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Search Engine Optimization has always been an essential element of blogging. We always talk about increasing traffic and maximizing conversions on our blog but all of this is possible only when our content is accessible to search engines. Thus, it is essential to follow a certain set of rules so that search engines can find the content on our websites easily. On-Page SEO is all about using the tactics that can help you in producing search engine optimized content.
In this blog post, we’ll discuss on-page optimization and the on-page SEO checklist that you should follow while optimizing a blog post.
What is On-Page SEO?
On-Page SEO is the process of optimizing individual web pages of your website to get good traffic and higher rank in search engines. Remember, On-Page SEO and On-Site SEO are two different things. On-Site SEO involves optimizing the entire website. However, both of these optimization types are mutually exclusive.
Many people believe that on-page optimization is all about placing keywords on a page. Yes, keywords are an important part of on-page SEO but there’s actually a lot more to the process.
Watch More Videos Here: ASH KNOWS
On-Page SEO includes:
- Meta tags
- Page Speed
- Social Sharing
You have to focus on all the above-listed factors in order to optimize your page for good search engine rankings.
Before moving on, I am assuming that you have a pretty good idea about what SEO is and how it works. If not, you may check out this article for refreshing your concepts:
On-Page SEO Checklist 2019
Let’s have a detailed look at the most important on-page optimization factors that you should keep in mind while publishing a blog post:
1. Title Tag
The title of your blog post is the most important on-page SEO factor. Try to create an engaging and attractive title.
Some tips for creating an SEO friendly title:
- Keep the title’s length no more than 65 characters.
- Use the focused keyword at the beginning of the title tag. If it is not possible, try to keep it close to the beginning.
- Never repeat the focused keyword in the title tag. It will do more harm than good to you.
- Add modifiers like “best”, “quick”, “guide”, “review”, “2019”, in the title tag to create a good long tail version of the focused keyword.
- Use H1 (Heading 1) tag for the blog post title. Usually, WordPress automatically adds an H1 tag to the title.
2. URL Structure (Permalink)
The permalink or a URL of a page is also another important on-page SEO metric. Search engines like short and nice URLs. That is why you should keep your URL short and to-the-point. Plus, always include your target keyword in the permalink. Avoid commas, special characters, and brackets in the URL. Use dashes to separate the words.
Bad URL Structure:
Good URL Structure:
3. Heading Tags
Heading tags are necessary to highlight headings, sub-headings, or other important points in a blog post.
As a good rule of thumb, you should always use Heading 1 for the title tag. Do not use H1 more than once in your article.
Use H2 and H3 Tags for other sub-headings and try to use the target keyword at least once in a subheading. Do not overdo the use of target keywords in subheadings because search engines do not like it.
4. Keywords Usage
Keywords are the most important and crucial part of on-page SEO. You should always do proper keyword research before writing a blog post. Google Keyword Planner is a free and very helpful tool for researching the right keywords for your article.
Once you have researched all the keywords, the next important thing is to place them at correct positions in your content so that they can make a difference.
Try to drop the keyword in the first 100 to 150 words of your blog post. Keep your tone natural while using a keyword. Basically, a lot of people start a blog post with long introductions and use the basic keyword much later. Write in a way that readers can get the topic and purpose of your article by reading the first paragraph.
The keyword density should be around 1.5% with a good mix of LSI keywords. Use both long tail and short tail keywords to make the content look natural and reader-oriented. You may use the SEO Yoast plugin for checking the keyword density and making your post SEO friendly.
5. Meta Tags
There are basically four major types of Meta tags:
- Meta Title
- Meta Description
- Meta Keywords
- Meta Robots Attribute
I’ll do a detailed blog post about these tags later but for now, we’ll talk about Meta Description.
While writing a blog post, you should add a relevant Meta description. Use your focused keyword in Meta description once. Keep it between 300-320 characters. Always write natural-looking descriptions that are actually useful for the readers so that they can click on your post.
6. Image Optimization
Images play a great role in attracting visitors and keeping them engaged while reading the content. Whenever you add an image to your blog, optimize it. Image optimization is one of the major on-page SEO factors that you should never ignore.
Search Engines cannot see what an image is about so you have to tell them by assigning a name to it. For this purpose, you add an Alt Attribute or Alt Text. It helps search engines in understanding what an image is about. Alternate (Alt) text is also very helpful in case when the image is not loading.
Use the focused keyword at least once in the image title and alt text to make it more targeted and SEO friendly.
