We are living in a Digital world where almost everything needs to be available on Digital platforms. If you are in business, you need to remain on top rankings on leading search engines. Just imagine how frustrating it would be to see your competitor outranking your website. You will get even more irritated and tense if you don’t even completely understand how they managed to do it. It’s a fact that you won’t be able to even compete if you are clueless about ‘from where to start’.
Let’s go through the list of 12 essential on-page SEO elements that will play a major role in securing top ranks for your website on search engines. Isn’t it awesome??? Before we start, let’s get to know about On-Page SEO.
What is On-Page SEO?
The term On-Page SEO refers to the set of practices that are done directly on the web page to improve its ranking on search engine. Thoroughly working on on-page SEO will ensure your content and code to follow the best practices of Google. This will also assist you to focus on the most crucial ranking factors that are used by the search engines to rank content. In true sense, on-page factors can make or even break your search engine rankings.
We have compiled a list of the most important on-page factors that need to be attached prime importance:
1. Title tag must include keyword
Title meta tag is considered to be the most important on-page ranking factor by specialists. It sends Google a strong relevancy signal. Due to Title Meta Tag, a search engine can understand the topic and content of the page and understand its relevance to the search query. Title tags are also used by the search engines to display the titles of your search listings.
If the main keyword is included in the title tag, it helps Google to establish the topic of a page and the queries that need to be displayed. While optimizing the title tag, one must ensure to include the keyword at the start itself. Search engine attaches more value to the words that are present on the left of the title.
2. Inclusion of keywords in meta description
Meta description to sends Google relevancy signal but it is not as strong as the title tag. However, description holds some significance as a ranking factor.
Google makes use of it to display the description of search listing. Due to this reason, inclusion of the main keyword can be of help to achieve better rankings. If you add the benefits of your products, it could help the click-through rate of your listings.
3. Wrapping page title with the headline
The headline too is known to send a strong relevancy signal to Google like title tag. With the help of the headline, the search engine is able to gauge what the page is about and what are the search queries that it relates to. Most of the Content Management Systems have a tendency to automatically wrap page title in the headline. Make sure that title of every page wraps in the headline tag for better rankings.
4. Keyword must be included in the URL
As per experts, inclusion of keywords in the URL helps to send one more relevancy signal to Google and thus automatically helps to improve rankings of a page. Always keep in mind to keep the most important words at the start of the slug while constructing the URL. Keep your URL short and let it start with the keyword.
5. Inclusion of related keywords in the copy
Always make it a point to focus on 1 or 2 keywords per page. If you include synonyms and variations of the main keyword, you will be able to increase the number of queries a page could rank for. You can think of adding companion words that would help Google to elaborate the context of the desired keywords.
6. Keyword must be included at the start of the copy
Inclusion of keywords in the first paragraph sends another relevancy signal to the search engine. While doing this, ensure that it must read and sound natural. Keeping the best copy always works in your favor.
7. Inclusion of keyword in image ALT tag
ALT tag is a small text that appears when we hover a cursor over the image. ALT tag also sends a relevancy signal to Google and it is used to describe the image to users. It’s crucial to include keywords in ALT tag so as to optimize your page in a better way. Most of the content management systems add ALT tag to images automatically. If you want to use this feature, you might need to download dedicated plugins in most of the cases.
8. Write Long Content
Make sure that you write lengthy content as the length of your content can affect your rankings too. Google prefers longer content as it indicates thorough research and an in-depth approach on a topic. Longer content tends to have better quality of info and hence preferred by search engines. So, it would be a wise idea to have longer length of content on your website.
9. Use of canonical tag to avoid issue of duplicate content
Duplicate content issue is never easy to deal with as it looks annoying too. Your content management system or e-commerce platforms might create several URLs that point to the same page or it adds session IDs to URLs. Duplicate content is not good from SEO point of view as the search engine cannot decide which version to be displayed in rankings. Owing to this, even the entire page can be demoted from SERPs. To deal with this issue you must add canonical tag to the page’s code. By doing so, you will be able to suggest the search engine about the original version of the content to be included in search results. Several content management systems add canonical tag by default whereas for others you might be required to install dedicated plugins.
10. Interlinking to other relevant pages on the website
Interlinking must be done in order to provide a nice user experience. If readers spend more time on a website, Google treats it as a quality signal. Hence it would be quite a nice idea to try make people spend more time on your page so as to have better rankings.
11. Referencing and linking to other authoritative resources
If you cite references and links to other credible resources on the topics mentioned on your website, Google takes it positively. Referencing and interlinking indicates that you are interested in helping your reader to learn more on the topic. Search engine receives good signals of trust and quality through this.
12. Reduce page-loading time
Loading time is also a crucial ranking factor. If a page takes more than 3 seconds to load, you are required to take necessary steps to reduce the loading time. By reducing page loading time, you will be able to fetch better rankings for your website.
On a concluding note: You can leave your competitors far behind in rankings if you know these simple but crucial On-page SEO techniques.