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Sunday, September 19, 2010

On Page SEO History

"On Page" SEO simply refers to the text and content on your web site pages. Basically editing your page and content so the Search Engine can find your webpage when a surfer is searching for your web sites particular topic.

On Page Search Engine Optimization has been around the longest, since the beginning of search engines. Search engines used simpler less sophisticated technology a few years ago, and the World Wide Web was a lot smaller. At the time "ON Page" SEO Worked years ago, and it was basically an easy comparison. As the World Wide Web grew larger and larger it became more difficult for search engines to differentiate between your site and other sites. A search on "Autos" may return 100 million + pages that have the word "Auto" on it. So Off Page SEO began to take off as the World Wide Web and search engines grew in complexity.

On-Page Search Engine Optimization

1. Create unique, accurate Meta Tags specially page title
The page title is one of the most important on-page aspects of SEO! Every page of your site should have its very own unique title that includes main keywords for that page. Keeping mind the search engine guidelines we suggest you to keep the title description under 70 words. Make sure you description tag has its unique content and concise description is below 140 characters. Search engines might use the ‘description’ meta tag as part of your page in the search.

2. Make use of H1 –H3 tags Keywords:
For achieving good search engine optimisation results, these are of great importance for on-page SEO. It is advisable to place your keywords in the headings of your content in a priority fashion. H1 gets higher priority than H2. So make sure you write keyword rich headings in the order of priority in H1, H2 and H3 title tags. They are used by many crawlers to differentiate important content.

3. Improve the structure of your URLs:
For good search engine optimisation of your site, having search engine friendly URLs is highly recommended. According to Google guidelines, these bring better crawling. Try to include your targeted keywords in the URLs. Also, remember that all of your important pages should be short and static URLs.

4. Keyword Density should not exceed 2-5%
Although using keywords in the content of your site is very important, try not to repeat keywords just for search engine robots. Keep the keyword density between 2-5% percent, instead of repeating a keyword try to simply use alternative terms that describe the same concept. Exceeding keyword density might lead to your site being banned from search engines. Try not to focus on the keywords, rather work on the quality content!

5. Use Alt Text for Image Optimization:
Since Images are very important from a search engine optimisation perspective, they need to be optimised properly as well. If you want to know more tips on improving your images, read here.

6. Ordered and unordered lists:
This is an often overlooked technique to highlight certain keywords in a list format when it makes sense in your copy to do so. I typically use a list of bullet points in an unordered list to tell the reader (and the search engines) what the rest of the article is about. Then I copy each of those list items and turn them into h2 tags, elaborating upon each topic.
In this way, the organization of your article becomes easily navigable. You can even get some additional on-page SEO benefit by linking an anchor in each list item to the heading tags below where that bullet point is elaborated upon. This puts some valuable keywords into anchor text format within the page, which can help direct Google's attention to what the page is about. It also makes it much easier for humans to navigate.

7. Well-written and optimized copy:
Good SEO copywriting will do the heavy lifting in your competition to get to the top of the search engines. If humans like your content, they will bookmark it, giving you some off-page SEO benefit in the form of backlinks. But it all starts with on-page SEO in the form of well-written copy that is organized logically, navigates easily, and includes strategic use of your intended keywords or phrases where appropriate.

If you are not a writer, this is something that can be learned, but as with any discipline, time is money. If you want to shorten the time between concept and a high-ranking page on Google, it is well worth the investment to hire an experienced SEO copywriter to handle your on-page SEO.

8. URL optimization:
The URL has always been important for SEO, but it now plays a much larger role than it used to in SEO. I have anecdotal evidence that the domain alone is sometimes enough to obtain a page one ranking.
This was shocking to me, but it's true. Using a two-word domain with over 800,000 competing pages, a site I built got to #1 within two weeks of being online. And this was before the site was even officially launched!
The main criteria for the high Google ranking appeared to be the keyword based URL, the title tag, and potentially the meta description tag (although there is disagreement as to whether Google uses the meta description tag for ranking at all).
To make sure this wasn't a fluke, I tried the same process with several other keyword domains. Same result—page 1 of Google. My results so far:
• Page one on Google against 345,000 competing sites
• Page one on Google against 460,000 competing sites
On sites that have been around a bit longer, I obtained the following amazing results:
• #1 on Google against a formidable 3.4 million competing sites!
• #1 on Google against an even more astounding 11.8 million competing sites!
The conclusion from my experimentation was clear: The URL, including the domain, path, and filename, play hugely important roles in determining keyword relevance in Google's algorithms.
My advice to clients is to pick domains that are keyword relevant, invest in some good old fashioned SEO copywriting, link to it form a few trusted sites, and repeat as necessary. Once these sites rank well, they can be used to link back to a branded site to help it rank better without the advantage of the keywords in the domain. They can also be used for lead generation, opt-in email marketing, etc.


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