Have you considered all important on-page SEO factors while were you optimizing your website for SEO purpose?

Did you use your main keyword in the URL? Did you use heading tags in your content?

That’s the common on-page SEO best practices they want you to follow when you ask so called SEO experts “how to rank my website top in Google?” Isn’t it?

If I were them, I would advise the same.

You should pay attention to the all important on-page SEO factors.

But before we step ahead of you must know…

What are those on-page SEO techniques and why you need them?

On-page SEO factors are the elements that Google’s spider bot looks for when optimizing a website. The more elements it got, the more value it provides to that website in the search results.

You probably already know that Google uses around 200 ranking factors in their algorithm to rank a website.

Therefore, it is understood to get confused to pick the best on-page SEO elements from them.

Let me tell you a secret…

You don’t need to focus on all 200 on-page SEO factors.

You can rank your website in the search results with a couple of important on-page SEO elements if implemented those right.

In today’s post, you will learn about all those important on-page SEO factors that will get you more search engine traffic from every piece of content that you publish:

1. Make your URLs SEO-friendly

Google’s Matt Cutts stated in an interview that keyword in URL “does help in ranking.”

Use your target keyword in first 3-5 words for more exposure.

In other words:

Don’t create complicated URL: www.growwithweb.com/p=123?5755

Or

Avoid long URL like this: www.growwithweb.com/25/1/2017/on-page-seo-factors-that-will-improve-search-engine-ranking/

Instead keep it short and sweet.

The reason to use a keyword in URL is, it sends a clear message to the users to what is the page about before even they click on it.

2. Use your target keyword in the Title

A title is one of the most important SEO factors that Google gives attention.

Every blog post or web page you create should contain your target keyword in it.

The reason to do this, whenever someone searches for that keyword in the Google, it appears in the search results, and they know what the page about is.

In short, the closer your keyword will be at the beginning of the title, the more attention it will get from Google.

Here is how to do it:

Wrong- How to use Twitter for business and build strategy that never fails

Right – Twitter for Business: How To Build Strategy That Never Fails

Pro Tip – Try to write your title within 65 characters. Google truncates characters that exceed more than 65.

3. Add Modifiers To Your Title

Don’t get confused with word Modifiers it’s not new for you; you have already seen it thousands of times.

In SEO, modifiers are the words like “best,” “offers,” “buy,” “cheap,” “2000-2017,” “reviews,” and more.

The reason behind using modifiers are it quickly give users a clear idea what they are expecting from the search results.

User loves to search their query in the search engines using modifiers. If your title contains those modifiers chance are you will get on their radar.

For example- the following web page may have the title:

Adjustable dumbells – Fitness Point

Improve this further by including the modifier ‘cheap‘ and ‘Delhi.’

Cheap Adjustable dumbells in Delhi – Fitness Point

You see the above title sends a clear message to the users that the page is about cheap adjustable dumbells and the location you can find them in Delhi.

4. Keyword in Headings (H1, H2…H6)

Headings are important on-page SEO elements. As you know search bot can’t read the text, they can only read the text that written between the code.

Heading helps them to understand what the page about is.

The H1 tag is your “headline tag.” CMS’s (like WordPress) automatically add the H1 tag to your blog post title.

If that’s the case, you’re good. But, if you’re using other blogging platforms then you have to add it in your backend manually.

The code is pretty simple to write:

<h1>Pinterest for business: The only guide you need</h1>

Remember, your page can’t have more than one H1 tag. If you have multiple tags, use them as H2, H3 to H6.

Here are some pieces of advice on how to use heading on a website or in a blog post:

  • Never forget to write an H1 tag
  • Use at least 2-3 H2 tags
  • Use your target keyword in the H1 tag

5. Fuel up your content with multimedia

Writing informative post is good, but when it contain multimedia such as (relevant images, videos, and graphs) it become great.

Using multimedia in your content can reduce bounce rate and increase audience engagement on your site at the same time.

If you have ever visited Brian Dean and Neil Patel’s blog, you might have noticed they use lots of images and graphs in their content. And the result, their content gets plenty of shares and rank in search results.

Multimedia makes your content visually appealing and breaks up boring pieces of text. It makes readers stay for a longer time and Google loves audience engagement on a website.

6. Write your target keywords in Meta Description

The meta description in HTML tag is the 160 character snippet that appears in the search engine results after user input a particular query.

It describes your page to search engines. Furthermore, it helps users to know what is the page about before even they land on that page.

