A Leak From Yandex Might Have Given an Insight into Some SEO Secrets 

The fact that we live in a highly competitive world is very much familiar to us. It seems like competing with others is a motor which keeps the world going. This competition is especially obvious in the SEO industry, where SEO secrets and strategies are kept and used for website optimization and better ranking. 

Throughout history, such a competitive environment created an atmosphere where there is little room for making a mistake. However, when a mistake (or a sudden leak) happens, information is used to one’s own advantage and benefits.

We are used to reading about situations where a sudden leak happens. In such situations, a disclosure of highly confidential data might take place, due to some procedural oversight or a mistake of different nature.

In today’s blog, we will talk about a leak from Yandex which might give some people a useful insight into how SEO engines work and what their ranking criteria are. 

According to official sources, Yandex’s former employee leaked a code containing around 1.900 code factors. Those factors are especially important, because Yandex’s algorithm used them for website rankings. 

So, the leak might be especially amusing to SEO lovers and those who make a living out of it.


Yandex – what is it?

Yandex what it is

In plain language, Yandex is Russian Google. Referring back to competition-driven societies, Russia wanted to compete with the US in the field of digital technologies, among other things, so the country created its own search engine.

Yandex, then, provides services of advertising, commerce, trade, navigation, education, etc. in the same way as Google does. 

In fact, the search engine is the fourth most popular one in the world, after Google, Bing, and Yahoo. 

Expectedly, it is mostly used in Russia, where it is given priority over Google, and in some former USSR states.

The leak revealed around 1.900 ranking factors 

Yandex Seo Secrets
Martin MacDonald, the founder of the SEO consultancy agency MOG media, suggested that the release of data in this case might be among the most interesting things which have happened in the SEO industry in years.

As much as some may be glad to have an insight into SEO secrets of a popular search engine, it is important to note, however, that Yandex is not Google, even though the two search engines have very similar algorithms. 

In this sense, many experts agree on the fact that they do not regard the leaked factors as completely relevant. This is mostly because they might be outdated or because Google might not give them the same value. 

Some other factors, however, like text relevancy or host reliability, you would expect to find.

In any case, we are bringing you 25 Yandex’s SEO secrets for website ranking that we found the most interesting. 

25 SEO ranking factors that the data leak has revealed 

yandex leak
full list is much bigger, amounting to almost 50GB of leaked data. 

We have compiled a list of 25 ranking factors that we found interesting. Should you wish to see the full document containing all 1.922 code factors, just refer to the trust link in the previous paragraph.

Without further ado, the factors you have been expecting can be found in the text below. Let us take a dive into some SEO secrets found in Yandex’s leaked code.  

Organic traffic

This is a well-known ranking factor, and Google’s algorithm uses it, as well. The more visits your site receives, the better its ranking will be. 

Organic traffic involves all kinds of unpaid visits to a website.

Keywords in your URL will help you rank better

SEO is all about being straight to the point. The aim is to clearly communicate one’s message with the readers, as well as web crawlers. 

In the case of content writing, experts recommend the placement of up to three keywords into the article URL. Doing that will help the search engine recognize what is the article topic, which will contribute to its ranking.

Numbers in your URL will not help you rank better

We suggested in the above section how to improve your URL so as to achieve a better ranking. Now, we will tell you what not to do.

Inserting numbers into your URL will not contribute to your site’s better ranking. The reason for this is the fact that numbers can be confusing. 

Placing numbers  into your URL can mistakenly communicate a wrong date, year, or something completely different from the article topic.

Accordingly, avoid placing numbers into the URL of your website or articles.

Be careful while using the trailing slash in your URL  ( / )

Following the above-mentioned information, we should say something about the use of the trailing slash. According to the leaked code, using too much of the trailing slash may confuse web crawlers.

The URL is a building block of your website. So, it needs to be clear, concise, so that web crawlers can easily analyze it.

Even though a few extra trailing slashes will not change users’ overall experience, it will definitely contribute to how the search engine understands your link.  

The newer the referencing links, the better 

This is particularly important if your site, or articles that you write deal with contemporary news or blogs.

The world is changing at a pace which was never before seen. Every day, we witness innovations, breakthroughs, changing situations, etc. 

In this sense, it is very important to insert relevant and up-to-date trust links into your articles.

Keeping track of new things will add trustworthiness and reliability to your website.

Make sure to follow prescribed rules at all times

In the world of SEO secrets, pessimization is a thing much talked about. 

In case a violation of prescribed rules happens, the search engine will forcibly downgrade a website or ‘’pessimize’’ it.

Always pay attention to the rules, because a website risks severe punishment, if it receives a spam mark or if it goes against the official guidelines. This will result in consequences for future rankings, as well.

Make your hosting as reliable as possible


Reliability of your web domain is also a crucial factor when it comes to website ranking. 

Accordingly, make sure that your website receives appropriate and valid web hosting services.

Users’ experience matters

This is another ranking factor that is quite reasonable to expect. 

Even though it is still debatable to what extent users decide what the ranking of your website will be, it is undeniable that it is a highly important factor.

Click-through rate, bounce rate, exit rates, organic traffic – all of this depends on users’ impression upon encountering your website. 

Backlinks add to the site’s reliability

This is quite reasonable to expect. 

Whenever we read articles, the ones containing references and backlinks leading to other relevant websites leave a better impression. Plus, such websites look more professional. 

Web crawlers will analyze websites whose links you posted, especially those which you emphasize and post on the front page. Placing a reliable backlink will give an impression of reliability, authority, and trustworthiness.

Expertise, experience, authoritativeness and trustworthiness

EEAT SEO secrets

E-E-A-T factor is an important ranking factor based on Google’s algorithm. Yandex also analyzes and ranks websites based on similar criteria. 

