On Page SEO Techniques: The Only Guide You Need To Optimize Your Blog
In an era when Google’s search wing has evolved with so many new algorithms, you cannot just rank a page with good ‘ol methods like writing great content or getting some comments.
You need to optimize your blog further with proper On-Page SEO techniques and Off-Page SEO optimizations.
To increase your Google rankings you have to have the right ratio of natural backlinks, perfect content with optimized for your target topic, a great website that is Google friendly and nice social signals that show your authority and so on. The whole optimization process can be broadly divided into on page SEO & off page SEO.
However, in this post, we will not be doing a on page SEOvs off page SEO case study, In fact, we’ll talk about how to optimize your article for the higher rankings with the best on page SEO techniques and that too without voiding any of Google’s quality guidelines.
I have a handy ON Page SEO checklist so you can get it printed and gauge your articles for proper white hat blog SEO optimization.
What is On-Page SEO? The Definition
These On-Page SEO techniques include optimizing the text content (meta tags, permalinks, web copy, images etc) and optimizing the HTML (includes removing unwanted codes, mobile friendly site, no iframes, loading time etc.) of the web page.
That was just the gist of the whole game, let’s discuss the whole process about how to do proper on page SEO and make your site totally Google compliant.
What On Page SEO ? Benefits Of On Page SEO Optimization:
Before jumping into the latest on page SEO techniques, wouldn’t you want to know why bother about online SEO marketing when you have tons of other things to do for your business?
The simple answer to this is, through optimizing your site for search engines like Google you can funnel a heck load of traffic from them to your business website. This stands true for every online business and they invest in SEO efforts no matter they are bloggers, small business website owners, freelancers or big giants like Amazon and Techcrunch. Every form of online business takes the effort to optimize their website for search engines.
Here are the main benefits of on page SEO optimization and why you should consider it:
- Most on page SEO strategies focus around one topic, that is user experience. So when you optimize your site for on page, you automatically give users a good experience.
- Following the latest On Page, you can easily get higher rankings on SERPs, which means your website will be visible to as many people in your niche as you want.
- Better ranking = more traffic = more leads, sales, ad-clicks and overall revenue.
- Per dollar spent, small business SEO generates approx 3 times as many leads as traditional marketing.
On-Page SEO Factors: How to Increase Ranking With Proper On-Page SEO Techniques?
Now that you know what On-Page SEO is and the advantages of following on page SEO techniques, let’s quickly jump to the on-page SEO factors that contribute to boost your site’s rankings. We’ll try to optimize these segments with proper on page SEO techniques which will help you create a better blog in the eyes of Google.
To make your on page SEO task list easier, I have categorized the whole white hat SEO Strategy game into 3 steps for better understanding. They are:
- Optimizing the content,
- Optimizing the HTML section &
- Optimizing the meta data,
Want To Know The On Page SEO Techniques (2017) And Examples?
Here are the latest On Page SEO techniques you should know and follow:
- 1 What is On-Page SEO? The Definition
- 2 What On Page SEO ? Benefits Of On Page SEO Optimization:
- 3 On-Page SEO Factors: How to Increase Ranking With Proper On-Page SEO Techniques?
- 3.1 Optimizing The Content For OnPage SEO
- 3.2 1) Write Original And Detailed Content:
- 3.3 2) Use This Keyword Placement Strategy:
- 3.4 3) Optimize Your Images Without Fail:
- 3.5 4) Boost Dwell time: (What is dwell time & how to optimize it?)
- 3.6 5) Have The Most SEO Optimized Permalink Structure:
- 3.7 6) Do Internal Linking For On Page SEO:
- 3.8 7) Outbound Links (Yes! It is an important on page SEO technique)
- 3.9 Optimizing The Blog (HTML) For OnPage SEO
- 3.10 8) Make Your Site Branded & Optimized For Conversion (An underrated On-Page SEO Technique)
- 3.11 9) Improve Your Site’s Speed For SEO:
- 3.12 Optimizing The Meta Data For OnPage SEO
- 3.13 10) Meta Title And Page Title Are Not To Miss:
- 3.14 11) Optimizing The Meta Description:
- 4 Wrapping Up: The Perfect On Page SEO Technique To Optimize Your Blog For On-Page SEO Factors & Increase Ranking (2017)
Optimizing The Content For OnPage SEO
1) Write Original And Detailed Content:
Writing original content might take effort and time but that is what gets love from the search engines. Copied content on your site might harm your reputation as your readers will be quick to identify your tone and content.
