Your Complete Guide to On-Page SEO

Nearly 70% of all activity online starts with a search engine like Google. Unfortunately, 75% of people never look beyond the first page of results. If you're not on the first page, you need to reevaluate your search engine optimization (SEO) strategy.

You'll need to consider your on-page SEO if you want to improve your search engine rankings.

Boosting your rankings will position your website ahead of a competitor's. You can generate brand awareness, gain more website traffic, and start increasing leads.

Not sure where to start? What is on-page SEO, exactly?

Here's everything you need to know about on-page SEO optimization. After reading this guide, you can improve your website SEO optimization with ease. Start reading to learn everything you need to know about on-page optimization today!

The Types of SEO

Before we answer the question "what is on-page SEO," it helps to know how to differentiate between the different types. Here are the four types of SEO you'll need for a complete optimization strategy.

On-Page SEO

First, let's answer the question that likely brought you here: what is on-page SEO?

On-page SEO includes tactics involving your website. Optimizing your web content can boost your search engine rankings. Then, you'll start appearing in front of a wider audience online.

Most on-page tactics involve the words and phrases you use within your page content.

For example, a few on-page ranking factors include your:

  • URL structure
  • Title tags
  • Meta descriptions
  • Image optimization
  • Content structure

Many people confuse on-page and technical SEO. Though technical SEO also involves your website, it considers behind-the-scenes elements. You'll optimize your website for technical SEO by updating your website design and development.

You have control over your on-page website elements. For example, an important component of on-page SEO is keyword placement. Where you include a target keyword within your content can impact SEO rankings.

Optimizing your content with on-page ranking factors can show Google your website content is relevant.

You'll need to appeal to the user's search intent to improve your rankings. Otherwise, Google will show someone else's website for a search instead.

Improving your relevance will help you appear for the right searches at the right time. Then, you can attract more people to your website with ease.

Off-Page SEO

Off-page SEO includes ranking factors outside of your website. You don't always have control over these ranking factors. These can include:

  • Domain strength
  • Backlinks
  • Social sharing
  • Content distribution

One of the most important off-page SEO ranking factors is backlink-building. Backlinks send readers from one website to your content. Generating backlinks from high domain authority websites can boost your domain authority.

Generating backlinks will show Google that people trust and approve of your content. Your SEO rankings could improve as a result. Then, you can start reaching more consumers online.

Technical SEO

Technical SEO also involves elements on your website. However, these elements are usually on the backend of your website. For example, technical SEO ranking factors include:

  • Mobile optimization
  • HTTPS security (SSL certificate)
  • Intrusive interstitial guidelines
  • Safe browsing
  • Google's Core Web Vitals
  • Broken links
  • Duplicate content
  • Schema markup
  • Page load times

Run your website through Google's PageSpeed Insights and Mobile-Friendly Test. Make sure your site is fast and easy to use.

Google also uses mobile-first indexing to determine rankings. If your website isn't mobile-optimized, contact a digital marketing agency. They can update your site to ensure it's mobile- and user-friendly.

A positive user experience will encourage people to explore your content. You can improve your clickthrough rate and dwell times. Improving these metrics will further benefit your SEO rankings.

Don't neglect Google's Core Web Vitals as you make updates to your website.

Local SEO

As you explore the different types of SEO, don't forget local SEO as well.

About 30% of mobile searches are related to location. These searches grow 50% faster than all other mobile searches.

You can build your local SEO marketing strategy by:

  • Optimizing your Google My Business listing
  • Generating customer reviews
  • Updating your listing on other online directories
  • Creating content for location-based keywords
  • Creating location-specific pages on your website

As you develop strategies for these four types of SEO, make sure to keep up-to-date with the latest trends. Different trends can impact different areas of your SEO strategy.  

On-Page SEO Ranking Factors

Now that we've covered the different types of SEO, let's look into on-page SEO optimization. Here are a few on-page ranking factors you'll need to keep in mind.

URL Structure

First, take a look at the URL you create for each page on your website. Consider how one URL will impact future URLs.

Some websites create a subdomain for their blogs ( instead of a subfolder ( Unfortunately, this strategy could hurt your backlink building. Any backlinks you generate for the subdomain won't benefit your main site.

Instead, consider using the subfolder URL structure. You'll have an easier time improving your ranking for the main site and your blog.

As you start creating subfolders, it's important to create as few as possible. Otherwise, you could make it more difficult for search engines to crawl and index your content.

Content management systems like WordPress might automatically set the page or post title as your URL. Try to shorten the URL when you can. Shorter URLs are visually appealing.

They can also help consumers better understand your content.

As you create URLs for new blog posts, make sure to add your target keyword to the URL.

Title Tags

Title tags will display on search engine result pages (SERPs). They're an HTML element. Title tags can give readers a better idea about your content.

First, make sure your title tag includes the target keyword. Make sure it's relevant to the content and engaging. You'll have an easier time appealing to readers as a result.

Then, you can generate more clicks and website traffic.

Make sure your titles are also unique.

