On-page SEO is the keystone of every insightful SEO campaign. I’m sure when it comes to on-page SEO you always hear about the title, description, keywords but On-page SEO is much more than that. In this article, I’m going to tell you about complete on page SEO checklists.
When you do SEO for a website, On-page is the first step. A perfect optimized page gives you a higher boost in search engine result page (SERP) If you get the higher ranking that means more people are discovering your business and it results in generating more leads that means more sales.
On-page SEO acts as a base for an SEO campaign. Following are the steps to rank high on the search engine:
On page SEO: quality content and site structure.
Off-page SEO: number of quality backlinks
Local SEO: display your business for local visibility.
local SEO is a technique to promote your service, product and online business with customers. It helps you to generate leads and sales.
Now the query arises, Is on page SEO important in 2019?
Have a look of Ahref on page SEO study
What is On-page SEO?
It a technique to optimize your website page, content, images, title, keywords to improve its search ranking.
On-page SEO is quite different from onsite SEO. It optimizes the whole website as in its site speed, SSL certificate.
Difference between on page SEO and off page SEO?
On-page SEO is a practice to optimize your website page, content, images, title keywords to acquire ranking
Off-page SEO is a technique to build a number of quality backlinks for your website in search engine.
Let’s jump On-page SEO techniques first.
Title tag plays important role in On-page SEO. It is the first priority when it comes to On-page SEO. You can enter keywords in the title. Make sure your keyword looks natural in your title.
Your title should be attractive and eye-catching in a search result, it increases your click-through rate.
So what is the ideal length of a good title?
It is between 60-70 characters. If the title is lengthier than 70 characters it will be cut off by the search engine.
Adding your targeted keywords to your title is a good method. Enter your keywords at the beginning of your title.
Here is the example:
How to add your title tag?
Open a webpage in your browser, right click then select view page source. You can also use the shortcut key, press ctrl+U and you will reach the source page.
You can see your title tag in between HEAD section.
Adding your title tag:
In the HTML page, you will find an index.html file. open it and add your title between head section.
Here is the title coding:
<title>Title of your webpage</title>
If you’re using WordPress, you can use the Yoast plugin.
Go to page/posts scroll down you can see SEO title add here your title.
Add your title here.Tweet This On-page SEO Checklist Click To Tweet
Like a title, your description also plays a significant role. it helps you to know what your website is all about. an appealing description can increase your click-through rate.
you can add your keywords in your description but remember your keywords in your description should be natural and not against the search engine guidelines.
An ideal description is one that consists 260 characters. You can also take tips/hints by checking your competitor’s description like what they are using.
To check and add your description:
In HTML file find an index.html file open it and add your description between HEAD section.
Here is the coding
<meta name=”description” content=” Description of a website.”/>
If you’re using WordPress, you can use the Yoast plugin.
Go to page/posts scroll down you can see your description.
Add your Description here.Tweet This On-page SEO Checklist Click To Tweet
Adding keywords to website content is always a good idea. it helps search engine to analyze what your content is all about. In SEO words, keywords are words and key phrases that seekers enter in a search engine.
Types of keywords
Long Tail Keywords: Long tail keywords are the keywords that have at least 3-4 words. They are less competitive keywords because they are more specific in terms. In an SEO campaign, long tail keywords are the best options for targeting a niche audience and demographics.
For example, Adidas white shoes for men. These are long tail keywords as they are more specific and target a particular audience.
Short Tail Keywords: Short tail keywords are the keywords consist of at most 1-2 words. It makes them less specific than long tail keywords.
Short Tail Keywords are the best options for the paid campaigns in search engines.
For example, shoes is a short tail keyword.
How to use Keywords?
First, you have to check what niche your website belongs to? For example, if you provide digital marketing service then your ideal keywords would be SEO agency, a top digital marketing company.
To find your keywords, head to the Google Keyword Planner simply put down your keyword and it will show your keywords details
To add keywords to your website:
If you are using WordPress go to the page/post where you want to add keywords and scroll down and add your keywords.
You can also go to the appearance editor and header.php and add your keywords in your head section.
Here’s a coding
<meta name=”Keywords”content= ” Keywords of a website.”/>Tweet This On-page SEO Checklist Click To Tweet
You should use SEO friendly URL, and make sure to use short and readable URL. you can add your targeted keywords in URL.
