On-Page SEO: Anatomy of a Perfectly Optimized Page (2016 Update)

When it comes to on-page SEO, I’m sure you’ve heard enough about meta tags and keyword density for one lifetime.

If you’re looking for some practical strategies that you can use on your site today, then you’ll love this infographic.

It’s a simple checklist that will bring in more search engine traffic from every piece of content that you publish:

Bonus: Download a free checklist that will show you how to quickly leverage these strategies. Includes 2 bonus on-page SEO techniques not found in this post.

on page seo infographic version 3

Here’s my take on the on-page SEO insights from the infographic:

1. Use SEO-Friendly URLs

Google has stated that the first 3-5 words in a URL are given more weight.

So make your URLs short and sweet.

And always include your target keyword in your URL.

In other words:

Avoid ugly URLs: backlinko.com/p=123
Or long URLs: backlinko.com/8/6/16/cat=SEO/on-page-seo-is-so-amazing-omg-its-the-best

Brian's Take
Brian's Take

Click “play” to see the tip:

 

2. Start Title With Keyword

Your title tag is the most important on-page SEO factor.

In general, the closer the keyword is to the beginning of the title tag, the more weight it has with search engines.

keyword in title tag
Brian's Take
Brian's Take

You don’t always need to start your title tag with your target keyword. But if there’s a keyword that you’re gunning for, try to put it towards the beginning of your title.

3. Add Modifiers To Your Title

Using modifiers like “2016”, “best”, “guide”, and “review” can help you rank for long tail versions of your target keyword.

Brian's Take
Brian's Take

Click “play” to see the tip:

 

4. Wrap Your Blog Post Title in an H1 Tag

The H1 tag is your “headline tag”. Most CMS’s (like WordPress) automatically add the H1 tag to your blog post title. If that’s the case, you’re all set.

But some themes override this setting. Check your site’s code to make sure your title gets the H1 love it deserves.

Brian's Take
Brian's Take

I used to assume that WordPress hooked up my post titles with H1 tags…until I actually looked at my site’s code.

Then I realized that WordPress themes sometimes use H1 tags to increase text size. As an example, my email opt-in area used to be wrapped in an H1 tag:

H1 Tag

It’s worth checking out your site’s code to make sure you only have one H1 tag per page. And that H1 tag should contain your target keyword.


5. Dazzle with Multimedia

Text can only take your content so far. Engaging images, videos and diagrams can reduce bounce rate and increase time on site: two critical user interaction ranking factors.

Brian's Take
Brian's Take

You probably notice that I use a lot of images, diagrams, and screenshots here at Backlinko.

image use in online content

That’s because I firmly believe that it makes my content straight up better.

But it has a nice SEO benefit to boot: multimedia helps you boost those user-interaction signals that Google has been paying more attention to.

And it increases the perceived value of your content –which means that people are more likely to link to it.

6. Wrap Subheadings in H2 Tags

Include your target keyword in at least once subheading…and wrap it in an H2 tag.

Brian's Take
Brian's Take

This definitely won’t make or break your on-page SEO efforts. But my tests have shown me that wrapping your target keyword in an H2 tag can make a dent.

Here’s an example of this strategy in action (target keyword=”SEO strategy”):

h2 tag example

7. Drop Keyword in First 100 Words

Your keyword should appear in the first 100-150 words of your article.

example of using keyword in first 100 words
Brian's Take
Brian's Take

This is something that you probably do naturally.

But a lot of people start their posts off with a long, meandering intro…and use their keyword for the first time MUCH later.

Instead, drop your keyword somewhere in the first 100 words or so. This helps Google understand what your page is all about.

8. Use Responsive Design

Google started penalizing mobile unfriendly sites in 2015. And they’re likely crack down even more in the future. If you want to make your site mobile-friendly, I recommend Responsive Design.

Brian's Take
Brian's Take

I’d be surprised if your site isn’t mobile-friendly yet. But if it isn’t, maybe the incentive of more search engine traffic will push you to take the leap.

And if you’re going to make your site mobile-friendly, I HIGHLY recommend responsive design. In my opinion, it’s ideal for user experience. Plus Google prefers it.


9. Use Outbound Links

This is an easy, white hat SEO strategy to get more traffic.

Outbound links to related pages helps Google figure out your page’s topic. It also shows Google that your page is a hub of quality info.

Brian's Take
Brian's Take

Not linking out might be the #1 on-page SEO mistake that I see people make. I try to use 2-4x outbound links per 1000 words. That’s a good rule of thumb for most sites.

Keep in mind that the sites you link out to reflect on you. So make sure to link out to authority sites whenever possible.

10. Use Internal Links

Internal linking is SO money. Use 2-3 in every post.

Brian's Take
Brian's Take

If you want to see a great example of how to internal link on your site, check out Wikipedia.

They add keyword-rich internal links to every entry:

wikipedia internal linking

Obviously, they can get away with 50+ internal links per page because they’re Wikipedia. I recommend a simpler (and safer) approach: link to 2-5 older posts whenever you publish a new one.

11. Boost Site Speed

Google has stated on the record that page loading speed is an SEO ranking signal. You can boost your site speed by using a CDN, compressing images, and switching to faster hosting.

Make sure your site doesn’t take more than 4 seconds to load: MunchWeb found that 75% of users wouldn’t re-visit a site that took longer than 4 seconds to load.

You can easily check your site’s loading speed using the excellent GTMetrix.com:

page loading speed report
Brian's Take
Brian's Take

CDNs and cache plugins are nice, but investing in premium hosting is the #1 thing you can do to make your site faster.

$5/month hosts are decent for the money you’re paying. But they don’t hook you up with serious speed.

I’ve literally dropped load times from 6 seconds to less than 2 seconds by switching from a $5 shared hosting plan to a top-notch host (I use Synthesis Hosting here at Backlinko).

From a conversion and SEO standpoint, the ROI of premium hosting can’t be beat.

12. Sprinkle LSI Keywords

LSI keywords are synonyms that Google uses to determine a page’s relevancy (and possibly quality). Sprinkle them into every post.

Brian's Take
Brian's Take

I don’t go nuts about LSI keywords because I usually write REALLY long content.

(Long content increases the odds that you’ll naturally use LSI keywords).

But if you want to make 100% sure that you’re using LSI keywords, search for your keyword in Google and scroll down to the “Searches Related to…” area at the bottom of the page:

searches related lsi keywords

Toss one or two of these into your post.

13. Image Optimization

Make sure at least one image file name includes your target keyword (for example, on_page_SEO.png) and that your target keyword is part of your image Alt Text.

image optimization
Brian's Take
Brian's Take

Another reason to optimize your images for SEO: it gives search engines another clue of what your page is about…which can help it rank in organic search.

When Google sees images with alt text “blue widgets” and “green widgets” it tells them: “this page is about widgets”.

14. Use Social Sharing Buttons

Social signals may not play a direct role in ranking your site. But social shares generate more eyeballs on your content.

And the more eyeballs you get, the more likely someone is to link to you. So don’t be shy about placing social sharing buttons prominently on your site.

