Keywords are one of the essential starting points for an effective inbound marketing strategy. After you’ve chosen your keywords, you need to increase your website’s chances of ranking for those keywords. Search engine optimization (SEO) is about doing just that.
In order to get found, you should aim to be near the top of the first page or near the top of the first few search engine results pages for your keywords. Google suggests that you design your website for visitors and not for search engines. While you should keep this principle in mind, it is worthwhile to learn a bit more about SEO in order to better optimize your site.
To get you started, here are nine crucial elements of on-page website optimization:
Page Title: Page titles are one of the most important on-page SEO factors. Page titles are the text you see at the top of your browser window when viewing a web page. They are also the that is presented in search engines. Some guidelines for coming up with effective page titles include having them contain keywords, making them fewer than 65 characters long, putting keywords as close to the beginning as possible, and using different easily readable titles for each page.
Meta Description: Meta data is an often-overlooked opportunity to attract visitors from search. The meta description is the text under the title of a site in a Google search. These words attract a searcher’s attention and indicate if a search result is particularly relevant. For this reason, including keywords in your meta description can draw in visitors, even though it does not dramatically affect search engine rankings.
Headings: If a piece of text appears larger or more prominent than the other text on a page, it’s probably part of a heading. You can verify this by checking the HTML code of your website and seeing if that text has an <h1> <h2> or <h3> tag surrounding it. Text in the headings is more likely to be read by search engines as keywords than text in the rest of the page. For this reason, it is good to include keywords in your headings whenever possible.
Cascading Style Sheets (CSS): HTML is the back-end code of your website that search engines read. Search engines extract relevant information from your HTML, such as keywords. CSS, on the other hand, holds a template for the layout of your page. In the CSS, you define how headings, links and other visual elements of the text should look. The takeaway here is simple: use CSS.
Images:Images on a web page can certainly enhance user experience. However, when inserting images into your website, you should keep in mind the following: don’t use images excessively, associate text with pictures, and include keywords in your image file name.
Domain Info: Search engine rankings favor sites that are registered for a longer period of time. Longer domain registrations indicate a commitment to the site and mean the site has a lower chance of being considered to be spam. Extend your annual website registration for an SEO boost.
Moz Rank: This is a general measure of how much online authority your site has. The higher the MOZ rank, the better. Note that MOZ rank factors in both on-page and off-page SEO. Improving your on-page SEO is just one of the many ways to improve your Moz rank.
Google Crawl Date: When Google crawls your site, it updates the information related to it, such as your keywords and other SEO factors. Therefore, you want Google to crawl your site as often as possible. The best thing you can do to make Google crawl your site more frequently is to regularly produce fresh content and publish it on your website.
URL Structure: The URL of a web page is its web address. For example, HubSpot’s blog has a URL of http://blog.hubspot.com. The URL structure of a website is about how the different URLs connect with each other. Unfortunately, improving your URL structure is one of the more difficult aspects of on-page website optimization. The methods of fixing these issues depend entirely on the back-end parts of your website, such as your content management system or programming framework. Nevertheless, if you have a competent developer by your side, having him or her tackle these issues can significantly improve your SEO.
As with keywords, on-page website optimization is essential if you’re looking to get the most out of your inbound marketing strategy.