On-Page SEO: More Than Just Content
SEO guidelines and ranking factors have changed hugely in in the last three years as Google released algorithm updates with trust, security and machine learning at the heart.
In 2019 simply optimising your landing page, meta data and heading tags is no longer enough for a positive ranking. There is a need to offer valuable and insightful information on a target product and it is important to understand what a user wants, but also how a search engine will perceive this information.
Starting with the Content
Although content is not the standalone need for on-page SEO in 2019, it is still the core element within a landing page for SEO. If the goal is to rank a site higher on Google for target products then then your website needs to show expertise, authority and trust on that subject. Following the Florida2 update in March 2019 – which added an additional layer to E-A-T factors it is important for a website to portray positive signals about service and product where relevant.
Within content there is a need to look directly at the accreditations of a business, the insight a business offers to an industry and the security offered to customers. For e-commerce businesses this is particularly important as Google will determine for themselves whether they feel a consumer (or user) will be protected in the event of a sale.
Think About What Google Sees
Next up it is important to identify what Google will see when crawling your website – as opposed to simply what a user sees. The focus here is to understand the small elements that Google crawls but that make up a proportion of ranking equity on the page.
This includes a number of elements but can be largely boiled down to:
- Alt Tags and Image titles: This is an accessibility area and Google will read the text behind an image as it cannot ‘see’ the image itself
- Heading tags: Generally, these are used to break up content and they need to be split accordingly. It’s best practice to keep paragraphs no longer than 125 words and have 2 paragraphs per heading tag. Heading tags on paragraphs should be Heading 2.
- Keyword density: Consider keyword density within your content in that no more than 1.5% of your content should be your keyword (or variation of)
- Semantic keyword use: Google will determine the relevance of a page based on the text which you may feel not be related your content, but that Google sees as supporting text. If you don’t match your keywords here, you may find it harder to rank.
As an SEO agency we’ve seen our work turn increasingly technical in the last three years and we expect this to move further in the coming years. Most notably is the introduction of schema tagging and rich snippets within search results. This means as an agency we’re able to look more at sending specific information from a landing page to a search crawler. This includes search data for services, locations, business information and awards – all of which enhances the landing page without adding anything additional to the page itself.
Working in line with an SEO agency will allow you to build a stronger base for a website to ensure Google crawls and your website results are enhanced.