On-page SEO Checklist for 2020 with [Action Tips] to Rank Website Fast
With this on-page SEO checklist, help your website rank higher, bring in more traffic, and convert more visitors!
SEO gives long term benefits to your website. But this happens only when you optimize your website properly. On-page seo is an essential part of the SEO process. To get a better performance of your website, you have to optimize each and every page of it.
Start optimizing your website with this checklist having Action Tips and see the difference in the website’s overall performance.
What is on-page SEO
On-page SEO is the process of optimizing the website elements so that it can rank in the search engines for the related queries and bring the traffic to the website. The on-page SEO refers to both content and source code of the web page that can be optimized.
Importance of on-page SEO
On-page SEO helps search engines to understand your website and its content. It also helps to search engines to know how relevant your website is for a particular search query.
When your web page is optimized properly it will rank higher in the SERP for related search queries in search engines. And this is the aim of on-page SEO.
Here are the checklist and action tips I have built for on-page optimization of the website!
On-page SEO Checklist 2020
- Optimize Page Title
- Optimize Headers with Focus Keywords
- Meta descriptions
- High-quality and Long page content
- Keyword Positioning(Keyword Prominence)
- Optimize Image
- SEO-Friendly URLs
- Internal Linking
- External Link
- Mobile Responsiveness
- Site Speed
- Secure Domain(HTTPS Site)
- Broken Links
- Social Sharing Button
1. Optimize Page Title
A page title or title tag is one of the most important elements of on-page SEO. The title tag tells search engine bots what they will find on the page. So to optimize the title tags of each page, include the focus keywords in the title. Make sure your titles are not stuffed with keywords.
- Keep the title tags under 65 characters for better results
- Do not stuff keywords unnecessarily
- Make sure title are relevant to the webpage content for better search
Action Tip: Front-load your keywords in the title. Google puts more emphasis on the words found at the beginning of the title tag. Example – On-Page SEO Checklist: Optimize Your Website to Rank Higher
2. Optimize Headers with Focus Keywords
The header is also known as heading tags. Heading tags help you to organize your webpage content. Optimize the headers with focus keywords or synonyms of the focus keywords. There are six heading tags H1, H2, H3, H4, H5, H6.
H1 tag is the most important heading tag. It helps search engine bots to understand what the content is all about.
Action Tip: Add focus keywords or synonyms in the H1 tag.
3. Meta Descriptions
Meta descriptions are not the ranking factor anymore but still, it is important to increase the click-through rate(CTR) of the page. A well crafted and compelling description makes visitors click on the URL.
If you do not write meta descriptions for your web pages then search engines automatically fetch description from the page content to fill the meta description space that sometimes is not good for the website.
So write an optimized meta description
- Keep the meta description under 165 characters
- Use the focus keywords at the beginning of the description.
- Write a compelling description with power words
- Avoid grammatical mistakes
Action Tip: Put your focus keywords at the beginning of the description.
4. High-quality and Long Page Content
Write high quality and engaging content to provide value to your audience. Before writing the content think about the buyer’s journey and the buyer’s persona. This will help you to write engaging content that can provide value.
Your content should be at least 1500-2000 words long. Several industry studies have shown that longer content ranks higher in search engines.
- Add focus keywords in the content whether its short or long tail
- Add relevant visuals content
- Create content that people can share
- People love those content which solves their problems, so focus on writing problem-solving content
- Add CTAs in content to optimize the conversion
- Don’t forget to add FAQs at the end of the content whenever possible
Action Tip: Write insightful, engaging content with proper CTA that can solve visitor’s problems.
5. Keyword Positioning or Keyword Prominence
Keywords are the phrases or queries that people use to search on Google. We collect them through various Keywords research tools like Google Keywords Planner, SEMrush, AHREFS etc. After finding the keywords the question arises on how to place them in the content.
So here the keyword prominence comes into the place!
Keyword prominence means how close your keyword is to the start of any section of the content or webpage. Google pays close attention to the position of the keywords on the webpage.
The earlier it appears in the content, the more important it would be for Google. So while writing the content one should place the focus keywords at the beginning of the content
Action Tip: Add your focus keyword in the first 100 words of your article.
