Welcome back to part three of our How to Rank on Google blog series. For this blog, we will be talking about on-page optimization. After you work out what your keywords should be and how you should build and optimize your content, the next step is to work on your on-page optimization.
There are five things to consider when looking at optimizing your pages.
Be the First Click
In the content section, we talked about how you want your content to be the last click. You want people to find everything they need from your content and not have to go out and end up on someone else’s site.
In that same vein, you also want to be the first click. You want people to find your page in the search results and click on it before anything else because they have confidence that your page will be able to answer their questions.
You want to improve your click through rate and get as many people as possible to click on your page, no matter where you are ranked on the search results page. More clicks, means more qualified traffic, which usually translates into a higher ranking on Google.
There are a few key ways to improve your click through rate:
- Webpage titles
- Meta descriptions
- Rich snippets
- Occasionally, image and video results
Titles are far and away the most important component of improving your click through rate. It’s the first thing people see when the search results populate so it needs to be strong. Titles are followed closely by rich snippets (which are not accessible to everyone).
Make sure your titles are compelling, have the right keywords and are designed to make people click.
If you have followed our guide up to this point, your SEO should be solid but it’s always a good idea to double check your on-page SEO and how user-friendly your website is by running it through some tests.
Some of our favorites:
A lot of website builders have SEO tools built in, so make sure you are using them.
This is where we get into some of the nitty-gritty. While schema doesn’t show up for the end-user, it is a key component of making sure your site ranks because:
- It helps Google understand your page which can boost its ranking
- It helps you win rich snippets which can boost click through rates
While schema is not in and of itself a Google ranking factor, it can help you rank as it is additional content that search engines can read and determine if your site helps someone who is searching for content.
Here are some schemas in order of importance that you should consider adding:
- Local Business
Here’s a good guide to creating schema.
Fast and Impactful
Think about how the end user is experiencing your page. Does it load fast? Is the content impactful? Is it mobile friendly? There is a lot when it comes to user-interface and usability that can influence your ranking like:
- Page speed
- Mobile friendliness
- Safe browsing
- Aggressive pop-ups etc
While these won’t give you a big boost in terms of ranking, not paying attention to these areas can for sure hurt your page. If you pay attention to nothing else in this section, consider page speed as the end all be all.
Page speed is THE most important factor for reducing bounce rates and increasing conversion so when in doubt, make sure your page is fast.
Do NOT Over Optimize
Optimizing is important but over-optimizing can cause problems. You need to make sure that your SEO is diverse and that your keywords vary from component to component. For instance, you don’t want to use “best pest control Atlanta” in your title tag, URL, Headings, multiple times in text and in your anchor text on links.
Optimization like this doesn’t look natural to search engines and your ranking can take a hit from over-optimization so make sure you are diversifying your SEO.
Stay tuned for our next and final article all about site architecture!