What Are The On-Page SEO Ranking Factors [The Essentials]
# seo

What Are The On-Page SEO Ranking Factors [The Essentials]

In one of our recent articles, I took you through the different types of SEO that will boost your website traffic, there's many different types, and on-page SEO is by far one of the most important of them all.

Despite what other content creators are putting out and telling you about ranking in the search engine, if you do on-page SEO poorly or incorrectly, you're likely going to see your website's ranking position go down.

In fact, you might not even rank at all if it's done incorrectly.

In this blog post, I'm going to dive into more detail about some of the ranking factors that go into on-page SEO, and what you can do on your website today to improve your domain's authority.

On-Page SEO Ranking Factors

on page seo ranking factors

SEO is an extremely wealthy topic covered a lot on the internet, without it, websites simply wouldn't rank nearly as well as they do.

It's said that SEO could be worth well over 80 billion US dollars, and is growing year upon year.

If you're not optimising your website for SEO today, then you're missing out on the slice of the pie.

Quite literally, so here's the detailed list of ranking factors that contribute to on-page SEO:

Your title tags

Some SEO features on your website you'll have no control over, whilst other features you do have control over.

One of these, is your page's title tag, and it's a big one when it comes down to showing Google what your page is about…

But also, for potential readers to decide whether they actually want to click through to your post.

Your title tags play a large part in SEO, and ideally need to be at an optimum length…

Just what kind of length?

Well, we're talking roughly 60 characters, and more than this and it's likely that your title tag is going to get cut-off and won't be displayed by the search engine results.

Any shorter, and your page could come across as low quality, or might not be relevant for a potential reader, so go ahead, make it longer…

How do you make your title tag longer?

Well if you're using a blogging platform like Wordpress, go ahead and install the Yoast SEO plugin, it's FREE to install, and yes, there's a paid version - but you don't need it.

Unique, original content that provides value

Content marketing is about creating unique, relevant content that provides buckets of value for your readers.

It's not about creating pieces of content that are simply copied from other sites and pasted into yours with a few word changes here and there.

Yes, sites really do this these days.

Ask yourself, whether your content is worthy enough of a search position, remember, there are millions of posts out there, and millions if not billions of websites - all fighting over page 1, and at a stretch, page 2 of the search results.

Because who goes beyond page 1, I don't, and I'm sure you don't either.

You'll simply refine your search result and look for another piece of content if the results don't look original.

Ensure your content meets this criteria:

  • Content demand - if your content doesn't supply a demand, nobody is going to read it. Simple. If people aren't searching for the topic or idea that your page is about, you'll get next to no clicks.
  • Linkable content - is your content linkable? Would you share it with other people? If you would, chances are other people might link to your content, which would give you an SEO boost

Craft engaging meta descriptions

The meta description of your web page is the small snippet of text that'll display below your title tag within the search results.

It doesn't matter how engaging tour content might be, how much value you're offering, you have just 155 - 160 characters to entice the reader to click through and read your post.

It's not a lot of characters, is it?

You could spend hours on crafting engaging meta descriptions that persuade the potential reader to click though, or you could leave it out and let the search engine decide what to generate for a meta description.

It's your choice.

But, I highly recommend you work on crafting your own.

I'd recommend writing down a few different descriptions, and sleep on them, come back to it the next morning with a fresh set of eyes and use whichever one feels the best.

If you're starting your blog today, chances are, descriptions aren't at the top of your priority list, instead, your priority should be to generate content, valuable content.

You could, after this, pick the best sentence within your content and use this for your meta description as a starting point, give your content time to index and rank, and then give it 3 months to find out how well it ranks.

If you're getting impressions, but no clicks, maybe it's time to change up the description or title of your post!

Consider your domain name and URLs

If your domain name has got nothing to do with your general content marketing theme, chances are, the URL for your blog post or piece of content is going to be irrelevant.

You could have a domain name and website all about social media, and then you're crafting many urls that have the word: "cars" in them, will it rank for this?

Possibly, but your domain name does play a part in your on-page SEO ranking efforts.

Beyond this, the URL structure of your pages are extremely important, if you're using Wordpress, by default you're going to get a URL structure that looks something like this…

yourdomainname.com/blog/YYYY/MM/DD/your-post-url

This isn't great for SEO, because you're bound to have the date of the post as part of the URL, which means if and when you update your content on that page, your URL would either be irrelevant, or could change.

Instead, you're going to want to change the permalink structure of your urls AS SOON AS you create your site, whether that be a blog or not.

Change your permalink structure from the beginning.

You're going to want your structure to look a bit like this…

yourdomainname.com/blog/your-post-url

This type of url structure will ensure you're being hyper specific, but will also mean you can set up a url structure that will continue to rank well in the search engine beyond the time you create and publish your post.

Image alt tags

Website accessibility is often an overlooked topic when it comes to websites, just because you might be able to see clearly and hear clearly, it doesn't mean all of your potential blog readers can too.

In fact, if they can't see clearly, how are they going to put context to the images on your page?

Most visual impairments require the use of a screen reader (they're typically built into most devices)

When a screen reader finds an image, it's going to try and look for the "alt" attribute associated with the image, and it'll try reading that out to the user.

If you're not putting anything in your "alt" tags, or the information in there doesn't reflect what the image is about, your users aren't going to be able to fully understand what your page is about, and what the content is about.

If you've got an image of a dog, rather than put the word: "dog" as the alt tag, why not go into a bit more detail?

For instance:

  • What breed of dog is it?
  • What's the colour of the dog?
  • How about the name of the dog?

You could craft an alt tag such as: "Leo, the golden Labrador" for instance, it adds a bit more context to the image for those using a screen reader and adds more content that can help you rank for on-page SEO within the image section of the search engine.

Wrap-up

wrap up

If you're looking to drive more search traffic to your website organically, then you must start implementing on-page SEO into your website today, in every piece of content you write.

Follow through with the ranking factors listed in this post, and you'll be off to a great start pretty quickly!

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