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On Page SEO Factors – What to Know

So, let’s say that you’ve designed, developed, and launched a website for you or your business and you want to rank well on Google and other search engines. Seems simple enough, right? In a perfect world, you would create content for a website and search engines would automatically direct users to your well-crafted and informative business. However, that isn’t really how things work. Search engines are not omniscient beings that “just know” that your content is worth directing users and searchers to. However, that doesn’t mean that you can’t help signal to search engines that your content is relevant, authoritative, and accurately meets user search queries. You may find yourself asking: “How do I inform Google that my page is relevant?” Well, let’s look into that:

On-Page SEO (Search Engine Optimization) Factors

on page  seo factors infographic On-page SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is a web industry term that simply means optimizing the content on your webpages (hence the “on-page” part of the term) for indexing and ranking by search engines. For simplicity, in this post, we’ll just focus on what Google has specifically stated are on-page SEO factors for ranking a website on their search engine. Those factors are (in no particular order):
  • The content of the page itself
  • Title tags and other meta information
  • The URL of the page itself
  • Relevant images with alt-attribute text (more on that later)
  • Links (both internal and external)
Now that you’re aware of what the main factors for on-page SEO are, let’s dive into the specifics of each category.

Optimizing The Page Content for Your Subject

The content of your page is the meat of it and should be hyper-relevant to the subject you wish to explore. For example, if your website is for plumbers, then the content of the page you’re crafting should be hyper-focused on plumbing and relevant sub-categories. In fact, the subject of your content should be clearly stated in the following sections of your webpage:
  • The meta title tag
  • The URL of the page
  • The header (H1) of your page
  • At least one sub-header (H2) for your page
  • In alt attribute text for all your images

Creating Unique Content is Important

Optimizing on-page content for the subject in question is not the only thing to consider when you’re writing your page. For instance, when you’re writing your page make sure to also provide some unique information on the subject of your choice. Basically, the more unique and in-depth the information your site provides, the more likely Google (and other search engines) will give your page a high-quality signal for ranking authority.

The Nitty Gritty – Meta Titles, Descriptions and the URL

After you have created unique, in-depth, and hyper-relevant on-page content for your site, the next step is to take care of the nitty gritty things like your meta titles and descriptions.

Meta Titles

Meta titles are what search engines will read as the title of your webpage. These are also the titles that Google and other search engines will use to display your page in the SERP (Search Engine Results Page). The title should be:
  • Less than 512 pixels/65 characters in length
  • Hyper-relevant to your subject
  • Include your main keyword

Here is an example of a well-written meta title:

optimized meta title with title boxed in on SERP

Meta Descriptions

After you have written an engaging and attention-grabbing meta title that accurately depicts the subject of your page, the next step is to craft a meta description. The meta description is a description of what will be found on the page in question. Google (and other search engines) use the meta description as the description for your page on the SERP. Your meta description should be:
  • Around 680 pixels/120 characters for mobile results
  • Up to 920 pixles/158 characters for desktop results
  • Contain your main keyword
  • Be hyper-relevant to the subject of your page

Here is an example of a well-written, topic-centric meta description:

optimized meta description image with description boxed in on SERP

URL Optimization

After you have written engaging meta titles and descriptions for your page (that also follow the guidelines laid out above), then it’s time to create an SEO optimized URL. When assigning a URL to a webpage, follow these simple steps:
  • Make sure it isn’t too long. Optimum URL lengths are always less than 2,048 characters
  • Include the subject of the page in the URL
  • That’s really it.

Check out an example of a well-crafted URL:

optimized URL example image with URL boxed in on SERP

Images and Alt-Attribute Text

Another important factor for on-page SEO optimization is to make sure that your content has engaging images that all contain alt-attribute text that pertains to your page subject. Alt-attribute text is what web browsers use to describe an image to the visually impaired when they visit your website. They also help optimize your images for ranking on Google image searches. The images you pick for your page are equally important as the alt-attributes you assign them. Images should load quickly, be visibly free of any artifacts or problems, and be placed in strategic locations in your content. They should also pertain specifically to the subject of the page. Don’t include pictures of air conditioners on your plumbing page!

Links – Internal and External

worldwide linking graphic showing link paths Probably the most overlooked, yet the second most important aspect of on-page SEO is linking. You can think of links kind of like the currency of the internet. The more websites that link out to your website (and vice versa), the more authoritative your content appears to search engines. There are two distinct types of links that websites use. They are:
  • Internal
  • External

Internal Links

Internal links are links that go from one of your pages to another one of your pages on the same website. To optimize your internal linking structure, you will have to figure out what you want your most important pages to be. Then, once you’ve determined what pages you really want visitors to land on, you will need to make sure that the rest of the content on your site links back to those important pages. But, don’t overdo it! Internal links distribute their authority evenly between themselves. So, the more links you have going to one specific spot, the more spread out your link authority becomes. Keep this in mind when you’re structuring the internal links on your website. You will want to strike a careful balance between funneling visitors to your best and most important pages, and making sure that your link authority doesn’t become too diluted. Generally, the best practice for internal linking is to:
  • Link back to the category or parent of the page you’re creating
  • Link to the homepage of your website
  • Link back to the sub-category or parent page (if applicable)
  • Link visitors to your contact page (or area of your website)

External Linking

External links are simply links that either go to sites outside of your own website, or links that come into your site from an external website. Obviously, you won’t be able to directly influence who links back to your website, so let’s focus on which websites your content links out to. Basically, you don’t want to link out to any pages that have a low page authority (don’t rank well). The more authoritative and trustworthy a website is, the better off you’ll be linking out to it. Some examples of high-authority places to link out to include:

Sounding too Complicated? Contact Contractor-Advertising for Help

Well, there you have it: a breakdown of what good on-page SEO optimization is. If this all seems like it is too much for you to handle, or like you don’t have time to make sure each of your webpages follows these guidelines, then you can always hire the SEO professionals here at Contractor-Advertising. Our team of on-page SEO specialists is always standing by to help. Call today or fill out the form below!