Top 16 Key Elements for a Perfect SEO Page
To some people, content optimization seems to be tough. But honestly, it is one of the easiest things to do in SEO you’ll ever come across. But you need to ensure that you are following the right procedure and best practice guidelines. With this guide, you’ll see how a perfect SEO page looks like.
Do you want to learn for the first time how to perfectly optimize a page or are you just looking to refresh your skills?
- 16 Key Elements of a Perfect SEO Page
- 1. Keyword Targeted
- 2. SEO-Friendly URL
- 3. Optimized Title Tag
- 4. Optimized Meta Description
- 5. Optimized H1 Tag
- 6. Optimized H2 Tags
- 7. Last Updated Timestamp
- 8. Target Keyword in the First Paragraph
- 9. Use of Semantically-Related Keywords
- 10. Multimedia Use
- 11. Mobile-First Design Layout
- 12. Internal Links
- 13. External Links
- 14. Page Speed
- 15. Social Share Buttons
- 16. Unique, Educational Long-Form Content
At first, you need to understand the importance of these certain elements from an SEO perspective as well as how to implement them into your content.
It is your content that tells Google about your page’s worth.
Content is one of the super important Google ranking factors, yet many of the SEO marketers ignore this.
In times gone by, people used to earn a huge number of rankings simply by writing and posting a 500-word blog post. But presently, people and Google understand the importance of quality over quantity.
To achieve a higher ranking on search engines, you need to share an amazing piece of content.
Whenever you share some content, you should know the purpose behind writing this. You should never be posting content without any purpose or of no use.
Usually, you post content to meet one of the following objectives:
- To rank on the search engines
- To capture links
- To build awareness
- To drive traffic
- To boost brand awareness
There must be a separate process to create perfect content for each purpose. However, it’s important for you to totally understand the purpose of your content generation before you share your next piece. It is the cornerstone for every productive and successful post.
Most importantly, you need to ensure that you aren’t producing content for the following reasons:
- Your manager wants you to keep posting blogs every other day
- Somebody misled you by saying the more content generated will be better for your site
If you are following any of these approaches, it’s better to rethink. To learn more, have a look at our post on creating content.
Believing that you understand the importance of content in your SEO strategy, let’s check out the 16 key elements with which you can make a perfect SEO page:
16 Key Elements of a Perfect SEO Page
To make a perfect SEO page, here is the simple checklist to follow:
1. Keyword Targeted
One of the most important SEO factors is keyword research that should always be the first and foremost step when starting to write.
It is basically a process of realizing the value of right search terms and then finding the keywords that fit your content.
But before you throw yourself onto the keyword searching process, you need to determine what type of content you are going to generate. Whether it is going to be a principal topic that covers main aspects of something or simply a supporting content that just relates to the main content and links back in. After evaluating this, map out the keywords accordingly.
And, to do this task, you certainly need some tools. There are plenty of tools available from which some are listed below:
With the help of these tools, you can determine what people mostly search for around your selected topic and then, use these keywords as a base.
Usually, people just focus on the content generation and, they ignore the right keywords usage. It is important to formulate a plan initially based on the searched keywords and, your website is ready to strive for more traffic. If you do so, you’ll see a nice effect of this on other on-page factors.
Note that if you don’t find most-searched keywords matching to your site content, then you’ll face problems in succeeding in the online market.
You should conduct proper keyword research as it will greatly help you in gathering a set of most searched keywords by people around your niche and understanding what could work as a supporting content later if you are currently working on a cornerstone page.
And, if you are generating supporting content, then this process should be much easier as you have already established relevant topics while the main page creation.
2. SEO-Friendly URL
As stated by Google, the first few words in a URL are given more importance. And, a ranking factors study has found that short URLs have edge over the longer ones.
It is important to note that a short and SEO-Friendly URL is as much essential as publishing great content on that URL.
Suppose, if your blog is titled How to do exercise at home, your URL should not have all of these words in the URL.
