ContentSEO

You Should Know These 12 Essential On-Page SEO Factors

On-page SEO is the process of improving search visibility by tweaking a page's content, tags, and internal links. Here are 12 ways to improve yours.

Have you ever tried your hand at Tetris? If that’s the case, you’ll recall that there was no real way to “win” the game. It just got faster and faster as you progressed through the levels.

Search engine optimization (SEO) is similar in some ways.

It never ends, not because it has a catchy 8-bit soundtrack or because it rewrites your dreams.

There will never be a time when you can sit back and relax, confident that your site will always be at the top of search engine results pages (SERPs).

Sure, you may have reached the pinnacle today, but the work of an SEO expert never ends.

Every change to Google’s algorithm or competitor content has the potential to knock you off the top spot, so you must stay current.

As a result, your on-page SEO must be flawless. But before we get into that, let’s take a look at how Google and other search engines work at a high level.

Basics of Search Engines

Crawlers, or spiders, are sent out by search engines to explore the internet. They follow links from one site to the next, creating a content map known as a search index.

These crawlers evaluate the content of websites as they explore them, determining what kind of information they contain.

The search engine’s algorithm then uses this information to determine how well the content of that specific site responds to user queries.

The higher it is ranked on the SERP, the better it answers the query.

Google’s algorithm is updated frequently in its never-ending quest to provide better results to users. This invariably results in changes in rankings, necessitating the need for someone to optimize the website in order to improve or maintain rankings.

What Is On-Page SEO and Why Does It Matter?

On-page SEO, also known as on-site SEO, is the process of improving search visibility and traffic by tweaking a page’s content, tags, and internal links.

To put it another way, it’s a method of optimizing your website so that search engines can better understand it.

This, of course, comes with a slew of advantages.

The first is in terms of traffic volume.

On a search page, the first five organic results receive 67.60 percent of all clicks. The next five make up only 3.73 percent of the total. From there, it’s all downhill. As a result, if you want traffic, you must be near the top.

Second, higher-ranking websites have significantly higher click-through rates (CTR). The average organic CTR for the first Google mobile search result is 26.9%.

Consider that 92.4 percent of internet users who search for something nearby on their mobile phones visit that business the same day, and you can see how organic SEO can affect your bottom line. Furthermore, on-page optimization is a significant factor in organic ranking.

Hopefully, you’ve realized the significance of on-page SEO by now. It’s now time to get down to business. Let’s get started…

12 Crucial On-Page SEO Elements

Content, HTML, and website architecture are the three broad categories of on-page SEO. We’ll take a look at each one separately.

Content

You’ve probably heard the phrase before: content is king.

Without it, SEO is like a brand-new sports car with no engine – it may look nice, but it won’t get you anywhere. However, not all content is made equal.

To improve your on-site SEO, consider the following content factors:

1. E-A-T

Expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness, or E-A-T, are three factors that Google considers when ranking your site.

It’s mentioned 135 times in 175 pages of Google Search Quality Guidelines, which should indicate its importance in the search engine’s algorithms.

While only a few aspects of E-A-T (PageRank and links) have been confirmed by Google, it’s widely assumed in the SEO community that on-page signals play a significant role in its evaluations.

Read this article for more information on E-A-T.

2. Keywords

The language you use is the most basic way to tell them your website’s content answers a user’s question.

Pages that include the query’s keywords in the body, headings, or both are more likely to be relevant to the query.

This isn’t always easy to determine. If you’re optimizing a furniture store’s website, keywords like [sofa], [dining room set], and [end table] are likely to be included.

If you’re advertising a specialized furniture store, make sure to use long-tail keywords like [contemporary art-deco sideboards].

In other words, you must understand what your target customers are looking for and create content that incorporates these terms. It’s always a good idea to do some research so you don’t miss out on anything.

Download our keyword research ebook to get started.

3. Search Engine Optimization Writing

Creating content that prioritizes search engines while also converting human visitors to your site is a fine art.

Writing copy that reads well while adhering to SEO best practices can be difficult unless you’ve done it before.

