce must be pretty good. Also, Google has already read it and it agrees with those sites, so your ranking moves up. The more high-quality links you have your page, the higher it will rank.

Oh, by the way, you can’t rank a website – only a page. Stop trying to, “get my website to rank,” because the only thing that will rank on Google is one particular page, not the entire site. Stop saying it. Don’t make me come over there.

Anyways, high-quality backlinks are best produced through the creation and sharing of content that other peeps will want to share also.

There’ a theme developing, and suddenly your copywriter is the most important person in the entire world, and you should give them a massive pay rise.

Unless they work for Knight SEO and Copywriting, in which case they should be grateful and go and buy some cake.

So news sites that have been established for a long period of time generally have a better trust ranking than smaller sites that have just been started today on WordPress. Google knows that CNN wouldn’t refer any old thing if it wasn’t relevant to at least someone. I mean, it may be fake news but they’re not idiots. That one was for you Donald, you crazy, crazy man.

But it’s not all about newsworthy content. I mean, unless you are a news site in which case it is literally all about newsworthy content. If however, you are a software developer, furniture manufacturer, dentist, cake decorator…you know, someone who does stuff, then it’s unlikely that you will have any topical news stories that CNN will pick up on. Unless you are a homicidal dentist, or you make cakes that give people superpowers.

If not, you will have to create shareable and interesting content that is relevant to your target market. That annoying marketing consultant you’ve got probably said the same thing, and for once they are right. Usually when people think, “shareable,” they think social media, or millions of people, or those nude photos of Jennifer Lawrence that I totally never saw. What photos?

But shareable content in your industry might be something as simple as a checklist, or a useful guide, or a blog post that is crazy boring to me but for some reason useful to the people you like. Probably because they are weird, and you are weird and you all do weird things. Weird.

So it’s at this point that you realise my really clever hacks for getting you ranking on Google involve creating good content and getting it shared by other sites. I probably could have just said that in the first sentence, and you could have saved yourself a few minutes, or an hour or so if you’re a really slow reader and perhaps had a snooze in the middle, or went and got a cup of coffee or something.

Look, don’t listen to all the nonsense out there about optimising things and doing other things to code things and stuff like that – just create really good content that is useful to your target audience. Then create some more really good content, and some more…eventually, you will get addicted to creating brilliant content and all of a sudden people will start paying attention. Experiment with different ways of writing, and find a style that is natural to you. When you write naturally, you write faster, better and usually with more mistakes but that is what editing is for.

If you look at the sites that rank unusually well, they aren’t the ones that have the most content or even the most well-written content. It’s those sites that create useful, shareable and interesting content that people want to read. Also cats.

Now go write something.