It is an arcane art to making sure your page appears in search results. Everywhere you look there is another take, another piece of advice, another hack, but don’t follow that one because Google updated last month and doesn’t search keywords that way anymore. So, to avoid that messy and mercurial advice, what can you do to build a long-lasting, authoritative, site that both rates highly in search algorithms and is resistant to changes in said algorithms. Enter on-page SEO.
On-page SEO can mean a lot of things. Primarily on-page SEO refers to designing both the architecture and content of your website in order to best attract searches and please that ever-fickle algorithm. Here’s what on-page SEO can refer to:
1) Site content
2) Internal linking
3) Optimization of:
With this list in mind, let’s walk through a few of these elements to see what you can to optimize your on-page SEO.
The golden goose of content is and always has been keywords. Are you trying to sell sweaters? Find out what sweater-buyers are googling and talk about that in your ads and on your sales pages and in your headers and in your meta descriptions. Myriad tools exist for this kind of keyword mapping but at the end of the day, finding out what you should be talking about and then talking about it will boost your rating, boost your authority, and boost your sales.
You know how when your friend references that tv show she’s been trying to get you to watch for like six months now and eventually you do just so that you can tell her something about the pilot and pray she never brings it up again? Well search engines are kinda like that weirdly enough. A metric that pleases our algorithm overlords is site authority. Site authority is dictated by both the amount of time that a viewer spends on that site and how often it is referenced by other websites. Linking your pages together works towards both of these metrics. Firstly, if it allows viewers to hop between your pages, allowing them to spend more time on your site. Second, it allows algorithms to recognize those links between pages and potentially build authority between those pages.
Optimizing Tags and Images
Consistently tagging your titles, pages, and meta descriptions will go a long way in making sure its your site that shows up before your competitors. In addition, an often-overlooked aspect of optimizing tags is image alt-text. Adding a description of your images including a keyword or two will allow your site to be searchable not only to text searching but for images searches as well.
At the end of the day, its not the number of links or quality of meta descriptions that make or break a website. It’s the quality viewers find there. While on-page SEO can help, its but a single piece in the dark sorcery we call marketing.
Article written by Graham P. Johnson
Article produced by Gabrielle Bejarano