We’ve dedicated an entire article to assist you in mastering the art, but here are a few key takeaways:

  • Emphasize readability: Your content should be simple to scan so that users can find the information they need quickly.
  • Don’t overuse keywords: This tactic, also known as keyword stuffing, has been used in the past by unscrupulous SEO professionals to game the system. Google frowns on sites that overuse keywords. If your page is caught doing this, it may be demoted in the SERPs or even removed entirely.
  • Keep sentences and paragraphs short: If you’ve ever visited a website only to be met with a wall of text, you know how difficult it is to read long passages of text. Keep your sentences and paragraphs short to avoid driving users away.
  • Make use of subheadings: Because of their size, subheads stand out and draw the attention of people who are scanning your page. Use a lot of it in your content to help readers move down the page.
  • Use bulleted lists: This may sound a little meta, but bulleted lists are a great way to break down information into bite-sized chunks. When they’re appropriate, use them.

4. Visual Resources

Adding images, videos, and infographics to your page do more than just make it more visually appealing to visitors. It also gives you the chance to improve your SEO.

When it comes to online shopping, more than 36% of consumers use visual search, which means you’re missing out on traffic if you’re not using images.

Make sure your accompanying text is optimized whenever possible.

To avoid slow loading, keep track of your image file sizes. Make your images shareable to find backlinking opportunities that will help you improve your E-A-T.

HTML

HTML stands for HyperText Markup Language, and it’s the code that organizes your webpages and their content.

They instruct the user’s browser as to what should be displayed and where it should be displayed. It also informs search engines about your page’s content and where you should be ranked.

The following are the on-page SEO HTML factors to consider:

5. Tags in the title

This is one of those areas where it’s crucial to pay attention to the finer points.

This snippet of code, which allows you to give a webpage a title, is unlikely to propel you to the top of the SERPs on its own.

However, when used in conjunction with other on-page elements (such as the ones discussed here), it can help you build context and demonstrate the relevance of your site.

Read this for a more in-depth look at how to optimize your title tags.

6. Meta description

A seasoned SEO expert is currently raising her hands to the screen. “Oh, come on,” she says, “everyone knows meta descriptions aren’t a factor in SEO ranking.”

She is only partially correct. While there is a lot of evidence against meta descriptions as a ranking factor, she is incorrect in assuming that everyone is aware of this.

And don’t let Nancy’s negativity deter you from including them on your site.

Despite their lack of use in SEO, they have two major advantages: they can help Google understand what your web page is all about, and they have a significant impact on your CTRs.

Better meta descriptions give searchers a clearer picture of what your page is about, resulting in more clickthroughs. As a result, don’t overlook them.

7. Image Optimization

We’ve already discussed how important visual assets are on your page, but now it’s time to dig deeper into their technical aspects.

Here are a few pointers to help you improve yours:

  • Include alt tags that are SEO-friendly.
  • For quick loading, choose the right format and file size.
  • Instead of using something like IMG 08759, make your own file names.
  • Make sure your images are responsive to mobile devices.

We have another fantastic resource for more in-depth information on HTML image optimization. It can be found here.

8. Geotagging (For Local Search)

Even though it is a global economy, the majority of business is still conducted locally. Optimize your on-page local SEO to connect with people in your neighborhood.

While this is less important for large corporations such as GMC or Pepsi, it is critical for small and medium-sized businesses.

When it comes to local traffic, there are three main SEO tactics to consider:

  • Using third-party apps, as well as getting reviews, to optimize local listings and citations such as name, address, and phone number (NAP), website URL, and business descriptions.
  • Local content optimization includes accommodating “near me” searches, providing location-based content, or purchasing a local website or blog.
  • Improving and strengthening relationships with other local businesses and organizations.

Make sure to include the name of your target location in your keywords and sprinkle it throughout your content.

Read this for more information on how to create your own geotagging SEO strategy.

Structure of a Website

It’s critical to have a well-structured website for two reasons: First, search engines will crawl a website more effectively if it is laid out logically, and second, it will provide richer user experiences.

When it comes to optimizing your site’s architecture, there are a few things to keep in mind:

9. Site Performance

A clumsy, slow-loading website does more than irritate and repel visitors; it also harms your search ranking.

The effect of a page’s loading time on SEO was investigated in depth by SEO Polarity, which found that page speed is a ranking factor in search results.