In fact, a study by BrightEdge found that prominent social sharing buttons can increase social sharing by 700%.

Brian's Take
Brian's Take

Social signals aren’t an important part of the Google algorithm. But social shares on sites like Facebook, Twitter and Google+ may give you an indirect rankings boost.


15. Post Long Content

The SEO adage “length is strength” was supported by our industry study which found that longer content tends to rank significantly higher on Google’s first page.

02_Content Total Word Count_line

Aim for at least 1900 words for every piece of content that you publish.

Brian's Take
Brian's Take

As a rule, I make sure all of my articles have 1000+ words of meaty, useful content.

Longer content helps you rank better for your target keyword and brings in more long tail traffic…a win-win!


16. Boost Dwell Time

If someone hits their back button immediately after landing on a page, it tells Google in black-and-white: this is low quality page.

That’s why Google uses “dwell time” to size up your content’s quality. Increase your average dwell time by writing long, engaging content that keeps people reading.

Brian's Take
Brian's Take

Want to improve your dwell time (FAST)? Use the tactics from my SEO copywriting guide (especially bucket brigades):

examples of bucket brigades

Here are a few more important on-page SEO factors that I didn’t have room to include in the infographic:

Quality Content: I know that you’re sick and tired of hearing about “quality content”.

Even though search engines have no direct way of determining quality, they have plenty of indirect methods, such as:

  • Repeat visitors
  • Chrome bookmarks
  • Time on site
  • Dwell time
  • Google searches for your brand

In other words, great content definitely won’t hurt you. So there’s no reason NOT to publish awesome stuff every single time.

Encourage Blog Comments: I’ve long suspected that sites with lots of high-quality blog comments get a slight edge in Google’s search results.

That’s why I wasn’t surprised when Google said that having a thriving community on your site can help “a lot” with rankings:

google employee tweet

That’s why it’s smart to encourage people to comment on your blog posts.

Maximize Organic CTR: There’s no doubt in my mind that Google uses organic click-through-rate as a ranking signal.

And even if they don’t, you STILL want to optimize your Google listing for CTR.

(More clicks=more traffic)

This video will show you exactly how to do it:

Here’s How to Use These Techniques For Your Site

I made a free on-page SEO checklist for you that will help you put these strategies into action for your site.

It outlines — step-by-step — exactly how to use the techniques that I talked about in this post…including 2 strategies that I didn’t include in the infographic.

Here’s where you can download the checklist:

download the on-page-seo checklist pdf
      1. Hey Brian, I am currently busy with a blog consisting of 121 topics.

        My question is, can I upload pictures for every single topic, so 121 images?

        Also, if I use my main keyword in every image alt tag and title will that be overboard and will I then be penalized?

        Looking forward to your response 🙂

  1. This is fantastic! It is so true that on page SEO is vital to get right and great to see such an in depth look at it!

    1. You’re so right: it’s super important. Let me know how the tips from the infographic work out for you, James.

    1. Good, question Rameez. I think that keyword density plays a small role today, but it’s not as important as it used to be. I actually don’t measure it anymore: I just make sure that my keyword is in the title and the first 150 words.

      1. Hey Brian.

        I was going to ask the same question. From now one I won’t measure keyword density any more.

        I also want to thank you because I am achieving some results in my blog, santanderencanta.com, after applying the tips you share on backlinko

      2. I agree completely – don’t measure the density, but make sure you use the keywords early, and use variations of the keyword throughout the post.

        I always have a difficult time conveying to clients that they are not selling “it.” The product/service has a name – use the name instead.

  2. Great infographic! I have a question re: content length. Does your 1,000-1,500 word recommendation apply to site pages as well as blog posts? All the locally targeted keywords relevant to my site are highly competitive, and I’m trying to figure out how much content I should shoot for on each page. Thanks!

    1. Thanks Kate! Yes, longer content also helps site pages rank better. So it’s something I recommend doing for those competitive keywords that you’re gunning for.

      1. I’m curious about this, too. Doesn’t that run counter to the trend towards streamlined, uncluttered landing pages with few click-away choices? Do I need to build my site with some kind of mix of conversion-optimized pages and SEO optimized pages?

        1. Good question, Susan. It’s possible (with the help of a pro web designer) to incorporate all of the on-page SEO tips here and rock an uncluttered design. If you look at Backlinko, you’ll see that it’s pretty streamlined and SEO-friendly.

        2. A strategy that I use regularly with client websites is to build a landing page that is streamlined above-the-fold and just under the fold

          Then lower on the page add long-form text content to expand upon the service/product/idea. There’s no doubt that long-form content ranks better, is shared more often, and builds trust with the reader/potential client.

          I get just as many leads from people who found me via search and landed on my long-form content, as people who locally search for a service I provide.

    2. With my clients who have locally targeted websites, I encourage them to tell a story about the service/product they offer.

      Walk through the journey with the potential client/customer.

      When might they need the service?
      What happens when they contact you?
      What do you do?
      What should they expect after?

      This is a great method to turn a short/simple/boring service/product description into a robust page with strong SEO.

  3. This post is beautiful in its simplicity, Backlinko:)
    I’m a SEO amateur (but hopefully a quality-copy writer) and this info is really helpful to me. You’ve just given me a big job to go back over my blog and edit it with all of the ideas above. Thanks! Glad I found you.

    1. Thanks Dr. Naomi! I’m positive that implementing just a few of these strategies can make a significant difference in your organic traffic. Shoot me an email if you have any questions along the way 🙂

    1. Glad you found it useful, Martin. Get in touch if you have any questions about how to implement the on-page SEO strategies.

  4. Great article Brian.
    Funny thing is that long articles are great for ranking, but visitors tend to prefer shorter articles. The more tests I run, the more conflicts I find between what results in good rankings and what visitors want.
    Nevertheless, evergreen content will always be a good bet.
    Cheers,
    JC

    1. Glad to hear that you enjoyed it Jeff 😀

      I also think that some readers want short and sweet content. But there are always a good chunk of visitors that want a thorough, comprehensive guide. That’s why I like to write ultimate guides vs. traditional articles and blog posts: it
      lets me bang out 2000+ word pieces that satisfy people and search engines.

  5. First time here at backlinko.com and have added it to my feedly. Brian, I G+ shared your image, and concur you have covered some critical. My big takeaway is linking OUT. I need to find authority, relevant sites to link out to. Other than that, I’m pretty good on everything else.

    Mike

    1. Glad to hear that, Mike! I’ve noticed that linking out makes a difference very quickly. I’m sure it will give you a boost.

  6. Good article on what not to miss when it comes to on-page SEO, Brian. And we use HostGator but I’ll definitely have to look into using something faster like Storm. It may cost more, but I guess if you want to cover your bases when it comes to site speed, a better and faster host is the way to go. So thanks for the tip.

    1. Thanks David. Most higher-level hosts cost quite a bit more than HostGator and Bluehost. But I’ve found that they make an instant and significant difference in loading speed that more than makes up for it.

  7. Brian, This information is invaluable for anyone trying to increase back links and page weight for their site. Thank you for taking the time to be so thorough.

