On-page optimization is an essential part of the SEO process and greatly affects the search engine ranking of your website. This includes content and technical issues which need to correspond to the rules and demands provided by the major search engines. All the ingredients which structure a perfectly optimized page are called on-page SEO factors and will be the topic of today’s article.
So, how do you structure a perfectly optimized page?
1. Title Tag
Whenever you write an article for your website or blog remember to mention targeted keywords within the title tag. The title tag defines the relevance of a particular page because it shows up in SERP’s, snippets and social shares. That’s precisely why paying close attention to it is of great benefit.
Google displays only 50-60 characters of a title tag or as many as will fit into the 512 pixel display, so you better keep your title tag short: under 55 characters.
Pro-tip: Include a keyword at the beginning of your title because the earlier a keyword appears, the more weight it carries.
2. Page URL
The page URL should be short and keyword rich. The first 3-5 words in the URL carry the most weight, so remember to place your keyword at the very beginning.
Your permalink defines a document; it’s a concrete on-page factor. So, never go for an automatically generated URL because it’s not readable to others nor for search engines.
3. H1 Tag
Include your title tag in the H1 tag, headline tag. Most of CMS’s automatically do it for you, but don’t take this for granted. Check the code and make sure that there is only one H1 on a page.
4. H2 & H3 Tags
Heading tags are really important, but underutilized, on-page SEO factors. Include your target keyword at least once in an H2 or H3. Heading tags provide users with a better experience, dividing your content into clear paragraphs. It makes your content readable and easy to scan. This is why heading tags should be created correctly.
5. Outbound links
Use outbound links within your copy to related pages, but make sure that you link to authority sites. Pay attention to quality indicators such as Page Rank, Domain Authority, Page Authority and Alexa Rank when you pick your resources. Remember that your outbound links should by default open in a new tab to keep your bounce rate low.
6. Internal links
Whenever you publish new content, take an opportunity to link to internal pages. Citations or fresh mentions are perfect deep linking techniques to quote your older resources and improve the search value of those pages.
Moreover, pay attention to their anchor text and use keywords that are relevant to a particular resource.
7. The Body
It’s vital to insert keywords within the first 100 - 150 words of your article and have them naturally dispersed without compromising the text flow. Putting a keyword early in your content emphasizes the particular topic your article is about.
Pay attention to keyword density, or rather TF-IDF, which measures term frequency to the rest of the context. SEO experts usually say that it’s best to create a page in such a way that a single keyword makes up 5-6% of the text.
Optionally, bold your keywords or put them in italics to emphasize them in a text.
8. Modify keywords
Implement different versions of keywords. Add modifiers such as “best”, “ultimate”, “guide”, “new”, “2015”, “checklist”, etc. which transform a term into middle or long tail versions. Doing this will bring you more valuable visitors. Play with the phrase, prepare as many substitutes and forms as you can think of and don’t worry, as long as you present high quality, search engines will catch the idea behind it and rank it well.
Sprinkle LSI Keywords (Latent Semantic Indexing). LSI is an indexing method based on a mathematical formula which identifies patterns in any given text. The definition from Google Knowledge Graph states that LSI keywords are semantically related to your primary keyword. In other words, these are synonyms for your keywords which can improve your search ranking, helping Google understand the intent of your topic.
Find semantically related, minor keywords to your broad terms and sprinkle them as many times as necessary on a page. You can search for keyword ideas directly from suggestions in the Google Search Bar...
...and for some queries scroll down to the “Searches Related to…” area at the bottom of a page.
You can also use any dedicated tools like Adwords Keyword Planner, Ubersuggest.org or Keywords.io which will help you multiply and find new versions of your keywords.
However, make sure that you don’t overuse LSI keywords because you may get penalized for unnatural keyword stuffing. Just implement them when necessary and make them flow naturally with your content.
9. Post long content
Always fulfill the needs of your targeted audience and put them first, but just keep in mind that search engines adore the long content and tend to rank it higher for certain keywords. Therefore, it is good to aim for at least 1500 / 2000 (or even more) words when targeting competitive keywords as long as you convey useful information.
10. Make your content media rich
Use visuals such as images, videos, gifs, diagrams or embed codes. Visuals break up the long chunks of text, make reading and browsing more visually attractive and entertaining to your readers, and most importantly, boost user interaction; that’s what search engines really value.
Additionally, visuals positively impact your quality indicators, increase time on site and reduce bounce rate.
Anytime you include visuals, especially images within your content, remember to optimize them for SEO too! Describe what the image is about and optimize each image around a keyword. Adjust the images’ file names and alt texts so they include related target keywords. This gives search engines another clue of what your page is about, which helps rank it in organic search.
SEO success is all about following trends and providing your targeted users with quality material. Optimize your website today and make sure you use it to its full potential.