Search Engine Optimization is an essential element to be implemented in your marketing strategy. This should be taken up on a priority basis while creating new landing pages or blog posts. To maximize conversions, we also need to have good relevant and original content to be found and convert. Check out these latest on-page SEO best practices.
When creating new landing pages or even looking to improve existing pages, I would suggest you use the below checklist to help you boost the SEO effectiveness of your site without affecting the ability of your pages to convert. After all, it’s a win-win situation and worth the time and effort put.
Search engine optimization has always been an essential element to your marketing strategy, but often it’s not thought of as being a priority when creating new landing pages. Sure, you want to maximize conversions (and don’t get us wrong, conversion optimization matters too), but at the end of the day, you need your content to be found in order to convert.
The Importance of On-page Search Engine Optimization
Search engines use the content of your pages as a guide to what your page is about, or to use search engine parlance, the relevancy of the page. Search engines parse the page into the words they find and assign various weights to each word depending on if it is in a header tag, H tag, etc or if it has special characteristics like bold or italic, and its location relative to the start of the page,
While each search engine used different methods of weighting or ranking the page and while many search engines use external factors like anchor text links pointing to the page also, this is the first place that the search engines look.
The way each search engine approaches this task is covered in greater detail in the search engines section, but in general page title tags gain the most ranking points of the header tags and the H tags the most on the page,
Within each factor, the location of the word may also be taken into account with words closer to the beginning of the tag gaining the most ranking points in general. In addition, most modern search engines will consider the words in the vicinity of to add more ranking points
Key benefits of On-Page SEO and why you should even do it
- The first strategy you should focus on is to improve the user experience or UX. A landing page with a good user experience will lead to more conversions.
- Follow the On-Page strategies mentioned in this post to easily get higher page ranking on SERPS, thus improving visibility and conversions.
- Better ranking = more traffic = more leads, sales, ad-clicks, and overall revenue.
- The leads generated through SEO have a higher chance of getting converted. Research says that 15% of the leads get converted to a sale.
- For every rupee spent, small businessmen can generate approximately 3-5 times as many leads in comparison to traditional marketing.
- 65% of the users never scroll past the 1st page of the SERPs. If they don’t find what they want, they either change the search engine or the query term or keyword.
Here are my recommendations for On-Page SEO techniques
1. Creating SEO Friendly URLs
URLs have a significant role in creating a perfectly optimized page. The ex-employee of Google, Matt Cutts has clearly stated in one of his interviews that URLs can also be used for ranking your content. By adding 3-5 keywords in the URL helps Google and other search engines to determine the main keywords of the page. The URLs have to be short and it will help you rank your website higher.
I recommend you to read Search Engine Journal Guide Five Steps to SEO-Friendly Site URL Structure.
- Things to keep in mind before you start editing your URLs
- URLs must not be too long for e.g. https://skartecedu.in/blog/how-can-you-make-your-pages-seo-friendly-and-can-get-higher-ranking.html
- Make the URL easy to read and understand, for example, https://skartecedu.in/blog/on-page-seo-techniques/
- Don’t use numbers instead of words, e.g. https://skartecedu.in/blog/p-500
2. Use SEO friendly Title Tags
Title tags are considered as the most important element of on-page SEO. It must be properly optimized. Search engines use title tags to determine the topic of your page if you have used your focused keywords in title tags which you want to rank for you can get ranking easily.
3. Use keywords at the beginning of Title Tags
Suggest you start your Title Tag with a keyword. This helps you to rank for your specific and focused keywords. Refer below image for an idea on how to create a Title Tag with a keyword.
When you use keywords at the beginning of your Title Tags, it is easy for search engines to understand the main topic of your page and show them to your targeted audience when they search using a particular keyword. In the above image, the keyword “Digital Marketing Course in Chennai” has been used at the beginning of the title, thus making them readily available to the audience basis their search query.
The Title Tag should not exceed 70 characters as it will get truncated and dots will appear towards the end. Title Tag will improve click-through-rate (CTR). If your website has good CTR then your site’s pages will be automatically ranked higher. Your audience will also be able to find your website and understand the purpose of it. I recommended you read Moz’s article on Title Tag Length Guidelines.
4. Use modifiers in Title Tags
Modifiers are the words that are added in title tags to make them more appealing and attractive. These words include “Best,” “Guide,” “New,” “2018”, “Review,” “Easy” and some other words of this kind.
Things you should know when you write Title Tags
- The length of title tags must not be more than 63 characters (It may vary with upper or lower case because Google gives just 600px of the area for titles in the search result page.)
- Use keywords at the beginning of title tags in such a way they make sense.
- Don’t stuff your title tags with keywords.
- Using “Best” and “New” also helps you to boost your CTR because when a user sees these words on the search page, they click to see what is NEW or BEST.
5. Use Meta Description
In 2009, Google had announced they are not using Meta Description tags to rank web pages. But Meta descriptions are still important as Google uses the phrases in the meta description tags to understand the purpose or the topic of your page.
