When it comes to digital marketing and promoting your brand online, SEO has long been one of the fastest changing and most talked about ways to stand out in an online marketplace. Whether you’re a marketing director for a local non-profit looking to rank for the latest keywords or are interested in learning the newest tips and tricks, there are a number of On-page SEO tactics that can help you make the most of your website and deliver a powerful statement in the marketplace.
On-page SEO tactics are one of the most common and flexible areas of search engine marketing. Everything from keywords, title tags, and even the overall user-experience of your site affect how users and search engines access your content. If this all sounds new and a little overwhelming don’t worry, we’ll take you through everything you need to know.
Great Content Is Key
If you’ve ever read our blog before, you’ve heard us preach the value of great content and list its countless benefits in regards to SEO, user-experience, and marketing overall. When it comes to on-page optimization of your website, leveraging the power of your content is essential. Providing content that is relevant to your user’s needs and that effectively ties in all the critical SEO elements listed below is a concrete way of improving your organic search rank and driving the right users to your site.
One of the first things we sit down and discuss with clients that are interested in making improvements to their websites or building new ones from scratch is how accessible a site is from a user’s perspective. How the site is organized, how pages are laid out, and how easy it is for a user to find exactly what they are looking for is one of the most prominent ranking factors used by search engines like Google.
On a page level, content and navigation menus should be clear and easy to understand for every user. The rule of thumb we use at VIG is that if a user cannot find what they’re looking for within three clicks or less, the navigation and layout of the website needs to be improved.
The design of the website should also be clean and relatively modern. If your website hasn’t been updated since 1999, the SEO of your website is definitely suffering. Search engines like Google and Yahoo prefer to send users to sites with fresh content, layouts, and features. Unless specific keywords are used, older sites usually fall in ranking and end up on deeper pages of search results.
Responsive Web Design
As simple as it sounds, making your site accessible to users across different devices is one of the easiest ways you can give a helpful boost to your SEO. As part of an algorithm update in 2015, Google is now placing a higher priority in search rankings for sites that are responsive to different screen sizes and operating systems.
This is intended to push web developers and site owners to be more accommodating for smartphones, tablets, and Chromebooks and to provide an improved user-experience across multiple platforms. Search engines like Google are now crawling and indexing the mobile pages of a website first to assess responsiveness as well as other essential performance factors.
Making sure images, navigation buttons, and content are easily viewable and accessible on the mobile pages of your site is a great start, but this is only the beginning. Factors like page speed and how quickly the site loads across different devices is another factor search engines are using to fill their databases with quality sites for users.
Search Engine Friendly Coding
Making your site accessible to users across different platforms is the first essential step to SEO. Making individual pages, content, and features friendly for search engines like Google and Yahoo is the next step in on-page SEO and requires continual maintenance and improvement.
Performing routine SEO maintenance on your site and making sure your pages don’t display 404 Errors, ensuring main pages are not set up for no-indexing of content or even no-follow elements on valuable links is critical. Making sure you don’t have mixed content issues, broken internal links or excessively slow page load speed are other common factors SEO experts check regularly in relation to common coding errors.
Keeping a watchful eye on the technical SEO portion of your website is pivotal to providing a healthy experience for both users and search engines alike. Long term, it will help drive search rankings organically, improve the effectiveness of paid search, and improve metrics like bounce rate, sessions, and key performance components.
On-Page SEO Keywords
A guide to on-page SEO wouldn’t be complete without a detailed dive into keyword research and optimization. Keywords are easily one of the most powerful and talked about aspects related to SEO and for many good reasons. They offer flexibility, precision, and the opportunity to experiment in new areas.
On a page-level, keywords allow search engine bots and crawlers to determine key factors like how relevant the page/content is to a user’s search phrase. By modifying title tags, meta descriptions, header tags, and even alt attributes to genuinely and logically include keywords relevant to your site, you can begin to rank for select keywords during a search. Useful tools like the Yoast SEO plugin for WordPress sites can help guide you through a few of the basics and give specific steps on how to improve the SEO of your page, blog post, or product/service description.
By focusing your content strategy around central topics related to your business like (HVAC installation, Precision Machining, or Hospice Care) you can begin to tailor your keywords and content around those topics. Done well, you can begin building your domain authority and drive your organic ranking across multiple search platforms.
On-page SEO is one of the most influential aspects of how a site ranks in searches and drives users to your domain. Whether you tailor your content strategy around keywords related to popular topics or craft a refined user-experience for your users, it’s all about providing a valuable browsing experience across devices, locations, and users.
Now That’s Thinking VIG!