Properly optimizing your website for search engines requires smart SEO tagging as well as strong content and on-page practices. It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking good SEO is all and only about figuring out the most popular keywords to use for your niche, but there are many steps beyond that to implement your keyword research into your website, pages, or blog posts that’s necessary to give your site and its pages the best chance possible at ranking well in search engine results for your chosen keyword phrases.
Here are 6 tips on how to incorporate good SEO techniques on your website pages and business blog posts.
6 On-Page SEO Tips & Best Practices
1. Choose your SEO keywords wisely
Spending time doing SEO research using Google itself is time very well spent. You’ll find that your “keyword” really is at least a few words or a long phrase. Not only is that OK, it’s the better SEO approach as those long-tailed keyword phrase is much more in line with how searchers are searching for information and usually have lower competition. Each website page or blog post should have a unique keyword phrase you are using and trying to rank for, and that phrase (and natural variations of the phrase) should be used throughout the content, in headings, and in ALT tags in addition to the title tag and meta description.
2. Use your SEO keywords in your post title, permalink and post content
If you own a party planning business and want to write a post featuring the latest trends in autumn wedding flowers, you may conduct some SEO keyword research that shows “popular bridal bouquet styles fall” is your ideal keyword phrase for that blog post.
A strong post title would be: Popular Bridal Bouquet Styles for Fall Weddings
A strong permalink would be: http://YourURL.com/popular-bridal-bouquet-styles-fall-weddings
You would also repeatedly use this SEO keyword phrase – and natural, conversational variations of this same phrase – throughout the blog post.
Please note: It is very important that your chosen keyword phrase is used multiple times in your post. However, be sure that your use of that phrase is natural and doesn’t seem forced. Readers need to enjoy what they are reading in order to return to your site or blog, and Google has said it wants you to write for human beings and not bots. Once you’ve finished writing your post or page, it’s a good idea to re-read it and consider if replacing a few mentions of your phrase with other relevant words (such as flowers, wedding, bride, trends) would help your post flow better.
3. Positioning of your keywords affects SEO
In the post title (and title tag):
It is more beneficial for your SEO if your chosen keywords are located close to the beginning of your title. In the example above, “Popular Bridal Bouquet Styles” is a stronger title than “Lilies are the Must-Have Flower of this Bridal Season“.
In your post content:
Some say that you need to fit your SEO keyword phrase into the first 50 words. Others say within the first 100 words. While others simply say within the first paragraph. The jury is still out on the “correct” parameters; however, it is clear that including your keyword phrase at the beginning of your post is great for SEO.
4. Use section headings throughout your blog post or page
Section headers (like point 4 above) make a post more scannable for your readers and are good for SEO. Be sure to mark up your headers with <h></h> tags.
WordPress users can choose their headings from a drop-down menu.
Users of other platforms can switch to their post’s HTML view and add the <h></h> tags there. The number next to the h relates to the size of the text. h1 is the largest, and the size of the heading font decreases and the number increases.
As an example, here’s the html/text view of the main section header above:
<h2>On-Page SEO Tactics</h2>
5. Search engine spiders love links
Add a couple links to older posts, into the new blog post you are writing. Also, be sure to choose the right anchor text for your links.
Links are an important of SEO. But there is a difference between “just OK” and “great” linking efforts.
6. Add ALT tags to your images
Images add a finishing touch to any post. But without words behind those photos, they are meaningless to Google bots. Naming your photo files and adding keyword-rich ALT tags will benefit your on-page SEO efforts because they give a(n SEO) value to the images you’ve included on the page.
Implementing strong SEO practices with your site takes time and a lot of practice. Learning what SEO is, why bloggers and businesses need it, and all the terminology that goes along with it, creates a solid SEO foundation to build upon. Understanding how to compose a post with strong on-page SEO elements is the next layer in the SEO puzzle.
This is great info. Thank you!
Would it be worth it to go back & add the h1, h2 coding to some older posts? (not all!)
If you have some posts where the section headers make a lot of sense (perhaps the VLCADD posts), then I would say to do it.
Great tips! Esp the anchor tags one. That’s a mistake I see way too often…click here as the anchor text doesn’t cut it! Seo is such a slippery thing..and not guaranteed even if you do it correctly. But every bit helps.
Any advice on choosing adwords using the link above?
You want to choose terms that are popular but not too popular. So, if it’s searched 1,000,000 times or more a month, you’ll have stiff competition. Also take into consideration what keyword phrase is easily worked into your post. You’d be better off choosing a less popular phrase that fits into your post repeatedly and flows smoothly than one that is more popular but harder to incorporate.
Great tips! Especially the photo one, I use a lot of photos and haven’t really bothered tagging them. Will go back and do it now.
Great tips. I always choose my keywords haphazardly without a thought to the title or first 50 words. There’s so much strategy to this blogging stuff that I still need to learn! Thanks for helping 🙂
Great advise! I’ve always been pretty bad at picking keywords and will definitely start using the adwords tool now and putting a lot more thought into my typically plain post titles. Thank you and I’ll be sure to keep checking back for more tips.
Thank you so much for these reminders. I took an SEO class of sorts a long time ago on a Yahoo Group, but have forgotten a lot. I really appreciate this post! 🙂