The SEO On-Page Optimization Checklist will provide steps to rank higher, increasing your online presence along with increased traffic to your business online.
Why is SEO so important on a website and why should I care about On-Page Optimization.
SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization.
The methods used within this checklist will assist the search engines in Google, Bing, and Yahoo to index your website.
Once indexed, there are other techniques you will use to maintain your online presence as you build a solid foundation for your website.
Those that know their SEO, as a result, you will find them at the top of the search pages.
Regardless, if you have a new website or an established one, that doesn’t mean you can’t outrank your competition.
Apply what is available to you here together with your consistent work you can easily rank at the top and be the competition others are chasing.
Here are some other reasons why you should care about On-Page Optimization
• Increase Free Organic Traffic.
By having a high ranking within the search engines, your website will get free organic traffic from those looking for what you have to offer.
• Increase your website presence.
Using the proper SEO techniques creates a more user-friendly website, bringing established trust between your website and your visitors.
• Create brand loyalty
By being consistent with your SEO practices, there will be an increased user experience gained between your website and your customers.
• The advantage over competitive websites
One of the main reasons why some fair better than others is the proper use of SEO techniques, so why not take advantage, become the competition others are seeking to be.
Please note the following:
Regardless if you are creating a website for the first time or already, have an established site, one of the first and foremost on your To-Do list is to create an account with both Google Webmaster Tools (now known as Google Search Console) and Bing Webmaster Tools.
You will find each link above, and both are free to join.
There are many reasons for this, but the main one, for now, is to establish a connection with both search engine tools that will help you further down the track with your analytics.
Although these are not On-Page methods, it is more Off-Page which I will discuss in a later article. By doing so, this will help you later as we go through some of the On-Page techniques, such as helping to index your website even before you create any content.
There are two reasons why this should be your first step to take.
1) Think of it this way, if the search engines don’t know you exist, how can they index you?
2) If you are not indexed, then how can your customers find you on the web?
SEO On-Page Optimization Checklist
Below, you will find 12 easy steps to take that are important for your SEO optimization.
Two are Off-Page tools, one of which I mentioned already with the Google Search Console and Bing Webmaster tools.
The second tool is a plugin, that will help you at the start with both the Google Search Console and Bing Webmaster Tools along with helping improve your SEO when you first start.
These I feel are the first and foremost aspects to take before the On-Page SEO begins.
Now you have your website and your Niche selected and have connected with the two Webmaster tools, Google and Bing (as stated above) it is time to prepared your content that you will be writing about for the benefits of your readers.
Let’s Get Started
First, what is a keyword and why using the right keyword can determine your ranking position with the search engines or not been seen on the web.
A keyword can be a single word, a phrase, or a query that users type on the search box of search engines or other websites.
There are two main reasons for the proper use of keywords.
- It helps the search engines understand what your keyword is saying and how relevant it is to your content.
- The proper use of keywords helps to match what your audience is seeking online. As a result, they will be more inclined to visit your website and buy from you with what you are promoting.
A major Factor with On-Page SEO is keyword research.
Here is an example of what proper keyword research can bring you, along with all the correct On-Page SEO optimization can give.
In a post of mine, I am promoting candles, Not just any candles but “The Best Candles In The UK”.
As you can see this post is now on Page 1 position 1 in Google but also in Bing and Yahoo.
That is what Proper Keyword research, correct SEO techniques will give you. In fact, with all the On-Page SEO Optimization done, it ranked higher than the same company I am promoting, which is No 2 in Google.
This alone shows the power of using a great Keyword Research tool like Jaaxy, which gave the results needed to rank in the best position with the search engines.
- Long-Tail Keywords
There are keywords that you may struggle to rank, and there are keywords that will rank you higher.
Long Tail Keywords, will give you the best opportunity to rank at the top along with the great content you have created for the best user experience.
As stated further up, keywords can be a single word, a phrase, or in the form of a question or query.
Long-tail keywords can be 3 or more words together best with a max of 5 as you also need to consider the length of your post along with the amount of space you have for your Meta Title and Meta Description (discussed later).
Also, remember the length of each word used as well.
Note; That when using long-tail keywords, they need to make human sense and your main aim is to write for the benefit of your readers, not for the search engines.
Using the image above, I could have easily created a keyword saying best candles around but to be more specific to a particular audience the best result that Jaaxy gave me was The Best Candles in the UK.
