On-page SEO is a whole set of works carried out to improve the site’s quality with the aim of better ranking in search engines. When carrying out optimization, it is necessary to look at the site not only through the eyes of the user but also through the “eyes” of search engine robots. Furthermore, there is an Off-page SEO which involves methods that aim to enhance a website’s visibility and reputation outside of the website itself.
After you have made a competent selection of keywords and created the site’s semantic core, it is time to put the site in order. Where to start?
What Is On-Page Optimization?
On Page SEO is a set of measures that help to improve resource quality.
The goals of on-page optimization are to improve the perception of the site by search engines and increase its attractiveness to users. In simple terms, this is the site’s optimization according to search engines’ requirements so that it responds to user requests.
Why Do You Need SEO on Page?
On-page optimization includes a set of measures to prepare the site for interaction with users and search engines. These events have three main goals:
- Ensuring that the site complies with the technical rules of search engines;
- Solving user problems;
- Compliance with the requirements of search engines for commercial sites.
The result of on page SEO is the improvement of the site’s visibility in the search engine and increasing attendance. And if, at the same time, you correctly adjust the sales funnel, it will give a significant increase in leads – targeted actions.
Elements of SEO on Page
The work on the site concerns on-page SEO, and other works, including increasing the link mass to attract traffic from search engine maps, belong to off-page SEO.
On-page SEO factors apply too:
- Meta tags (title, description);
- Content and headings;
- Technical part;
- Commercial factors.
This is a significant and essential stage of SEO promotion: on-page SEO factors are considered when ranking, affecting the site’s position in the output of the Google search engines. When implementing these methods, it is essential not to make mistakes and consider the recommendations of search engines that are regularly updated.
Meta Tags Optimization
The semantic core is a set of keywords and word combinations that describe the topic and direction of the site. This list can include more than a thousand words for large multi-page resources. Work on the on-page optimization begins with the compilation of semantics.
The semantic core is formed to:
- Analyze the main competitors and apply their positive experience when developing a new site or optimizing the current one;
- Choose anchors of on-page links for high-quality linking of the resource in accordance with the requirements of search engines;
- Prepare tags and meta-tags with occurrences of frequent key phrases for pages;
- Structure a resource: expand the current structure or create a new one. Semantics allows you to organize the menu, think of new sections, a link between pages and other points;
- Form a content plan and technical tasks for copywriters to write new texts or optimize current texts on the site pages with keywords and LSI phrases.
Different services are used to select keywords. The simplest one is Keyword Planner from Google. Using several tools will help create a complete semantic core taking into account the frequency – an indicator of the popularity of requests in the target audience.
Semantics is an essential part of the site’s SEO.
Title, Description, H1
Meta tags are elements in the HTML code that tell search engines information about the page’s content. The most important HTML tags are related to the ranking of resource pages in search engines. This is the title, description, and also h1 header.
The description meta tag is also necessary for forming an expanded snippet – a short text block for the presentation of the website page in the search results.
Headings h1-h6 help structure the information on the page – this allows search engines to better understand the page’s content.
Competently written meta-tags with frequent vital phrases can positively affect the position of pages in search results.
Why is this important?
- Search engines will understand the information on the pages and present it to users in the output for the corresponding requests.
- The more precisely the content of the pages is described, the higher the number of visits to the site and the conversion of search traffic into sales.
- When forming meta-tags, you can use features that increase the clickthrough rate of search results, for example, emojis. People are more willing to follow such links – a snippet with emojis is more attractive.
- Duplication of tags and meta tags is not allowed – such sites are always promoted worse. Also, this can lead to the exclusion of the promoted page from the index: the robot may not choose a page optimized for the request, which could bring high traffic and sales, but a duplicate for display in the search results.
Website Structure Analysis, Audit
When you have a file with keywords distributed to groups and an understanding of the site’s structure, it’s time to compare it with what is currently available. It may turn out that you need to optimize the main page. Or you need to remove unnecessary ones. This is “rough” work on the on page SEO.
The structure of the site should look like this:
- Categories of goods and services, subcategories, filters;
- Product pages;
- Blog or individual articles.
Work on the structure is an essential stage of the website SEO that affects the following factors:
- Behavioral factor – The website’s design improves behavioral factors and reduces the rate of refusals;
- Conversion – The structure is related to the usability of the site, which plays a decisive role in making a purchase decision;
- Indexing speed – It is easier for search robots to build a route according to a transparent and understandable structure, which means that the site can be quickly and fully indexed;
- Site links – quick site links. These links lead to the most critical pages located in the search results, which can be displayed when searching by the name of the resource and during ordinary requests. You must create the correct structure for additional internal site links to appear in the search results.
The optimized structure improves the perception of the site by search engines and positively affects the behavioral factor.
Content is one of the on-site SEO elements that influence search results: texts, pictures, tables, audio, video, and any other information formats. But first of all, these are texts. Their quality plays a primary role in the ranking of resource pages in search engines. Work on content SEO is built considering the requirements that help website promotion.
- Literacy – Texts must be grammatically, orthographically, and stylistically correct, without errors and typos.
- Uniqueness – Texts copied from other sites reduce the position of the resource in search results.
