While you may have a lot of concerns about the many ways in which Google can penalize your website and cause you to fall off the first page of Google results, here are some elements where you can take comfort in knowing that they won’t have any direct impact.
Your Website’s Age
Many people believe that a website’s age will affect Google rankings, but the truth is that Google doesn’t care whether you established your website in 1998 or 2018. All they care about is the helpfulness of your content; they want to see if you have the right authority signals, links, and other elements that can truly help readers and subsequently affect your rankings.
If your old website from the ‘90s is still performing well, this is likely because of the amount of high-quality links leading back to it along with your website’s overall authority.
The Use of Google Apps and Services
People often worry about whether using Google’s services or apps influences rankings, but Google actually doesn’t care one bit if you use Google apps or any other types of services. So, if you don’t use Google Analytics (although you should for effective analysis), Google Docs, or any other app or service they offer, don’t worry about it. Google won’t take that into account.
Social Media Metrics
Not getting a ton of likes or shares for that Facebook post linking to your page, or any retweets on Twitter? Google doesn’t care whether a post has 1 share or 20,000. However, Google does take a look at what those likes and shares lead to, as many of those individuals (provided they aren’t bots) will browse the linked page along with the rest of the website.
The more people visit your pages and the longer they stay on your website and look around, the more likely your pages will be to rank higher in Google.
While time on your website can indicate to Google that your page is worth ranking, keep in mind that raw bounce rates and time on the site won’t directly affect your rankings. So, if people visit your webpages via Google rankings and don’t find what they’re looking for, only to go back to the results page and look for a better answer to their query, don’t worry about this having a negative impact on your rankings.
While it doesn’t hurt to have a robots.txt, which allows you to provide disallows, you don’t need to have one for Google to rank your website. Google assumes you have this even if you don’t, and feels free to crawl over the entire site. Including things like rel=follows inside href tags won’t help boost your rankings.
If you really want your website to rank, the best way to do so is to practice honest and high-quality SEO strategies. The kiss of death for your website is bad SEO and unreadable content, but none of the above factors need to be of concern when you’re trying to get your website to rank well.