This can be even worse if your content gets detected by the owner who can sue your for copyrights infringement. At the least, you can get your site removed if he files a DMCA.
Therefore, it is highly recommended that you write original and fresh content. If you’re outsourcing content from writers, make sure they are not spun content (copied content with jumbled wordings) with the help of free plagiarism checker tools.
How to optimize blog content for on page SEO?
- Words per page: Gone are the days when you could rank your keywords with 500-700 words per article. With increasing competition, you literally have to write the best articles that cover everything about the topic you are writing.
Articles that are 2000 words or longer get more shares, more links and better rankings.
- Include a lot of LSI keywords: LSI keywords or latent semantic index keywords are the side-keywords that are related to your main keyword logically. These LSI keywords help Google and other search engines perceive what your page is all about.
For example, if you are writing about “Squash” it might be confusing (both for users and search engines) that you are speaking about squash the vegetable or squash, the indoor sport.
However, if you content contains terms like drive, drop, game or racket which is normal to be included if you’re writing for the sport then Google’s bot can get a clear idea that your page is about indoor sport and not the vegetable. This will help your site get ranked for sport related queries instead of food related queries. So a win-win.
- Grammatically correct: Correct grammar and punctuation is very important for good impressions and authority. You can use the free Grammarly (read Grammarly review) to write grammatically correct articles.
Additional Resources You Should Read:
- 5 Essential Books Every Blogger/writer Must Read.
- The Most Inspiring Article I’ve Ever Read! (Read for yourself & see.)
- How Michael Hyatt Grew His Blog From 0-300K Visitors Per Month (Video)
2) Use This Keyword Placement Strategy:
Keyword Placement is the most important thing in the on-page SEO optimization. You have to be very smart when placing the right keywords at the right locations.
How to optimize keyword placement for better on-page?
- Make use of H1, H2, and H3 tags. Make sure you use your target keyword in at least once in any of them. However, don’t overdo it by stuffing so many keywords multiple times in these heading tags.
- Sprinkle the target and LSI keywords throughout the content in a natural manner. They should be placed in a way that the content flow is not disturbed.
- Use keywords in the first 100 words and try to make the things as natural as possible.
- Always try to keep the keyword density equal or less than 1.5% for better optimization.
- Optimize your images (we’ll talk about them in detail below) for your keywords too.
PRO TIP: Always use the target keyword at least once in the first and the last paragraph of your content. For LSI keywords, you can use tools like long tail pro or free ones like LSIGraph. Using LSI keywords is a topic in itself, you can read more about LSI keywords in the resources give below.
Additional Resources You Should Read:
- The Ultimate Keyword Research Checklist (SEMrush Blog)
- How To Use LSI Keywords For Maximum SEO. (GoBloggingTips)
3) Optimize Your Images Without Fail:
Images are the most underused on page SEO factor but if optimized properly they can bring you loads of traffic and improve your site’s SEO health. I have been getting a lot of traffic to my site from image search too, and that’s because, in most of the blog posts, I have optimized the images.
Below are some on page SEO techniques to optimize images for SEO and rankings.
How to optimize blog images for on page?
- Rename the image file to something that is human readable and about the topic. For example, change file names like 123.jpg to seo-strategy.jpg. It helps the image show up in the image search when someone searches for SEO strategy.
- Give an Alt text to describe the image. Alt text is the text that appears in place of image when someone with a slow connection fails to load the image. This also makes it easy for search engines to know what the image is about.
- Use a caption whenever possible because captions are read 300% more than the body text. So why miss this chance?
In WordPress, it is quite simple to add alt text and captions since the option is given when you upload an image.
In the technical part, keep the image lighter so that it doesn’t impact the page loading time. If your screenshots are heavier, you can try to reduce their size using online tools like Kraken or Optimizilla (both are free but charge for more usage).
