On-page SEO is the process of ensuring that your site is readable to search engines. Learning correct on-page SEO is not only important in ensuring Google picks up the keywords you want, but it is an opportunity to achieve easy wins and improve your site’s overall performance. On-page SEO includes the following considerations:
- Making sure site content is visible to search engines.
- Making sure your site is not blocking search engines
- Making sure search engines pick up the keywords you want.
Most on-page SEO you can do yourself, if you have a basic level of experience dealing with sites.
If you are not technically inclined, please note there are technical sections of this chapter. You should still read these so you understand what has to be done to achieve rankings in Google, you can easily hire a web designer or web developer to implement the SEO techniques in this chapter, after you know what it takes to achieve top rankings.
How to structure your site for easy and automatic SEO.
Take a quick look at Google’s search engine results. You will see a very large portion of sites in the top-10 have clean and readable URLs like the above example. And by a very large portion… I mean the vast majority. Most site content management systems have search engine friendly URLs built into the site. It is often a matter of simply enabling the option in your site settings. If your site doesn’t have search engine friendly URLs, it’s time for a ‘friendly’ chat with your web developer to fix this up.
There is no limit on how to structure the navigation of your site. This can be a blessing or a curse. Some people force visitors to watch an animation or intro before they can even access the site. In the process, some sites make it harder for visitors and more confusing for search engines to pick up the content on the site. Other sites keep it simple by having a menu running along the top of the site or running down the left-hand side of the browser window. This has pretty much become an industry standard for most sites.
By following this standard, you make it significantly easier for visitors and search engines to understand your site. If you intend to break this convention, you must understand it is likely you will make it harder for search engines to pick up all of the pages on your site.
How to make Google pick up the keywords you want.
There are many misconceptions being circulated about what to do, and what not to do, when it comes to optimizing keywords into your page. Some bloggers are going so far as telling their readers to not put keywords in the content of targeted pages at all. These bloggers—I’m not naming names—do have the best intentions and have really taken worry about Google’s spam detection to the next level.
But it is complete madness. Not having keywords on your page it makes it almost impossible for Google to match your page with the keyword you want to rank for. If Google completely devalued having keywords on the page, Google would be a crappy search engine.
Next up, you need to ensure you have a handful of LSI keywords on your page. LSI stands for Latent Semantic Indexing. Don’t be discouraged by the technical term, ‘LSI keywords’ is an SEO term for related phrases. Google believes a page is more naturally written, and has a higher tendency to be good quality and relevant, if it also includes relevant and related keywords to your main phrase.