I am Alex Bungener and I’m the founder of Digital+ LLC. How do you SEO optimize your website (commonly known as on-page SEO) internally? Today we are going to discuss the different parts of a web page that need to be SEO optimized.
Title Tag: What the Page Is About
The title tag tells Google what the page is about. You can see what your title tag by taking the cursor and putting it on the tab. A little rectangular block pops up and that’s where you’ll find your title tag. That title tag should be optimized with the keyword phrase that you’re targeting with that web page.
Geo Terms: Area-Specific Keywords
If you are a local business, it should include geo terms such as the city or the area, like Cape Cod or South Shore or North Shore or Greater Boston. The title tag should be no more than 70 characters long because that’s all Google will show. So one way you can tell if your website is SEO optimized is to look at that. If you’re wasting space by repeating words or having your business name in there that’s not a good idea; remember, search engine optimization is about having people that don’t know you exist find you. If people already know you exist, okay: they’re looking for you specifically. The whole objective of search engine optimization, however, is to get you on the first page when people are looking for what you do or the product or products you sell. So that title tag is going to have that keyword phrase.
Then the next thing is the meta description. The meta description is what actually shows up in the organic search where you see that paragraph part. What you want that meta description to do is to encourage people to either contact you or go to your website. In that meta description you want to make sure that you have the keyword phrase that you have in the title tag. The meta description is not to be more than 160 characters long, because Google doesn’t show more than that. You don’t need the geo terms in that, but if you’re targeting, say, Boston pest control company, then you want to have as your keyword phrase “Boston pest control company” in your meta description.
H1 Tag (Header Tag)
The third part is the H1 tag, or the header tag. Typically, that is the top of the page, it’s the biggest font, and it tells Google what the web page is all about. Again, the keyword phrase has to be in the H1 tag. There is only one H1 tag per page. The H2s are the secondary headers. For example, if you are doing an FAQ page, then you could have “Qualifying for a Mortgage FAQ” as the H1 tag and then have each one of those questions as an H2 tag because that tells Google that those are the second most important things. Your H1 tags are the most important part of your page, which is why it’s important to choose a broad general topic such as “qualifying for a mortgage” rather than secondary topics such as “credit” or “insurance.”
Content Should Target Keyword Phrases
Now the next part is content. As a rule with content, you want to have at least 300 words for each page that you have targeting a keyword phrase. Not all of your pages, for example, your “contact us” page, is going to be really targeting a keyword phrase, but say you’re a pest control company. If you want to get found for exterminating mice, then you want to have a page specifically on mice extermination because people will do searches on specific types of services. For example, I just did research yesterday for a dentist practice that’s in the Greater Boston area. Out of the seven hundred and twenty-five different keyword phrases that people use looking for a dentist in this area that have monthly traffic numbers, 234 of those actually have a value for ad words. In other words, in order to use these phrases, you actually need to pay to buy ads for them. It’s amazing how many different ways people ask for the same kind of service.
Something kind of unique or that’s changed over the past couple of years with Google is that Google’s gotten really good at understanding the intent of your content and the intent of the search that the person is performing. So when you’re writing your content, do not worry about the number of times the keyword phrase is within the content. What we do at Digital+ is simply put it in the beginning of the content and somewhere else within the content. We bold it in one spot and we italicize it in another spot, and that’s all we worry about. Then you can pepper in variations of that keyword phrase within the content. If you do that, then the cool thing about it is that it works with getting you rent for a lot more of those variations of keyword phrases related to the main one you’re targeting on that page.
Have at Least One Image on Each Page
Another part is images. You want to have at least one image on your page for a couple of reasons. One, it helps to break up the content, so it makes it look smaller, which is more inviting for the person to read, and it’s more attractive to have it. You want to have at least one, but if you can use three or four of them, that would be great. Part of the image is what’s called the alternative tag, or the alt-tag. You also want to include the keyword or phrase that you have in the meta description and in your title tag in the tag of your image. If you have more than one, you can do a variation of that keyword phrase as the alt-tag of the other image, or a different variation beyond that in the third image, and on down like that. You can also add in geo terms, like “Boston,” or “Melrose,” or “Medford,” and whatever you want to put in there.
Web Page Addresses: Have the Keyword Phrase in the URL
Then the other thing you can do, which is not that difficult if you’re building your website from scratch, and that’s the web address for that web page. It is best practice to have the keyword phrase in the URL. if you already have an existing website for say, BostonPestControlCompany.com/exterminator and you just had “mice” on there, then that’s what you’ve got. You can do a 301 redirect, which means that if somebody is going to /mouse or /mice, it will automatically go to the mice extermination page. Those are the seven areas of a web page that you should optimize for the specific keyword phrase that you’re targeting with that web page.