Good basic on-page SEO is very important if you want to rank near the top of Google. On-page SEO is something that you can control completely, and it is worth to make sure that your website is well optimized. It can be hard to make sure that all content is 100% optimized, but you can make sure that basic on-page SEO is handled in a good way. On this page, we are going to look at some of the most important things to consider.
Different SEO experts will have different ideas about which of these factors are the most important, and if they even matter. The list below is based on my experiences and what has worked well for me.
Page speed is a very important on-page ranking factor. It is a lot harder to rank a slow website than it is to rank a fast site. It is especially important that the website resolves and accepts a connection quickly. The time it takes to load the website once a connection is established is less important but you should still do what you can to make sure that your website load as quickly as possible. Read more about how to achieve a fast loading website here.
The page title is a very important ranking factor. Especially for your main keywords. It is less important for long term keywords with less competition. Targetting long-tail keywords with your page title can however be very effective.
The title should contain your main keywords near the start and should reflect the content on the page. The title will not be enough to help you rank for phrases that you do not address in the article.
Meta keywords are of no importance and should ideally be removed completely to reduce bloat in the code.
The description is an important ranking factor for two different reasons. First of all. Google does consider the description when they evaluate the page and what it is about. Including keywords near the beginning of the description will help you rank. Make sure you do so in a natural way. It is important to keep your description spam-free.
The second reasons that the description is important is that Google will show the description in the SERP and a well-written description can lure more people into clicking on your website in the SERP. This will help your website climb since Google can see that it seems more popular than the websites listed above it.
Make sure that your HTML is clean and free from clutter. Many themes and CMS include a lot of clutter in the code that most websites do no need. This includes WordPress. WordPress is designed to be a good choice for a wide variety of different users. This means that it contains a lot of functions that many people do not need. Make sure that you disable all functions you do not need and that you remove all junk code. This will make your website better optimized and allow it to load quicker. There are several free plugins that can help you remove junk code from the WP core if you use WordPress. Many themes also add junk that you do not need. Make sure to remove it.
Go through all the requests that the website needs to do to load fully and remove as many as possible by removing functions or combining files. Do not leave any request that is not necessary for the functions you want.
Proper header structure
Make sure to use the proper header structure. Only have one H1 header on each page. You can have an unlimited number of each subheader but make sure to keep them in the right order to build a structured text.
Make sure that all pages include images and that all images have good alt tags. The alt tags should ideally describe what the image depicts and should contain your keyword. All pictures do not need to have alt tags that include your keyword if your page features a lot of images. All images need to have alt tags.