On-page SEO is a pretty key aspect of any overall SEO strategy. It is the optimisation of individual web pages to rank them higher in search engine results.
Virtually every part of your website – including all its pages – have an impact on your Google rankings. Google’s sophisticated algorithms identify, assess and index all your site’s pages and ranks them in search engine results according to quality and relevance.
On-page assessment and optimisation include both your page’s written content and the code used to create the page, particularly the HTML code which itself can be optimised to help you rank higher and pull in more relevant traffic.
As with all other aspects of SEO, on-page SEO is always changing, and it is important for you to stay updated with the latest changes and practices if you are going to be making changes to on-page SEO yourself.
On this page, we are going to look and analyse some of the factors which can have a positive or negative impact against your on-page SEO and how you can optimise your website to get the very best results.
Optimising your individual pages for SEO doesn’t require any specialist or technical knowledge and there are likely to be many changes you can make right now which will have a huge impact on your pages’ SEO.
With well over a decade’s worth of experience as an SEO consultant, I have worked with a huge number of clients – from new start-ups to established corporations – to help them with website design, conversion optimisation and SEO, amongst other things.
On-page SEO is a vast area and there are many improvements you can easily make to your pages right now. You may be surprised to learn just how much of a difference little changes to simple things can make.
We are going to cover a comprehensive range of on-page ranking factors on this page, however, if at any point you decide you would like some help or guidance, feel free to contact me via email and I will get back to you promptly.
It doesn’t matter at what stage your website is; me and my team are here to help you get the best from your SEO strategy. You can also view my latest SEO articles too!
There are many different on-page factors which can improve your SEO. here are some areas where you can easily make improvements to your website’s SEO:
Your page’s written content is its most important asset, and it is what makes it worthy of ranking in Google search results at all.
If your pages are not filled with high-quality and relevant content, then your page is not going to rank very well.
After all, your written content is what web traffic is coming to see, and it is something which search engines take seriously.
It is important that you create emotive and actionable content which is linkable and supplies a demand from potential customers.
Written content must be linkable, i.e. other pages must be able to easily link to it so they can appear as an authority. You need to make them look good.
Your written content also needs to satisfy a demand from your readers, they should be at the forefront of your mind.
A good example of written content which supplies demand is Wikipedia: Wikipedia contains lots of information which is highly relevant and extremely detailed.
You, therefore, need to find a way for your content can meet a consumer demand. You need to write about this subject in a clear emotive way that your readers trust.
It’s very easy to make impactful changes to your written content yourself.
Start by removing any content which isn’t your own or duplicated across the site first as this will be having a negative impact on your rankings
Then write in layers about subjects so a customer can easily go between different areas of your site.
Although keyword density is not as important as it once was, especially as Google’s algorithms have got smarter, your written content still needs keywords.
Keywords help Google and other search engines determine whether your content is relevant.
Keywords need to relate strongly to your brand and a lot of keyword research goes into finding the right ones for use in your written content. The more you use a certain keyword in your written content, the more relevant that content becomes for that term.
Keywords need to be used consistently throughout your content, and synonymous words should be used where possible for variation. Carrying out keyword research is important and easy to do; there are many tools out there which you can use to unearth the best keywords for your website.
Visitors to your site don’t want to sit around forever waiting for your pages to load.
Statistics have shown that and 53% of mobile users will abandon a page which takes longer than three seconds to load, and this only increases the longer load time is. In addition to this, , and Google will always prioritise pages higher in rankings which load quickly.
Speeding up pages is often a case of making some slight tweaks below the hood or to the content on the page itself; even the slightest of changes can make a huge difference to load times and your conversion rate.
Some tweaks you could make to improve page load times include –
A page’s meta title is the very first thing a person will see when they find your site’s page through Google.
A meta title is the perfect opportunity for you to catch someone’s attention and encourage them to visit your page. You should try and incorporate at least one keyword relating to your business in the meta title as this can help with both SEO and conversions. Google displays the first 50-60 characters of a title, so keep within this limit.
A meta description appears directly below the meta title and you have around 300 characters to play with here. A page’s meta description needs to be extremely descriptive and actionable; it should briefly explain the page’s contents and convince the end-user to visit your website.
Although meta descriptions do not have a direct impact on page rankings, they impact your clickthrough rate which has an impact on your rankings.
A good example of a meta title and description for a blog covering the 2018 World Cup would look like this –
Latest World Cup 2018 news and coverage, including match blogs, analysis, reviews, pictures and videos.
Our food experts have tried and tested these gorgeous burgers, so you can sink your teeth straight into London’s best offerings.
What makes these examples good? The titles and descriptions are compelling and persuasive, with clever use of keywords such as “World Cup 2018”.
These are HTML tags which are used to distinguish headings and subheadings within your page’s content from other types of content such as paragraphs.
H tags range from H1 to H6, with H1 being the main heading of a page and H2 to H6 being optional tags which can be used to organise content and make it easier for visitors to navigate a page. H1 is the “most important” H tag whereas H6 is the “least important” one.
Proper usage of H1 tags is important for SEO purposes; your page can be prevented from ranking properly if you do not utilise the H1 tag to its full potential by creating simple titles which incorporate keywords.
There are a few simple rules to follow when making a H1 title –
Your website’s pages are indexed by crawlers, Google’s clever pieces of technology which are constantly scanning the internet for new websites and pages.