  8. Brian good article! But you said: “make sure you only have one H1 tag per page”.
    I would go even further, because ONE is for HTML4 and with HTML5 there can be a H1 tag in every semantic page part: heading, content, sidebar and footer because search-crawlers can understand the semantic and know which H1 is the most important and that’s on the content article part.

    1. Thanks for your comment, Emile. I didn’t know that about HTML5…good to know 🙂 I’ve added your insights to the post.

  9. Hi Brian,

    I came across with site, and I really enjoy your throughts on SEO is a step by step for anyone starting out in this area. Great work!!!

    Until next time.

    Tony

  10. Thanks for the nice looking infographic – sometimes you think you know a subject, but then realise something new by getting others perspective on it. With regard to linking out to authority sites, though, have you any indication on an ideal number range?

  11. Great Post Brian! Just one question. On point number 9. Use Outbound Links, you mentioned that adding outbound links to authority sites boosted the page’s rank in Google. Does these links needs to be DO FOLLOW or is also fine if we this outbound links are NO FOLLOW. In case they need to be DO FOLLOW aren’ t they going to send some link juice to other sites?
    Thanks!

    1. Thanks Eduardo. Good question: in my opinion you want them to be dofollow. Although you lose a little bit of link juice, you’re adding depth to your content and letting know your pages are hubs. That more than makes up for a little bit of lost PR.

  12. Hi Brian
    SEO is about ‘fixing’ your site to rank high using flavour of the month/year technics, which is not natural as you are trying to trick the engines to rank you higher. And if we are trying to provide what the customers want, why should we consider what the engines want?
    I would hope that folks will get fed up with Google and turn more the search engines that are less commercial and more customer originated. Presently it is all just a game we play to win and most likely the losers are the customers.

    1. Thanks for your insights, Andrew. I actually don’t see SEO as trying to trick the search engines. That’s how most people approach it, but it’s not the only approach that works. You’re right though: if we provide what customers want, search engine traffic (usually) follows.

  13. Great inforgraphic Brian.
    Keyword has always been a part of content if the content has been planned to market. Keeping in mind both, search engine and user – it has become more crucial for content writer and as well as search engine optimizer to find the queries that best suite the user need and follows the search engine guidelines.

    1. Thanks for your insights, Jitendra. You’re 110% right: content that appeals to users and search engines perform better than content that appeals to one or the other.

  14. How about over optimization? Won’t you trigger the OOP penalty if you optimize all your pages like you said? I mean…. how natural is for your keyword to be in the title, H1, alt tag, bold, italic…..etc ? Care to answer my question?

    1. Over-optimization is definitely something to be weary of. I’ve never been dinged for over-optimization and this on-page plan has worked really well for me. Also, I actually don’t recommend putting a keyword in bold or italics. Just sprinkling it in sensible places on your page to let Google know what your content is about.

  15. I like to keep all my links dofollow because it’s natural. Wikipedia is a special case, because if they didn’t nofollow their links, they’d get spammed to death.

  16. Maybe you should have mentioned IMAGES as a seperate, rather then bundle in #3??
    Users really love those! (We all heard in school: A picture is worth a thousand words, blah.. blah…)
    Also bots catalog ALT tags, filenames, titles and various other image associated data.
    For visually orientated websites a noticeable portion of the hits comes from image searches.
    In my experience user magnifies images on a ratio of 50-1 compared with playing a video or a soundbite.

    1. That’s true, George. But if you use a CDN and put your site on a fast server (not $5/month shared hosting), you can actually pack a ton of media on a page without slowing it down much. Even so, I rather delight the users who read the page than produce a mediocre page that loads quickly.

  17. Good comparison by the way,but talking about hosting,there is a new category called lite speed hosting,i am using this type of hosting.The page load speed is good compared to others.With this type of hosting you can eliminate using CDN.
    I have seen some site with less than 500 words indexed in first position in google,can you tell me how they made it?

    1. Thanks for the heads up about Speed Hosting. Hadn’t heard about that. There are 500 word articles ranking because content length
      is only one factor Google uses to rank pages. A page with 500 words and lots of quality links will outrank a 1200 word page
      without that many links. But content length definitely helps.

  18. Fantastic article! Well written, clear and to the point. We will make sure to share this useful information with our clients. Keep up the good work!

  19. Hey Brian,
    I seriously liked your post and its helpful too. I firstly read your SEO strategy: #1 Ranking With Guestographics, I really liked that too. I want to implement it. Can you please suggest me, how should a newbie starts using Guestographics? I really want to make my blog rank.
    Regards,
    Pulkit

    1. Glad you liked the post, Rakesh. Well, the first step is to create an awesome (or at least a very good) infographic. The strategy works best once you have that in hand 🙂

    1. Thanks Supriya.

      Good question. I think rich snippets are good for organic SERP CTR, but I haven’t seen them make any difference in rankings.

  20. Thanks for an in depth post Brian, you have talent, your posts are very easy to read and very informative.
    I have an on page seo question which has had many answers depending on the seo experts opinion.
    In the footer of our site’s should we be attributing our company name with a rel=”nofollow” link, next to our sites copyright link or not linking at all, and also a similar question for our clients sites for those of us who do web design, (Designed by: company name) should this be rel=”nofollow” as well and does this impact on our on page seo.
    Would love to know you’re thoughts on this.

    1. Thanks for your kind words, Chris. I don’t recommend linking back to your site in the footer (they’re already on your site, there’s no need for a link). Yes, I’d recommend nofollowing links from client’s sites. Because your clients will be from so many different industries, followed attribution links will get you a ton of links from unrelated sites, which can set you up for a penalty.

  21. Wow…what a post. So much helpful information and all for free. I will begin to implement your suggestions asap. I love it when I find a blog that gives it’s viewers what it wants and needs.

    1. Thanks Paul. I work hard to give people practical strategies they can use to get more traffic so it’s nice to hear that you got some value from this guide 🙂

  22. I am designing an SEO course for undergraduate students – using WordPress they are designing the site and applying SEO strategies (on page with some pff page). I would love to hear your thoughts on what would make a great beginner course in SEO and the things that MUST be covered and the things that woudl be nice and the things that as a beginner they don’t need to know. I am finding it is hard to find a good place to stop between beginner and intermediate. Feel free to contact me offline.

  23. Hi Brian

    Excellent post as usual, point 6 H1 tag, you touch on some lazy wordpress sites using the h1 for sizing, from experience (yours not mine) is having more than 1 h1 really a bad thing, the reason i ask that I was looking at the marketing niche and one of the sites that was really prominent for a few good keywords had multiple h1, i have been lead to believe this is not a good thing, do you have a preference for this.

    Paul

    1. I don’t think it’s a really bad thing, Paul. Multiple H1s aren’t ideal, but it’s not going to make or break your rankings.

  24. Thanks a lot, I was very impressed by your on-page SEO techniques. Really valuable information, I guess I’ll be applying these SEO strategies to better rank my websites

  25. Nowadays Meta tags and content are very important as it gives the short summary of website. You have very nicely explained it, thanks for providing this useful article.