The minimum speed that your site must meet, on the other hand, is constantly changing.

At the moment, meeting Google’s Core Web Vitals minimum threshold will suffice. There are several steps you can take if your site isn’t currently meeting these standards, including:

  • Compression is enabled.
  • Reducing the number of redirects.
  • Image optimization.
  • Take advantage of browser caches.

10. Responsive Design

For the first time in 2016, mobile search volume surpassed desktop search volume. That number has only increased in the years since.

More than 56 percent of all internet usage is now done on mobile devices, with tablets accounting for another 2.4 percent.

Because more people are using mobile devices, Google took the logical step of prioritizing responsive websites in mobile search results.

This mobile-friendly update only affects mobile search results, and while it is still possible to rank in these results without a responsive design, Google strongly advises that sites have a mobile version.

More information on the impact of site responsiveness on search results can be found here.

11. Structure of URLs

There was a time when URLs were extremely important in SEO. To help them rank higher, professionals would make sure their keywords were included in web addresses.

However, Google, being Google, changed the algorithm. And what used to be so important to rankings is now much less so.

That isn’t to say it isn’t important. Your URLs are still factored into your overall score by search engines, but they aren’t as important as they once were.

There is evidence, however, that they play a role in a site’s initial ranking, and some experts believe they are used to group pages. This means that, while they shouldn’t be your top SEO priority, they shouldn’t be overlooked either.

More information on how URLs affect Google rankings can be found here.

12. Hyperlinks

Do you recall E-A-T from the beginning of this article?

Links from other reputable websites are one of the most effective ways for your website to establish expertise, authority, and trustworthiness.

Consider this: If you had to choose between a financial advisor who manages Warren Buffet’s portfolio and your cousin Jimmy, who lives in your aunt’s basement, who would you trust with your 401(k)? Jimmy could do a good job, and he might even outperform Buffet’s guy. But he lacks the trustworthiness that comes with a strong co-sign.

In the same way, links work.

There are three main types of SEO that you should be aware of:

  • Internal links are those that take you to another page on your site, such as this one.
  • Outbound links, also known as external links, are links that lead to a site hosted on a different domain, such as this one to Google’s SEO page.
  • Inbound links, also known as backlinks, are links that point to your page from other websites.

Inbound links are by far the most important of the three. They are the most beneficial to SEO, but they are also the most difficult to obtain.

The use of social media, the creation of shareable infographics, and even simply asking for backlinks are all methods used by SEO professionals to generate quality incoming links.

However, not all inbound links are beneficial. Some links, particularly those from link farms, forum posts, and guestbooks may be fake links designed to deceive the ranking system. It may harm your ranking if you do not disavow these.

Here’s how to disavow links and when you should do so.

On-Page SEO vs. Off-Page SEO: What’s the Difference?

We’ve covered a lot of on-page SEO, but there’s also off-page SEO to consider. The difference, as you might have guessed from the names, is where it takes place.

On-page SEO includes keyword optimization, meta descriptions, title tags, alt text, and website structure, as well as everything else you can do internally to improve your rankings.

Off-page SEO refers to everything that happens outside of your site that affects its rankings. Backlinks, E-A-T, local SEO, social media mentions, and pay-per-click are all examples of this.

You obviously have a lot more control over your on-page SEO, but don’t forget about off-page SEO – you’ll need both to get where you want to go.

However, before investing a lot of time and money into building links and promoting your site, you should first focus on creating a good, relevant webpage that is fully optimized for search engines.

On-Page SEO is a continuous procedure

At the end of the day, search engine optimization is all about finding the most effective way to provide useful information to searchers and ensuring that your website appears at the top of the SERPs.

Your goal is to provide users with richer experiences while also demonstrating your worth to search engines. Fortunately, these two complement each other. On-page optimization is the first step.

Begin with what you have control over, assessing your current site for flaws and growth opportunities.

When you get all of your on-site ducks in a row, you’ll start to see results, including a natural improvement in off-site factors.

Remember that SEO, like Tetris, is never finished. But if you keep reading and working, you’ll get the results you want.

Learn more from SEO and read 5 On-Page SEO Factors to Examine in Poorly Performed Content.

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