In this basic on-page SEO guide, we’ll run through a few of the fundamentals that a business owner can implement on their website. That being said, it is important to note that the number one rule when it comes to search engine optimisation is to offer value. The main objective should always be to look to answer the searchers needs as thoroughly and accurately as possible – while still providing good user experience.
While the above is 100% true, we also need to understand that the results in the search engines aren’t picked manually – but rather by an algorithm. As such, there is plenty of on-page SEO technical aspects that you are able to tweak which have an impact on your rankings. These on-page SEO factors can be broken down as follows:
- Keyword Research
- Website Structure
- Website Speed & Security
- Titles & Headings
- Optimizing Your Content
- Outbound Internal & External Links
The structure of your website should be determined by the relevance of your content and be divided into pages according to your keywords and product categories. From an SEO perspective, these pages should never be more than 3 clicks away from your home page and the categories should be as simple as possible so that visitors can easily access your product and service information.
Website Speed & Security
If your site takes a while to load you may be missing out on potential customers as users are likely to choose another search result. According to Google, 53% of users will leave a page if it takes more than 3 seconds to load and website speed is now a ranking factor. You are not likely to achieve a number one ranking position if your website is not optimised for speed. There are audits you can carry out on your site to see how you can improve your site speed but a good place to start is by ensuring images are not too large and that you haven’t included any unnecessary HTML code.
Security is of great importance too especially if your site includes an E-commerce store as users are unlikely to engage in conversions if they feel they are at risk.
Permalinks (Your URL)
For best on-page SEO practice you should pay close attention to the hierarchy and structure of your website pages and ensure your URLs reflects this. Your URLs are used by search engines to determine what your page is about and it’s relevance. Try to ensure your category hierarchy is clear and optimised and try to avoid long numbers or unclear URLs that are long and untidy.
Titles, Headings & Meta Descriptions
Your title tag is the clickable information that appears on SERPs and from an SEO perspective they work best when they accurately reflect the content and includes keywords that don’t appear forced. You should aim to keep your title under 60 characters long to ensure it will display correctly on results pages, web browsers, and social media pages.
Headings are used as a signpost for users visiting the website so that they can easily find the information and be clear on what the content is about. These headings work best as part of an on-page SEO strategy when they are a part of a structure and hierarchy that include keywords. Your page should begin with an H1 title heading and then be compartmentalised into H2 headings and then H3.
A meta-description gives a brief summary of a website or page. They can be written to any length but Google typically displays around 160 characters so it is best to write concisely and aim to influence users to click the link and increase the sites click-through rate. For best on-page SEO practice use relevant keywords and try to avoid duplicate meta descriptions.
Optimising Your Content
The content on your website is of great importance to search engines and the reason users are visiting your site. All content should meet this demand and be relevant to the target audience. This can be achieved by using the keyword research as a guide and striving to ensure the content is both original and engaging. However, content doesn’t necessarily mean paragraphs or pages of text as embedded videos and visual images are becoming increasingly more common. However, from an on-page SEO perspective, all content should be linkable. This optimisation is vital as if your content can’t be linked to or from then it is highly unlikely to rank.
Internal & External Links
Internal links are used to connect your pages and give a sense of structure to your website which really appeals to search engines like Google when they are crawling through pages to determine the relevance and authority of your site pages. A strong internal linking strategy can, therefore, boost your opportunities to rank. External backlinks can also pass value and it is often a good idea to link out to high authority pages and industry-relevant pages where possible in order to demonstrate the relevance of your website to Google.
The team at Gorilla Marketing apply the above technical aspects as well as a number of other tried & tested techniques. Our knowledge and experience of on-page SEO will ensure excellent results whether you are a small business owner or a national company.