If you use a premium theme like Thrive Themes (Swadhin uses it here on DigitalGYD Blog), they come up with inbuilt image optimizer so that it reduces the size of any image you upload without any change in quality.
This way you save time by bypassing the compression stage for each of your images and also saves you the extra subscription for the compression services.
Additional Resources You Should Read:
- Image Optimization 101 – Optimize Blog Post Images For SEO (BloggerTipsTricks.com)
- How To Support Your Copy With Images (CopyHackers Blog)
The next on page SEO technique pretty much summarizes the whole SEO game.
Ready for it?
4) Boost Dwell time: (What is dwell time & how to optimize it?)
Dwell time is defined as the actual length of time a user spends on a page before returning to the search results. Having a dwell time of 2 minutes or more is considered a good SEO signal while if a user returns (back to search) in a few seconds you are said to have a poor dwell time (and hence bad on page SEO).
How does dwell time affect search engine rankings? Or if it is even a ranking signal?
The dwell time of a site is a strong ranking signal for search engines like Bing but Google hasn’t cleverly not said anything about using dwell time calculation as a ranking signal. But if you are smart enough to spy back Google’s algorithm history, you can know that they did include dwell time as a ranking signal which they have never officially removed.
As a gesture that Google considered dwell time as a ranking factor you can check the screenshot below which shows that you can block a specific site after you hit back to search (after clicking on the result) due to low quality content.
This shows dwell time is logically related to better rankings because it signifies valuable content (that is why reader is dwelling on your page), user satisfaction (user loved your article hence reading more posts). Now let’s see how to use dwell time as an on page SEO factor and the exact on-page SEO technique you need to increase dwell time of your site.
How to boost dwell time and increase on page time spent by users on your site?
- Add multimedia: Easy as it might seem, I don’t see a lot of multimedia on most blogs even if they know that adding images, videos and .gifs are the best way to keep your readers on site. A related video embedded might keep your readers on your site a few more minutes.
- Write long content: People often consider old content a boring task but for readers, they are a resource. Most of my long content like this article on Facebook marketing for business perform really well. The article has nearly 5000 social shares which clearly shows readers like it.
- Write engaging content that interacts with your audience. Use conversational tone and write as if you are speaking to the single reader who is sitting directly in front of you.
- Stay away from false show off: Do not optimize your content for multiple keywords or use a different keyword for your title. These posts clearly mislead the reader into your site who is sure to return back to search results promptly.
Additional Resources You Should Read:
- Dwell Time: Does This ranking Factor Live To The Hype (Ahrefs Blog)
Permalinks are very crucial for a site’s SEO. However, the value that it had in the past diminished a bit because Google prefers more of the content part, but still, it is good for SEO if you have really nice, clean, human and search friendly URLs.
Ideally, in the anatomy of a URL, a permalink is the part of the URL that comes after the main domain as shown in the screenshot below:
If you are just starting your WordPress blog, make sure you choose the best permalink structure which is short and simple. That is one-time task. Having a simple URL structure for your blog will help to make your blog optimized for search engines and improve traffic.
Now, whenever you draft a blog post, you can edit the permalink to something that describes that particular blog post. WordPress, by default includes the whole article headline in your URL, you don’t have to do it.
- In fact, make your URLs short and to the point.
- Google gives preference to the first few words in the URL, so always try to include your main keyword in the beginning of the URL.
For example, in the above screenshot you can see, I kept “screen-recording-software” as that post’s permalink because the post is all about the list of screen recording software.
It also helps the users identify the content they are going to read once they see the URL in the search pages.How To Optimize URL For SEOClick To Tweet
6) Do Internal Linking For On Page SEO:
Internal linking of your articles is very important because it creates a better structure for your blog and provokes the readers to click on those links to read other articles on the blog as well.
It does help to keep your site’s overall bounce rate lower which is good for SEO. When it comes to interlinking, Wikipedia is the best example.
Start doing it, and you will gradually learn the right way to interlink your blog posts.
- Link to resource articles: When you are writing an article, link to other resources that are related to the topic. For example, in the this very article, I linked to various content tools in the section about optimizing content. Interested readers will check out and help reduce my bounce rate while reading one more resource on the topic.
