On-Page SEO Techniques: Practical Result Boosting Strategies

On-page SEO techniques

On-page SEO is not rocket science. When it comes to SEO of your website or blog, there are practical strategies that are best practices. By following them, your chances will increase for not only showing up in Google’s search results and other search engines but to rank well.

Image opening your front door and your best friend has sent you a brand new 55 inch TV with 1080p, 3D, LED, HDTV and a built-in Wi-Fi. As you start to set it up, you discover that you don’t know how to put it together. You do your best to put all the cables in the right places and plug it in.

Then you realize that you can’t even find the remote to turn it on. You search frantically for the instructions to guide you through the setup. They are nowhere to be found. That would be frustrating, wouldn’t it?

Learning how to optimize each page of your website for the best possible results in the search engines without basic instructions can be frustrating, too. Let’s review the basic on-page SEO techniques to help get you started.

13 On-Page SEO Actionable Strategies

Here are 13 on-page SEO tips to use a guide to help you achieve the goal of effective organic search engine optimization.

  1. Focus on a Main Topic
    Each web page and post should have a theme or main topic. For example, if your website is about social media marketing, you may have a page dedicated to the social media network, Google Plus. The focus keyword or keyword phrase on that page would be Google Plus.
  2. Exclusive Meta Title Tag
    Each and every web page should have an exclusive Meta title tag. The Meta title tag is different from your page’s headline. It is a powerful ranking factor that influences search engine results.

    The title tag is the “single most important “on page” element telling the search engines what your page is all about,” according to Eric Enge, CEO of Stone Temple Consulting.

    Google advises that “page titles should be descriptive and concise.” How long should your title be? Google generally includes the first 55-60 characters of a title tag or as many characters as will fit into a 600-pixel wide display.

    If logical, put your important main topic keywords or keyword phrases at the beginning of your title.

    For example, the focus of this post is on-page SEO and the exclusive Meta title tag is: On-Page SEO Techniques: Practical Strategies to Boost Results

  3. Keyword URL Optimization
    Ultimately, you will want to use the focus keyword phrase in the file name or URL. Google advises to “keep a simple URL structure,” and to use hyphens to separate words instead of underscores. This practice will help search engines and your readers understand what your page is all about.

    For example, the main focus or theme of this post is on-page SEO. The simple URL includes the focus keyword:

    https://r-rwebdesign.com/on-page-seo

    This URL structure is less complicated than the alternative with the entire post title:

    https://r-rwebdesign.com/on-page-seo-techniques-practical-strategies-to-boost-results
  4. Distinctive Meta Description
    The Meta description of your page may be included in the rich snippets in search engine results. Again, using logic, include your main focus keywords at the beginning of the Meta description.

    You have approximately 155 characters for the Meta description. This description is not visible on the page. Search engines may use this description in the rich snippet in search results.

    Writing a compelling and concise description with keyword focus at the beginning of your description Meta tag may enhance your chances of capturing users’ attention and entice them to click your link in the search engine results.

    This is an example of what the Meta title, optimized URL, and Meta description might look like in Google’s organic search results:

    Meta Title, URL and Meta Description

  5. Forget Meta Keywords
    Meta keywords are not longer a ranking consideration by Google.
  6. Use your Hs
    The page title of the page should be enclosed in h1 tags. Use “h tags” for an important subtitle within the content to give valued weight.

    For example, an important subtitle in the HTML would look like this:

    <h2>13 On-Page SEO Actionable Strategies</h2>

    You not only tell your readers that this subtitle is important information, you are also letting the search engines know.

  7. Content
    First and foremost, make it a point of writing your website’s content for people and not merely to place higher in search engines results.

    Have you ever visited a web page that is so stuffed with keywords that it doesn’t make sense?

    Writing unique and logical content for your website is your first goal. You will want to include focus keywords in your copy logically, but do not overdo it. Including your focus keyword in the first 100-150 words of text will help Google and other search engines know what your page is about.

