On-Page SEO: The Complete Guide [2024]

Written by Ethan He

February 15, 2024

On-Page SEO Guide

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) has been around for almost as long as the internet, and since its inception, businesses have been utilizing SEO to reach new audiences, bring traffic to their websites, spread knowledge, and drive growth.

But SEO has changed a great deal since it was first used, from spamming as many keywords as possible into content and filling pages with low quantity backlinks to authority and content driven like today. Over time, SEO has evolved into a complex technical technique that’s highly informed by user behavior.

Today, SEO uses both on-page and off-page techniques to ensure high-quality websites make it to the top of search engine result pages.

But what exactly is on- and off-page SEO, and how can digital marketers use it to serve their clients? In this post, I will discuss what makes on-page and the steps you will need to take to make your on-page SEO flourish in 2024.

 

What Is On-Page SEO?

On-Page SEO is a technique used to optimize website content and generate organic traffic for users and search engines.

Best on-page SEO practices include

  • Optimize header tags, title tags and meta tags
  • Improve website loading speed
  • Add relevant internal links
  • Image optimization
  • Schema Markup
  • Use SEO Friendly URL

Why is On-Page SEO Important?

Search engine giant Google is constantly updating its algorithms on a daily basis. With over 80% of seaech coming from Google. This makes it more important than ever to tweak and adjust your SEO.

Digital marketers invest their efforts and energy in off-page techniques, such as guest posting, influencer outreach, social media engagement, and other SEO techniques. The truth is, off-page SEO doesn’t work well if your on-page SEO is not optimized. One way to imagine this is that on-page SEO is the foundation of your house, and off-page SEO is what attracts potential visitors.

Tech-savvy digital marketers and SEO specialists know that on-page optimization must be constantly optimized and prioritized to stay ahead of the ever-changing search landscape. This will ultimately lead to more organic traffic (free traffic!) and higher rankings on search results.

On-page SEO goes beyond simply posting engaging, high-quality content and optimizing HTML tags and images. It requires you to put some extra effort into making sure your business website has a high level of expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness.

If done correctly, on-page SEO has real potential to attract consistent new organic traffic and potential customers to your site.

 

On-Page SEO Tips For 2024

1) Choose your Keywords  

Incorporating relevant keywords into your content will help your visitors find what they are looking for. Google also prefers websites that use targeted keywords in their content. This is because it helps Google understand the purpose of the site.

So make sure every page on your website is keyword optimized. Define your search intent and then use a number of keyword variations and related phrases to optimize your content Google algorithms.

You can perform keyword research using different tools, some of my favorites are:

  1. Google Search Console
  2. Ahrefs
  3. Semrush
  4. Google Keyword Planner
  5. KeywordTool.io
  6. Moz Keyword Explorer
  7. AnswerthePublic

2) Optimize Your Content

To rank your website in search results, you need to optimize your content. Web page content is one of the most important elements of your on-page SEO strategy. It informs both visitors and search engine bots about your website, products, or services.

Make sure your content demonstrates your expertise and authority on the subject or the keywords you want to focus on.

 

3) HTML Elements, Page Titles, and Headers

HTML tags are one of the most important on-page SEO elements that help Google understand the structure of the webpage. They are building blocks for most webpages today.

A title tag like the one below gives the search engine important information about the page.

<title> On Page SEO: The Complete Guide </title>

Make sure your HTML page titles and headers include focus keywords that help users understand what your page is all about.  But don’t over do it and spam keywords all over the page as poorly written and duplicate HTML tags can hurt your organic rankings.

 

4) Optimize Metadata

The meta description is the page description that is shown in the SERPs. It conveys important information about the page and gives your visitors an opportunity to visit the page.

It is strongly advised to optimize metadata by adding target keywords in the meta title and meta description to make the description more attractive to the visitor. Furthermore, if your business is offering location specific products or services, make sure to include the location in the Meta title and description.

Pro Tip: Avoid using automatically generated descriptions and optimize your metadata with relevant keywords and useful content to help users and Google understand what your site has to offer.

 

5) Create Original, High-Quality Content

Creating high quality content with proper keyword placement that focuses on the needs of users will greatly improve your website rankings in 2024 and beyond.

Google prefers EAT-friendly content and is an Expert, Authoritative and Trustworthy.

Make sure your website content is original and solely focused on search intent and target keywords.

