Jennifer Ledbetter wrote about something on her blog last week that not many people know about. She explained that when your web pages hit the No. 1 spot in Google rankings, they are then reviewed by real human eyeballs. It’s not all “man vs. machine,” she said.
That’s an important thing to understand. Search rankings are not just based on algorithms. If you do well and get your pages ranked for keywords that you target, you’ll have to get through a human reviewer. If your web pages can stand the scrutiny of that reviewer, they may stay at the top. If not, they could fall from the rankings – sometimes pretty far.
So what do these human reviewers look for? Basically, they’re looking for signs that might tell them something is amiss.
If your web page is full of spam, you’ll fall in the rankings. If it is relevant for the search query for which it ranks well, it might stay. The one big question your human reviewer will be asking about your page is, Does this web page have any discernible weaknesses that would prevent it from ranking for this search query in a perfect world?
The reviewer probably isn’t asking that specific question, but they are asking something similar. The idea is to scrutinize the search result as a searcher would. Would any normal searcher be satisfied to see that page rank so well for their search query? If not, you’ll fall in the rankings. If so, you’ll stick around.
Aren’t you glad you know Google uses human reviewers?