  8. Minimum word count
    When writing content for each page, plan on writing content with a substantial amount of words. This will help to provide your visitors with amazing information about your product or service. It will also help you ensure that your website is not dinged by Google for shallow content.

    How many words should you include on a page?

    • In a post on Yoast.com, the author advises to, “Make sure your articles have a minimum of 300 words.”
    • Brian Dean, founder of Backlinko states, “As a rule, I make sure all of my articles have at least 1000-words of meaty, useful content.”
    • Neil Patel of Quick Sprout, LLC writes, “If you’re looking for numbers, a post that is above 1,500 words seems to be in the zone of ideal length. I’d shoot for that if I were you.”

    There is no “magic number” for word count. While a study by SerpIQ indicated that longer posts will perform better, it is important to remember that Google uses over 200 ranking factors to determine how web pages are ranked.

  9. Optimize Images – When you include an image on a web page, optimize if by giving it a descriptive file name and alt tag. For example, for a photo of barbecue ribs:
    • Instead of: DSC03790.JPG, name the file, barbecue-ribs.jpg
    • The alt tag in this example would be, alt=”Barbecue ribs”
  10. Make it Easy for Others to Share
    Include social sharing icons on each page of your website to make it easy for others to share your posts.

    One way to accomplish this is to use a mobile-friendly social sharing program like Social Warfare if you are using WordPress. To learn more, please see Social Warfare Plugin Review: Supercharged Social Sharing.

  11. Ensure Your Website is Mobile-Friendly
    A mobile website is a basic fundamental requirement today. As of April 21, 2015, Google now includes mobile-friendliness as a ranking factor for mobile searches.

    To test your website to be sure it is mobile-friendly:

  12. Speed Matters
    The download speed of your website is also an important ranking factor. The use of site speed as a ranking factor is one of the few indicators that Google has announced.

    To test your website’s page speed, use Google’s:

  13. Resist Quick SEO Tricks
    The last tip is more of a common sense SEO tip: resist and avoid from tricks to try to improve search engine rankings.

    Purposely trying to manipulate rankings can actually end up considerably harming your site’s rankings. Examples of what not to do include participating in link schemes with the sole purpose of artificially passing Page Rank (PR) to your page, buying links to boost page rank, and keyword stuffing.

Take Away

With these 13 practical on-page SEO tips, you have a solid guide and approach to ensuring your chances of your website showing up and ranking in Google and other to search engines.

While there are other factors including the quality and relevance of other sites linking to your site, making the most of these fundamental best practices will help you reach your goals.

Over to You

What on-page SEO techniques are you using on your website? Are there any mentioned in this post that you would like to try? I would love to hear about them in the comments below.

Fascinated with the growing potential and power of the Internet, Robin founded R & R Web Design LLC in the Chicago area in 2000. As creative director, she is passionate about helping others reach their Internet objectives through a strategic online presence with results driven custom web design, ethical SEO, and social media marketing.

This article was published on: June 22, 2015 and was last modified April 10, 2018
14 comments on “On-Page SEO Techniques: Practical Result Boosting Strategies
  1. Check, check and CHECK! I’ve learned from the best but…1500 words in each blog article when many people struggle to come up with 300 words?!?!? Thanks for the great info!

    • Hi Heidi,
      I understand. 1500 words of content for a blog article does seem overwhelming when many people struggle to come up with 300 words. I try to aim for 1,000 words. There are times when I don’t hit my goal, and other times, I write more because I feel it adds value.

      ~ Robin

  2. Wonderful article, Robin, and very helpful for website owners trying to understand best practices for on-page SEO. You are right about word count; there doesn’t seem to be a “magic number” due to all of Google’s ranking factors. However, these days I aim for 1,000+ words per post and that seems to help. I am also finding that some of my older, shorter posts still get organic traffic. As long as they do, I’ll leave them as is. If I have a short post that’s not getting organic traffic, I’ll either combine it with another post on a similar topic, or delete it altogether.

    • Hi Michelle,

      Thank you! You have made my day! I’m glad that you feel this will be helpful for website owners to understand best practices for on-page SEO.