    1. Good question, Nicol.

      The short answer: not really. Google’s paid and organic results are still keyword-based. The only difference is that — if you produce outstanding content — you can rank your well-optimized page for multiple keywords.

  26. Hey Brian,
    I run a small virtual assistant business here in Melbourne, Australia. I have heard how SEO can be a great way to drive visitors to my website and ultimately gain more clients. Hence I have spent hours researching and learning how I can capitalise on Google search. Thanks so much for this on-page graphic, it has helped me immensely. Now to put some of your other strategies in place! Thanks a mill.

    1. Hey Fleur, happy to help you with your company’s new SEO campaign. Let me know how the strategies in the inforgraphic work out for you 🙂

  27. Hey Brian – just came across this having seen it mentioned in your excellent “SEO That Works’ Program. This is now my new go-to resource for on-page SEO. Really nice, comprehensive job.

    Many thanks
    David G

    1. Hey David. Nice to hear from you and glad to hear that you’re enjoying the course 🙂

      I’m glad I covered on-page SEO here because it leaves more room in SEO That Works for advanced link building
      and content promotional strategies. In other words, the good stuff 🙂

  28. This is an almost perfect guide to creating an on-page SEO. I skimmed your checklist and they are reasonably precise and concise. However you did not mentioned about meta description. 2 Questions: Is it advisable to create a description that contain my keywords with original sentences? Would copying a few sentences from the first paragraph of my articles acceptable?

    1. Thanks Shaha. I didn’t include the meta description because Google doesn’t use that for SEO. That being said, a good description tag can help you stand out in Google’s search results.

  29. Thanks for your prompt reply,Brian. Your blog is simply fantastic. I did not know that meta description does not play a role in SEO. I would like to add, the current trend for a Google friendly site should be mobile-responsive too. Would you agree? Another personal question. Do you work for Google before? Or you own a Doctorate in majoring SEO?

  30. Hi Brian

    Is Google keyword planner a better tool to use than keyword spy? I see the results of the 2 tools do not always agree, not even close..

    Can you assist..

    Thanks for the awesome content!

    1. Thanks Wessel! Glad you liked it. Honestly, I’ve never used keyword spy. But I’d stick with the GKP because it’s info straight from the horse’s mouth.

  31. Brian, I didn’t see the Breadcrumb whereas Google said Breadcrumb is also an important things for On-Page SEO Optimize. So, it’s still important or Not? Thank you

      1. I believe they are talking about Google’s own handy guide about SEO. Its called Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide. Not linking to it since I’m not sure if you allow links in comments 🙂

        Great post btw and I’ll be coming back to this for my own projects.

  32. Thanks for sharing the infographic about On Page SEO. I always forgot to add related outbound link in articles, will surely remember this. Yoast SEO plugin too recommends that.

  33. Hi Brian. My issue is this. I’m getting a lot of “F” grades for certain keywords to my homepage using MOZ. the thing is I can’t add to many keywords to title tag without going over 65 characters. It seems the title tag is most important and even though i have keywords in content and everything else, without title tag keyword its useless. can creating more than one title tag help or will that make things worse?

    1. I definitely wouldn’t use more than 1 title tag, Robert. Actually, 65-70 characters is plenty because you only want to optimize your page around one keyword.

  34. Nice infographic Brian l love it! To help speed up page load time I use Gzip but I kinda find images lose a bit sharpness.

    How do you get high resolution images that tend to be big compressed without losing sharpness.

    can they really slow down loadtime if you use them in the high quality resoln they are?.I use wordpress

    1. Thanks James. I’ve been using smush.it. Tends to decrease the size without any loss of quality. But there’s only so much you can do
      without sacrificing image quality. It’s a balance 🙂

  35. As Penguin 3.0 looms, this article serves are a really good on-page SEO reminder. It’s a bummer that the lsikeywords.com has been out of commission for years. It was so much handier than Google’s ‘similar searches’.

    1. Thanks Mark. I can never read enough about on-page SEO. It’s a difference maker 🙂
      I also miss that tool.

  36. Hi Brian ,

    Great stuff indeed 🙂
    On Page optimization is the beginning of SEO efforts and sometimes on page optimization is all you need to do to start getting some organic traffic. What do you think Sir ?

    Thanks for this wonderful info graphic and article 🙂 I’ll be surfing around 🙂

  37. My goodness. Awesome tutorial. I would like to add in regards to finding LSI keywords. Just search your main keyword in Google and look at the bold words in the SERP itself. apart from the main keyword you might find another closely related words in bold format. Those are LSI words in the eyes of Google.

    1. My goodness. Awesome comment 🙂
      One of those “why didn’t I think of that?” really solid tips. Thanks Chadan!

  38. Pretty inclusive infographic. I would add mobile ready next to #7 “Nail loading speed”. Page optimized for mobile devices is a part of a user experience and also will affect ranking, May be not much at the moment but it will become more important factor in the future.

    1. Really good point, Alex. Mobile loading speed is super-important…and becoming more important everyday.

  39. First-time visitor Brian and really enjoyed your article. Simple, sensible & easy to understand. Couple of points here are new to me too which is always a bonus. And a great Infographic! Added to my SEO List on Twitter and will be circling you on G+.

  40. One of the best and most informative on page seo guide i’ve ever seen. Thanks for Sharing it Brian 🙂 I learned a lot from this one.

  41. Hey Brian,

    that graphic with the 12 on-page factors was extremely helpful. I just noticed that my blog didn’t have the title tag set to h1 but h3 by default.

    Keep up your good work!

  42. I am using a WordPress plugin called Related Youtube Videos. http://wordpress.org/plugins/related-youtube-videos/ This plugin adds as many youtube videos as I want on my page. I add one right at the top and one in the middle and one at the bottom. The plugin doesnt always find a video to show but when it does they are usually right on the money and add alot of quality to my page. Plus, my time on page goes up astononomically.

  43. There are many sites that talk about SEO on-page, but reading this infographic is awesome. I’ve shared this on my blog. Thanks Dean

  44. Hi Brian,

    In your infographic (n03.dazzle with multimedia), you say time on site and bounce rate are Google ranking factors.

    I would have to disagree as Google has always denied using analytics data as a way of ranking sites.

    This link involving Matt Cutts also supports this notion: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CgBw9tbAQhU

    I just wanted to ask where you got your sources from as it’s confusing when 1 site says otherwise?

    Other than that, an awesome page!! Thanks Brian 🙂

    1. Hey Alan. Actually, Google doesn’t need Analytics data to determine bounce rate and dwell time (at least for traffic that comes from Google). They can easily get that information from how people interact with search results.

  45. Thank you for the infographic, very useful. I’m a bit confused about H1 though cause so far I’ve thought h1 should be the title of the site (sometimes in WP sites it’s used at the top – when not replaced by the logo) while page/post titles should be H2.

    1. Thanks Ledio. Usually, you want H1 to be the same as the title tag on that page. But it can be different. Either way, make sure that it includes your keyword.

  46. Great post, great infographics. As a rookie in SEO world this one will surely help me a lot.
    Thanks Brian!
    [email protected]

  47. Very informative infographic on onpage SEO factors, Brian. All these points are very much valid. But i guess you missed the power of structured data or rich snippet markup. It could have been added into this list. Really enjoyed the infographic.

