What is On-Page SEO?

Netmatters Ltd
Posted by Netmatters Ltd
25th June 2015

On-Page Factors

On-Page factors are the aspects of any given webpage that influence the search engine ranking. There are many different On-Page factors that affect this ranking; some of these are the following:

URL:

As well as smart internal linking, you should always ensure that the category hierarchy of your website is reflected into the URL. For example, a good URL could be something like:

http://www.example.com/seo/optimisation/on-page/how-to

This URL clearly shows that you are looking at a tutorial of on page optimisation within SEO. This information can be used by the search engine to determine the websites relevancy to the users search. The search engine can determine that this is a tutorial to optimisation of On-Page SEO, rather than a tutorial of optimisation of any other type.

A bad URL would be something that has no link to the actual content on the page, and this makes it impossible for a search engine to link the URL relevance to the search term or the keywords that the user has searched.

Meta Data:

•Title Tag:

Title tags are the second most important aspect of On-Page SEO, after content of course. The optimal format for title tags goes something like this, primary keyword, followed by secondary keyword, then the brand name. Google typically displays around 60 characters of a title tag so it is important to ensure that you keep your title under around 55 characters or so. When actually on the website you do not see the title tag anywhere apart from possibly at the top on your internet browser, where it will be written in your tab. Also remember that different search engines can display a different title such as any headings that you have (H2-H6, although this is rare), depending on the query or your brand.

•Meta Description:

Meta descriptions are incredibly important also; this part of the website is one that you don’t see when actually on the page, similar to title tags. When you search for something, this is what displays under the URL as a brief description of the site. It is important that this is relevant to the content, as this is your main opportunity to capture the user’s attention and lets them know whether the page is what they are looking for. This description should use keywords resourcefully, as these are very good for ranking a website higher on the search list, but should also give the user a good description of the sites content.

Headings: H1-H6:

The heading tags are incredibly important when it comes to web page optimisation. The heading 1 tag is the most important, and should never be skipped on any website. Doing so is simply bad practise, and if you do you are simply missing out on an easy way to get your website higher up on the search rankings. Search spiders always take note of what the H1 tag is, and check it for relevance against the pages content.

This is why it is always helpful to ensure that your H1 does hold a basic description of the page content. Also only use one H1 tag as search engine spiders could think this is an attempt at getting more keywords and in term make your page look spammy. The other tags are always less important, but it is also important to note that if you do use tags it is key to use them correctly and not skip headings, for example if you used H2, then H4 and did not use h3 then that would be making your site particularly SEO unfriendly because the hierarchy and structure of the page would be broken. Using these tags in a structured way is beneficial, but more so to the readers of your site than to how the actual site will rank on search engines.

Content:

The content on a page is what makes it valuable, and in turn causes the page to be worth a high search ranking. Ultimately it is the only thing that a website exists for, and it is the only thing that the user wanted to see when they clicked on the website in the first place, so of course it is always of the utmost importance to create unique, high quality content. Good content, when being observed from an SEO perspective must have a handful of main attributes, and some of these are:

Supply of the content meeting a high demand, content with no demand is useless, even if it is unique and well written.

•The content must be linkable, from an SEO perspective there is no difference between the best and worst content if both are not linkable.

•Images relevant to the content.

•Links relevant to the content.

•Automatically updating elements.

Another thing to note is that for the content to be high quality, it must be visible and accessible to every single user visiting the page, regardless of location or the device they are using. Mobile users make up a sizable portion of web traffic so it is important to insure that they visit a well optimised and responsive site in the same way that users on a desktop type platform do. Also note as mentioned above that it is good SEO practice to include images (with page subject in alt text) and links, relevant to the site, as well as automatically updating elements for “freshness” of the page. This can be achieved by using responsive design on your website, like we do on all of the websites that we create for our clients’. 

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