Now that you have researched your keywords, It is time to add them to your content using your On-Page SEO techniques (more of which will be covered further below).
What makes great content?
Great content is about giving the best user experience for the visitors coming to your site.
Your content needs to be unique but written for your visitors and not for search engines.
Length of Content
An average length of your content would be around 1500 – 2500 words.
However, it is not as much the length of the content, but what is within the content that matters most.
An informative post can rank page 1 of the search engines with 750 words yet a 3000-word content, may not rank at all.
It is all about what is inside the content.
Are you providing insights on what the topic is about or just barely scratching the surface?
There is no doubt that many are creating longer content than ever before and as long as it is informative, it keeps the reader wanting more on the topic will be what will rank more.
There are many templates around that can show you how to structure your content, but usually, it contains the Title and around three parts within the content itself.
Now you are ready to begin to type your content.
So within the Title Header, you will have your selected long-tail keyword that will relate to what you are about to write.
We have stated that you need to create unique content for the benefit of your readers.
The introduction will be the first impression your reader has to what you offer in your article.
If it is not captivating, they will go elsewhere.
One of the On-Page SEO techniques is to have your keyword in the first part of your introduction and must make sense as well.
2) Main Body
Write the rest of your content naturally that is relevant to the topic. Don’t stuff your content with keywords. You will be surprised by how many keywords will be found by the search engines.
3) Conclusion and CTA (call to action)
Both parts of the last section can be either be separate or included together depending on what you have to offer to your readers.
The conclusion is a summary of what you have written, you may ask for comments relating to your article asking for your reader’s views and perhaps questions and to comment on what is on offer. Creating a comment section is also an SEO technique that can add some further value to your rankings.
With the CTA, here you would add either a hyperlink in a text or image (more on this further down) that is clickable to take the visitor to purchase the product or service to the affiliate company or merchant.
So now you have completed writing your articles but before you publish these more steps need to be taken.
These steps can be done while writing your content or at the end before you publish it.
We have already discussed the Title and the introduction now we need to do some SEO to this.
5) Meta Title, Meta Description
You Heading Title in the back end of SEO is also known as the Meta Title, while the introduction is known as the Meta Description.
Here there are a few things to do with both.
The Meta Title will contain your keyword relating to your content. The Meta description will contain your introduction to your article.
Nothing changes about that, the only aspects as per SEO is the length used in both.
The Meta Title has about 60 characters if it is longer than that it will be cut off in your snippets when viewing this with the search engines.
Therefore, for best results try to keep it to around 55 characters instead.
The Meta Description which contains your keyword (preferably a Long-Tailed Keyword) allows up to 160 characters and again anything longer than that will be cut off your snippet.
The image below shows you the back end of what the Meta Title and Meta Description would look like along with what your snippet would look like when seen by your audience on the search engines.
6) Body Tags (H1, H2, H3, H4, H5, H6)
HTML — This stands for Hypertext Markup Language.
This is a common language that is used when creating web pages.
The H tags are HTML tags that indicates a heading on a website along with How a heading is to be displayed.
There are six heading tags, ranging from H1 through to H6.
H1 tags being the most important, while H6 is the least important.
When creating content, you will have various headers to help stand out from the rest of your content.
Your post title will use an H1 tag and should be the only H1 tag used. The rest of the H tags can be used as much as you wish.
The introduction to your content will be an H2 while the rest of the headers, such as subheadings can be H3 if need be H4 but rarely is there a need for H5 and H6.
Here is a sample of what the H tags would look like using Times New Roman as the font and size is 14
7) Internal Links
Internal Links are also HTML codes that when clicked take you from one part of a website post to another post within the same website.
When clicked, this will take you straight to that blog post without the need to search for it on the website manually.
For example, when you click the link that is highlighted it will take you to one of my recent posts regarding Affiliate Marketing For The Beginners (How To Get Started Now)
This is how a link would normally show up as highlighted and underline but you can also change these features as well but for now, the example is shown for this purpose.
Internal Links are powerful On-Page SEO techniques for the following reasons;
• They help users and search engines navigate through the content of your website.
• These SEO techniques will benefit your articles on your site.
• Internal linking gives added priority to newly created content.
8) Image Optimization
We already understand how important having good quality content is.
Another factor with quality content is the addition of images that is relevant to the content you have.