    1. Thanks Soumya. I personally haven’t seem structured data make much of any difference in rankings. If that changes, I’ll definitely add it 🙂

  48. I got some mistakes when optimize On-page for my blog. I found on Google “How to optimize On-Page for blog”, i got your article, after reading your tip, i hope i will fix this matter. Thank Brian.

    1. Hi Henk, meta descriptions and meta keywords don’t help with SEO anymore. I’d focus on the strategies from the infographic 🙂

    1. Jeremy, the can make a massive difference. I recommend long descriptions for all high-priority product and category pages.

  49. Do you think it would help to write really long product descriptions 1500 words for ecom sites? do you know of any test?

  50. Question for you, Brian–
    If I create an infographic and people embed it on their site, will that qualify as a backlink? Or is it better to include an introduction with a contextual backlink?

  51. Hi Brian,
    This is the very clear explanation, but I have some question about an Image format. Are the image format like jpg or png have some different effect in google rank ?.
    And how about the .webp image format which designed specially for web ? there is a rumor that the .webp image format is better and have good ranked on google.
    Thank you

  52. Stunning collection of tips and info – got you from Stuart`s nichehacks; been using plenty of them, but you woke me up to a ton more – so many thank you`s!!

  53. Hi Brian, since I visit your website, I could not stop reading all the posts. Vietnam and I was not able to read English, but luckily there is Google Translate and I can almost understand all of what you want to say. Infographic is perfect, I hope to see some new skills from your SEO. Thank you very much! Forgive me if there are mistakes in spelling or grammar.

  54. Brian – regarding bounce rate. There are a few WordPress plugins that trigger an event in GA when user was on site more than 30 seconds. This massively affects bounce rate.

    Would this alone not solve bounce rate issue in many cases? Or does Google discount this? I watched my bounce rate in GA tumble from 40% to 3% after this install.

    Really interested to hear your thoughts.

    1. Hey Adam, that plugin really just changes the definition of bounce rate. The idea is to get people to stick to your page and click around. The exact measurement doesn’t matter so much.

  55. Hi Brian,
    I have read many of your articles, but I have a question: how can I update keywords in a site where we don’t write articles? I mean we have good content, web structure, titles, meta descriptions, but I don’t know how often change the keywords in the pages… Do I have to “play” with the keywords every day?

  56. Great article, Brian!
    Just a question about the on-page SEO. I’m really wondering how Google sees a (WordPress) website that has a slider at the top of the homepage and the H1 title + first paragraph containing the keyword after the slider. The slider contains several image + short text div’s and a JS that makes one div visible at a moment. I wouldn’t want to remove it because it is very useful for the users but I’m concerned that it might affect the on-page SEO. Do you have any recommendations?

  57. Really good job Brian. You have explained each aspect in very proper way. Although, the infographic is a BONUS :). It was first time and I am glad to come over. Keep the good work up.

  58. Gday Brian, first off thanks for being the best and sharing it with the rest of us.
    Secondly, a question: When creating an ultimate guide that spills over multiple pages, does this hurt SEO/backlinking strategy? Would it be better to split the content up and produce several smaller guides that fit on one page? Would love to hear your thoughts, e.g. how you optimised your keyword guide. Cheers!

  59. Awesome infographic brian, I also follow your written article “Advanced guide of Link building” along with Neil Patel. You’re truly brilliant on On-page and white hat SEO world.

  60. Hi Brain, thanks for the awesome infographics, I have one doubt though! Do the outbond link to the authority sites be dofollow or nofollow? And i mostly point to wikipedia pages only! So does that hurt if not diverse in oubond linking?

    Best Regards

  61. If I try to share this on G+ with a comment, your sticky sidebar puts the submit button under my start bar, permanently, on my smaller monitor. If you could move the G+ option to the top, or move the whole bar up a bit, you might get a little more social spread.

  62. Thanks Brian! You share so much great information in such a gret way, it is much appreciated. How can I give something back to you? I will gladly link to your site or embed this infographic. How can I help you?

  63. Great article thank you! Just one thought – I believe that Google sees underscores as though there is no space between the words, so it’s better to use hyphens, or Google would read your image file name as ‘onpageseo.jpg’ ?

  64. I like how we’re both grabbing our LSI phrases in the same way Brian. You should definitely check out https://books.google.com/ngrams/ I use this for a couple of on-page tasks, but when you look at Google’s patents you’ll start to notice a pattern. So definitely check it out and utilize that alongside what you’re doing currently for LSI and you’ll be pleasantly surprised with the results if you do this across any of your sites!

  65. Fantastic stuff once again Brian!
    I have an ecommerce site with 30k + product pages…
    This may be a basic question to most (but that’s why I’m here…)… but how do I on-page all 30k pages with the correct meta optization etc?
    Thanks
    Z

  66. Hi,
    I read the whole article and I didn’t see keyword density! Once in title, once in 1st paragraph, one more time in conclusion or middle?
    how many times do you use a keyword in an article per say 750-1000 words?
    thanks

  67. I never comment on blogs, but I *had* to say thank you so much ! This is EXACTLY the kind of info I’ve been looking for, & I love how you get it across in a very easy to understand manner 🙂 I’ve already started making some of these changes to my site, so excited about this…

  68. Hi Brian,
    I’m a beginner in SEO, so this article is very very helpful to me. I also change a lot of things for my site.
    Thank you so much. I love your site.

  69. Your articles and insights have literally changed my whole approach to SEO. As a relative newbie in SEO, you’re a great help!

  70. I just love this post and the checklist it’s just brilliant! I like this blog because of the quantity of quality articles, every time i read something i learn something new…just keep up the good work!

  71. Hi Brian,
    How do you see for the Title Tag with year-specific something like ‘Best in 2015’? I mean, while it works for 2015, when 2016 comes, I would like to alter it to 2016 – of course with the ongoing efforts to update the post from time to time to make sure it always stays relevant.

    But, how changing title tag will affect SEO in this case?

  72. The infographic alone was insightful, but I was blown away with your write-up afterwards!

    It’s easy to make a quick checklist, but you went the extra mile by sharing your insights and personal experience with each on-page element.

  73. Is one of the best structure for a success SEO web page. Great job Brian! All the tips are great and for me all you’ve show us is really working!! Thanks.

  74. Hi Brian,
    Thanks for the article, it has been very helpful.
    I recently took on a new client that needs SEO from the ground up.
    Do all of your points outlined in this best practices article apply to the homepage as well?
    Specifically, the keywords in the first 100 words of content AND the title tag optimization suggestion?

    Any help is most appreciated.
    Thanks Brian!

  75. As always very helpful info-graphic. Well explained. Brian, I have a question, what will be the possibility of getting higher rank in SERP’s for a tutorial page which only contains info-graphic image and no other content(text). What I think, is that, instead of writing a long content, explaining about all the steps, which will also take more time to follow, we can explain the same thing, using info graphics in a easy way and help our visitors to get the solution instantly in less time. For example, If I’m explaining about : how to create Facebook page for your website/business. So my question is : A page which only contains info graphic image, will be able to rank high in SERP’s? As I’m delivering exactly what my visitors are looking for and it will guide them in a easy way. Or it will be like now, I’m serving to only humans and not to Google crawlers?