High-Quality Content

As you begin creating content for your on-page SEO optimization strategy, focus on quality over quantity. Create helpful, engaging content with your target audience in mind. Show readers you're able to help.

If your content isn't high-quality, people will leave. A high bounce rate can hurt your search engine rankings.

Instead, remove fluff from your content. Focus on EAT (expertise, authority, and trustworthiness), too. Create content that demonstrates your experience and expertise in the industry.

Consumers will start to see you as a thought leader. They'll come back to your blog when they have questions, helping you generate leads.

Content Structure

When people discuss on-page SEO optimization, they're usually thinking of content structure.

Structuring your content will help bots crawl and index your pages. However, it's important to write for humans, not search engines. Make sure your content is easy to consume.

For example, you can:

  • Organize content into headings and subheadings
  • Avoid jargon
  • Use bullets and lists
  • Add images

You can also run your content through to improve your readability. If your content is easy to read, people are more likely to stay on the page.

Meta Descriptions

Your meta descriptions will appear on SERPs under the title tag and URL. You can create attention-grabbing meta descriptions to draw readers to your content.

First, make sure your meta description includes the target keyword. Help readers understand what information your content contains. If the content doesn't appeal to their search intent, they'll leave.

Make sure the meta description is easy to read and informative. Try to keep it short, too. You only have 160 characters.

Google's bots will look at your meta description to learn about your content.


Try to include your target keyword in an H1 header, too.

Headings and subheadings can help you better organize your content. Readers will have an easier time skimming through your posts. Using headings can improve the user experience and readability.

Image Optimization

Add an eye-catching, relevant image to each blog post you create. Then, optimize your image using your target keyword.

Include your keyword within the image file name and image alt text. The alt text will help Google understand the image's relevance.

Keyword Use

Remember, your keyword placement can also impact your on-page SEO optimization. Include your target keyword in the opening and closing paragraphs. Feature it within the body text as well.

Don't forget to avoid keyword stuffing. Instead, use secondary keywords and synonyms within your content.


There are two types of links you can use as part of your on-page optimization.

Internal links send readers to other pages on your own site. You can use internal links to boost your clickthrough rate. Send readers to relevant pages and encourage them to explore your content.

External links send readers to other websites. You can link to resources, data, and studies. External links can boost your credibility.

The Benefits of On-Page SEO

What benefits of on-page SEO can you experience after optimizing your content? Here are a few to keep in mind. With a successful SEO strategy, you can experience these benefits and more.

Generate Brand Awareness and Recognition

Consumers won't get the chance to try your product or service if they don't know you exist. You can use on-page SEO optimization to boost your rankings. Higher search engine rankings can help you generate more brand awareness.

Consumers will see your website each time they search for your product or service. In time, you'll start developing brand recognition.

When someone needs your product or service in the future, they won't have to search online. Instead, they'll immediately recall seeing your website in the past. They could visit your site directly as a result.

Increase Website Traffic

About 53% of all website traffic starts with an organic search. In fact, SEO drives 1,000% more traffic than organic social media marketing.

The top-ranking page generates the most traffic nearly 50% of the time.

You can use on-page optimization to improve your rankings. A higher ranking will ensure consumers see your site first. Then, you could have an easier time generating more website traffic.

Google will recognize you're generating an influx of traffic and boost your ranking even higher.

Rank Ahead of Competitors

Improving your ranking will ensure you appear before competitors within your industry. You could boost your credibility as a result. Consumers might decide to choose your business before anyone else's.

Become a Thought Leader

Ranking ahead of the completion could position you as a thought leader in the industry, too.

Make sure you're creating helpful, informative content. Provide consumers with the information they can't find anywhere else.

They'll start to rely on you when they have questions. Your experience and expertise can give you a competitive advantage in the industry.

Boosting your credibility could help foster brand trust.

Boost Brand Trust and Loyalty

Consumers won't choose your business if they don't trust you. On-page SEO can help boost your rankings. Establishing yourself as a credible resource could encourage brand trust to grow.

In time, trust can turn into brand loyalty. You can retain repeat customers, which will improve your ROI.

Generate Leads and Sales

SEO can capture over 40% of your company's revenue. In fact, SEO offers a 14.6% close rate. That's eight times higher than traditional marketing.

As you generate more website traffic, you'll have a chance to generate more leads, too. Generating more leads and e-commerce sales will improve your ROI. Then, you can get ahead of competitors and experience lasting growth.


Once you improve your SEO rankings, it can take time before competitors knock you down. On-page SEO optimization is a long game. You can improve your search engine rankings and keep those rankings.

Consumers will keep seeing you at the top of search engine result pages. You can keep generating traffic, leads, and sales as a result.

On-Page SEO: Your Guide to a Higher Search Engine Ranking

Don't give your competitors the chance to take the lead. Instead, take the time to improve your on-page SEO optimization. With a strong SEO strategy, you can boost your rankings and reach more customers.

You don't have to develop your SEO strategy alone. We're here to help.

Explore our SEO services today to get started.

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