Onpage SEO is the part of SEO that deals with the optimization of the page itself. Its main mission is to correctly indicate to search engines what content is on the page and which should position.
In this first post on the subject I will make an introduction to onpage SEO presenting some of the factors that we must review when doing an onpage analysis of a page. It is desirable to have basic knowledge of HTML to better understand some aspects of onpage SEO. If you use WordPress, for example, it is not essential, but it is still recommended.
If you use WordPress or some other CMS (content manager) you should know that many of these aspects are already solved satisfactorily by the CMS itself. Others can be optimized with plugins like the Yoast. WordPress optimization will be discussed in a future post, but even using WordPress and Yoast, it is important to know what parameters we should consider, how and why.
Onpage SEO factors
One of the differences of onpage SEO with respect to link building is that with onpage SEO we can be much more aggressive without risk of penalty.
This means that we can clearly say what content we want to optimize. The titles, meta tags, anchors of the internal links, h1 and other factors, we can make them completely clear, completely aggressive.
To be penalized by SEO onpage we would have to use techniques that directly look for the deception, such as putting text of a color same as the background, hidden internal links, offering a content to Google different from the one you offer to other users, etc.these techniques were used a lot about the years 2005-2007 but today no one uses them anymore (or should not).
As I usually do in articles, I will take pages from our network to show examples. Let’s move on to the main factors of onpage SEO.
It is the <title> tag located in the <head> of your website. Also called “Title ” or “meta title” (although strictly not a metatag). This is what you see at the top of your browser and is often used by Google as the title of the pages in its results.
It must be aggressive, that is, very clear, with what you want to position. Also be short (less than 10 words if possible).
If the page is going to have a minimum of prestige or can be remembered or recognizable, I recommend ending the title with the mark of the page to reinforce it and try to remind the user in future searches, which would mean an improvement in the user response. However, Google is recently starting to include page branding in some results, so this technique may not be needed soon.
Examples of cats World:
Cover: Cats, photos and breeds of cats in catsworld.com
Category: Persian cats. Breed of Persian cats. catsworld.com
Article: hygiene and care of Persian cats. catsworld.com
It is the meta tag (metatag) < meta name=”description”>. It contains a description of your section and should not exceed 156 characters.
The target with this tag should be the user, not the keyword. Just as in the title we strongly attacked the target keyword, in the meta description we must attract the user. We must focus this text as a message that the user will read in Google search results. It should therefore not be aggressive.
Examples of NoSoloiOS:
Home: find out all the news from the iOS universe and discover the most interesting games and applications for iPhone and iPad from the Apple Store.
Article about travel apps: having some or all of these apps, will undoubtedly make your trips a more enjoyable experience because it is easy, and free of inconvenience.
The <meta name=”keywords”> tag is completely ignored by Google. You can ignore this label. I include it in this article in case any reader did not know this data.
Other minor search engines could take it into account. I completely ignore her. In some old projects you can still see some meta keywords but in the new ones no longer.
The <h1 > s are highlighted paragraphs. They should be used to highlight our keywords to Google and there should be only one per Section. In posts, an h1 is usually used as the (visible) title of the post. In categories the same thing usually happens. In almost all WordPress templates the h1 is used exactly like this.
Its use is recommended although it is not essential. Google can use other techniques to get the main keywords of your article or section.
Example of NoSoloiOS:
< h1>Apps to organize a trip</h1>
The URL should also indicate what the content of the page is. It is almost imperative to use friendly URLs, i.e. descriptive urls that use alphanumeric characters.
This part is very important (deserves an exclusive post)and is usually very poorly designed. You have to start from a basic principle:
The strength of our page is given by the external links we receive. Internal links must distribute this force to the sections we want to empower.
The typical error is a blog where the general template has 10, 20 or 30 links to unimportant sections (contact, legal notice, etc.), while your articles hardly receive links.
I use a metric I call “distance to cover” which would be defined as the number of links you have to follow from cover to get to an article. If to get to an article, you need to click 20 times on “next posts”, the force that will arrive will be minimal. Of course, you can continue ranking if said article has External links, social actions or user response, but we would be limiting you by not giving strength of the domain itself.
In Mundo Gatos, The Force is distributed to the categories through the left side menu, and from these to the articles. We also support some articles from the footer.
Duplicate, empty or poor quality content
As we already saw in a previous post, we must not offer Google content that does not satisfy the user. When we have that kind of content we have to hide it, and one way to do it is with a “noindex”. A mistake with this factor can result in a Panda penalty.
The tag to indicate this is the robots metatag: < meta name’ ‘robots’ content=’ noindex, follow’/>. With this tag we indicate that we do not want to index the content (noindex), but that it does continue to distribute force through the links (follow). You can expand this information in this SEO course.
In MundoGatos we have several examples like this. User profiles are deindexed because they did not provide anything worthy of being searched. With a community of 11,342 users, it would mean having 10,000 indexed pages with very scarce and very similar content. The ad forum is also deindexed because most of the content was repeated, a copy-paste of other websites worthless.
When we have links to which we do not want to transmit strength, we can add a rel=”nofollow”. Honestly, I have not proven that this improves positioning, but I can say that it does not harm it, so I usually use it. I also usually add nofollow to social media links.
Matt Cutts says We don’t have to use them, but he doesn’t penalize either.
SeoAzul.com it serves as an example for this. You can see how the contact and legal notice sections are linked to nofollow, as well as the social networks of the blog.
This point, in any case, is of minimal importance (and may be null), so if implementing this factor is a lot of trouble, you can ignore it.
Images can also be optimized for Google Images, although the profitability of this work is low. Although this topic deserves an exclusive post we will summarize it by saying that:
We must complete the alt and the title with a short descriptive text of the image, and put a friendly filename.
Example: < img src= ” cat-Persian.jpg “alt =” Persian cat “title=” image of a Persian cat” / >
1001 additional factors
After the main factors, there are many other factors that are often labeled as “problems that may arise”” These issues don’t usually appear in standard projects like WordPress-based blogs, but they can be a problem in less common projects. At a conceptual level all are solved with the principle of clearly indicating to Google our content, but at a technical level the solutions are very diverse.
Among the technical aspects that may arise we find:
- Multi-language projects
- Projects with multiple subdomains
- Indexing pages with massive content
- Canonical label
- Improved charging time
- Unification and compression of css and js files
- Sprites sheets
- Get Parameters
And so we could go on with a long etcetera. In future posts we will see some of these aspects in more detail.
Correctly edit the title, meta description, h1 and url of your sections. Correctly distribute the force through your internal links and de-index low quality content.