Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a technique to optimize your website for ranking higher in the search engine result pages. SEO techniques can be split in two major areas – ON Page SEO techniques and Off Page SEO techniques. Today, in this blog post, we will discuss about checklist of on page SEO techniques.
With many major changes in Google Algorithm over the past few years, it can be difficult for a blogger or SEO professional to keep track of what’s still relevant and what’s not in the field of SEO.
There are numerous new factors that’ve come up in on page optimization.
On page SEO checklist for 2018:
- URL / Post Permalink Structure – Universal Resource Locator (URL) is the address of the page on your website. First three to five words of URL are the most important, so try to include targeted keyword in the beginning of the page URL. You can add modifier along with focused keyword to target long tail keyword. Try to avoid numbers in Page URL. Make it clear and avoid spelling mistakes. While writing URL, you should use Hyphen (-) as a separator for more than 2 words, don’t’ use underscore (_) as a separator.
- Title Tag – Page title is the clickable text of your web page, when it appears on the search engine result page. It helps you to get good CTR, so write a unique page title for your web page. Google gives more importance to words that’re found in the starting of page title. So, I recommend that you add focused keywords in the beginning of the title tag, as they will help you to get higher rank with desired keywords.Page title should be between fifty to sixty characters. Google will show first 60 characters of your page title in SERPs – Search Engine Result Pages. In short, page title should be short, clear and descriptive.
- Meta Description – Meta description is a summary of the web page. Write original and meaning full meta description and put your targeted keywords in such a way that it looks natural. Avoid writing a description to pamper search engines. It should be attractive and short at the same time, so try to avoid repeating same words. Length of description is 155 characters. If possible, try to use call to action words like “Download”, “Read more” etc. It helps to improve CTR of your web page.
- Heading Tags – H1 tag plays the most important role in search engine ranking factory. Through H1 tag, search engines understand the purpose of your web pages so take it on high priority in your On Page SEO strategy. Use only one H1 tag in web pages. You can use multiple h2 and h3 tags if it makes sense to do so. Make sure your keywords are in the heading tags. Try to include page title in heading tags, especially in the H1 tag.
- Image Optimization – Use at least one image in a web page. Use keyword rich alt tag for images. File name of image should be your targeted keyword or phrase to help search engine identify what the image is all about. It will also help you to get traffic from google image search.
- Internal Linking – Internal linking is one of the best ways to keep your visitors for a longer time on your website. I will recommend that you add some relevant pages’ links in your new page or blog post. Best example of internal linking is wikipedia.com , but don’t add multiple links in a blog post like Wikipedia articles but two to three old blog posts can be linked in a new post on relevant keywords.
- External Linking – Adding proper external websites’ links in a web page is not harmful as per google updates. Use No follow if external website’s Domain Authority (DA) is lower than your website. I will suggest that you try to add external links of some popular or trusted websites like Wikipedia, YouTube, moz.com etc. One more important thing is that you shouldn’t use your targeted keywords as anchor tags for external links.
- Mobile Friendliness – Now a days, mobile internet users are increasing. Make sure your website or web page is responsive and mobile friendly. You can check it in Google’s mobile friendly test tool. Search engines are now giving more priority to mobile friendly websites in mobile searches.
- Content duplicity– Duplicate content is the presence of same content on multiple web pages. Always check your new blog post content in plagiarism checker. If you have same content on multiple URLs (web pages) in the website, then use canonical URL pointing to the original content pages.
- Keywords – Keywords are the list of words which you want to optimize to get organic traffic. Make sure you have added keywords in the page title, URL and the H1 tag. Include your targeted keyword in the first paragraph (150 Words) of the web page. Don’t do keyword stuffing as overuse of keywords is considered as spamming and Google may penalize your websites for it. Use synonyms to avoid keyword stuffing.
Ideal keyword density is 1.5% of the article. Keep it between 1 to 1.5%. Click here to know more about Keyword density. You can target more than one keyword on a web page. I recommend that you shouldn’t target more than three keywords on a single web page.
- Page Speed – Page speed is one of the ranking factors which Google has officially confirmed. 75% users will not return to your website if your website speed is slow. You can improve page speed with the help of Google page speed insights tool.
- XML Sitemap and Robots.txt file – An XML sitemap tells search engines about all pages of your site that you want indexed. With it, search engines get to know how frequently is site updated and which links are there on your site. Sitemaps don’t directly affect SEO, but are necessary to ensure that all pages of the site are indexed by the search engines.
With Robots.txt file, you can provide specific instructions to search engines’ crawlers /spiders, the software robots, that index your content and store it in the search engines’ database. You can decide which pages should be crawled and which shouldn’t with robots.txt file.
This checklist covers almost each and every On Page SEO factor which should be taken into consideration in formulating proper SEO strategy in 2018. It is tedious to follow every On Page SEO checklist, but I am sure this list will help you to stay a step ahead from your competitors. 🙂
Let me know your feedback and also if you think that any other point should be there in this checklist, by using the comment section below.
Jyotsana Gupta - the content and communication head, is an engineer by education and a writer at heart. In technical writing for 6 years, she makes complex topics interesting to general audience. She loves going on long drives in her spare time.