What Search Engines See: On-Page Optimization


be locally seo on page optimizationThe process of search engine optimization (SEO) primarily takes place through two separate but related mechanisms, off-page and on-page optimization. Briefly, traditional SEO or off-page optimization involves keyword analysis and selection, creating links to the website on reputable directories and bookmarking sites, and placement of links on blogs, online articles, and other external sites. Off-page optimization helps build the credibility of a website and improve its strength through internet links that point back to the website. The following diagram symbolically represents off-page SEO optimization:

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On-page optimization is the process by which website attributes are enhanced, particularly around the use of keywords, for robots or bots to find on Google, Yahoo, Bing and other search engines. These robots crawl or index websites on a regular basis and help to determine where any given business comes up when a person searches for a particular term or terms.  Website optimization also means removing barriers that prevent bots from recognizing important parts of your website. Finally, there are places on every website that are under development or you may not want indexed for some reason. On-page optimization blocks bots from recognizing these areas as well.

A Word about Keywords

The most important factor is optimizing your website is the strategic use of keywords and their placement in headings, images, meta-tags and content.  Although it is important not to overdo keyword placement in content, they really count in indexing your website when used naturally and strategically by SEO professionals.  The most recent Google algorithmic changes stress the need for clear and concise content.  Keyword stuffing (the use of too many keywords) will result in Google penalties that decrease the strength of the website.

As you read in the article on keywords, a thorough analysis of keywords assures that they are terms the public uses when looking for what you have to offer. Therefore, factors relating to the best key words have to do with relevance but also with competition. Using only highly competitive keywords will not help you stand out from your competitors. There has to be a balance between the relevance and competition on the words and phrases you select.

The placement of key words in your url, the page title, headers, images, and links, all combine to increase the strength of your website. Strength equals positioning, all other things being equal, but overuse of keywords will have a diluting or even damaging impact on the use of your site.

To avoid repetition, Be Locally SEO uses singular and plural forms of keywords and phrases to makes sure that content remains interesting.  If potential customers see too much redundancy of keywords, they could quickly become bored and leave your website. The use of synonyms and long-tail key phrases are important as well.

On-Page Optimization Elements

So how do we optimize your website?  Be Locally SEO uses a variety of tools that facilitate your website rising above the competition so that potential customers find you and that help to reduce the bounce rate, or the rate at which they quickly leave your site.  The design is an important factor in reducing the bounce rate but customers have to find you first. That is precisely why landing page optimization, in particular, is so important.  This diagram represents on-page optimization:

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Some of the important factors contributing to successful on-page analysis are worth expanding on.HTML (HyperText Markup Language) is used for much of the on-page optimization techniques that are employed. HTML is the language search engines understand when indexing your website and is not visible to your readers.

  • Your url: If you are starting fresh with a new website, we make sure your company name contains at least one strong key word and incorporate that into you uniform resource locator or url. For example, let us say you are in auto body repair business.  Your url should contain at least one key word such as collision, auto body, auto paint, dent, body repair, or the like. Been in business for a while and have a url that is totally unrelated to your industry? Well, thinking long-term some folks make a strategic decision to change their company name and match it up better with a new url or just to change their url.  The most effective choice for branding purposes comes when your company name and url are as similar as possible.
  • The page title tag: The next important place to consider is the title given to each page of your website and its length. The use of industry related and geotargeted keywords are particularly important here.
  • The heading tags: Titles and subtitles for each section of content you have on your website should contain keywords.  The headings introduce the content so have to be relevant to what the following content. Again, the length of headings is a factor.
  • The navigation bar: Not only is your navigation bar important to help readers work their way around your website, but it is an important location to strategically place key words as well.
  • Image names:  Since everything on your website is indexed unless told not to through on-page optimization, file names for images including pictures, your logo, graphics, and videos must contain key words.  Image 895486 has no meaning whatsoever to the bots crawling your website but collision-repair, using the example above, does. The use of keywords for any type of image is called an image alt-text.
  • Content: One of the most important features in on-page optimization is the content itself. Our article, “Is Website Content Still King?,” clearly explains the role that content plays in the optimization of your website.
  • Content optimization: Search engines such as Google also recognize the use of bolded text and text in italics. These tools are used strategically or they come across as gimmicky to the reader.  Link text is another important factor in on-page optimization.  Internal links created in the content of your website take you to other locations within your website. A link may also take you off your website, which you may want to do if you are promoting your products on another site such as Pinterest or Etsy. Of course, your content on those sites will also contain links back to your website. The links can also be one way are generally one-way and maintain your website remaining open.

It is important to consider that both off-page and on-page optimization are ongoing processes.  In order for any given website to remain relevant in todays ever changing on-line world, continual link building is important.  Similarly, regular website analysis and the use of reporting tools and feedback loops are necessary to adjust websites through on-site optimization. Content must remain fresh in order to continually be indexed in such a way that leads to improved search engine standings. When thinking about your business website, it is critical to see it as a dynamic, ever-evolving marketing tool.

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