On-page SEO refers to the optimization of different aspects of a webpage that determine its search engine ranking.
For example, while setting up a shop, it’s important to take care of things that influence your customer’s experience. You provide quality products, install AC, ensure cleanliness, appoint customer friendly sales personnel- which are some of the significant factors that enhance your customer’s experience when they visit your store. When they are satisfied with your service, they are more likely to come back. Otherwise, you will be losing out on your business opportunities.
Similarly, when it comes to a webpage, there are several factors that help it rank higher in search engine result pages. You need to optimize them in order to make the web page easily found by search engine for a specific search query and more importantly offer your visitors a satisfactory user experience.
On-page SEO is an essential component of your entire SEO strategy. While a good on-page SEO is crucial to promoting your organic traffic, bad on-page SEO can affects the possibilities adversely.
Bad On-Page SEO Can Frustrate Your Visitors
What are the on-page elements?
Speaking of the old school and modern SEO techniques, there are noticeable differences in their approach to on-page SEO optimization. But before we learn more about these difference, it’s important to know the basic components of on-page SEO. There are several on-page factors that include,
Meta Data (Meta Title/Meta Description):
The Metadata of a webpage consists of Meta title and Meta description.
This is nothing but presenting your page title and content summary in a brief, compelling manner. So when they appear on the search engine result pages, searchers will find it more relevant and click on it. Ideally, the meta data contains the keywords of a webpage.
By optimizing the Meta data, you can improve findability, indexability, and crawlability for search bots.
URL optimization is the key to page ranking as well. It refers to structuring the URL of a webpage to make it sound relevant to both the search engine and users.
Basically, it’s about eliminating the extra words and expressing the page content through keywords.
Here is an example.
Page Content :
Content optimisation is the most significant element of an on-page SEO strategy.
In fact, the success of an SEO campaign largely depends on the content quality.
When the content is unique, original, and substantial, Google is more likely to rank the website higher. Quality content is one of the strong ranking signals used by Google.
The keyword tells the search engine what your web page is about. Thus, it plays an important role in on-page SEO. The choice of keyword requires proper research. Besides, you need to consider the keyword density and their placement in order to enhance the user experience.
The correct link strategy enhances your visitor’s experience as well as it improves your performance in search result pages. Putting relevant links in a webpage by using contextual anchor text and interlinking of pages are some of the best practices of on-page SEO techniques.
An SEO friendly web page design contains three elements,
Responsiveness– It can be properly viewed in any device.
Accessibility– The navigation button is ideally placed, so that a visitor doesn’t find it difficult to switch to the important pages.
Fast Loading– Tt should load as quickly as possible.
Valid HTML and CSS codes are an important factor in page ranking. They ensure that there are no errors in the website to hamper the experience of your visitors.
The images used in a web page should carry the correct alt text. This helps the search engine better understand the image and index them properly. More importantly, by using correct alt text you make your website content accessible and useful to visually challenged visitors.
These are some of the most important on-page factors you should consider while creating your SEO strategy.
SEO has come a long way since the time it was more of a manipulative tactic to acquire more traffic, links, and pagerank. But, the scene is completely different now. Back then Web owners were more concerned about their own benefit, today they are getting more careful about user experience. Thanks to the latest upadtes in Google’s search algorithm.
As far as the on-page SEO is concerned, here ais a quick analysis on how the modern on-page SEO approach is different from the old-school SEO techniques.
Old school On-Page SEO vs. Modern On-Page SEO
Keyword stuffing was prevalent in old school on-page SEO methods. Nobody cared about user experience. Traditional SEO was focused on structuring a page where target keyword can be integrated just about anywhere in the page.
In modern SEO, keyword usage requires careful planning and research. While Google tends to value proper and contextual usage of keywords in content, page title, and meta description, you should also keep in mind that over usage of keyword can hamper user experience and affect your page rank. With the help of Yoast SEO tool you can find out the ideal ratio of keyword to content and the best practices of using keywords in a web page.
PageRank is a part of Google’s search algorithm, Hummingbird. PageRank helps the search engine sort the websites, ranks them and display them in the SERPs on the basis of their merits. So, the websites were too focused on going after pagerank to worry about user experience. They acquired mass links to manipulate the search mechanism and rank higher in search pages.
But PageRank is dead now. In modern SEO market, websites are conducting market research and exploring different options to provide better user experience and stand out from the rest. If you use manipulative tactics to build links, you are more likely to get penalised by Google.
In traditional SEO techniques, content quality was never a priority. Websites used thin and duplicate content, while focussing on spammy techniques of link building.
But with emergence of Google Panda updates, content quality became the primary element of on-page SEO. From the search engine point of view, it’s the quality of content that sets the foundation of a web page. When the content is unique, original, and properly researched and more importantly optimized with keyword, Google has a strong reason to place your website in the first page, provided the rest of the search engine components are properly optimized.
The websites optimized through old school SEO techniques used to lack user friendly site design. Pages were too heavy to load faster. Even it was difficult to view them on mobile devices.
However, at present the on-page SEO is more concerned about user experience and user interface of a website. So they are focussing on a responsive website design that loads faster and more importantly offers seamless navigation. Considering the growing number of smartphone users, modern SEO emphasises on responsive design of websites, so it can be properly viewed across all devices.
User experience is crucial to the popularity of your web page from both search engine and visitor’s point of view. A website with usability issues offers poor user experience. As a result, it fails to retain the visitors and loses out on its potential customers. But, if a website has everything for a satisfactory user experience- starting from website design to accessible navigation button to engaging content- it’s more likely to get a better rank and more visitors.
However, as far as user experience is concerned old school SEO did not cared about, while it is a huge aspect in modern on-page SEO.
To any website, visitors mean a lot. In old school SEO, web pages used to so buggy and heavy that it would take ages to load an entire page. Unoptimized images and heavy codes in websites used to slow down the page speed.
On the contrary, modern SEO addresses the problem and makes sure the web page loads faster. So the visitors are not frustrated by the load speed and they arrive at the web page in a seamless manner.
In old school SEO, websites tried to obtain links without considering their quality. Mass link building used to be common and convenient practice. Since it was much easy to manipulate the PageRank through spammy links, nobody cared about relevant or contextual links. They were only focussed on PageRank and traffic. The objective was shallow.
In modern SEO, it’s more about quality than quantity. Generating hundreds of links overnight just like you used to do, can get you penalised and de-indexed by google. Link building in modern SEO focuses on contextual links and relevant links. It’s more about building and promoting brands by exploring different channels. If you have optimized the on-page factors including content, design and keywords properly, you are more likely to get natural backlinks from other relevant websites that boosts your authority and improves your page rank.
Recommended reading: Holistic SEO vs the Old SEO
Going by the differences, the significance of modern SEO technique is much relevant. it not only increase the search traffic but offers long term benefits to web owners. Google being the most popular search engine with over 1.17 billion users across the globe, it’s important to optimize your on-page SEO according to the modern SEO method, rather than relying on the old-school SEO which have become obsolete in present context.