Being online is a major part of your business growth. There is no doubt that your customers can reach you and access your services or products if you show a presence on the internet.
Search engines like Google play a vital role in order for the customers to find millions of businesses like yours. Yes, millions, now you must be thinking that it will be very easy to get lost in the clouds of millions of search results.
Only having a presence on the internet is not enough, you must strive to be the best or at least to be in the view of potential customers.
On-page SEO contributes to the overall performance of your website in google search rankings.
We all know that google rankings can help your site get lots of traffic and potential partners for your business. So it means that it is very important for you to rank high on search queries.
One of the most ethical practices which have been followed for many years is “On-page SEO”. It has all the tried and tested ingredients for your website to reach its potential.
You do not want to miss out on this information if you want to take your business to the next level.
What is On-Page SEO?
In simple words, On-page SEO is the use of key phrases which are highly optimized in websites so that Google or any other search engine can rank it higher. It improves the visibility and accessibility of your website.
The optimization includes title tags, content, structuring data, internal links, and all the other on-Page SEO factors.
Why is On-Page SEO Important?
Stuffing of keywords for SEO has been penalized by Google a long time ago and it does not help your site rank up in search result pages anymore.
This is where on-page SEO can contribute to your site performance without compromising on the relevancy and understandability of your content.
On-page SEO is user-focused which means that it will be easier on the potential visitor’s end to find exactly what he is looking for when searching for a particular query. They will appreciate the optimized search results which are possible via on-page SEO.
Most Important On-Page SEO Factors
E-A-T is an abbreviation for Expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness. The term was introduced back in 2013 in an online document that was published by Google.
The document consisted of 168 pages and it was about Google’s Search Quality Rater Guidelines.
E-A-T is a ranking factor that specifies queries to an extended degree. The results that it puts out when performing a query are based on the website’s Expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness.
There are thousands of important queries made by people that can determine their livelihood and health. For example – A person searching about the correct dosage of aspirin for a pregnant woman would want to see accurate information, not a third-party website where the information can be misleading and lacks authority.
Untrustworthy sites can show up the first page of your search rankings if their site is SEO friendly but the E-A-T factor, it ensures the website has the expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness.
2. URL Structure
The URL structure of your website helps Google understand what the page is about. It gives broad information about the content available on the site so that the google algorithm can work accordingly.
There are various ways you can optimize your URLs for a better performance of your site. The first thing is to use keywords and especially primary keywords. Primary keywords will help search engines, as well as potential visitors, understand the content.
Placing the title or primary keywords on the left side of the URL helps you improve the structure of URLs and can easily match with search queries.
Making your URL simple, short, and easy to understand is the first rule of thumb in structuring a URL. You need to make sure that Google can easily recognize the URL and the content. Use real words that are easily understandable.
3. Title Tag and Meta Description
Title Tag and Meta description is one of the most vital on-page SEO factors that enhances your organic search rankings. The title tag is where your focus is in this on-page SEO factor.
Every decent webpage or website on the internet is consists of a title and a short summary under the title which highlights the topic or content even more.
You must have seen there are short summaries always written under the titles when you search for a particular topic. That is called Meta description and based on what is written in it, people decide whether to click on the website or not.
Title tags on the other hand is the headline of each result shown in search and it directly affects on-page SEO rankings while meta description is there to catch the attention once the search has been made.
If the title tag and Meta Description are optimized, it increases the CTR or Click-Through Rate.
4. Header Tags
Using multiple header tags enhances the user experience and increases more traffic to your site.
When you use H1, H2. H3 and more, the reader can easily grasp the content without urging to leave the article because of the constant load of 10 lines paragraphs.
Make sure that you use primary keywords in your first two header tags that directly attract google algorithm and on-page SEO.
It also helps visitors understand the structure of content and in case they are looking for a specific line then it will be easier for them to find it.
Some writers and authors stretch out the usage of primary keywords in more than 2 header tags so feel free to use it if your content matches with it.
Long-tail keywords also help your website drastically by sending Google a piece of appropriate information about the topic.
5. Image Optimization
Image optimization is an underrated on-page SEO factor because many websites refuse to use any images that could potentially hinder the site load speed.
However, with just the right amount of appropriate images that fit the criteria to be on a website, you can improve your SEO and rankings.
So what are the criteria of an image to be suitable for a website? The first criteria are to use descriptive file names of the images. Words used in those descriptive file names should be separated with hyphens.
The size of images in websites also impacts your on-page SEO so you have to use images that are not more than 400kb otherwise it will slow down the site load speed and you can lose potential visitors.
Use keywords in your image alt tags so that google search engines or any other engines do not find it hard to recognize the image.
6. Keyword Cannibalization
Keyword cannibalization is the result of your website competing with itself. It negatively impacts the ranking of your website if two or more of your articles have used similar key phrases and optimization.
Keyword Cannibalization occurs when you have multiple articles on exactly the same or similar topic. Those articles have a high chance of having the same key phrases which are used by Google to determine the rankings.
Google queries will show only one or two results from the same website and on top of that, it will be hard for Google to distinguish which one to put higher in search rankings.
In situations like these, even backlinks and CTR does not help the websites. So both your websites will be in lower search rankings.
To avoid keyword cannibalization, you can either merge or delete one of the articles and keep the better one. It really depends on the topic and word count whether you should just merge it or delete one of the two articles.
7. Internal Links and External Links
With an extensive linking structure that you produce via internal linking, Google finds it easier to understand your website and grasp the depth of its relevancy.
Using internal links can attract traffic from all sorts of keywords. When people read articles they might want to seek more in-depth information about a particular subheading.
The subheadings can be a blog post or a case study. This is where your internal links allow the reader to conveniently redirect to an article that is completely focused on that particular subheading.
External links work the same way but instead of linking within one particular website, the links are from external websites hence external links.
8. Optimize for Featured Snippets
Optimizing for featured snippets can tremendously give your website exposure and traffic.
Basically featured snippets are the results that show up in question-type queries and instead of finding the answer by clicking on a website, the answer will be given directly in the search result right under the search query.
This is even better than the rank 1 position, it is a rank 0 position since it contains the exact answer the query is looking for.
Using keywords and creating blogs for question-type queries can help you optimize your site for featured snippets.
Check “People also ask” sections which give you an idea about what type of key phrases you need to include in your content.
9. Page Speed
Page and site loading speed can make or break the potential of your website’s growth. Even if you have outstanding content on your website, if the site is not optimized for loading quickly then your content will not matter.
There are useful tools like GTmetrix and Google PageSpeed Insights that can help you test out the speed of your website. It gives you an in-depth insight into your site so that you can make some changes to improve the speed of your page.
Acknowledging each and every on-page SEO factor mentioned above is the fundamentals of your website and business growth.
Since there are an endless amount of search results shown by Google, it is your responsibility as a blogger who holds a respectable domain, to help Google understand what your website is about. Help Google in a way that rewards you with high google search rankings.