Google’s main crawler is known as Googlebot and it is constantly exploring websites and using the information it finds on their pages – content and media, etc – to rank them within search results.
One mistake many people make is to prevent Googlebot (and other search engine crawlers) from scanning their pages by accidentally blocking a page from being indexed by these crawlers and not including pages in a sitemap.
Robots.txt is a natural part of every website which enables crawlers to do their job, and it is important not to block this file or modify it in a way which can hinder crawlers.
You can also use robots.txt and leverage its natural SEO to appear higher in search engine rankings, even if you don’t have any technical knowledge or experience.
Which image file name do you think sounds more appealing to Google’s crawlers?
Image file names are another on-page ranking factor and it is important to ensure that you are using file names and alt-tags which are descriptive and use keywords where possible.
Remember, Google’s crawler bots cannot see images on your site and so they use the name of the image and its alt-tag to determine what an image is showing and whether it relates to the rest of your content.
A page’s URL is the first thing Google will see and it is important to get them right. URL structure involves both accessibility and usability factors used alongside SEO.
There’s no one-for-all approach when it comes to URL structure, but there are a few key rules which you should follow so that you can get the best out of page URLs and set your on-page SEO up for success.
It is highly recommended that you use keywords in your URLs wherever possible. Using descriptive and relevant keywords in your URL helps crawlers find your page and discover what it’s about.
Research has shown that there is a correlation between shorter URLs and higher rankings in search results. You can omit words such as “and”, “or” and “the”; Google can still understand what a URL means without them. Avoid keyword repetition, too, and use hyphens to separate words.
A root domain is the structure which contains subdomains and folders (for example, blog.website.com or website.com/blog) and it is important that your URLs stay as close to this as possible as this has an impact on page depth, which is a ranking factor.
Look at all of the URLs your pages are using and think about whether they could be made shorter or have some keywords added in.
Here are a few examples to visualise what good and bad URLs look like –
These are all good examples. They use descriptive keywords and the URLs are kept short and sweet. Some of these URLs categorise and nest pages, whereas others get straight to the point. In contrast, bad URLs look like this –
The first example uses permalinks which cannot be read by either Google nor a potential visitor, the second doesn’t split up the keywords and the third uses an underscore which cannot be read either.
Your most important pages should sit as close to the homepage as possible, ideally one click away, because this helps Google rank your pages.
Google understands that pages which sit closer to the homepage have higher importance and thus Googlebot will prioritise these over your other pages when it comes to ranking them. In contrast, pages which are buried within the layers of your website are given less priority.
Placing your pages properly within your website’s architecture is a subtle way to tell Google how important each one is. Page structure has a huge impact and it is something you can easily fix for yourself by re-ordering your site’s page architecture. It doesn’t take very long, and it can make a big difference.
Using lots of different media on your pages doesn’t just help engage visitors to your website, but it helps rankings too.
Research has shown that sites which use properly optimised media – i.e. media which is relevant, custom-made and optimised for display on their websites – generally rank higher in search engines.
Not only this, but sites using high-quality relevant media have a chance of appearing in rich snippets within search engine results, as well as in Google’s semantics search results – Google’s way of showing users the most relevant search result according to user intent.
As we have just seen, there are lots of different ranking factors and the ones which you should focus on depends entirely on your site.
Having strong, high-quality and unique content is your number one priority as this is the biggest SEO ranking factor by far. After content, it is simply a case of sussing out where your site is lacking with on-page factors and then applying simple improvements. On-page SEO is one of the easiest areas of SEO overall, and you can make many changes yourself which will have a huge impact on its ranking.
Improving on-page SEO is methodical and it requires you to carefully look at each of your pages individually and suss out where weaknesses lie. If you’ve got time to do it, you can quite easily make drastic changes which will deliver measurable results.
When Should I Consult an SEO Consultant?
This boils down to your needs; there is never a right or wrong time to consult an SEO professional to help you out with on-page SEO.
Do you have enough time to fully dedicate yourself to improving your on-page SEO?
If you’re a busy person, your time would be better spent running your business and outsourcing your on-page SEO may be a good idea.
Getting SEO right takes time and it is important that you use these on-page ranking factors to their full potential.
An SEO consultant such as myself can draw together a comprehensive SEO strategy and execute it, leaving you free to focus on what matters. With years of experience, I am 100% in the know when it comes to SEO and the field’s latest developments.
I can ensure that your website’s pages are kept in the best shape possible, helping you rank higher in search engines and achieve measurable results.
Get in touch for an and we can have a discussion about how you could be achieving the results you deserve.
On-page SEO is hugely important and each one of your website’s pages needs to be properly optimised to drive the very best results.
On this page, we have covered the various ranking factors and how they apply to a web page’s SEO. These ranking factors cannot be ignored; in-order to succeed and rank highly you need to be using all of these ranking factors to their full potential on each one of your website’s pages.
When it comes to implementing on-site SEO, you can either do it yourself or contact an expert such as myself for some help. Although it is possible to do your own on-page SEO, it takes a lot of time, effort and knowledge. If you can put this time and effort in, there is no reason why you cannot make changes yourself.
If you would like to learn then feel free to check out my SEO blog.
Alternatively, you can contact me if you would like to discuss your website – me and my team are here to help.