It is also a good idea to add videos to your blog post because they minimize the bounce rate and maximize the reader’s time on your blog. Adding videos and diagrams increase the value of your content and make it look better. Search engines also like the posts that make use of different multimedia like images, videos, infographics, or other diagrams.
Note: Always compress the images before uploading them on your blog. Remember, large images slow down the page loading speed thus affecting your Google rank. You may use TinyJPG for compressing the images.
7. Linking Structure
There are basically two types of linking:
Internal links are the ones that go from one page to another page of your website. A great internal linking structure of your website can do wonders.
They are very important for your blog because they help in passing the page rank to other pages of your domain. Besides that, they help the readers to spend more time on your blog and read the other related posts.
Use 2-5 links of older posts in your blog post. Do not abuse the power of internal links. Just add the ones that are actually related to your blog posts. While linking an older blog post, try to use a keyword as anchor text.
External links are those that go from one page of a website to another page of a different website.
Adding external links of related pages helps Google in identifying the topic of your blog post. In addition, it shows that your page contains a lot of quality information. Try to use 3-4 external links in your post.
This is actually an amazing SEO strategy to get traffic for your blog. While linking to another website, make sure that the website holds authority and enjoys a good reputation. It is necessary because the other websites that you link to actually reflect the status of your website.
8. Site Speed
Page loading speed is an important SEO ranking factor. Make sure that your site does not take more than 4 seconds to load. A slow loading site ruins the user experience and decreases your Google rank as well. That is why you should always keep an eye on your site’s loading speed.
You can always check the loading speed of your website using GTMetrix.
9. Good Readability
If you want to build a good reader base for your blog, it is vital to create reader-oriented content. While writing a blog post, imagine that you are talking to your readers. This will help you to write in a reader-friendly way.
Here are some tips to improve the readability of your content:
- Always go for short sentences and paragraphs.
- Do not write paragraphs more than 7 lines.
- Choose a responsive design and theme for your blog.
- Add your related posts at the end of each blog post.
- Create a proper navigation structure to provide a great user experience.
- Write in a way that an average Grade 5 or Grade 6 student can understand what you are trying to say. Use Hemingway Editor to check the readability of your content. If it is Grade 5 or Grade 6, you are good to go.
10. High-Quality Content
No matter how much the SEO industry gets advanced, content will always be the king. If you produce good quality content on your blog, it will get recognition sooner or later.
The success of your blog is determined by the content you write on it. Every other component (images, videos, designs) serves as a secondary thing.
If you want to be a good blogger, you should not underestimate the value of writing high-quality content. Ultimately, it is the content that helps you in building a relationship of trust with your readers.
If you write content for search engines only, your readers will never be able to connect with whatever you are writing. Try to be as genuine as possible and write with the motive of providing good information to your readers.
Things you should keep in mind while writing content:
- Create unique content. Do not copy the content of other blogs.
- Before writing content, make sure to research the topic properly to avoid providing erroneous information.
- Use proper grammar and spellings. Check your content on Grammarly to remove all kind of grammar mistakes.
- Align the text properly and use good formatting.
- Do not write random stuff. Focus only on the topic you are writing.
- Write longer blog posts because they rank higher on search engines. Go for at least 1000 words blog posts.
- Enable comments after the post to get the feedback from your readers.
11. Social Sharing Buttons
Add social sharing buttons at the end of your blog post. This will help your readers to share the content on their social media and you’ll get more traffic on your blog.
Although social sharing is not an important on-page SEO factor, it helps in making your content popular. Thus, you should never hesitate about using social media buttons on your website.
The major points of On Page SEO Checklist include:
- Have focused keyword in the title.
- Use focused keyword in the first 100 words.
- Use LSI keywords in H2 and H3.
- Place focused keyword in the Alt Tag of one of the images.
- Keep the keyword density up to 1.5%.
- Don’t stuff your blog post with keywords.
- Use H1 for the title.
- Do not overdo the heading tags.
- Keep the URL short and nice.
- Avoid special characters, brackets, and commas, in the URL.
- Write Meta description of about 300 characters.
- Use your focused keyword in Meta description once.
- Add 2-3 internal as well as external links.
- Write original and unique content.
- Check the readability of content.
- Compress the images before adding them on the blog.
- Boost the page loading speed.
- Add Social Sharing Buttons to your post.
- Add related articles after each blog post.
- Allow comments on your blog.
This was all about On Page Optimization. If you have any query, do ask it in comments. I’ll wait for your feedback. 🙂