Digital marketing has become increasingly popular as the world has become continually reliant on technology. At the heart of digital marketing is SEO. SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. Successful SEO means that Google (or other search engines) to recognize a site as legitimate and consequently place it above other similar sites in a relevant search. “SEO encompasses both the technical and creative elements required to improve rankings, drive traffic, and increase awareness in search engines.” (Moz) There are basic onsite and offsite SEO principles that can be adopted by seasoned or novice digital marketer that can help their website to rank above the competition.
Onsite describes “any code or data that sits on your website or digital asset” (Sutton). Manipulating information on your site to improve SEO can be called Onsite SEO. Onsite SEO focuses on making a website look natural and easy for Google to read. Google crawls websites which contributes to its SEO. To determine page rank and relevancy, Google uses algorithms. Onsite SEO “account for approximately 33% of Google’s algorithm (Sutton). The content on a site is judged by mathematical equations to judge relevance and then popularity (Moz). If a site is easily read by Google SEO will be improved. A few ways to increase Onsite SEO include: editing <meta>, <title>, and <img> tags within a sites format. By doing this, Google will have an easier time crawling the site and deciphering what is being said. In addition, making sure that all the links on a site pull the different pages together helps Google’s bots to crawl a site. Linking internally, or linking anchoring text, is essential. An example of this would be linking a page about Google AdWords to a different page on the site about the Keyword Planner. Creating interconnected links helps increase a sites SEO. Using relevant keywords on the site also works to improve SEO. Avoiding overusing keywords and duplicating content (copy and pasting) are SEO killers.
Below are 8 principles that you should follow if you want to maximize Onsite SEO for your page. The first thing that a marketer must try and do when working with Onsite SEO is “fulfill the searcher’s goal and satisfy their intent.” (Moz) As marketers it is important to try and answer the direct query that the user is asking. If someone is searching for “how to prepare for a 5k” they might just be looking for general knowledge of what to do for a marathon. However, in a week or two they could be looking for running shoes or energy gels for an upcoming race. So, one of the first principles on Onsite SEO is trying to attend to the searchers goal and then to fulfill the goal. The second principle is making sure that users can quickly and easily access your site. We’ve all abandoned a page that’s taken too long to buffer or load. Working to make sure that page availability is working at a high speed is a simple, but vital part on SEO. Building off of speed, increasing user interface and user experience helps to increase positive Onsite SEO. This can be improved by making sure that your site is user friendly on all devices. Other details in this element involve getting users to trust and know your site. The fourth principle revolves around making sure that you don’t dissuade users away from your site. “Overlays” dissuade users from sites. Overlays involve asking a question, and then a follow up question depending on an answer. On websites these are usually prompts like “do you want to learn more about digital marketing? If so, follow this blog.” The problem here is that users have to answer one way to move onto the next step. If their answer is no, sit could send them back to the search results. Principle five is all about keyword targeting. Placing the correct keywords in the correct places is an age old practice in SEO. Placing keywords in the title, page content, and image file name are all good places for keywords to be placed if your trying to rank well on Google. Targeting related topics is when Google draws connections between related terms and searches. This is the sixth principle for successful Onsite SEO. Related topics are terms that Google notices are associated with one another. As a marketer, you’ll want to try and include these related topics into your content. To Google, this adds legitimacy to your site and helps you rank. Snippet optimization is the seventh principle. Snippet optimization drives the click. Getting a click is an extremely important element alongside high page rank. The final principle involves producing unique content. With this principle, you need to evaluate what makes your content better than what’s already ranking. The key is producing valuable content that is also different than what’s already out there. Working to combine and follow these eight principles will help any marketer to improve Onsite SEO and achieve high page rank.