Wondering why Google doesn’t use Meta Descriptions, then check out the below video –
Even if Google is not using Meta description tags remember there are many more search engines like Bing, Yahoo who use meta description tags to identify the topic of your page.
6. Use Heading Tags for SEO
Heading Tags are incredibly powerful, and search engines also read your heading tags. These tags are used to break up your page into various sections so that users can easily find the information they are looking for.
Heading Tags are classified from H1 to H6 and these tags are critical because the words used in heading tags are also considered as the secondary topic of your contents. It also helps Google understand the purpose of your page
7. Use Keywords in H1 Tags
H1 Tags are the most powerful heading tags than others. Ensure to put your Central Keyword here. Remember there can be only one H1 tag in a page and multiple H2…H6 tags. Suggest using Latent Semantic Indexing Keywords. Search using LSIgraph.com
7. Use Multimedia to boost your engagement
If you are just using text on your pages, then your visitors may get bored and can find it difficult to understand. Multimedia is the best and easiest way to engage your audience and thus making them happier. Here Multimedia can be Videos or images.
9. Ensure to optimize your images
Using Images in your content is a wise idea, and they really help in optimizing your pages perfectly. For optimizing images use your target keywords in an image name, ALT tags and consider reducing the Image size. The image should be of 72ppi (pixels per inch) and the file size should be low. If the file size is very high, then this can affect your website loading speed and your visitors will just bounce off. You can use WP Smush to optimize your images on a WordPress website.
10. Use YouTube Videos
Using YouTube videos in your content is the easiest way to optimize your website for search engines and reach the top of Google SERPs. You may have seen many YouTube videos getting ranked in the search results. This helps your pages to boost its ranking easily. Always upload your own video to YouTube and add a description of 250 + words for that YouTube video. In this way, your videos will work better. YouTube also belongs to Google, just imagine the impact it can create in your rankings.
11. Use Keywords in the first 100 words
If you write naturally, then you can drop your keywords in first 100 words very quickly as you know some people start writing their blog posts which a long intro having hundreds of words and they often use their targeted keywords after a long introduction which does not produce a good impression on users as well as search engines.
12. Get your pages to load faster
Fast page loading speed has become an important ranking factor, and Google has clearly stated this on their webmaster’s blog. If you want to find the loading speed of your site, then you can check it on Google’s free page speed checking tool called page insights. You can also use GTMetrix or Pingdom. GTMetrix gives your suggestions, optimizes your images and I use this majorly.
Tips to make your website load faster:
If you are on WordPress, then using any caching plugin helps a lot in loading your pages faster. I use WP Fastest Cache & WP-Optimize. You should also host your website with a good hosting company that provides 24×7 support and 99.99% uptime. Many companies host multiple websites on a single server with a single IP Address and this causes server load and thus affecting your website loading speed.
13. Use Mobile friendly or Responsive design for your website
Since the beginning of 2015, Google has started penalizing all those sites which are not mobile-friendly. Google has come up with a feature called AMP – Accelerated Mobile Pages. This enhances the way the website is displayed on hand-held devices. AMP strips off all the images and only shows the content to your audience. Thus, increasing the speed of your website as well as your rankings. Google has made it mandatory that webmasters make use of this and make their website more mobile-friendly.
If you want to check either your site is mobile-friendly or not, you can use Google’s Mobile-friendly site testing tool. Use this link -> https://search.google.com/test/mobile-friendly
14. Internal Linking is a Must
Internal links are very useful as they help your visitor to keep on reading your pages as well as increase the number of page views per visitor. Internal linking creates a web of links around your blog, and when search engine bots start crawling your pages, they crawl each and every page of your websites.
If you want to see some examples of internal linking, then there is nothing better than Wikipedia they have average 50 internal links on each page. This proves that internal links are most important. For a WordPress website, you can use the Yoast Premium Plugin which has a function for internal linking. It displays a long list of similar topics basis a blog post and helps you easily link articles with one another.
15. External Linking
External linking has become the most popular on-page SEO technique since Google has started giving importance to those pages which often link to useful and authority pages. You can give a source link, to avoid duplicate content issues.
16. Use Latent Semantic Indexing keywords
LSI stands for Latent Semantic Indexing, or you can say it is the synonyms of your targeted keywords. Google algorithm uses LSI keywords to identify the topic of pages. You can receive more traffic using LSI keywords without having the problem of competition because LSI keywords never get displayed in competition. Suggest you to use LSIgraph.com to find your LSI keywords.
Keywords like on-page SEO, SEO Techniques, SEO Guides, Link building techniques have high competition and are also difficult to rank. Hence, I suggest that you use LSI keywords as they do not have much competition and you can easily rank your website.
If you want to find some LSI keywords in the SERPs, then scroll down towards the bottom of the Google SERPs to find Searches related to. Whatever keywords are displayed here can also be used as an LSI keyword.
