5 Ways to Improve Your Website’s On-Page SEO
If you want to succeed at SEO, you need to do it well both on and off the page.
Off-page SEO is what you do off your website, such as link-building, social sharing and contributing to online discussions. But while that will definitely help you improve your search rankings, what you do on each and every page of your content – on-page SEO – is just as, if not more important.
Thankfully, getting your on-page SEO on track isn’t too difficult or time consuming. In fact, here are five things you can do to start improving it today.
1. Content IS King
While this phrase has become somewhat of a cliché, there must be at least a grain of truth to it if it’s bandied about so much.
When it comes down to it, SEO can only get you so far. You also need content that can stand on its own two feet.
SEO is like frosting on a cake. It enhances something that’s already good and pushes it to the next level.
High quality content ranks well, with or without SEO. That’s because search engines love content that’s original, relevant and useful, which means it gets preferential treatment over sub-standard content.
If on the other hand, your content lacks substance, SEO is merely a crutch. Sure, your rankings may improve slightly in the short term. But chances are they’ll be nowhere near as good as the results you were expecting.
2. Help Search Engines Help You
If you want search engines to find your content, you need make it easy for them to do so. This means making sure they can quickly and easily understand what your content is all about.
Here’s how you can help a search engine help you:
a. Page title
Give each page of content a unique title. This should make the subject of your page instantly clear.
b. Meta description
Write a unique and compelling page description that convinces users to click on your link. Remember to limit yourself to 150 characters, or it won’t appear in full on the search results page.
c. Proper formatting
Break the text up with headings and subheadings; and highlight all the important parts.
Taking these steps helps search engines scan your page more quickly. It also has the added benefit of making your content easier to read.
3. Know Your Keywords
Search engines can’t find you unless you use the right keywords. And by right keywords we mean the search terms your audience actually uses, not those you think they do. With this in mind, it makes sense to spend some time doing your research before incorporating keywords into your pages. That way, you can make your content much easier to find.
As a rule of thumb, the more specific a keyword is, the better your results. Use long-tail keywords (i.e. phrases made up of four or more words) as much as possible. These are a lot more targeted than short tail keywords, which makes it easier to rank for them.
You should also try to keep your keywords as natural and conversational as possible, since this is how most people run searches online.
4. Keep Your Content Fresh
Search engines love fresh content. The more recent your content is, the better it will rank. This is exactly why a regularly updated blog boosts your website traffic and improves search engine results.
But keeping your static pages fresh makes as much of a difference to your on-page SEO as a frequent blog posting schedule.
Thankfully, you don’t need to rewrite your static pages all the time to keep them fresh. Here are a few ideas on how you can do it quickly and easily:
- add a recent tweets widget
- add a recent blog posts widget
- add new client testimonials and date them
5. Link Often And Well
Search engines prefer content that has outbound links, because they view it as more trustworthy and authoritative. The trick is to do it naturally; and to incorporate links that are relevant, i.e. that actually buttress your arguments and enhance what you have to say.
Look at it another way.
If you want to be taken seriously, you need to back your claims up. By linking out to other high quality websites, you’re showing that you’ve done your research. As a plus, relevant links make it even easier for search engines to understand what your page is about.
But that’s not all.
Linking to other pages within your own website is just as important as adding relevant outbound links.
Search engines are like spiders. They follow every link they find. Linking to other pages on your website can improve your page’s relevance and it’s ranking in search results. As a bonus, you’re also letting the search engine know about your other pages.
Need help getting found on the web? Talk to us today.