It is suggested to opt for shorter, keyword-optimized URLs and avoid using complex or confusing structure. Make your URLs short and sweet as the shorter ones rank better on search engines.
Be sure to put your main target keywords at the beginning of the URL. So, as our above example, you’re targeting the term Exercise at home, your URL should be something like:
3. Optimized Title Tag
Your title tags are one of the important aspects for SEO on-page and quite simple to optimize.
You really need to get this right if you want your site to rank higher and to drive more traffic to your site. The results of the industry study show that you should have your main keywords as a part of your title tag.
It is good to keep the important keywords in the beginning and, the length of the title tags should be somewhere between 50-60 characters or even less to go pretty well.
The exact width of Google search results is about 512px, so it is recommended to have title tags of this range. To check how your title is going to be displayed, you can use the Moz’s title tag tool.
Let’s take the above-discussed targeted keyword and the perfectly optimized title tag would become:
<title>Exercise at Home | Shape Yourself</title>
This is how you can place your primary keyword in the tag beginning followed by key variations as it has the power to make or break your site visitors and to maximize your click-through rate (CTR).
4. Optimized Meta Description
Even though Google has stated in the past that meta descriptions are not a ranking factor, still it is important for SEO page to many people.
You must be thinking how can this be important?
The reason is that Google and other sites use the meta descriptions in the search engine results preview and it may affect the CTR of the search results.
The little snippets of text are the meta descriptions that you see in the search results while you scan them.
From a CTR perspective, a well-written meta description is extremely important to drive traffic to your site.
As of 2017, Google has doubled the length of meta descriptions which becomes roughly the 4x more length of your title tag. Meta descriptions should be around 315 characters in length or about 4 lines of 512px.
There are higher chances of Google to ignore the meta description if it is stuffed with keywords or doesn’t make sense. So, the goal is to write compelling meta description with one or two main keywords to encourage the clicks on your site.
Again, we’ll take the same example:
<meta name=”description” content=”Are you looking for ways to stay fit and reduce weight without spending money at the gym? Have a look at this blog to find the best exercises you can try at home to stay healthy and fit.” />
5. Optimized H1 Tag
Headings are used for organizing the large content so that the content is easier to read. The main heading of your page should be the H1 tag, containing the primary keyword. And if you use a CMS, this tag will be the ‘title’ area.
Like if you use WordPress, then the H1 tag is most probably the Add title field:
But it is not necessary that every theme or site has an H1 tag to add the title. So, it is better to check twice.
Now, how can we optimize the H1 tag?
Mostly, inserting the main keyword along with other important modifiers are enough for optimization.
If we take our example of exercise at home, the following would work brilliantly:
<h1>Exercise at Home</h1>
Although, there’s nothing wrong in adding different terms after the main target keyword that sits perfectly.
This type of example would be:
<h1>Exercise at Home | Shape Yourself</h1>
You must have noticed that this is exactly the same as our title tag.
6. Optimized H2 Tags
Even if you have already entered your page title in the H1 tag, there still might be the need to add sub-headings on your page. To add sub-heading on a page, there are H2 – H6 tags available.
These tags can be thought of a hierarchy, starting from H1 and ending at H6. The first heading is used to include the most important heading of the page, probably the page title. In this way, other less important titles can take the sub-headings place according to contextual weights. If all are similar then you can go for H2 tag but, if there’s a clear difference between them, then consider using H3 and so on in a logical order.
Keep in mind that your headings should not be stuffed with your target keywords. Use the words in your headings with variations that relate to the content under that heading.
If we take our example, you may start your page with the H1 tag, and after the introductory paragraph, you can use the following sub-heading:
<h2>Exercise to start at home</h2>
In this tag, we are clearly highlighting the main theme and targeted keywords. While being different from the H1 tag, it is showcasing to the users that this post/guide is aimed at home exercise.
It is important to note that your H2 tag should be concise and there is no need to have a keyword variant each time unless if there is an obvious inclusion.