We also know that a picture can paint a thousand words as the saying goes.
Images come in different file types, such as Jpg, Jpeg, Gif, and Png. Jpg is generally the best file type to use within your website.
However, Image size is an SEO ranking factor as well as page speed.
Too large a size can impact your loading speed, which also slows down your website when being loaded. As a result of a slow loading site, search engines will take longer to crawl your website, and if it takes too long, your ranking will drop.
Generally, it is best for a site load up within 2 seconds or better, any longer than that you could be losing money and time.
Another critical factor is the user experience. Any longer than 2 seconds, they will leave and go to another site.
So how can you optimize your image?
One method is to add a plugin that can optimize your images as you add them to your media library within the website.
There are a couple of plugins I would highly recommend that can help optimize your images within your site.
They are Smush and EWWW Image Optimizer.
These are both Free plugins available via your WordPress.Org website and there is really no great need to pay for their premium version as the work they do is fantastic as is.
Both will help to optimize the images and speed up your site.
10) Alternative Text and Image Title Attribute
Here is where your On-Page SEO comes to action for your images (refer to the image below).
When you first download an image to your WordPress Media Library, you will have some options to add the details in your Alt Text, Title, Captions, and Descriptions as shown above.
All options have some link juice with SEO, but not all are necessary. It all depends on what the purpose is and is author dependent.
First note, Search Engines such as Google, cannot read an image to understand what it is about from just the Picture alone, to remedy this, added details are required this will enable us to assist in three ways.
1) To enable Search engines to understand what the image is about and how it relates to the content.
2) By adding a description in the right section, creates a better user experience and will help them to stay longer on your site.
(Staying longer also is ranking metric search engines use. That is for your added information).
3) Increasing your ranking with the SEO On-Page Techniques are applied to give you a higher chance of being in the top page of the search engines.
Ok let’s look at these options from top to bottom;
The alt text allows search engines to understand the description of the image so they can be index accurately.
If for some technical reason the image can’t be loaded the alt text will still provide the information.
Here you would add your main keyword to gain some SEO juice for your images.
The Title Tag let’s search engines know there may be something of importance to the image.
Search Engines will then crawl your image, read any other context provided and as a result can lead to higher quality traffic to your site.
Although it may not have as much SEO Ranking power if any, as some others may think, nevertheless, a Title name is needed that relates to the content.
It is also used by WordPress to allocate a name to the images within its Media Libray.
You wouldn’t put Image 1 as a title as it has no sense nor offers any value to your content.
If you did it would give some warning bells to the search engines to state something is not right with this image and if so, may feel it is a possible clickbait title which won’t bode well to your content and its ranking.
Captions are an optional choice, and although they can help with image optimization, it is not always necessary to use it as other areas such as the title attribute can cover that depending on the purposes of the image. So there is no need to state it twice.
We already know the importance of creating great content that provides information to your users.
Part of writing great content is readability which includes various sections such as the layout of your content, such as headings, sub-heading, the use of H Tags, image placement, most of which have already been mention above, along with providing relevant information on the topic at hand.
However, despite all that you do to make it look relevant and create an easy layout for the users’ experience, one aspect I have noticed with many websites, and not just from newbies. Even some well-known websites tend to skip this at times.
A major Ranking factor with Search engines is that of a poor quality content which would include areas such as poor spelling and grammar. No one wants to read large blocks of text with poor spelling added to the mix.
Instead, create some white space by breaking the text into smaller paragraphs with headings and sub-headings along with the use of the H tags as mentioned above.
Add proper images relating to the context of your article, minimize the use of added adds such as AdWords.
If you have a pop up ensure it doesn’t come every few minutes, if you are like me I want to read the article not keep clicking away another pop up that keeps appearing.
All these simple aspects can either make or break your article along with determining your ranking page factor with the search engines.
Your content is about creating a great user experience and writing for the reader in mind and not to focus on search engines if you apply what is shown above with the SEO On-Page Optimization Checklist you are on your way to rank higher.
12) Publish your content
So the process of creating your content is nearly complete before you hit the publish button, go over your content, ensure you have applied all the Optimizations from the checklist above.
Once you know you have done all you can hit the publish button.
The SEO On-Page Optimization Checklist is only a part of what and how you can improve your site and the content you have created. Just applying the above alone can help your website rank higher.
Please provide a comment below I would love to hear your thoughts and views on the above.
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