- Naturalness – Articles, descriptions in product cards, and other texts should be written not for search engines but for people. Algorithms allow search robots to determine whether a text is readable.
- Usefulness – The content of the pages should be relevant and helpful to visitors and respond to their requests.
- Spam – This is the number of repeated words to the volume of the article. It is unacceptable to use too many keywords in the texts.
- Structure – It includes a thoughtful design of the material, which improves the perception and attractiveness of articles for search engines and the user. Divide texts into paragraphs, highlight subheadings of different levels, use numbered and bulleted lists, and add pictures, tables, and videos.
Interesting, valuable content has a positive effect on behavioral factors. This is actively tracked and encouraged by search engines with high positions on the site’s pages in search engine results.
Image SEO plays the same role as text optimization: relevant images improve behavioral factors, attract additional traffic from Google image searches, and speed up page loading.
It is not only about selecting high-quality, unique, relevant images for the page’s content. This also includes choosing the appropriate format, optimizing the size and weight of the images, writing a proper file name, filling in the Alt and Title, adding captions under the pictures, and creating a Sitemap for the photographs.
Work in this direction should be carried out so that specialized pages of the site, which are useless for the promotion of the resource and can negatively affect its ranking in search results, do not enter the index. Technical SEO is complex work ensuring fast loading and correct operation of the site. A well-optimized resource is technically convenient for users and ranks better in search engines.
Technical optimization consists of an extensive list of works:
Setting up the robots.txt file is a service file containing search robots’ instructions. With the help of robots.txt, you can close individual pages or the entire site from indexing, limit access for some robots, adjust the frequency of robot requests to the site, and other parameters.
Configuring the sitemap.xml file – a file with information for search engines about the pages that need to be indexed. It is a list of pages available for scanning by search robots. Separate maps can be created for images on extensive Internet resources.
Checking for technical duplicates – Duplicates are a complete or partial coincidence of content on two or more site pages. Search engines perceive them poorly. In the worst case, they fall under the filters and can be excluded from the index of search engines. Therefore, this stage must be completed during the on page SEO.
Checking of redirecting links – Many on-page links with redirection make it difficult to index and can negatively affect the site’s position. It is better to avoid them.
Checking links with a 404 server response – broken pages are URLs inaccessible to users and search engines (non-existent, etc.). With many connections to broken pages, search engines interpret the resource as low-quality and may lower its position in the results. Robots spend a lot of resources scanning broken pages, which may need more for important page promotion.
Site speed analysis – Site loading speed is an essential ranking factor directly related to the bounce rate. A long loading time negatively affects search results (robots can exclude or pessimize such pages from the index), while search engines prefer “fast” sites. Users often leave “slow” resources without waiting for loading.
The optimal site loading time is about 2–3 seconds, and the ideal user response time is 0.5 seconds.
Optimization of Commercial Factors
Commercial ranking factors affect the site’s usability and increase the probability of the target action. Commercial factors play an important role in the on page SEO process and allow:
- increase the reputation indicator – trust of users;
- improve the convenience of the site for making purchases or orders.
What commercial factors should be optimized?
The exact address and working telephone numbers are indicators of the company’s reliability. It is better to start the audit with contacts: they should be accessible from any part of the site. The more ways to communicate, the better for the site.
Information about the Company
For commercial resources, the availability of complete and reliable information about the company is strategically important – it increases the trust and loyalty of potential clients, encourages them to take targeted action, and positively affects the ranking of the site by search engines.
This is the main section of the online store. Search systems evaluate the catalog’s navigation, assortment, and marketing aspects. The key parameters are a large selection of goods and easy shopping.
Information about Goods/Services
The main requirement for product cards and service pages is that they must be informative. Price, availability to order, photos, and description must be filled in correctly.
The purpose of the e-commerce site is to sell goods or services. The algorithm for performing the target action should be convenient and understandable for the user: minimum actions are the best variant.
Information about Delivery, Payment, and Guarantees
The Payment and Delivery sections must be on the seller’s site. A plus if you add information about guarantees, return conditions, selection recommendations, answers to popular questions, an online consultant, etc.
Works on the Website Usability
Usability is a list of attributes related to users’ individual evaluation of the product and the efforts spent on its use. The following tools are used for the site usability:
- expert evaluation by SEO specialists who analyze the resource based on their own experience;
- analysis of attendance statistics and user activity records (time spent on the site, popular pages, entry and exit points, etc.) using Google Analytics;
- user testing (a group of people from the target audience works with the site as ordinary visitors, similar to a focus group).
During the audit, all parameters that affect the ease of use of the resource are checked and evaluated.
On-page SEO, performed according to all the rules, is an essential stage of SEO promotion. To properly optimize and avoid falling under search filters, a webmaster must have a severe theoretical base and understand all aspects of working with a resource. You can check your site on the checklist yourself and discover weaknesses. But to achieve the maximum effect from optimization, it is better to entrust it to professionals. Also, you can learn more about Off-page SEO by referring to our blog post.
On-page optimization is the most critical component of search engine promotion. The better internally optimized a site is, the easier it is to promote it in search engines.