17. Long & Engaging Content
Google loves more content and those websites that meet this criterion will get displayed in the top 10 search results. Well, there are no standards for writing long content, but your pages must have at least 1500 words enriched with relevant keywords.
The number of words in your pages also vary with your niche, for example, if you are running a blog related to technology, news, or jobs, etc. then 1000 words are enough, but if you are writing about SEO, then you should write 2000+ words.
People visit your site for content. So you should ensure that the content is original and relevant to their search query so as to keep them engaged. The content should be interesting and at the same time useful and informative.
Tips for Creating Engaging Content
- Don’t make the paragraphs too much longer.
- Add images and videos where needed.
- Use attractive and simple fonts.
18. Increase Dwell Time On Your Website
Dwell time is the time that a visitor spends on your site. Dwell time is often not considered as an on-page SEO factor, but it is important or critical because Google looks for these metrics to rank your website. Google records dwell time and use it as an important ranking factor for your site.
Read on to understand how to increase the Dwell time of your site. Well, this is also very simple to let me explain it.
- First, start your pages with some useful intro so that visitor’s thing you have provided something that deserves a read.
- Show your popularity to get into the mind of readers.
- Put a table of contents at the beginning of your page so that the user can immediately see what you are providing.
- Use short paragraphs at the beginning of your content it helps users to read and digest your content quickly.
19. Use Social Sharing Button For Social Signals
Matt Cutts has said that Google is using social signals as a ranking factor. The social sharing button is very useful especially when you have created a super good piece of article and your readers want to share the same with their friends. By adding a social sharing button on your website, it will be very easy for your visitors to share the content. Sharing content on social media creates a ripple effect and there are chances that it goes viral. More and more people see the article and keep sharing thus increasing your website traffic as well as its ranking.
29. Readability Level
It tells you how difficult or easy it is to read your website contents. You should optimize your content in such a way that it is easy for your visitors to read and understand. In WordPress, the Yoast Plugin will tell you whether your content is readable or not. Yoast’s “Flesch Reading Ease Test” and that is what I am going to tell you. If your reading level score is about 60 – 70 then it is good else you need to seriously rethink your content strategy.
30. Encourage Comments
Google gives a ranking boost to those sites that have implemented good commenting systems on their website. When you encourage comments on your content, it will increase your reputation in Google’s eyes, and consequently, you will be rewarded with a boost in rankings.
31. Increase Click-Through-Rate (CTR)
Google uses click-through rate to a rank website, and I am 1000% sure about this because this has happened to me. I have boosted the traffic of a site by just increasing the click-through rate. Wondering how can CTR increase your rankings the watch below video created by Brian Dean.
When I search for the keyword “On-page SEO for Beginners” in Google Keyword Planner, it throws out the following results –
- SEO tutorial
- how to do SEO
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- search engine optimization tips
- what is SEO and how it works
- Google SEO tutorial
- SEO tutorial step by step
- SEO tutorial pdf
- SEO tutorial w3school
- SEO Training in Chennai
- so tutorial step by step with an example
- how to do SEO for website step by step
- search engine optimization tools
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- search engine optimization techniques
- what is search engine optimization
- how to do search engine optimization
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- on-page SEO techniques
- search engine optimization tips and tricks
- search engine optimization definition
- Google SEO guidelines
- Google SEO tools
Copying and pasting the keyword list as-is is not a good practice for improving ranking. A better way would be to simply pick some of the phrases and write quality content around them in a natural way.
All of the above techniques are easy to follow and I am sure if you follow them you will always find your site at the top of the search result page.
Use the below tools to analyze your website’s SEO strength
- Seoptimer: Website Review and free SEO audit tool
- SeoSiteCheckup.com: SEO Tools
- Check Your Website’s SEO: Free Analysis Tool
- On-Page Optimization Tool – Internet Marketing
- SEO On-Page Optimization Grader Tool and Checklist – Moz
Is on-page content by itself enough?
While there are some search engines place great weight on the on-page content, the proliferation of billions of web pages have forced the search engines to find additional ranking factors. Google was an early adopter of using anchor text of inbound links to help determine the relevancy of a page and that factor is the most important Google ranking factor today.
The content of your pages is definitely a ranking consideration and a well-optimized page will always help your rankings. On some search engines and for search terms which are not very competitive this may be enough to rank you will by itself, but as soon as you get into very competitive terms at places like Google it will require you use a good inbound anchor text strategy to succeed.
When optimizing your page try to concentrate on only one search term per page (or perhaps up to three very closely related search terms). Use your search terms at the beginning of the tag or page starting with the page title and meta description, then first thing on the page use a header tag that summarizes what your page is about and which uses your search term.
Use your search terms in the first paragraph and throughout the page but make sure that it reads well for human viewers.
I prefer to use a call to action statement in the closing paragraph of the page, again using your search term.