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The Essential Introduction to On-Page SEO

August 14, 2020 Online Marketing, Seo,

On-page SEO is one of the two main parts of an effective SEO strategy (the other is off-page SEO). Essentially, on-page SEO involves optimising your website according to Google guidelines and SEO best practices.

Make Your Website Great

Before going further, it’s important to point out that, while there are several technical aspects to on-page SEO, the overall goal is to make your website as good as possible for users. This is what Google wants above all else, plus it will deliver the best results for your business.

What does it mean to make your website great, though? In terms of SEO for your Wellington business, it means ensuring your website is authoritative and trustworthy. More specifically, the pages on your website and the content on your pages should directly answer the queries of Google search users.

It All Starts with Keywords

Keyword research is the starting point for all on-page optimisation activities. You need to know what terms people use when searching for the products or services you offer, and you need to determine which of those terms will deliver the best results for your business.

This means considering search intent when conducting keyword research. In other words, considering why people use a particular search term with the objective of identifying those keywords that indicate the user is interested in your products and/or close to making a buying decision.

On-Page SEO for Your Website Overall

There are several on-page SEO factors that apply to your website overall. The current state of your website in relation to these factors can be determined by an SEO audit.

Here are the things you need to consider.

Responsive Design

Your website should look right and work properly on all devices, particularly mobile devices.

Page Load Speed

The pages on your website should load as fast as possible to keep visitors engaged. Google also prefers fast-loading websites, so optimise yours for speed.

Navigational Structure

The way you structure the content on your website, as well as the layout of your menus, is important too. The straightforward principle is that content on your website should be easy to find with intuitive navigation.

SSL Certificate

An SSL certificate adds a layer of security to your website that encrypts data between your server and visitors to your website, and vice versa. Whether you ask customers for sensitive data or not, adding an SSL certificate to your website is highly recommended.

Structured Data

You will need an SEO agency in Wellington to add structured data to your website, but the concept is easy to understand. Have you seen search results in Google that include star ratings and other detailed information? That’s the result of structured data. Adding it to your website can enhance the visibility of your site on search results pages.

Page Redirections

You should never delete a page on your website without redirecting that URL to another page. This is known as a 301 redirect. If you haven’t followed this best practice, you should identify your site’s recent 404 pages and consider whether adding a redirect will be beneficial.

Individual Pages

In addition to the above, there are things you should optimise on each individual page of your website. Here are the most important.

Target One Main Keyword

Each page on your site should target one main keyword, plus there should only be one page per keyword.

URL Structure

The URLs of your website’s pages should be short but as descriptive as possible. Often this means using the page title as the URL. Including the main keyword for the page can help too.

Page Titles

Speaking of page titles, these should be optimised for length and readability, and they should include the main target keyword for the page.

Header Tags

Header tags are the code you use on your page’s sub-headings. You should have only one main header, known as a H1 tag. The rest of the sub-headings on the page should use H2 and H3 tags.

Unique Content

Duplicated content will get you nowhere with Google, so make sure every page is unique – unique on the internet as well as within your site.

On-Page Text

You need to have sufficient text on your page for it to be SEO optimised. As a guide, less than around 200 words is unlikely to be enough. For many pages, you will need a lot more.

You also need to ensure the main keyword of the page is included in the text. The text on your pages also needs to be easy to read, well-written, and grammatically correct.

Meta Descriptions

Google says it doesn’t use meta descriptions as a ranking factor, but it does usually display them on search results pages, so they are important to SEO. You need a unique meta description for each page, it should include the main keyword for the page, and it should be well-written.

Image Alt Tags

Image alt tags are an accessibility feature to help people with sight impairments get a better understanding of the content on your page. They are important for SEO too as Google also uses them to better understand images. Using a descriptive filename for images can also help.

Links

The pages on your website also need links – links to other pages on your website as well as links to external sources. The latter is particularly important for blog pages.

Ongoing On-Page SEO Optimisation

As you can see, on-page SEO involves a lot of factors. It is also something you should continuously review and work to improve. This will help to not only enhance your rankings in Google but maintain the rankings you already have.