Popular internet encyclopedias, like Wikipedia, are considered while measuring the E-E-A-T factor. 

So, if a website is cited on Wikipedia, the search engine will show much appreciation for this by giving the website a higher rank. 

Become a desired referencing point of important domains

Mentioning the importance of reliability, expertise, trustworthiness, it is also important to stress the relevance of backlinks. 

So, make sure that your content is important enough. That way, it could be found among the cited sources on strong and relevant domains like Wikipedia, Quora, etc.

The more keywords you use, the more traffic you will receive

Try ranking your website on more keywords. As the time goes by, expand keyword rankings.

The reason for this is the fact that a website rises in popularity among search engines with more keywords used.

Rank your keywords based on the answers to the most common questions about the topic your site deals with. Answering those questions will surely support the website’s search appearances.

Anchor text is a ranking factor

If another website uses your website as a trust link, and if your website’s URL supports the anchor text which contains the ranking keywords for the website which uses your URL, web crawlers will give your website additional rating for reliability. 

Bookmark is permanent proof of validity

It is logical that your website needs to have content which will be relevant to the readers. 

This said, make sure your content is relevant to the extent where it will be permanently bookmarked by your readers.

Bookmarking a website will add additional points for the website’s authority when web crawlers analyze it.

SEO secrets of direct traffic 

Based on the paragraphs above, we should pay attention to the code factor known as ‘’direct traffic’’. Direct traffic, unlike organic traffic, does not have a well-defined source. 

Bookmarking the website, typing it directly into the search bar, coming to the website by accident, etc. subsume direct traffic. 

Include valid video materials 

Including valid video materials is a useful thing if you want to improve the ranking of your website. Also, it is a popular topic for discussion at SEO secrets sessions and seminars.

However, make sure to include video materials which are relevant to the topic that you are writing about. 

In case you have older articles on your website which contain videos, stop by and check them occasionally. Why? If you have included a video into your article or if you posted it on your website, the video might be deleted after a while. 

Videos that are deleted, but which are still available on a website as a referencing material, will downgrade the SEO ranking of that website.

Pay attention to short videos, as well

Having in mind what we mentioned above, we should introduce this code factor, as well.

Including short videos into an article or posting them on the website also requires regular check-ups. 

It matters whether documents are old or frequently changed

Websites which earn money through sponsorship may change their content frequently.

Because of this, web spiders compare older and newer versions of documents in order to recognize duplicated content or scams.

Being ‘’clean’’ in this field is important, because any indication of the opposite poses a risk of a website downgrade. 

Maps, location details, and guidelines are relevant

maps locations etc

If your website promotes events, writes about places where one can eat and drink, then it is very convenient to share the location of such places via Google Maps or in some other way. 

Also, if you have an on-site company, it is useful to provide information about your location on the official website.

This will give you additional ranking points for being approachable to the users. 

Turn off your Caps Lock 

This is an instance where we are simply amazed by the details which search engines observe when they rank websites.

It is important not to have your Caps Lock on all the time while writing an H1 for your articles. We rarely see top-ranked websites whose titles are written wholly in Caps Lock. 

In such cases, search spiders give them downgrading points. 

After all, is it more appropriate to see a title in this form: ‘’These Cities Will Give You a True Time-Travelling Experience’’, than a title like this: ‘’THESE CITIES WILL GIVE YOU A TRUE TIME-TRAVELING EXPERIENCE’’?

Optimize all the websites on your domain 

If your domain consists of several websites, make sure that all of them receive equal optimization.

In case you have some unused content or websites which have not been optimized, be aware that such instances will not help you with boosting your ranking, because SEO takes that as a downgrading factor and we can consider that as one of the SEO secrets.

Do not be too imposing with posting ads

SEO does not like too many ads on your website. Especially downgrading are those instances where there are so many ads on a website, that it affects its content. 

Accordingly, following the SEO culture and rules, the fewer ads your website contains, the better. It is as simple as that. 

Search engine spiders appreciate regular visitors

As in almost every industry, users who regularly opt for your services are always a good sign. 

The SEO industry follows the same pattern. If you have constant visitors who return to your website; you can be sure that you are producing high quality content. 

Recognizing this, the search engine will, consequently, boost the ranking of the website. 

Be transparent about statistics

be transparent about statistics
unsplash.com (Justin Morgan)

Crawlers which collect data about websites will always give additional ranking points to the websites which have transparently presented the statistics of their work. 

Being transparent is a feature of successful websites. Having said this, you can present how your website is doing by using Google Analytics. 

Get yourself your blue badge

By enlisting this final code, we wanted to point to the relevance of social media platforms.

SEO secrets and everything that it includes cannot go without social media. Expand your brand, and make it popular, because that will make it available to a bigger audience. 

Verified profiles on the internet, especially from social media, who visit your website will give it more popularity. The more verified users stop by and check out the content of your website, the more likely you will be to rank higher.

In conclusion…


We decided to devote this entire blog to talking about what seems to be one of the most interesting things that have taken place in the SEO industry.

The Yandex code leak surely is something that one cannot hear about every day. We have to note once again, however, that the information we have presented should not be understood as completely relevant. 

A primary reason for this is the fact that the code leak comes from Yandex’s algorithm. As similar their algorithms are, Yandex is not Google, and most of us surely use Google as our primary browser.

Also, Yandex possesses over 17.000 ranking codes. The ranking codes undergo constant changes, optimizations, and expansions, almost on a daily basis.

In any case, this data release has surely given us an insight, at least for a short while, into how search engines work and what their internet ranking criteria are. 

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