Though, Google does not consider keywords meta tag in web ranking. Despite that, you should use it to increase CTR (click through rate) from search engine results.

Here are some tips to write an effective SEO meta description.

  1. Meta description should be within 150 – 155 words. After exceeding it will cut down in the search results
  2. Start writing with actionable words that encourage people to take action like “learn,” “discover” etc
  3. Provide the searchers to reason to click your page by offering solution or answer to their query
  4. Don’t dare to cheat Google with false promises in meta
  5. Make it relevant to the title or headline

7. Introduce your target keyword in First 100 words

The keyword you are trying to rank for in the search engines should appear in the first 100 words.

By doing that you encourage search engine to know what it the page about as well as help users to understand the connection between content and title.

Many bloggers make this silly mistake; they write a long and confusing introduction, that usually confuse readers to know what is the page about, and they leave that page without even complete reading.

Pro Tip – For less valuable keyword synonyms use the second paragraph and so on.

8. Focus on Content length

Content length is now an important ranking factor.

Don’t believe me?

Take a look at the chart below. SERPIQ found that the average page that ranked for a particular keyword had at least 2000 words or more.

cotent length

That clearly shows Google loves content rich websites.

Google will award your site with ranking if your web page has a rich amount of quality content and it provides value to the users.

Long length content helps you in two ways:

First, it helps you ranking for your target keyword by targeting more long-tail keywords.

Second, the more words you use, the better you can demonstrate that topic to the readers.

9. .htaccess File

It is a small file which performs several specific functions.

How does it help in SEO?

1. Blocking Users – If you don’t want your competitor knows about the keywords that you are targeting.

You can use a .htaccess file to block them by domain name or their IP address. So, they won’t be able to access your website.

2. URLs Redirection – You might have seen a web page ranks with both “www” and “non-www.”

What does that mean?

Why search engine behave like they are two different websites while they are one?

The answer is, the user was building backlinks for both www and non-www, instead of one.

This type of action confuses search engines to understand that both pages are same, and its result search engines divide link juices between both “www” and “non-www” that isn’t good for SEO practice.

Pro Tip – If you have the same “www” and “non-www” issue, redirect your URL to one location to get more SEO advantage.

10. Create XML Sitemap

An XML sitemap is the best way to communicate with search engines, informing them about new or changed content, and ensure that they indexed them faster.

WordPress has plugins that automatically creates and update XML sitemap for you. In case, if you are not using any CMS or WordPress, then you can create XML sitemap yourself using this tool xml-sitemaps.com.

Once you have created XML sitemaps, you need to submit it to various search engines.

Both Google and Bing webmaster supports to submit XML sitemap via Search Console and Bing Webmaster Tools.

11. Use Schema Markup on your website

Adding schema markup code in your website’s HTML code enhance your web page presentation in the SERPs by showing more rich snippets that displayed beneath of your title.

Schema tells the search engine what your data means not just what it looks.

When a user searches a query in the search engine, he expects to get more qualified information for their query as much as possible. Schema markup does the same for him.

It provides extra information regarding their query.

event schema markup

When a website is using schema markup in place, users can see in SERPs that what is a website regarding? What they do, What are the cost of their product? And other valuable stuff.

Schema markup lets your website rank higher for all kinds of content types.

12. Image Optimization

Image optimization is one of the fundamental steps of on-page optimization.

The image brings more traffic than you can imagine. In addition to getting that traffic, you’ll have to make sure your images are optimized with alt tags.

What is the alt tag?

The short answer is, it is the text that tells search engines about the image.

To insert it, you need to add Alt=”image definition or alt text” in your image tag.

For Example: <img src=”fun-toy.jpg” alt=”fun toy” />

If you are a WordPress user, you don’t need to add tag manually. The option to add alt text appears as you upload the image in the WordPress.

alt image example

Following are some key points your need keep in mind when optimizing images:

  • Small size images load faster make it under 100KB
  • Image file name should be descriptive
  • Image title should keep your primary keywords in it

13. Keyword Density

Keyword density is the percentage of a keyword, or key phrases appear in a web page comparison the whole words.

Nevertheless, there is no ideal % available for keyword density. But it is recommended that it should be 2-3% with the right mix of LSI keywords.

Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI) is a modern way of dealing with keyword density problem.

Google uses this method to treat spammy results. So don’t forget to use LSI keywords when you write content for your website next time.

Here is the best practice to keep keyword density natural and avoid keyword stuffing:

First, use your target keyword once in the first paragraph.

