On-page SEO – Fixes for Boosted Performance
By Dominic Cooper On September 5, 2016 - Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
When it comes to on-page SEO, there are plenty of good habits you can develop to make sure your pages are doing everything they can to boost their search ranking performance. These habits are simple techniques that require little or no knowledge of coding, and just a little understanding of what effect HTML code has on a page’s performance in Google.
Below is a list of the key things you can start doing today to improve your site’s performance, attract more visitors, and make more sales. We’ve also included some of the more advanced fixes that can help, and how we can help you to implement them.
Give your heading a longtail
Starting at the top, the first thing you can easily fix is your headings. The heading of anything you post should contain keywords relating to the main body of the content, and by adding modifiers like “2016”, “guide”, and “greatest” (like “a guide to the greatest SEO techniques of 2016” for example) you can take advantage of the long tail keywords that will boost your rankings.
Use heading tags wisely
If you’ve got the perfect heading worked out that’s great, but it won’t be recognised as a heading by Google until you’ve wrapped some heading tags, like <h1>, <h2> or <h3> around it. These are what the tags look like in the code of the website, but will appear as a button or formatting option in most WYSIWYG editors on the web. All you need to do is highlight the text you want to turn into a heading and select the formatting option.
It’s important to remember there’s a hierarchy to the heading tags. There should only be one set of <h1> tags on a page, wrapped around the main title of your article, and anything wrapped in <h2> tags should always be more important than what’s wrapped in <h3> tags.
Drop your keywords early
You don’t want to stuff your article with keywords, as this will look suspicious to Google, but it’s a good idea to use a relevant keyword early on – ideally in the first 100 words. This will send a signal to Google that your article is about that keyword.
Add outbound links
Don’t be shy in including outbound links in your articles. Any articles or blogs you’ve used for research, that backs up the points you’re making, are worth linking to. Quality outbound links will boost your ranking and be another indicator which tells Google what your site’s about.
Add inbound links
Inbound links are also useful and adding two to three per post will encourage visitors to explore more of your site. One example of a site which is particularly good at doing this is Wikipedia.
Mix in Multimedia
Quality images, videos, and infographics can be added to your posts so your pages are filled with engaging content that increases the amount of time visitors spend on them. The longer people are spending on your site the more engaged they are and the more pages they will look at, facts which will impress Google and boost your page rankings.
Some expert help might be needed to implement these fixes, and will involve tinkering with your website’s templates.
The title of your page is different to your heading. The title is the description that appears in the tab when you open up a new website, and is essential for letting search engines known what your pages are about. Each page should have its own unique title, something which is usually controlled through the content management system of your website or its HTML template. Many sites will include the main heading of the blog as its page title, often appended with the company or website name.
Start titles with keywords
As the title tag is the most essential part of on-page SEO it’s important to make sure keyword placement is correct. To ensure your titles have the most impact place the main keyword at the beginning. For example “On-page SEO: Fixes for Boosted Performance”.
Tidy up your URLs
If your URLs aren’t easy for you to read, then they’re not easy for Google to read. A bad URL will look something like this:
A good URL will show a hierarchy and make it clear what the page is about, like this:
Simpler URLs are easier to read, easier to share, and generally more helpful to everyone than a long string of numbers and letters.
Make your site responsive
Although most on-page fixes involve changing words, one of the most essential factors of SEO is responsive design. Now the internet has reached a tipping point where most people are viewing it through mobile devices rather than desktop PC’s, responsive design is essential for ensuring that a website can adapt to a wide range of different screen sizes and offer the same experience. Since 2015, Google has started penalising sites which aren’t mobile friendly and it’s quite possible it will become even stricter in future – it’s essential for any website that wants to grow in a connected mobile world to take a look at their responsiveness.
Make it faster
In addition to using a website’s mobile-friendliness as a guide on how to rank it Google also factors in a site’s speed. The longer your pages take to load, the less likely visitors are going to wait for them to load. Compress images, optimise your code and consider faster hosting to ensure your pages don’t lag and lose you visitors.
Add sharing buttons
There are plenty of options for adding social sharing buttons to your site but all will require some code to be added to the template of your web pages. These buttons will make it easy for visitors to your site to share your content through their favourite social network, each time they do it will be another positive signal that tells Google your site is worth placing higher up in its rankings.
If you need assistance implementing any of these tweaks, VU is here to help. Get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org and one of our experience team will be able to advise you on the best way to improve your on page optimisation and boost your page rankings.