In simple words,
www.website.com/catogries/blog/post/on-page-seo-ID1972552 is a bad URL
www.website.com/on-page-seo is good.
To set friendly URL in wordpress.gho to setting > Permalinks and change it.
Tweet This On-page SEO Checklist Click To Tweet
5.Secure your site with HTTPS
HTTPS stands for Hypertext transfer protocol secure. It is a secure version of HTTP. For using HTTPS you have to encrypt your site with SSL certificate.
Go to Hosting providing website and purchase an SSL certificateTweet This On-page SEO Checklist Click To Tweet
6.No index tag
If your page has “no index” tag then it will not be indexed by search engine. If you don’t want to index a particular page then you can leave no “index tag”, following are the steps to do so.
Edit your robots.txt file set a “disallow” in robots.txt file
Setting “disallow” file in the Page source.
Paste the code in your source code between Head section.
<meta name=”robots” content=”noindex” />Tweet This On-page SEO Checklist Click To Tweet
7. Make website mobile friendly
Mobile device is a boom on these days. Over 800 millions of people are using mobiles. If your website is non-mobile friendly then it can negatively impact your site in search ranking.
To check your website whether it is mobile friendly or not, go to Google mobile tester and enter your domain it will show you that your website is mobile optimized or notTweet This On-page SEO Checklist Click To Tweet
When you upload images on your website or blog posts, it’s a very good idea to use your targeted keywords in your image filename. it’s known as an image Alt tag.
Alt tags describe images and improve your website ranking image result. Alt tags help a search engine to understand what your image conveys. It’s a good technique to add alt tags to all images.
When you search a keyword you can see that there are several images ranked from high to low in image search.Tweet This On-page SEO Checklist Click To Tweet
9. Heading tags
Heading tags are used to understand heading on a web document. h1 tag is a first heading which is necessary for every web document. h2 – h6 tags are not as important as an h1 tag.
There are 6 types of heading:
h1 tag is a main heading. It helps visitors as well as search engine to understand your website content and it should be user-friendly.
You can add your targeted keywords in an h1 tag and use secondary keywords in h2-h6 tags
To check your H1 tag, go to web page and right click then view page source
Tweet This On-page SEO Checklist Click To Tweet
10. CTR Optimization
If you are ranked high on a search engine and not getting clicks that means your title or description is not interesting and attractive enough. If your listing is not getting clicked it sends a signal to search engine that your content is not useful for visitors, so in order to avoid this situation your title or description must be appealing and useful.
The simple mantra is; More click = more traffic = more relevancy. The search engine gives you boost on search engine result page.
That’s why you should always use Click Through Rate (CTR).
If your content does not match user intent then it’s very hard to get a higher rank. But if your content provides every sort of information/knowledge to your users then Google will boost your ranking in SERP.
Use something interesting in your title and description. for example, if your keywords are “best SEO tools” then check out top 10 result titles and descriptions and take ideas.
Tweet This On-page SEO Checklist Click To Tweet
11. Content optimization
You should always go for the lengthy content, in other words, it should be comprehensive. Wholesome content ranks higher than shorter content. If your content is short then visitors might not find it interesting which means an increase in bounce rate.
That’s why you should follow skyscraper technique by Brian Dean. In simple words, the skyscraper technique means to think before writing.
First, search your targeted keywords in the search bar then analysis top 5 results in SERP after that check out the following:
How big their content is?
Are they using images or graphics?
Second, after analyzing, aim for better content. For example, if the title is “Top 50 Healthy foods” publish a list of 100 or 200 health tips.
Third, find people who run your niche site. Mail them about your newly published content.
The search engine generally doesn’t like short content. It will lead you to the panda penalty. More detailed content means you write all the information about your topics and it makes your users and the search engine happy and contended.
So What should be the ideal word limit for the content? Take a look at Brian Dean 1 this study of 1 million search results.
It clearly shows that about 2000 words content ranked on Google’s top 5 positions.Tweet This On-page SEO Checklist Click To Tweet
12. Bounce rate
Bounce rate is a percentage of visitors who visit a website and leave without browsing further. If visitors are leaving your website, it sends a signal to search engine that your content is not interesting/engaging and it will drop your ranking.
To check bounce rate, go to analytics
What is the ideal bounce rate?
Brafton study has found that 58.18% is the average bounce rate.
It means that above 60% of bounce rate might be bad for your website. So always try to reduce bounce to 60%
How to reduce bounce rate?
