Quick Guide to On Page SEO
A successful SEO strategy is proper optimization of a site for 3 SEO factors. They are:
- On-page SEO
- Off-page SEO
- Technical SEO
Among them, On-page SEO is the fundamental part of SEO as it helps search engines to understand the content written on the page considering several on-page SEO elements like h1, h2, alt tags, etc on the page to find out that the pages are worthy to rank well in SERPs for relatable users query or queries.
What is on-page SEO?
On-Page SEO is a process of optimizing the website’s on-page elements like meta tags (title, description), h1 tags, etc to send strong signals to search engines about the type of content present on the page with the sole aim of ranking your page on the first page of SERPs.
Know the Major Differences Between On Page Vs Off Page Vs Technical SEO
Why on-page SEO?
On-page optimization helps search engines quickly understand the overall structure of your content and what it is about. It makes it easy for search engines to interpret the content against user searches swiftly.
Search engines display the page to users in SERPs if it identifies the page content is relevant to the search query and can answer the user query.
It also makes the user wait for a long-time or go through other similar pages on your site, improving the site interaction rate and reducing the bounce rate.
Checklist for on page SEO
If done rightly, optimization of on-page elements can significantly improve the rankings of the webpage. Some of the most important on-page ranking factors are:
Importance of content for SEO:
What is a good Content in SEO?
From an SEO Perspective, content is considered as good content if it is linked and shared by other people on the internet and it supplies the demand of a large audience be it a web 2.0 submission that provides complete information about it.
What is a Duplicate content in SEO?
The appearance of the same content at different web addresses over the internet is called duplicate content or plagiarism.
Providing an accurate title to content written is the second most important ranking factor.
The title tag gives important information about what type of content is present on the page to search engines and users in SERPs.
The number of characters displayed in SERPs is limited to 60 characters remaining characters are truncated.
The meta description is used to provide the summary of the content that the users are going to view after landing on the page.
Meta Description character limit is set to 160 characters remaining characters are truncated.
Providing more than 16o characters may not affect your SEO rankings.
Now, Search engines will automatically pick meta descriptions from the content on the page according to users’ queries.
Website URL structure must be well-crafted to provide users and search engines the page they are going to view from the SERPs and also to make users easily navigate through the site to find additional information.
Example of well-optimized URL structure of a site:
Alt-text or alt attribute is part of the IMG tag that describes the function and appearance of an image on a webpage.
Example of Optimized Alt text:
<img src="pancakes.png" alt="Stack of blueberry pancakes with powdered sugar">
The use of canonical tags helps search engines understand the master copy of a page and which page should be shown in SERPs. It prevents duplicate issues on e-commerce sites with similar content on common product pages with slight changes in size, cost, and color.
Example of using the well-optimized canonical tag:
https://www.example.com/nike/shoes.html (master or main page with all colored Nike shoes)
If filters are applied by the consumer based on red color:
https://www.example.com/nike/shoes.html?color=red (same content is present on different URL)
If filters are applied by the consumer based on blue color:
https://www.example.com/nike/shoes.html?color=blue (same content is present on different URL)
Search engines may consider these pages as separate pages hence the issue of duplicate may arise.
To indicate search engines about filtered pages are the pages from the master page canonical tag must be implemented on these filtered out pages.
<link rel="canonical" href="https://www.example.com/nike/shoes">
Meta directive is a piece of code that instructs crawlers how to crawl and index a page on a site.
<meta name="robots" content="index, follow" />
HTTP Status code:
HTTP status code is 3 digit response code sent by the server in return for the user’s request of a webpage over the internet through a browser. some important http status codes are 404 (page not found) error, 410 (page gone) etc. You can check the crawl and index errors in search console and fix them.
Headings are like signboards to readers and search engines. These headings help readers quickly scan the page to find the content they are looking for. Headings make readers understand what the paragraph or section is about.
Headings range from H1 to H6 with H1 being the most important and it is used to mention the main topic of the page and H2 to h6 are used to mention the subtopics and subsections of a page.
Try to include the primary target keyword in the H1 tag.
How to Structure your content with headings?
Structure your heading tags effectively. For example, Consider the H1 tag as the name of the book and the h2 tags as the chapters of the book, and h3, h4 as sections of the chapters.
<h1>SEO</h1> <h2>On-Page SEO</h1> <h3>Meta Tags</h3> <h3> Images</h3> <h4> Alt tags</h4> <h2>Off-Page SEO</h2> <h2>Technical SEO </h2>
Images convey the information on a page to readers easily compared to text paragraphs. Images grab the attention of users and make users go through the content on the page.
With the increase in the importance of usage of images in webpages and with the increase in Google image searches, it is highly recommended to optimize the images for users and search engines.
Things to remember while creating an image for your website.
Image Optimization checklist:
- Use relevant images
- Save the image with an appropriate name without spaces between the words.
- Provide a relevant descriptive alternative text (alt-text) for the image
- Reduce the size of the images for faster page loading.
- Make images responsive to mobile devices for a better user experience.
- Create an XML image sitemap and submit it to Google to make google discover your images easily and index them.
What is internal linking?
Link from one page to another page on the same site is called an internal link.
Why internal linking?
Internal linking makes search engines understand the relationship and relevance between pages and posts. Internal linking distributes link value from the home page to other popular and recent pages and posts.
There are many types of internal links among them the most important links are contextual links(links from content) help users and search engines to navigate through the site in finding useful and relevant content.
What is an External link?
As opposed to internal links, a link from one site to another site is called an External link.
Why External links?
Providing an external link from your site to another relevant trusted external site proves expertise, authority and trustworthiness (E-A-T) of your content and makes search engines believe that you’re using right information to create content
External links also connect the sites on the web helping visitors and search engines discover useful and relevant sites.
Optimizing your videos along with the pages on which it is embedded makes your page rank in both video search results, and Google web search results with a video-rich snippet driving some traffic to your site.
Things to remember before creating and publishing a video on your site.
Video Optimization Checklist:
- Create a relevant optimized thumbnail
- Include the video-relevant metadata on the page to make the webpage rank in video search results.
- Video must be added above the fold.
- Embedded video should be 640*360 pixels (larger size) or 400*225 pixels (smaller size) to get it indexed in search results.
- Provide additional information like title, description for the video.
- Make sure your video loads faster in less than 5 seconds and it is visible on First content painful (FCP).
- Make a video thumbnail as the featured image using Open Graph Tags.
- Add transcripts to provide signals about relevancy to search engine crawlers.
UX & UI (User experience and User interface)
Design a responsive website that easily fits onto any device and serves the content properly making it easy for users to navigate through the site and spend more time on the site.
A user-friendly website combined with good SEO drives more traffic to the site.