- Link both pages and posts: The bad thing about pages is they become quite excluded from the whole content archive. No reader can ever find them unless you link them properly in your menu or blog posts.
Make sure to include important pages link your blogging toolbox page so that readers can find them easily.
- Do follow your internal links: Nofollow links make it impossible for search bots to follow the linked page. So if you are internal linking your blog posts, make sure they are dofollow so that your old content gets some link juice and keeps ranking.
7) Outbound Links (Yes! It is an important on page SEO technique)
A SEO study by Reboot shows that outbound links do have a positive impact on SEO. Google considers your site as a good source of information since you offer good content with good resources linked as well.
Here is what White Hat SEO expert Brian Dean suggests about outbound links and on page SEO:
In short, when you add outbound links, you are actually sending readers to go to the other online sources for getting more information on particular topics. And, this is what Google loves. You might lose some traffic in this on page SEO technique, but hey! giving your users a better experience and sending them to additional resources on the topic (because you can never cover all) is a good way to optimize your site for users as well as Google.
And, if Google loves your site, your ranking will be higher for sure.Outbound Links Can Boost Your Rankings.Click To Tweet
Success! You just Completed first level On-Page Optimization.
In the next and the second section of our top 10 on page SEO techniques, we’ll cover topics to purge your site’s code and make it for SEO friendly.
These are not anything like rocket science, but basic SEO techniques for HTML section of your site.
Don’t worry, you can do it!
Optimizing The Blog (HTML) For OnPage SEO
8) Make Your Site Branded & Optimized For Conversion (An underrated On-Page SEO Technique)
Your blog’s look is the first thing your visitors will see after they click on your article in the SERP. If that looks ugly and cheap, they will bounce off but if you have a clean theme with a lot of white space which gives them enough space for reading, they will stick around.
Plus, a branded look will boost your site’s authority in their first impression which will trigger credibility and conversions.
Make sure your theme is responsive, because Google automatically ranks mobile responsive sites higher than those that are not.
If you’re just starting out, I would suggest Elegant themes (read my Elegant Themes Review 2017 edition) because they are clean, responsive, fully SEO optimized and lightweight. Plus, they are cheap (87 themes for less than $1 each) or Studiopress themes.
However, you are serious about monetizing your blog (with affiliate & product sales) you should something more conversion optimized like Thrive themes. I use it here and it paid off barely within 3 months I used it.#Branded Site is The Key To Success!Click To Tweet
9) Improve Your Site’s Speed For SEO:
Site loading time is directly related to rankings. Site speed is a core on page seo factor in Google’s ranking algorithm. Not only this, fast loading site is also essential for user experience. Do not at any cost miss this important on page SEO technique. A loading delay of mere milliseconds can cost you sales and visitors.
According to a Kissmetrics research, 47% of users expect a site to load within 2 seconds and if it takes 3 seconds or more to load they will abandon the site forever.
How to optimize your site’s speed for SEO?
- Use caching plugins like Super Cache, WP-Rocket, W3 Total Cache.
- Use light images.
- Use a lightweight WordPress theme. Most fancy themes try to attract customers by adding features you eventually never use. These elements, however add to the site’s loading time. I suggest use something very light and optimized for speed.
The best you can get is Genesis (studiopress) theme for your blog. Most authority sites like QuickSprout, Problogger, Copyblogger, Shoutmeloud use it for the same reason.
- Remove unnecessary widgets from the sidebar. Most visitors are ad-blind so try subtle ways to include affiliate products within your article, not in the sidebar.
For more important sales posts, like my cheap VPS Buyer guide, I completely remove the sidebar. Most themes have that option. Try it to give your readers a better user experience and make your site more converting.
- Use a CDN.
- Use a fast web hosting server like Inmotion (for smaller sites) or a managed WordPress hosting like Flywheel (Check out my in depth Flywheel Hosting Review 2017 edition) for sites with huge traffic.
You can test your site’s loading time using Google’s pagespeed tool which also gives valuable insights about what’s wrong and how you can correct it.Fast Loading Site is The Key To Success!Click To Tweet
Still, sticking around?