7. Last Updated Timestamp
When you enter a search query related to home exercise into Google search bar, you’ll be shown multiple results:
Now, which result is going to be clicked on? Which one draws you more or has higher chances of getting clicked?
Most probably, you’ll select the first, second, or the third result.
It is quite obvious that everyone wants to consume the most recent or updated content that exists related to that topic on the web. Suppose, if one result was published on June 15, 2018, and the second result was on June 20, then we can see which one is latest.
And if there is no date timestamp, then it is not possible for us to tell without clicking that which post was published earlier and which wasn’t.
Most of the times, you’ll see the publish date on the SERPs appearing next to the content, though it is advised that you should also display the date when the page/post was last updated.
WordPress users can find a great guide on the Shout Me Loud blog to get help on how to do this or if anybody is looking for a quick and easy solution, then WP Last Updated Date plugin is a great option.
Keep in mind that an updated date timestamp may not affect the site ranking in a direct manner, but as per results of different researches, CTR affects the organic search performance and increased traffic on the page reassures that your content is latest and up to date.
Above all, everybody prefers to read content from a just-released post.
8. Target Keyword in the First Paragraph
While writing your SEO content, you should use your main keyword within your paragraph. It is because people on the web tend to read the first few lines of the content so, it is better to use that space wisely and place your keywords to be seen more.
However, you should avoid stuffing your content with keywords as adding unnecessary or repeated words can kill your SEO. Basically, website content is generated to educate the readers, and if you add too many keywords, then you won’t be able to serve this purpose.
This technique might have helped people earlier but filling your page with keywords doesn’t help anymore.
To use keywords in the right way, use them in all the right places, ideally the first 100 words and by keeping it no more than 2-3 mentions per a short content.
In the case of our Exercise at home guide, we can generate this type of content:
After you’ve been consistent with your home exercise program, you might become inspired to branch out and try new workout opportunities. There are a few options to consider.
The writer has written this content nicely. You should follow the instructions too.
9. Use of Semantically-Related Keywords
To stand the chance of getting a successful page ranking for your great content, you should demonstrate relevancy and, to do so, it’s important that you’re using semantically-related or long-tail keywords throughout the content.
At an earlier time, the keyword density used to matter a lot. But thankfully, it is not given that much importance.
Usually, people don’t search with only a single keyword. They mostly enter additional phrases or keywords with the targeted keyword. So, you should include semantically-related or long-tail keywords to your content to have a higher ranking naturally.
To find the high-quality and best semantic keywords, you can use a tool like LSIGraph that spark the ideas as to semantically-related terms and words.
10. Multimedia Use
Some people may not know that content with multimedia performs better than plain text content. Using engaging images, diagrams, and videos within the content has definitely a positive impact upon the dwell time. According to research from Hubspot, 80% of website owners have said that multimedia content has reduced the bounce rate on their sites.
Basically, the role of the website is to convey the information across the audience. And, when hundreds of pages are performing this role, it is important to be done efficiently and attractively.
It’s not a secret that contents with visual items make us learn better and we tend to read a blog post with more interest if it contains any visual objects other than the text.
Today people have fast internet and usually gives less attention to anything not interesting. From an SEO perspective, if your content has more visual objects, it engages people more and, thus it increases the time spent on your site. First introduced by Duane Forrester at Bing, this concept is basically “the actual length of time that a visitor spends on a page before returning to the SERPs.”
Use of multimedia makes people stay on your site for a long duration, therefore, it boosts the dwell time, making good sense from an SEO page perspective.
It’s quite obvious that images, videos, infographics, etc. are created interestingly to engage and retain the visitor’s interest.
Be sure to completely optimize the images and infographics on site and embed videos from hosting and streaming platforms like YouTube, Vimeo, etc.
Considering our example, we can use multimedia for endless purposes: images to display different yoga postures or workout plans, infographics to show the importance of a specific exercise, videos to cover detailed exercise, etc. See, the choices are endless!