  76. Great content. I put the external links to be opened in a new window so the user avoids leaving the site. It is important to pay attention to this detail. Hug

  77. Brian, I really love the infographic.I will keep all these points in mind. It’s my beginning phase in the blogging world. Every day is a new day. Thanks for your meaty, useful content.
    I know I am asking too much from your side. But, I invite you to my page. My niche is completely different, from yours.
    Looking forward to your future posts.

  78. Brian – fantastic infographic! This is proving very useful for my clients. One quick question for ya – does the page length (list item 10) include menu/wrapper content?

    Thanks for your help!
    Steve-O

  79. I’m new to blogging and didn’t really know some of these on page SEO tips before going through this article.
    Thanks for this excellent infographic.

  80. I’ve found that embedding a video into the page (around the 2nd or 3rd paragraph) does wonders for improving bounce rate and time on website. 🙂

    1. Nice Jon! I haven’t tested that but it makes sense that a video would keep people on the page longer.

  81. Very nice Brian. This info-graphic helps me a lot to rank my clients sites. You are really a superstar for newbies like me. Thank you again

  82. I have a question about keywords. Is my keyword always the same or does it vary depending on what my blog post Is about? Like for my website my keywords are columbus ohio birth photographer. So would that still be my keyword for a blog post about a lifestyle session or even a blog post about my personal photography projects?

  83. Hey Brian,
    Great stuff again which helps people a LOT in creating awesome articles. (Helped me too.)
    I’ve read this article at the time you published but did not got time to leave out a comment here. (And finally landed here again after a long time again).
    Thanks for that infographic, really works out of the box 🙂
    A little of-topic question (I hope you don’t mind): How did you bring that ?wide=1 on clicking that image?
    I’ve started making infographics reading your guestographics guide (that was awesome too) but want something like this (?wide=1, full width and height infographic) on clicking the infographic, so can you please tell me how did you do that?
    Another one: What SEO plugin do you recommend to you? Yoast or All-in-one (I’ve read almost all the articles that compare these 2 plugins)

  84. This is a great article Brian, Can on page SEO get you sandboxed it has around 30 areas written at the bottom of the page i cant access the site as the client has no login for the website. What filter would course a site not to rank with no bad links or over over optimised pages. Need help cant work it out

  85. Hi Brian, Thank you for your very informative post. I’ve been wondering how I should go about my on-page SEO. It’s very confusing how a lot of people give their “tips” or “how-to” ideas out. Some say you should have a certain number of words for it to work and these and that. So thank you, it’s clearer this way.

  86. Hi Brian – where else do we get quality information than on backlinko.com? I used this infographic yesterday to explain to a client what needs to be done to get his website properly indexed.

  87. Hey Brian

    I have one question. With a most recent Phantom update and your infographic 10th point, how important is the length of a content. Because we rank mostly client sites that are business websites and some are even ecommerce sites and at times not possible to write 1000 words or not even 500 words. How do we go about it?

    I understand from Phantom update that it is more inclined to usability than quality and length content but this makes me quite confused. Could you please clarify this.

  88. Hi Brian
    I spent a whole lot of today on your site and the information is really terrific. Thanks so much! You give lots of really smart, useful tips here and I’m grateful. Of course, now I need to put the actual work in, but it’s great stuff! 🙂

    A question or two, if I may: what do you think about using keywords/tags multiple times, ie: especially for images? Does using one keyword too frequently (either within one blog post or among several posts) cause a problem? Or does it just makes qualifiers and LSI words more important?

    Also, what about using punctuation (especially commas or colons) in tags/keywords (ie: in image tags)? Does that cause any problems, for some reason?

    Thanks! Keep up the awesome work!

  89. Love this post. After each website we’ve done we added a few things on our list, but never gone this thorough:)

    I do have one question – why the double opt-in? If you want to download the infographic, that is. It turned me only a bit when I found the download is a form, but I didn’t mind it – the double opt-in made my journey just a bit more messy, I still had enough interest to go through it all, but it did turn me off just a bit.

    I know there’s a lot of talk single vs. double, and I’m a firm believer there’s no single answer. But in your case, if you’re worried about a list filled with spam or not interested parties, you can always cleanse it based on the ones that actually opened the email with the infographic link in it.

  90. Point 9 social sharing buttons we have to be careful though, if we’re using WordPress, some social sharing plugins will lag the site down.. It’s impact on SEO is actually indirect also, and not direct.

  91. I am impressed with the simplicity of the presentation in a way where a reader can easily understand what you are talking about. It was a good read for me. I was hoping I could find better ways to do on-page seo and I found a lot. Thanks.

  92. I’m still learning about all of this but I launched my website at the beginning of the year because it was a personal goal and share it only with 4 social sites. Yet iv e been getting a lot of attention from it. I know 100+ views isn’t a lot but considering that I hardly have time to post due to designing new products right now I feel its great. After all that said, how do you know what is right and what is outdated? I read things that contradict others and find things that I’ve discovered my templete has errors but it sounds like its from the author and I’m afraid to change them.
    Also I just bought my domain and haven’t got a hosted service my loading time isn’t bad I optimize, redo the name, and watermark my pictures. I know u have a lot to improve and now that I’m catching up I’ll try harder. I’d been featured, invited to share ideas, and referred from top bloggers to see my blog. So am I doing pretty good for as little as I do?
    Sorry so long
    Michelle

  93. Great graphic and info – I was searching for a specific reason – we have an ecommerce company and they have (imo) overly long, keyword stuffed descriptions of a category which pushes the product images down. To me its blatant keyword stuffing, but not sure it it helps the customer or not. Would this be the LSI content equivalent (an ecommerce category description vs. content for an article, say) or should something like that be more concise and not so keyword stuffed? I’d really love to hear people’s thoughts on that. Thanks for the info graphic, I’ve bookmarked it.

    1. Bryant, that’s strange. I’d see if the URL was a .pdf file. If so, you might want to open the URL in another browser.

  94. Hi Brain,

    First, you are right on-target with these on-page optimization methods, in perfect order too. Unfortunately, what seems so simple and fundamental to implement is so widely neglected. But I guess it keeps SEO web design experts like us in business:)

    Secondly, so many website owners will overlook the most crucial on-page points but stress about things like page load times. While page load time is important, most sites with good link profiles can fix or increase their ranks simply by properly optimizing their URL’s and Title tags. Everything else should come after (in regards to established sites).

    I’m interested to hear from others about what they feel are on-page priorities?

    1. You’re welcome, Mark. On-page SEO is only one part of SEO. An SEO company can help with the other pieces (like keyword research and link building).

  95. Hi Brian!

    one question I am not able to find an asnwer online:

    – what’s the suggested time to wait in between the 1st on-page optimization and the 2nd?

    – how long should I wait minimum to re-optimize my home page title?

