Succeeding in organic search today requires optimizing for a combination of factors that search engines consider important – technical, on-page and off-page.
Over the years, we’ve seen increased focus toward off-page techniques – such as link building – and other technical elements.
But the reality is, off-page SEO won’t do much good if you don’t pay attention to the fundamentals – on-page SEO.
Smart SEO practitioners know that on-page optimization should be constantly prioritized.
And because the search landscape is ever-evolving, it’s important to make sure your on-page SEO knowledge is up to date.
In this post, we will cover what on-page SEO is, why it matters, and 10 of the most important on-page SEO considerations today.
What Is On-Page SEO?
On-page SEO (also known as on-site SEO) refers to the practice of optimizing web pages to improve a website’s search engine rankings and earn organic traffic.
In addition to publishing relevant, high-quality content, on-page SEO includes optimizing your headlines, HTML tags (title, meta, and header), and images. It also means making sure your website has a high level of expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness.
It takes into account various aspects of the webpage that, when added together, will improve your website’s visibility in the search results.
Why On-Page SEO Is Important
On-page SEO is important because it helps search engines understand your website and its content, as well as identify whether it is relevant to a searcher’s query.
As search engines become more sophisticated, there is a greater focus toward relevance and semantics in search engine results pages (SERPs).
Google, with its plethora of complex algorithms, is now much better at:
Understanding what users are actually searching for when they type a query.
Delivering search results that meet user intent (informational, shopping, navigational).
Adapting to this development is essential, and you can do it by ensuring that your website and its content – both what is visible to users on your webpages (i.e., text, images, video, or audio) and elements that are only visible to search engines (i.e., HTML tags, structured data) – are well-optimized according to the latest best practices.
Additionally, you can’t simply ignore on-page SEO because you have more control when optimizing for on-site elements – as opposed to off-page SEO that consists of external signals (i.e., backlinks).
If you put effort into on-page strategies, you’ll see a boost in traffic and a rise in your search presence.
This guide will walk you through the most important elements of on-page SEO.
Paying close attention to these 10 areas will help improve your content and authority – and increase your rankings, traffic, and conversions.
26 On Page SEO Ranking Factors 2020
01: Keyword At The Start Of Your Title Tag
Putting your keyword at the start of your title tag helps you gain favour in search engines:
On Page SEO Checklist
This is widely considered as one of the most important on page SEO factors.
Because it allows search engine crawlers to see what the main topic is going to be about, within the first few milliseconds of crawling your page.
If you worried that it may not be the best headline to send to your audience…
You can use Rank Math to help you set up different title tags for readers and search engines.
02: Page Title In H1 Tags
“<H1>” tags ensure that your keyword-rich title is crawled effectively by Google.
Google crawlers look for what is contained within HTML.
When the page title isn’t inside these tags, it can be overlooked.
You don’t want that to happen.
WordPress websites should do this for you, but see if your theme is compatible. If you’re using another platform you’ll have to do this manually.
So in order to format this title tag:
You’d add it into your blog posts code editing area and add the “<H1>” heading tags.
It shouldn’t just be unique… It should add unique value.
For example if your content is teaching people how to cook rice, it should show them a new way to cook rice and not the way every other article on the internet is showing them.
08: Content Reading Level
Google used to tag content as:
…based on its reading level.From a copywriting point of view, a lower reading level as close to basic as possible is advised for most websites. This makes your content accessible to the most amount of people.
But depending on your niche this could change.
A scientific journal would be expected to have a higher reading level than other sites. The same goes for a broadsheet newspaper and a tabloid newspaper.
Now it used to be that Google allowed us to get a break down of our reading level
That was removed as an option but it does mean that it’s something Google is paying attention to.
Many new SEO copywriters and bloggers forget about this…
They put the keyword right near the end of their introduction or even later in their article.
Be sure to check before you publish your article if it’s within in the first 50 to 100 words.
10: Subheadings In H2 Tags
Using header tags for your subheadings allows search engine crawlers to build a clear picture of your page, and the sub-topics you’ve written about.
Not only does this add structure to your page for search engines, but all of your human visitors will also love it as well.
11: LSI Keywords In Content
LSI Keywords help give context to your content which basically just means words and phrases that are related to the topic you’re talking about.
There is much debate about whether they are still useful or not but they are still baked into my processes as I write this.
Let’s say you’re targeting “Podcast Microphones”. Your LSI keywords may be:
Best podcast microphone
Podcast microphone setup
Cheap podcast microphone
The Blue Yeti microphone
Sprinkling these LSI keywords throughout your content will make it feel more relevant.
Which may also give you a boost of traffic from other related keywords.
12: Synonym Rich Content
It’s possible for pages to rank for keywords that aren’t even used on their page.
This is a byproduct of “Semantic Search”.
This is where a page ranks for a synonym of the main topic of the page.
This often happens for topics which are closely related to each other or which have different dialectical sayings or spellings.
“Google Adsense and “Best plugin google adsense 2020 are two words that relate to the same topic. But Google could choose to rank a piece of content focused on Hoovers to also rank for best plugin adsense 2020 terms.
Optimising for synonyms can help you gain more traffic through multiple keywords.
13: Keyword Order
The order a keyword is searched for and where it appears on your page affects rankings.
People often use variations of a search term although they have the same intent.
So it’s important to cover your bases.
Let me give you an example:
A group of people are looking to buy the book – Tribe of Mentors by Tim Ferriss. If four people search for it, they may use the keywords in any of these four forms:
Tribe of mentors tim ferriss
Tim ferriss tribe of mentors
Tribe of mentors by tim ferriss
Tim ferriss tribe mentors
Despite the fact they all want the same thing…
This word order can affect where you show up in a search ranking.
Especially in a highly competitive niche.
To combat this you should contain a mixture of keywords and their orders throughout your content to ensure you maximise the reach of your page.
14: Use Of Outbound Links
Outbound links can help a search engine determine the overall value of your content.
Citations, quotes and links back to research articles about the topic you’re discussing help add authority to your page and show you’re trying to add value.
Note: Place links to trusted authority sites in your niche.
15: Internal Linking
Internal link building is one of the most under utilised strategies in SEO, but it’s something you should pay attention to.
An internal link is a link from one page on your site, to another relevant page on your site.
Google shows the date of the latest update for an article in its search results:
This means that Google (and your readers) cares about how up-to-date your content is.
From personal experience, I know that I’m more likely to click on a more recent link. So it could help to improve your click-through rates too.
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