Second, use it in the last paragraph. You can also use it in the middle of content where it makes sense.

Pro Tip – Don’t do keyword stuffing otherwise it won’t help in ranking but hurt.

14. Improve Dwell Time

Dwell time is the actual time that a visitor spends on a page before returning to the SERPs.

If a user lands on a website and leaves it immediately without spending much time, Google considers that page is low-quality and push that page to down in the search results.

In other words, the longer is the dwell time, the better is for your ranking.

By now you know dwell time a ranking factor, and you might want ways to increase your dwell time. Don’t you?

I can read your mind.

Just kidding, I can’t read your mind, but yes there are solutions to increase dwell time, and these are:

The first job you need to do increase dwell time is, create better content. Most of all, no one would like to stick to read a low-quality content. Are they?

Second, as you know that dwell time is the time-period that user takes to arriving at a page and returning to the SERPs. It makes sense to make him do the extra activity on your page.

Relevant internal linking is the best ways to keep them engaging with your page as well as it reduces bounce rate.

15. Don’t publish regularly

“Google loves fresh content.”

This is the biggest lie; you have heard all the time.

It doesn’t matter to Google if your site regularly updates or not until that content provides value to readers.

A web page rank only when more people read and share not if it has fresh content.

Brian Dean has only 33 blog post on his site Backlinko, despite that he manages to outrank some authority sites for high competitive keywords in the industry.

You know what his secret is?

He focuses on quality content and promotion instead of quantity.

Google always favors web page that people take interest in. And, that can only happen when you promote that content to the right audience.

16. Build a perfect trap of internal linking

Place links to related posts in your content wherever it makes sense.

Wikipedia’s posts are a perfect example of internal linking. But I wouldn’t recommend you to follow them.

You can add 4-5 links that will be safe and help improve ranking.

Internal linking improve your website’s SEO because Google thinks that you are providing extra information to the users.

Internal linking helps you in two more ways:

First, it makes users stay more time on your web page as well as cut the bounce rate.

Second, link juice passes to other pages of your site.

When internal linking, don’t use generic words like: “click here” or “visit this link.”, etc. As an alternative use a keyword as the anchor text but don’t overuse it.

17. External linking

Aside from linking your articles, link some other useful resources, also. It is an excellent way of white hat SEO strategy to get more traffic.

It indicates Google that your page is source of quality information.

But remember, don’t link unless it’s relevant to your post and provides the information that matters to your article.

When linking outbound links, make sure the sources are trusted. If you have confusion about the popularity of those sites, you can add no follow tag. Doing so link juice won’t pass from your site to those potential low-quality websites.

By default, your link looks like this:

<a href=”http://www.growwithweb.com”>Grow With Web</a>

To make it no follow, just add an attribute Nofollow to the link

<a rel=”nofollow” href=”http://www.growwithweb.com”>Grow With Web</a>

You don’t need to add any no follow tag if you’re damn sure the sites you are linking are trustworthy.

Readers trust the information that comes from authority sites.

18. Mobile Friendly Websites

Google released Mobilegeddon update to punish the website which was not mobile friendly.

You might ask, why your website should be mobile friendly?

The answer is, 48% people told that if they arrive on a website through mobile, and if that is not opening in mobile they consider it as an indication business is not caring.

Having a mobile friendly website helps in SEO, it helps improve search ranking in mobile search.

19. Page load time

Page load time matters when we talk about SEO. However, there were rumors that Google doesn’t consider page speed as a ranking factor.

But that were the only rumor.

If your page doesn’t load quickly, it won’t only force users to leave early, but also encourage search engines not to index your page.

47% users move to another website if it does not load within 2 seconds.

Maybe not now, but soon, Google might consider page site speed as a ranking factor says Gary Illyes of Google.

Google always appreciate those sites which load fast and has clean codes. Page load speed also improves the user experience for the visitors.

20. Use social share buttons

I would be honest here; social shares have nothing to do with ranking, not even Google ever said anything about it.

But still, I would recommend you to use social share buttons on your web page.

However, it doesn’t direct help in ranking, though it attracts more views on your content. The more eyeballs your content get, the more chances someone will link to it.

You may add some popular social sites buttons on your websites such as Google Plus, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest.

Now it’s Your Turn!

To get high ranking in the search results, you should consider these important on-page SEO factors.

Include these elements in your on-page SEO checklist to improve your on-page SEO. It will help you get your web page rank faster in the search results.

Let me know what do you think about this post. What on-page SEO best practice you are going to follow?