On page optimization is a SEO practice that can affect your search engine ranking. So in this post I am going to share a flawless on page SEO checklist that every blogger should follow. But before I begin let me tell you that traditionally SEO has been divided into two categories –On Page SEO and Off Page SEO. On page optimization covers what we can do on the pages of the blog itself, and off page optimization covers activities that takes place elsewhere such as link building and social media promotion. Since both needs to be done differently I thought to write two separate post for on page SEO and off page SEO.
Lets get started with on Page SEO checklist…
For anyone who knows a little about SEO, it goes without saying that title tag is one of the most important on page SEO factor that affects your search engine ranking. The title tag tells search engine what your page is about. So you should always write a descriptive and key-laden title tag.
HTML Code Sample
<head> <title>Your Title Here</title> </head>
- Keyword with few more words | Brand Name
- Brand Name | Keyword with few more words
- Include your primary keyword close to the beginning.
- Use at least three keyword phrase.
- Try to keep it less than 66 characters.
- Use pipes (|) to separate your brand name.
- Avoid duplicate titles.
Meta Description Tag
Meta description tags are now not that important as it used to be, but still extremely important in gaining high CTR from search engine result pages (SERPs). It should always be descriptive and catchy like anon which a user would want to click.
HTML Code Sample
<head> <meta name="description" content="Description for the post or page here."> </head>
- Try to keep it less than 160 characters.
- Avoid duplicate meta descriptions.
- To prevent meta descriptions from being cut off use single quotes (‘ ‘) instead of double quotes (” “).
- Use keyword as it will get highlighted, drawing the user’s eyes to it.
Meta keywords were once used to be popular but in July 2009 Google officially announced that they do not consider it in web search ranking. So, go ahead and skip this unless an until you are using keyword rank checker tool like Traffic Travis.
A header tags is an effective way to tell search engines and readers what your page is about. So it’s good to use keywords in header tags but avoid using the same keyword multiple times in header tag.
You can use multiple H2, H3, H4, H5 and H6 tags if there are multiple section but always avoid using more than one H1 tag.
Proper Order in HTML
<h1>Header</h1> <h2>Header</h2> <h3>Header Text</h3>
- Use H1 tag once per page/post.
- Use keyword phrase once in you header tag.
- Use at least three words in H1 tag.
- Try to keep H1 tag less than 66 characters. (because sometimes instead of Title tag Google picks H1 tag as page/post title.)
- Use H2 tags to break your content into section.
Internal Links With Anchor Text
An internal link is one that go from one page to another page on the same domain. It strengthensite navigation, and tells readers and search engines that the page is relevant for the keyword phrase you used as an anchor text. Secondly, it helps you spread the link juice (Page Rank) around your blog.
- Use keyword phrase to inter-link your pages.
- Do not add rel=”nofollow” attribute to the link tag.
Images ALT Text
Alt text is meant to be an alternative information source for those who have disabled images in their browser and those user agents who are unable to see images.
If possible you should try to include your targeted keyword phrase in image ALT tag. Because it can make your photos and pictures more discoverable on the web. Here’s a video in which Matt Cuts explains why you should add ALT text in your images.
Vladimir Prelovac has developed a WordPress plugin called ‘SEO Friendly Images‘ that you can use to automatically add image alt attributes.
URL is another place where you can add keyword phrase and help your readers and search engines understand what your page is about. It should always be less than 60 characters so that your keyword is visible in search results. And if you have relevant keyword in URL structure then search engine could give you some priorities.
- Use no more than Five words.
- Try to keep it less than 60 characters.
- Use dashes (-) between the words, rather than underscores ( _ ).
- Avoid stop words. (a, the, to, is etc.)
Keyword Density Per Page
A common myth about keyword density is if we use keyword many time, we will rank higher in search results. In fact there’s no exact percentage, however 1-3% keyword density along with LSI keywords is considered to be optimum.
Here’s a video where Matt Cutts discusses the ideal of keyword density for a page.
- Use keyword in the first & last 50-100 words.
- Bold, underline or italicized your keyword.
- Use keyword in H1, H2 and H3 tags.
- Use Keyword in image ALT text.
By the end of this post I would like to remind you that there are hundreds of signals which Google considers for ranking a site/blog. By the way if you like this on page SEO checklist please leave comment.