      Like you, I aim for 1,000 words, but use this goal as a guideline. Sometimes, I write less and at others times, more if I feel that it offers value to our readers. As for older shorter posts, I do the same.

      I appreciate you stopping by and for your input on this!

      ~ Robin

  3. Adrienne says:

    Hey Robin,

    Well I’m on point with everything you’re sharing accept one thing. The Meta Title Description.

    I was told some time back that like the meta tags, they’re no longer needed. If you do a search and any of my posts come up, the title of my blog post will show anyway so unless you just want something specific there instead of the title then it’s not necessary. Would you are wouldn’t you agree?

    You know it’s that you hear this from someone who knows the stuff then you hear something else and then something else and it can all become confusing.

    Appreciate your response my friend, you’re the best when it comes to this topic.

    ~Adrienne

    • Hi Adrienne,

      Great question about the Meta Title Description. When it comes to questions like this, I turn to Google to see what the search giant has to say on a specific topic.

      Google has a entire page dedicated to Meta Titles and states, “While technically not a meta tag, this tag is often used together with the “description”. The contents of this tag are generally shown as the title in search results (and of course in the user’s browser).” Google also states, “Titles are critical to giving users a quick insight into the content of a result and why it’s relevant to their query. It’s often the primary piece of information used to decide which result to click on, so it’s important to use high-quality titles on your web pages.” You can read more about titles at: https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/35624?hl=en

      I hope this helps. Thank you for stopping by and for taking the time to comment!

      ~ Robin

  4. Hi Robin, your first tip is such a powerful one. I read posts every day that lack focus and I believe it’s because they don’t pop their topic into the headline, and they don’t use it to keep themselves on track!

    Everyone needs to resist the quick wins, the only quick win is social media traffic and even that takes time and effort! Let’s hope more people put your tips into action x

    • Hi Sarah,

      I agree. Focus is a powerful tip to keep us on track on what the post or page is all about. As for the quick SEO wins, you are absolutely right. I have seen some try quick SEO tricks that only ended up hurting them in the end. As tempting as they might be, Google seems to have eyes everywhere, and it is best to be safe and play by the rules.

      I appreciate you stopping by and for your input!

      ~ Robin

  5. Hi Robin,

    This 13 on-page SEO tips to use a guide is so easy to follow. I have read so many things about SEO, that it makes my head spin. You have done this so clear and concise and right on point.

    As I went down the list I nodded my head yes, so I think I’m OK. Especially when it comes to images. Because I make my own, I title them in accordance to the post I’m writing.

    I am surprised when I get an email from someone asking me to use my image, or someone coming to my blog because of the image. Go figure?

    Guess I’m on the right track.

    -Donna

    • Hi Donna,

      I’m happy to hear that you found these SEO tips guide easy to follow. I understand what you mean. There are some guides that do make one’s head spin.

      You do an amazing job with using your own images on your blog. That is surprising that you receive emails from people asking if they can use your images. At least they are asking 🙂

      I think you are absolutely on the right track. Thank you for stopping by and for sharing your insight.

      ~ Robin

  6. M-Minhaj says:

    Hi Robin Strohmaier,

    Founded your great blog post by Donna Merrill comment link!
    Awesome article you written about on page SEO. Yes, SEO is not one night job. We need to spend more times on it and to follow best strategy what’s working.

    It is a good strategy to optimize keyword in URL. But here we should keep URL simple. However, well written article for every bloggers and webmasters.

    Have a nice day!

    • Hello, M-Minhaj,

      So glad to hear that you found this post via Donna Merrill’s site and that you found it helpful.

      Thank you for stopping by and for reading and commenting!

      ~ Robin

  7. Pat Moon says:

    I checked my download time… it is not good. I will message you as I am not sure what to do? Great article! SEO is something I have had a difficult time getting clear in my mind so I appreciate articles like this as each time I read them I learn and understand more. Thanks.

    • Hi Pat,
      You are very welcome! I’m so glad to hear that this post has helped.

      I will be happy to take a look at your website’s download speed. I will look for your message.
      ~ Robin

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