According to Google Webmaster Guidelines, your website ranking will improve if you pay close attention to these simple tips:

  • Create an information-packed site that clearly describes your content
  • Write content for real users, not for search engine crawlers.
  • Make sure the content includes relevant keywords.
  • Make sure the page title and alt attributes are relevant and descriptive.
  • Allow search bots to crawl your website without URL parameters or session ID barriers.
  • Create unique, informative, and engaging content to increase the quality of your website

6) Internal Linking

Internal links are critical to the success of your page. It is the process of linking your web page to other useful pages of your website. in fact, it is one of the most cost effective on-page SEO tactics that can drive the desired results. Not only is it free and easy to execute, it also gives a sense of structure for your website.

Internal linking is essential because it sends visitors to high-authority pages on your website, thus lowering the bounce rate. This tells Google that users find your website useful.

Internal links also make it easy for crawlers to navigate and index your pages on the search engine. Without internal links, Google can’t properly index your page and thus lower the exposure for your site.

7) Increase Your Page Speed

Your page speed is not only critical for your SEO, it also directly affects user experience. Whether visitors are viewing your site on a mobile device or desktop, it should load within a few seconds. Google recommends that webpages shouldn’t take more than 3 seconds to load.

Remember, Google takes user experience seriously. In fact, page speed has been one of the ranking factors since 2017. If your website takes forever to load, chances are visitors won’t wait for your website to load; they will simply go to your competitor’s site. This is why the speed of your site can have a huge impact on your conversion rate and ROI.

You can greatly improve your website speed by following these actionable tips:

  • Eliminate third-party scripts
  • Compress and optimize your images
  • Reduce your redirects
  • Cache your web pages using a CDN
  • Asynchronous and defer loading for your CSS and JavaScript files.
  • Minify CSS, JavaScript, and HTML
  • Remove unnecessary plugins

8) Create SEO Friendly URLs

The URL structure of a webpage is often overlooked.

Building SEO-optimized URLs is now more important than ever. Keep your URLs short and easy to read for searchers and search engines as it helps them understand the key focus of the page. It will also help to include the location of your business in your URL if applicable. For example, instead of plumbing-services, add pittsburgh-plumbing-services as your URL.

Finally include Keywords in your URL, this is one of the easiest ways to include keywords in your website without the risk of being marked as spam.

9) Image Optimization

Adding images to your web pages is one of the most effective result-oriented SEO techniques. They give flares to your webpage and help convey your message more effectively. However, don’t over do it, as a large number of images can slow down page speed especially if the images are not optimized.

It is generally best if you can keep a webpage’s total weight under 1 or 2 MB in size. Images should have a descriptive filename and alt text helps Google understand what the image is all about. Alt text is also important for voice search optimization which is also one of the ranking factors.

Be sure to add the targeted keyword to the image and use a filename that includes the target word, such as on-page-SEO-complete-guide.png. Make sure you use the same keywords for alt tags in your images

 

10) Keep your Content Fresh

Keep your content fresh and up to date. But what is fresh content? Fresh content is simply new content. Updating existing content while adding new content is the first step in helping search engines rank your website higher. However, not all new content is useful, so make sure your content is targeted toward the relevant ideal audience you want to attract.

The main focus here is relevant! Always think about what your ideal customer or visitor finds relevant and tailor your content to their interests and needs.

Fresh content is timely trending content. It should be centered around trending topics, news and events. An example of this could be new changes pertaining to a subject of interest to the current time.

Pro tip: Adding the year to the title and description will make people think your content is relevant and up to date.

Conclusion:

If you want to improve your website rankings in 2024 and beyond, implementing these On Page SEO techniques on your website will definitely be worth your while.

Remember SEO is an ever-evolving process; site owners need to constantly make changes to their websites and follow the latest SEO trends to improve their website positions, traffic, and conversions.

I hope you now have a better understanding of  on-page SEO. With a strategic approach and actionable tips, you have the opportunity to significantly boost your ranking and increase your conversion.  If you need help implementing any of the above suggestions, please contact me! You know I am always happy to help.

Ethan He

About Ethan He

Ethan is a Full Stack Web Developer and SEO Specialist based in Pittsburgh, PA. In his free time, Ethan enjoys working on various projects involving Ruby, Vue and AWS applications.

Ethan graduated from The Firehose Project coding bootcamp in 2016 with a focus on Ruby on Rail and Computer Software engineering.