Website design is the first thing which your visitors notice. If your website is well designed your visitors will spend more time.
Create readable content
If your website content is not readable then you will lose your visitors as they will not be able to understand. Make the content of the website easy to understand use images and the graphics is a good option.
Avoid too many popups
Don’t use too many popups because it’s annoying and it may irritate your visitors.Tweet This On-page SEO Checklist Click To Tweet
Broken links are bad user experience for a website. If you delete a page in your site or change URL address without updating, a broken linked is created. They are called 404 error.
Google crawler reads your website and if it finds any broken links, so search engine spider will stop crawling your website, so always audit your website.Tweet This On-page SEO Checklist Click To Tweet
14.Optimize your website speed
Website speed time is a very important factor in on-page SEO. If your website takes too much time to open then you will lose your visitors and it will result in increasing your bounce rate.
A study shows that your bounce rate can jump from 9.6% to 32.3% if your page load time is 2 to 7 seconds.
A second section shows that Users visit an average of 5.6 pages more when page load time is 2 seconds compared to 8 seconds.
To check your website load time, go to Google page speed insight and enter your domain.
GTMetrix is another great tool to check website speed. Simply put down your domain and it will show what is your website’s load time?
Buy a good hosting Plan.
Customize your HTML and CSSTweet This On-page SEO Checklist Click To Tweet
15. Feature snippets
Let’s say if someone searches how to do link building and it shows a result in a small box called featured snippet. If you get a featured snippet you will get more clicks, more traffic, and higher conversion.
A featured snippet is generally used to give answers to specific questions. If your content doesn’t match for questions then your content won’t get into the featured snippet.
You generally notice that content in feature posts starts with “How To”
How to do content marketing?
To feature your content in featured snippets:
Create content specifically to answer questions.
Publish high-quality content.Tweet This On-page SEO Checklist Click To Tweet
16. External links
Use 2-3 links from authority sites. It helps search engine to understand what your pages contain. Outbound links is a very good technique, it will help you to increase your domain ranking (DA) and page ranking (PA).
Outbound links may have a positive or negative impact. When you use links from irrelevant pages then Google may put a penalty on you. Use links from your niche website.
For example, if you are running tech niche site then do not use health niche site links.
Before you use outbound links ask yourself that the content you link to your website is useful to your readers. If yes, then go for it.
Many website owners don’t use outbound links because it sends traffic to another site that you are linking to but instead of losing traffic you should think about your users.
If you are taking outbound links from a website and its Domain Authority is low it doesn’t mean that the site is bad, just their content should be relevant and of high quality.Tweet This On-page SEO Checklist Click To Tweet
A sitemap is an XML file which has individual web pages. It’s like a directory full of pages of your website.
It is necessary for your website. It helps the search engine crawlers to know how many links and content your website has. A search engine will fetch all your links and content through a sitemap.
If more pages of your website are getting indexed by Google that means Google has more information of your website and you start gaining trust from a search engine.
Sometimes we hide some URLs because we don’t want any Visitors to see them.
So, none of these URLs are indexed from search engines and they are hidden.
To create a sitemap, for WordPress users, install the Google sitemap plugin and activate it. This plugin will automatically generate a sitemap for you.
After activating your plugin, you can find your sitemap by typing this.
After generating a sitemap
Go to Google webmaster tools and login
On your left go to the Crawl then click sitemap.
After clicking the sitemap, on your right you will see a tab Add/Test Sitemap.
Paste your sitemap URL then submit.
For Non-WordPress users, you can use the sitemap generator tool. It’s very easy.
Simply, enter your website URL and click on generate sitemap it will automatically generate a sitemap
After that go to cpanel then to root directory folder and upload your sitemap file.
Then log in to Google webmaster tools go to sitemap then paste the below URL.
After that Google crawler will fetch and index your URLsTweet This On-page SEO Checklist Click To Tweet
Robots.txt is a file that provides instruction to search engine crawler which URLs of your website does it have to crawl and which not. There are various types of robots.txt files, here are few robots.txt files.
User-agent refers to the robots.txt file which applies for search engine crawler that visits the site for crawling.
Disallow means telling the robots to not to fetch any pages on the website.
Allow means telling the robots to fetch the pages on the website.
Implementation of robots.txt file
Here you can find my robots.txt file
How to add robots.txt
For WordPress users Go to Google webmaster tools
Go to crawl after click robots.txt tester put a robots.txt file then click on submit.