11. Mobile-First Design Layout
In early 2018, Google rolled out mobile-first search engine indexing.
Google encourages site owners to make their websites mobile-friendly. With mobile-first indexing, Google crawls each websites’ mobile pages to establish its search engine rankings before crawling the desktop web pages.
Google has made it clear that to rank better and remain competitive online, your website needs to adhere to the mobile-first strategy.
But if your site has already a mobile version, then it is more likely that your site is responsive. However, you must know how your content gets displayed on a mobile site.
And you can also use the “fetch and render” option for the mobile Googlebot to outline any potential issues.
12. Internal Links
The most useful way to establish your site structure and spread link equity is to add internal links pointing to a specific page of your site.
Internal linking helps both users and search engines to navigate through your site and recognize the key pages.
To put it simply, if you are mentioning something related to another page content on your site, link to it. And, you can also make use of anchor text for internal linking.
In our example, you can link to the Before and After page by using the target keyword of that page as an anchor while talking about the effective results of a particular exercise routine.
Keep in mind that you should not internally link everywhere and don’t force keywords just to link. Link only when it makes sense and adds value to the content.
13. External Links
Long gone are the days when SEO marketers were scared of linking out to others from their sites. The reason is the tension of damaging their search engine rankings.
Generally speaking, outbound links doesn’t harm your reputation. So, don’t be afraid of linking out to other sites.
Basically, the search engines want the users to find the information they want and when you add useful links to your content, you make the search engines understand the relevancy of your content you are linking to.
Avoid linking to spammy websites as it will negatively affect your site. Don’t accept money from third-parties to link out and also, don’t let your site gets associated with the spam content.
Again, talking about our example, you may consider linking out to fitness experts’ blogs, personal trainers’ page, or sports scientists’, physiotherapists’, and exercise physiologists’ sites.
Above all, link out to those sources that add value to your content, educate your readers, and differentiate you from your competitors.
14. Page Speed
Not only the quality of your content matters but the page speed too.
The page speed has a great impact on your user experience as well as on your rankings. To increase your page speed, you need to ensure you’re working on the ways which have an impact on the overall speed.
You can improve the page speed by doing the following things:
- Optimizing images
- Getting rid of add-ons
- Optimizing browser and plugins
- Improving server response time
- Reducing redirects
Displaying social share buttons on your site benefits the SEO page in multiple ways.
If you are generating some helpful content related to any specific topic, you might want more people to take advantage. These shares encourage people and make it easy for them to share your site content with their social network. In this way, your content gets shared again and again on multiple platforms and, it increases the exposure of content.
And these social share buttons come with templates available online. So, there is no tension of adding or placing them on your site by yourself.
Note that you should include and optimize the social meta tags such as OpenGraph, Twitter Card tags, etc. You can find a great guide to this here.
Briefly, when you share appealing social media buttons on your site using correct tags and make easy for the readers to share it on different platforms, then there are more chances for your content to get more SEO engagement and social shares.
16. Unique, Educational Long-Form Content
Last but not least, the point relates to content length.
Many marketers believe that their super-lengthy paragraphs will attract thousands of visitors. To their surprise, they don’t even make to a few hundred people.
Everybody should understand that great content doesn’t usually equal to long, long content. It is not the length of your content that describes the quality but, the depth does. Make sure whenever you write, you cover the topic broadly but, it also varies for every industry.
Make sure that you always add valuable, unique, and educational content even if it is lengthy. If your content is of great quality and helps readers solve their problems, it’ll attract a huge number of people regardless of its length.
And, this is not necessary that you always publish the world’s best content. All you need to do is to share content that is better than others and helps the readers greatly.
Now think of yourself as a normal searcher who types a query and gets your content on the top of the results. According to you, does it deserve to be on that position or does it answer the search query to a greater extent?
If your answer to this question is yes, then it’s wonderful. But if you say no, you need to polish your content to such degree that it makes you say yes to the above-asked question.