    Thanks in advance.
    Nico

  96. Hi Brian,
    I really loved your article I noticed a lot of keywords that I look up and see your website always on the top of Google. I was wondering where do you get your images from? Do you get the custom made and where?
    Thanks, A.J. Rodriguez

  97. Brilliant list, thank you Brian! I found out that the most important factors are the permalink structure, the proper use of headings and the speed. All brought great results.

  98. Brian,
    You make SEO so easy. I learn something new each post and there is always an actionable task I can do right away to make my site better.
    Thanks!

    1. You’re welcome, Todd. SEO is still hard work. But it’s not as hard as some “experts” make it out to be.

  99. The H1 tag missing was an interesting revelation since I was getting conflicting information with some saying WordPress used the title as the H1. My Theme doesn’t so I was about 10 post into it before I realized, oh, no H1.

    A couple of questions if I may. If your using a SEO pluggin, like in my case and apparently 1.7 million others, SEO all in One and it is managing original sitemaps you submitted to Bing and Google, with automatic updates, is it necessary to make new sitemaps and resubmit these new ones to Google and Bing, or is the update pinging taking care of it?

    Is it worth it to use more then one Ping service that is supposed to cover a bunch of them, like Pingomatic?

    My Theme is automatically placing Pages at the top in the Home line area, and I notice most people seem to run on menus in that area. Should I switch? Any advantage over have a menu system?

    Also, when I submit a sitemap, I see, 197 urls submitted. Which would be great if I actually had 197 pages and post. The site is only two months old, so there is a bit over 25 maybe. I look on Google and what do I see under my website, but it has indexed a whole load of images and category links. Is that just normal to do that and not effecting the ranking of the actual post and pages?

  100. Brian, what is your opinion of paying for social links, likes etc. I’m having trouble getting much in these areas so I am tempted to give it a go.
    Nicely done article by the way, I use all the techniques mentioned but still not ranking that well. I use long-tail keywords but they have zero searches for them in adwords yet, apart from one or two I can’t get on the first page, I’m mystified.

  101. Great article, really helpful! Do you consider there’s a limit regarding the number of times you can use a keyword for an article to avoid overoptimization penalties?

  102. Hello Brian

    Great post for sure. You talk about writing engaging quality content. Do you have any recommendations on where to read about this in order to improve your skills in this?

    Thanks in advance and have a great day

    Best wishes
    Jesper

  103. Brian Thank you – this is genius in it’s simplicity and it’s detailed content all at the same time.
    I tried using the embed code to put it onto my website but for some reason my theme is saying the code is incomplete. Would you mind if I actually uploaded the image and linked back to the article?

  104. Hello Brian,

    This is really really nice.

    One of the Best “On-Page SEO Best Practices” post I have ever seen.

    I am facing Technical SEO problems for my site. Can you please give me a post regarding Technical SEO?

    Thank You

  105. I struggle with getting the right keywords so I can then optimise them for each page. Apart from this, Brian you have cleared up a few other points and offered some very good advice. Regards, Nick

  106. As usual, the most helpful guide out there, thanks Brian,
    I have a question for you concerning about your optin page for this checklist download, how do you set it up for people who are already subscribed to you, doesn’t it get messed up and people end up being subscribed twice to you when they download that checklist above?

  107. Great work Brian. Really hooked me, in fact I have just missied my gym night as I couldn’t tear myself away. No gym tomorrow either as I start the implementation.

  108. Brilliant infographic – saving this to reference before pressing publish on every post from now on – so many tiny easy elements that can make such a difference!

  109. Hi Brian,
    Thanks for a great article.
    Do you have any tips on how best to use tags on a blog post (not H1/H2 tags) in conjunction with the categories and do these make much of a difference to SEO?

  110. Thanks Brian for this very informative article. I was researching on ways to drive traffic to my website and although this piece was published last year its still very practical in 2016.
    One thing to note however is the link on first point apparently talking about what Matt Cutts head of spam at google said about the first 3-5 words on stephanspenser.com. That link leads to a spam website. My avast antivirus has listed it as dangerous. How coincidental is that about a post quoting head of spam at google and the link itself is spam.
    Thought you should rectify that or replace it with another one.

  111. Great piece and definitely lots to work with. I have to disagree with your personal experience with Traffic from images as I really think it depends on what you’re offering on your site. We sell diamond jewelry and engagement rings so we get some great traffic from image search particularly.

  112. This is exactly what I am looking for me and my assistant. Thanks a lot for this awesome article. This is what we all know, but the explanation make some important clear to me. I will definitely going to implement this in my next project……..Thanks again!!

  113. First of all I’d like to say I just joined and I can’t leave your site — so much to learn! I tried to download the above-mentioned pdf of the SEO checklist and got the following error message:

    NoScript filtered a potential cross-site scripting (XSS) attempt from [https://my.leadpages.net].

    Secure Connection Failed

    The connection to the server was reset while the page was loading.

    The page you are trying to view cannot be shown because the authenticity of the received data could not be verified.
    Please contact the web site owners to inform them of this problem.

    So I am.

  114. You have a new huge fan & regular reader!

    Just a few questions:

    –I’m not a coding person. But when I click on tools in G, a screen opens that shows my site coding. Problem is, I think the page showing is a photo blog post type intro header (sorry I’m forgetting what I mean, basically a slider with only one entry). So the H1 for the page doesn’t show there. Or maybe I’m looking in the wrong place. Can you give the exact steps for looking at the code on any site? I might be doing that part wrong.

    –do you recommend redirects (which would slow that page load speed, I’m thinking) if seo titles of older posts aren’t ideal?

    –are you still using synthesis? do you have any thoughts on siteground as a host?

    –does whether people actually click on outbound links impact ranking, other than bounce rate? What about their bounce rate on the site to which you are linking? The reason I ask is if I link out to a high authority site, but the content really isn’t all that interesting, people might bounce away. Does that hurt?

    –do you ever link out to a direct or indirect competitor that has very useful, great content?

    –for local ranking, do we need city / state on every page & post of the site? Would love to see one of these posts for local!!!!!

    –please open up course registration again soon!! 🙂

    Thanks very much!
    Tina

  115. Fantastic Brian ! I’m a freelancer and want to improve my seo skills. You made the things light and easy to understand for the newbies like me and I really appreciate your knowledge and support through this blog. Thanks

  116. Brian, I only discovered your blog recently and it has become ‘the’ blog I check when I need seo advice! Thank you very much for such in-depth articles. You have inspired me to start a couple of projects using only the techniques you shared!!

  117. Excellent tips, Brian. It is something that we have tried to engage with my peers. However we remained concerned with the result of GTMetrix. How can we decrease the size of the site and the number of requests? Best regards.

  118. Wow, you even listed your “competitors” in the resources.

    This makes me believe you don’t even sweat the competition.

    Great info, thanks!

  119. Here’s a question: if you could choose longer content on a page, or breaking it into several more specific optimized pages, what would you choose?

  120. Nice article, Brian!

    I just have one question… Is there any problem if I use my main keywork in the post title and the exactly same keyword in any H2?

    Is it good, bad or doesn’t make any difference?