Good job! One last step to a perfect SEO optimized site left!
In this, we’ll discuss how to optimize your meta descriptions with recommended on page SEO techniques and create a winning site.
Here we go!
Optimizing The Meta Data For OnPage SEO
10) Meta Title And Page Title Are Not To Miss:
Bloggers often misunderstand these two to be the same, but they are different!
Meta title is what you see in the search, and the page title is what you see on the blog as post’s title. Page titles are the perfect H1 tag examples, meaning they are by default the H1 tag of a post. You should not include a second H1 tag anywhere in the post, since it is reserved for the article headline.
You can keep both similar; in fact, most of the bloggers keep similar but to optimize better you can have two versions of titles, one for your readers and one (with keywords) for the search engines. Amazin’ SEO technique, isn’t it?
You can have a title of any length on your blog. However, Google keeps 71 characters in your site title before it truncates them. So it is very essential you have a meaningful title in the SERPs.
Check the table below to have a clear idea on how long should title tags be. Title tags should be 71 characters long at most and no longer than 600 pixels wide.
|Tags||Length In Characters||Length In Pixels|
|Meta Title Tag||71||600|
You can use Yoast SEO plugin to set different meta title and page titles. You have to do this while drafting the post.
If you don’t edit in the Yoast, it does take the page title as Meta title by default. Below are the title tags best practices you should follow.
How to optimize page title and meta title for better click through rates?
- Keep the Page Title and Meta title relevant to the content. Don’t write something spammy in the Meta title just to optimize it better. Always keep it relevant.
- Always have the targeted keyword at the beginning of the meta title. This does impact the search algorithm as well. Keeping the target keyword makes the search engines understand more about the content.
- Feel free to add modifiers to your meta title because these help in boosting the CTR of your posts and thus more rankings. Power words like Best, Your, Wow, Unbiased etc can significantly boost CTR in the SERPs.
Additional Resources You Should Read:
- List Of Power Words To Boost CTR in SERPs. (SumoMe Blog)
- Headline Mistakes You’re Making + FREE Plug-n-Play Headline Swipe File. (Thrive Themes Blog)
Point To Remember!
11) Optimizing The Meta Description:
Are meta keywords still relevant?
Yes! meta keywords are still relevant. Search engines like Bing still use it to know more about your content. However, Google clarified long ago that they don’t consider Meta Description as the ranking factor.
However, they do use Meta description to generate the search preview. Hence optimizing it can help you get the better CTR. Like all other on page SEO strategies listed above, you should also optimize site description for SEO.
If you write the Meta Description in a better way, you can get more clicks by convincing your readers to click in. Therefore, not for the sake of SEO but for better user-experience, you must write a better description of your content.
To add your meta data, you need to fill it in Yoast as in the previous case. (Check the screenshot in the previous step.)How To Optimize Blog Meta Desc.!Click To Tweet
Wrapping Up: The Perfect On Page SEO Technique To Optimize Your Blog For On-Page SEO Factors & Increase Ranking (2017)
Since we are talking about user experience being an important parameter of any SEO strategy, let’s not forget that decreasing the bounce rate, making it easy for maximum social shares and getting more comments are also very important. They are beyond the scope of this article, though.
Additional Resources You Should Read:
- How To Increase Your Domain Authority (DA easily).
- Relationship Marketing Strategies for Bloggers & Marketers.
- How To Build Backlinks Safely? (By Atish Ranjan)
- 10 Internet Marketing Mistakes That Are Costly You Affiliate Sales. (By Kulwant Nagi)
Since Everyone is asking about link building guide and the trick to get dofollow backlinks (let me tell you that building backlinks isn’t a on-page SEO technique, it is an off page SEO technique), you should not miss the post below which contains 10 actionable ways to get dofollow backlinks easily.
Over To You: How do you boost SEO?
What SEO strategies you follow to give your site the perfect on page optimization? Though this guide answers everything about what is on page search engine optimization, is there anything I left?
Do you follow any specific techniques for SEO that I have not covered? Please comment below your favorite on page SEO techniques that have given you instant rankings?
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Thank You So Much!!