Top 10 On-Page Factors to Help Search Engine Optimization

10 stepsThese tips will prove to accelerate our search engine ranking program and are part of the consulting review we perform on web sites shortly after beginning to work with a new client. Some experts say that on-page factors account for as little as 10% of the overall search engine success they enjoy. After working with several clients who have optimized and not optimized on-page factors I have seen a 20-25% increase in the search engine performance with our service when the pages are optimized. In some cases it was all that was needed to pull a site up into the top 10 of the rankings after using our service for 60 days. While it is not the only answer, it certainly is part of the solution. Here are my top 10 tips:

1) Meta-Tags. In short, use them. I recommend using the metatags title, description, keyword at a minimum. All the rest, while optional, are nice to have but I do not spend any time or energy to put them in place.

2) Use H1 Tags around the title of the page. As the search engine spiders crawl through the site they will pay particular attention to the tagged words around the primary and secondary keywords. Many times I have found that the tagged words are given more importance than the words the author puts into the KEYWORDS meta-tag.

3) Use H2 tags around all sub-topics. By formatting the page correctly the spiders can figure out what the theme of the page actually is. The spiders can easily do this if the secondary keywords, or sub-topics, are enclosed in H2 tags. I have been able to conclusively test that keywords with H2 tags around them also quickly rank even without any backlink effort being given to them.

4) Main Keyword in the actual file name. Having your main keyword in the filename has proven time and again to help get the page get ranked very quickly. If you have it in the domain name it will be all the better, but it is not a terrible thing if it is not.

5) Keyword Density. The days of taking a page and stuffing it full of keywords are long gone. Write what is relevant and of interest to people and do not have the keywords be more than 1-2% of the total words on the page. Anything close to 4% is too many and search engines will consider it to be spam.

6) Content. Make it all relevant. Many schemes try to simply take words and arrange them on a page in order to be able to stick backlinks into them. The search engines are starting to figure this out and will discount those links severely. Don’t risk it with your site or your time to allow this to happen. Write relevant content and be sure it is unique.

7) Anchor Text. If there is an opportunity to navigate to another page either in your site or elsewhere, do so by using anchor text as opposed to a simple “Click Here” to go to the new page. Use the actual keyword as the link to the page and the search engines will have a much easier time determining the theme of your site and what is relevant to the user.

8) Use Titles and Alt-Text on images. Images are cool, videos are even cooler. You must tell the search engines what the video is about, however. The spiders do not read any type of picture or image, they just cannot do it. You need to use the title and alt-text descriptors in your image call in order to tell them what the image is about. There is great proof over the last few months that Google is starting to really like video and is ranking sites with video higher because they offer video segments on their site.

9) Use the keyword as a paragraph title, then write the text directly underneath the title. This is a very effective writing style and one that we know the search engine spiders can relate to in order to quickly find out what the page is all about – use it to the fullest.

10) Call to Action. SEO tactics get measured in many ways. I prefer to have a strong call to action to get the prospect or customer to do something and have the result be tracked for success measurements. It makes it easier for both the client and the company doing the work to say that the project was a success and that they should do additional projects together if the results are quantifiable and visible throughout the project. You will also be amazed at how many additional great ideas come from knowing and sharing the goals of the campaign (it is never about just ranking highly for a keyword or attracting additional traffic to the site. Measurable results means that something happened after those events took place.

While these tips will not get you to the top on their own they prove valuable when working with an overall program of optimization for certain keywords. My test results have proven these tips to be very effective, I hope you receive some benefit from them.

About the Author

About Chuck Stewart

Introduction: Enjoy Family, Church, Coaching Basketball, and Work
Occupation: Run an SEO firm called SearchEngineRanking.Net. Also serve as a partner and advisor to small businesses.
Employment: SearchEngineRanking.Net Owner, 2008 - present
Education: Miami University Marketing, Finance, 1981 - 1985
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