6. Optimize Image
The search engine can’t understand the images. So we need to provide the alternative text so that it can understand what the image is all about.
To optimize your images provide alt-text. You can also provide title and action to the images.
- Give a descriptive name to the image file
- Add descriptive alt-text
- Add your keywords in the alt-text if possible
- Reduce the file size to an acceptable quality of the image
Action Tip: Add descriptive Alt-text to the image and try to add relevant keywords if possible.
7. SEO-Friendly URLs
URLs help the visitors and search engine bots to visit the specific page of the website. It also helps to build the website structure.
As we optimize the title and heading tags, we should also focus on the URL structure and optimize it properly.
- Keep the URLs short
- Add the focus keywords it the URL
- Avoid numbers in the URL
- Avoid hyphens and underscore in the URL
- Convert dynamic URLs into Static URLs wherever possible.
Action Tip: Keep the URLs short that includes the focus keywords.
8. Internal Linking
Internal linking is the hyperlinking of one page to another page on the same website. Internal linking helps visitors and search engine bots to visit one page to another easily.
It keeps visitors engaged with other relevant pages of the website thus reducing the bounce rate of the website. It also helps to crawl your website properly to index in the search engine database.
One of the best examples of internal linking is the Wikipedia page.
- Use Keywords to internal linking
- Link all the webpages of your website with internal linking
Action Tip: Always add at least 2-3 internal links in the content to link it to older articles.
9. External Links
When you create the content use the references from other authoritative sites in your industry that make your content insightful. Valuable external links help to improve the authority of your website, by providing a viewer with reference.
- Give the external link to a popular and trustworthy domain
- There should be content relevancy in source and destination page
- Use keywords in the anchor text for external linking
Action Tip: Always add at least 2-3 external links pointing to highly authoritative and popular sites.
10. Mobile Responsiveness
Google has stated that it would prefer to rank mobile responsive sites first over others. So you need to make sure your website is mobile responsive. To check it, use Google Mobile Friendly Testing Tool.
Action Tip: Ask your developer or agency to make your website mobile responsive.
11. Site Speed
User experience is the first thing Google cares about. Faster the website speed better the user experience.
You will lose a lot if your website loading speed is slow. Website speed is one of the most important factors that decide the website ranking, traffic and bounce rate of the website.
Faster the load time, higher the engagement and lower the bounce rate that results in higher ranking of the website!
Action Tip: Keep website load time under 3-4 seconds
12. Secure Domain (HTTPS Site)
Google has announced that it would rank those websites first which are secured. So move your website from HTTP domain to HTTPS domain. One of the main benefits of HTTPS is the security of the website.
You just need to purchase an SSL certificate and install it on the domain to make your HTTPS domain.
Action Tip: Install an SSL certificate and make your website secure.
13. Broken Links
Broken links are those links that don’t work. Some of the reasons behind broken links are: web page is deleted or moved to another place without being redirected, URLs are being changed, content(video, pdf etc) is either deleted or removed
Check for the broken links on the website. Broken links lead to the visitor and search engine bots to the 404 Error page and lead to the higher bounce rate of the website.
So it’s important to fix the broken links issue. To do so first you need to find out the broken link of your website. You can use screamingfrog or ahrefs broken link checker tools to check the boron link on your website and resolve all those.
14. Social Sharing Button
Make it easier for people to share your article. When people find something valuable then, they love to share it in their network or community.
So, add social sharing buttons to your blogs or articles. Social share buttons allow website visitors to share content easily on their social media channels and messaging apps.
This will help your website to get referral traffic from social media platforms that help in ranking.
Action Tip: Add a social sharing button at a prominent place like the top middle and bottom of the blog and article.
Neither it is first nor it is the last on-page SEO checklist. But with this checklist, you would definitely optimize your website. One thing you should keep in mind that optimization is a regular process. You should keep an eye on your website performance and optimize it accordingly.
I have included all the elements that should be optimized.
So how are you going to start optimizing your website?
Let me know in the comment box if I have missed anything!