Aligning the Focus of Your Web Pages with Your Targeted Keyword Phrases
On-page optimization makes the relevance of your web page, as determined by the keyword phrases, immediately clear to your readers and search engines through structure, formatting and HTML tags.
On-page optimization includes:
• Title Tag
• Meta Description Tag
• Meta Keywords Tag
• Header Tags
• Alt Tags
• Internal Anchor Text
• SEO Copy Writing
The Title tag determines what text is shown in the title bar of your browser window and is a powerful search engine ranking factor. It needs to be succinct (6-12 words), unique, descriptive, and contain the page’s main targeted keyword phrase. Title tags that are long and diluted can weaken the SEO impact of a keyword phrase as well as confuse users who are skimming search results.
The Meta description tag should be written in sentence form, using 12-24 words. It needs to use the keywords contained in the Title tag, but should not repeat them more than once. While the Meta description tag has no direct impact on ranking, it does impact two important things:
1. It often determines your search snippet and therefore impacts your click-through rate.
2. It’s offers another unique factor that promotes the value of your content. Meta descriptions need to be meaningful and attractive to visitors, not keyword stuffed pseudo-sentences.
The Meta keyword tag should be written as a list of keyword phrases separated by commas, starting with your longest phrases and ending with your shortest. It should contain all of the keywords used in your Title and Meta description tags, but should not use any word more than four times. The total length should not exceed 48 words.
H (Header) tags are used to format your content using titles and subtitles. Search engines use them to determine your page’s main ideas similar to a traditional outline structure. They should be clear and relevant as well as helpful to people reading your page.
Alt tags are associated with the images on your page. If the image is a link, the Alt tag affects the on-page optimization but there is a greater impact on the page that the image links to. Alt tags that appear on images that are not links are read as text by search engines and should be keyword focused, describing the image they are attached to. They should not contain more than 12 words.
Your internal anchor text should support your targeted keyword phrases. This means that anchor text leading to other pages on your site should use a targeted keyword phrase of that page.
SEO copy writing is also an important part of on-page optimization. Keyword phrase placement and density, formatting, audience and reading level all must be accomodated to create compelling web pages that deliver value to your readers and maximize organic search potential.