Here is robots.txt coding
For non WordPress user
Go to Google webmaster tools
Go to robots tester put a robots.txt fileTweet This On-page SEO Checklist Click To Tweet
19. Social Buttons
Add a social sharing button on your post is a brilliant idea. Let’s think, you publish content and visitors read your content if they like it they simply share your content by clicking social sharing buttons.
Social sharing doesn’t help you in ranking but it grows engagement.
So why is this important?
If you have got more social sharing that means that you have more engagement and Google cares about engagement.
For example, if your content gets more social sharing that results in an increase in unique visitors so it tells Google that your content is good and wholesome and easy to understand so Google gives it a boost.
There are many social sharing plugins, but I recommend orbit fox ( I also use this plugin). With this plugin, you can integrate this plugin in your Google analytics account.
To add this plugin go to plugin-add new search orbit box install it then activate after that go to orbit fox dashboard and activate social sharing buttons.
Tweet This On-page SEO Checklist Click To Tweet
20. Improve UX
Think about your visitors and cater to their needs. Make content understandable for visitors.
It doesn’t matter how good your On-page SEO is. If your visitors are not engaged or satisfied with your content you will never be able to achieve a higher rank.
Unlike Wikipedia, Use eye-catching intro images, visuals, infographic, gif, videos.Tweet This On-page SEO Checklist Click To Tweet
21. Place keywords
Drop your targeted keywords in the intro of your post.
Add your targeted keywords to your intro post in such a way that it looks natural and appealing to your readers.Tweet This On-page SEO Checklist Click To Tweet
22. Google Analytics
Google analytics are web analytics tools which help you measure your website traffic, Real-time traffic, traffic location, bounce rate and collect crucial information about your website visitors.
Google analytics help you to know what changes you need to improve your website and conversion.
How to set up Google analytics account?
Provide all the details of your website
After entering your information, you will need to configure your data sharing setting,
Then click on Get Tracking ID. After that, your tracking id will be generated
Add tracking code to WordPress
Open your WordPress, move your mouse to the appearance tap in the left menu and select editor.
In an editor section, find a file name “header.php”.copy your code from Google analytics account and paste the code between header section.
your analytics code
After you paste code, click on update file. Done
In order to check your analytics account, refresh it in a couple of minutes.Tweet This On-page SEO Checklist Click To Tweet
23. Search console
Search console is also known as the webmaster tool. It is a tool which helps website owners in the collection of tools and resource.
Google search console is a great tool because you can verify your website in search console and after that search engine will crawl your site.
How to setup Google search console account?
Log in to the Google Search Console and click on “Add a Property”.
Then copy and paste your website URL and click to Add
There are 3 ways to verify your site.
HTML file: Upload an Html file to your website.
CNAME or TXT Record: you can add CNAME or TXT Record to your domain
HTML Code: Upload a small HTML code between <head> section.(My Personal Recommendation)
To add your HTML code to the website.
Login to WordPress account
Install Yoast SEO plugin after the installation, activate it.
Hover your mouse to the SEO menu then click General.
click on webmaster tools paste your webmaster Code then click on save changes.
After that go to webmaster tool and click on verify.
For Non-WordPress users Go to “index.html” file and paste your webmaster code in between header section.
Your webmaster code
</head> .Tweet This On-page SEO Checklist Click To Tweet
24. Website Bio
Always write an eye-catching bio. Your visitors are here to read not only your content but also your Bio.
Your Bio also explains who are you, why you started Blogging and why you are qualified to write about the topic?Tweet This On-page SEO Checklist Click To Tweet
25. Use modifiers
Use modifiers like “best”, “proven”, “fast”, “guide”.
They can help you to increase Call To Action (CTA).
For example, if you use “proven” in your title that means the content that you are providing is up to the mark, tested and trustworthy, so your visitors can’t resist but click your title.Tweet This On-page SEO Checklist Click To Tweet
Alright…the checklist is complete but your work starts right after going through it. All the tips and little tricks wrote in this will only be successful if you practice them on daily basis and prioritize your readers. Yes your readers are your first priority you should always cater to their needs.
Here are few tips to do so: always write what your readers are questioning about, make contact with them, incorporate their feedbacks in your work.
If you have any query or want to share some of your experiences/feedback you are always welcome to comment/ask.