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June 26, 2017

How to Master On-Page SEO in 2017

baltimore on-page seoOn-page SEO can get pretty intense, but it’s worth every minute of your time.

To really get SEO right, you’ll need to take a good hard look at your website and invest a lot of time and effort into improving it on both the front-end and the back-end.

In this post, we’re going to discuss everything you’ll need to know to master on-page SEO in 2017. Some of this might get a bit technical, so hang on tight.

Title Tags

We’re not supposed to judge a book by its cover, but Google does judge a website by its title. Optimize your title tags by putting your keywords as close to the beginning of your titles as possible.

Headlines

In SEO terms, this is called an “H1” tag. Google gives tremendous weight to this when ranking sites. Make sure to put your keywords in them and keep them between 35 and 65 characters long.

Keywords

Extensively research and identify your best keywords with Google’s Keyword Planner. Then, use them strategically and logically throughout the body of the content on your website. Don’t forget to blend them naturally in the text so your reader doesn’t get confused or lose interest in the post.

Subheadings

Google loves subheadings, so craft eye-catching ones. This will help you rank higher while simultaneously attracting more visitors and potential customers to your site.

Meta Description

This is a fancy name given to the short description underneath the title of a page in a Google search result. The key is to design a meta description that strategically includes your keywords, entices potential customers to click on your page, and is within the 165 character length requirement. It’s not an easy task, but if you do it enough, you’ll get the hang of it very quickly.

Internal Linking Boosts

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Image courtesy of Chabad.org.

Google loves when pages on your site link to one another.

Pretend for a moment that you sell promotional products and have a blog post discussing promotional power banks on your website. A great thing to do for SEO would be to link from that blog post directly to a product page selling one of those power banks. Similarly, if you’re an attorney with a business law page, you should discuss the types of contracts your firm drafts and link to another page dealing with, say, LLC Operating Agreements.

Internal linking like this (or cross-linking) gives Google’s bots an opportunity to bounce around your site and index it best. This is huge for SEO. It also keeps your readers on your website and looking for more information about your company.

Images

Pictures are vital to keeping your reader’s attention and boosting your web presence in search engines. Try to choose images that evoke emotion and resonate strongly with your readers. Remember, on the back-end, you’ll have to code their alt tags to be search engine optimized (since Google can’t actually “read” images).

NAP

If you want to rank higher in Google My Business or Bing Places, having your business’s name, address, and phone number (NAP) in the footer of every page on your website is pretty vital. Not only that, but your phone number should also be hyperlinked, so mobile users can call your firm with a single click of a button.

Videos

Having videos on your website is no longer a nice luxury, it’s a necessity. In today’s world, garnering a reputation for being the best in your niche requires high-quality videos on your website. Aside from building trust and authority, videos engage with your visitors on a personal level and improve your SEO tremendously – especially if you put the video on YouTube and embed it on your site.

Page Speed

Google confirmed long ago that sites that load slowly will hurt your search rankings. Also, studies show that users won’t stay on your site when it takes a long time to load. Now is not the time to be cutting corners. Ditch your cheap hosting package on a server with 15,000 other sites and make sure that you invest in fast, high-quality hosting on a stellar server. You can significantly improve your page speed by enabling any and sometimes all of the following: 1) page caching; 2) browser caching; 3) CSS & JS minification; 4) image optimization, scaling, and resizing; 5) minimizing your number of total requests; and 6) using a Content Delivery Network (CDN).

Mobile Responsivenessmobile responsiveness

Almost everyone has an iPhone or smartphone these days. Many even ask “Siri” or “OK Google” questions about locating great company’s just like yours. If your site isn’t optimized for mobile searches, you’re losing business. If your website isn’t mobile-friendly, you need to make it happen – no more excuses. If it is, find the best place to position your phone number to maximize calls from qualified leads.

Sitemap Generation

If you can’t find your pages and posts, neither can Google! Create an XML Sitemap that helps search engines find and index every page and post on your entire website. It’s also worth generating an HTML Sitemap that’s readable by humans, so your site navigation will be even more organized. After creating these, sign up for and use Google Search Console (AKA Google Webmaster Tools) to ensure that the most up-to-date version of your site, pages, and posts are appearing in all the major search engines.

As you can see, on-page SEO can be pretty intense and gets very involved.

If any or all of this seems way too technical and time consuming, RDB Design can take care of all of it for you. We’ve been doing this successfully for years, and it’s just the beginning of how we get your business on Page 1 of Google.

June 26, 2017 SEO

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