    Thanks!

  121. Thanks for the great information. I will implement this into all of my future posts. You explain the information in a very clear and understandable manner which helps a lot!

  122. Killer Headline and sure a very good read – Got me within the first seconds.

    Already signed up for the newsletter – Always a nice one when your newsletter hits my inbox!

  123. Excellent article Brian,

    This weekend I came across a Facebook post about the importance of using schema markup for SEO – is this something that you suggest for SEO or is it a waste of time? Or is it only important for local business websites?

  124. Hey Brain
    Thanks for the great content and infographic. What do you think about using an embed code so others can share a infographic on their site. Is that a good idea? Or do you think search engines will frown upon it.

    1. You’re welcome, Harris. I think it’s a good idea. In fact, I used to have an embed code but want people to focus on the content for now.

  125. Awesome. I’m so happy with your post.

    But I’ve a question for you.

    I’ve just started my blog but it’s not as mobile friendly as yours.

    I’m using a Responsive Theme.

    Please give me some suggestions on how can I overcome the issue.

    Thanks in advance.

    Keep helping. 🙂

  126. Thanks! I’ve been looking to review my older posts with a goal of improving them. This gives me an outline on what to improve upon.

  127. Hey Brain, I disagree with the point that longer content tends to rank higher in SERP’s. To support my view I am citing a single example

    If we Google seo ranking factors … it will show search engine land post in #3 (its a post with less than 300 words) and yours in #4 ( you have much more content though) …..

    https://www.google.com/?gfe_rd=cr&ei=eitDV7r9EMiL8QfAiprYCQ&gws_rd=cr&fg=1#q=seo+ranking+factors

    May be the brand name and dwelling time comes into play in this case or what?

    1. Hi Mark, keep in mind that Google uses 200 ranking factors. Longer content is just one of them (assuming it’s a direct ranking factor at all). That means that shorter content will outrank longer content due to those other 199 factors.

  128. Just watching your video about ctr magnet method, Thank you!
    I never think about it and now it give me some ideas to run on my blog..

    Great video Bryan 😀

  129. Hi Brian, I always look out for your new content, The main reason is you actually spend time talking and communicating with your audience. Something a lot of others don’t seem particularly bothered to do.
    Kudos to you for that.

    1. Thanks Lloyd. I hear you on that: I’m not sure what could be more valuable than communicating with readers and customers.

  130. I recently learned that we shouldn’t use H1 headers in the body of a post, because our title is already H1 and we can be dinged for continuing to use it.

    Of course, I learn this after two years of using H1 headers throughout my posts.

    I did more homework and found that people disagree on this “rule.” What are your thoughts? Should we stick to one H1 header (which I see you did above)? And will we be dinged if we go H1-crazy as I did?

    Thanks!

  131. Posted today and you already have almost 500 comments, that is impressive… thanks for writing, I found this surprisingly useful.

    1. Hey Melanie, this is actually an updated version of an older post. So many of the comments are from back then.

  132. Excellent article Brian,

    The most valuable article I read today. These days, most people says, SEO is dead, but I believe, SEO is the pillar of any online business and never gonaa die.

    Thanks for the checklist.. 🙂

  133. Pretty good post/infographic – though, I do have a question – Why did you include Wikipedia and CNN as examples of good outbund links to add to a blog post?

    Aren’t those actually some of the LEAST effective in regards to boosting your posts SEO? In fact, Google’s John Mueller was recently asked about outbound links and how it relates to the perceived quality of the blog post (http://www.thesempost.com/google-how-links-to-other-pages-influences-quality-of-the-page/) – he mocks Wikipedia and CNN links by name.

    My recommendation – find and link to other relevant content within your industry, instead of an “encyclopedia” website or a general news website.

    1. Travis, I actually just used those as “top of mind” examples that people can relate to no matter what niche they’re in. You’re 100% right: you should look to link to authoritative content in your industry…not a list of mega sites.

  134. I can confirm the part with comments.
    Not only that you will look better for Google but also you will get some nice long tail traffic from them.

  135. Hi Brian, great article as usual and very useful facts backed with your take…
    As for, H1 for blog title, I see that generally wordpress themes comes with H1 for site title and page/post title both. My query is which is better: make changes to remove H1 for site title in such themes or choose a theme which comes with single H1 for post title?

  136. Brian I think I learned just as much from your responses in the comments as I learned in the post.???????? Thanks so much! As always, excellent content, enjoyable to read and easy to implement. Win Win Win!

  137. Great post-Brian, I saved your earlier version, but I’ll be using this updated version now!

    I’ve just finished a post, but it’s short of the 1900 words so I reckon I’ll have to increase it more, but I’ll certainly be incorporating bucket brigades from​ now on!

    Cheers, Stephen

  138. Great post Brian,

    Would it improve the overall SEO on a site at all by getting rid of old posts that don’t rank well and focus more on optimizing a smaller number of SEO quality posts?

  139. Hi Brian,

    Thanks for sharing such a wonderful article with us.
    Is it necessary to use alt tag like (on_page_SEO) for an image? Can we also use alt tags without (-) or not.

  140. I would like to share my insight on second point that is “Start Title With Keyword”. It doesn’t only help search engines to rank your website, it yields better CTR. We all know that after few number of characters(60 to 70, depends on the characters used because Google uses pixel to count that), whatever comes next will be truncated. So to avoid this, better to start title with keyword. User who looks for his search query in the title of resulting links will also be satisfied, therefore higher CTR.

    1. Good point there. People do pay more attention to the first (and last) 3 words of a title. So it makes sense to put the keyword front-and-center
      (after all, that’s what they just searched for!).

  141. Amazing article as always Brian and I like it’s reflecting the latest trends that Google pays attention to – this changes all the time so it’s good to know what works right now! Thanks.

  142. I am adding something about LSI keywords
    1–put your keyword in GKP and hit “show only related keywords” and search pull out the keywords that have one more word added to your search keyword
    its helps Google finding more relevancy and natural ranking of keywords

  143. Hi Brian, great article love it, but i have 1 question regarding URL structure :
    I am create new URL’S structure for my eCommerce sites with HTTPS, and it’s every new URL’S same like breadcrumb, so my concern is google will consider this for ranking? or getting any penalty chance..?

    Share your views on it..

    Thanks,
    Haresh

  144. Thanks, Brian!
    As always: Your insights are brilliant. I’m a web content writer for numerous sites, and as such, I’m always looking for innovative new ways to boost SEO.
    Keep up the great work.
    You are a guru!

  145. Epic post, as usual, Brian!
    I wasn’t really using Google related search for LSI keywords, I’ll do it from today on. Thanks for the great tip.

  146. Hey Brian, another wonderfully informative post, I absolutely love the quality of your blog, keep it up.

  147. Hi Brian,

    I started my digital marketing job a little over 6 months ago. Back then, our site was not even listed on Alexa. So, we were virtually non-existent on the online front. I bumped into your article on how to get 25000 unique visitors per month and I decided to try the tips out. Cutting the long story short, we have improved in our ranking immensely after I followed your tips. Granted, we are not where we’d wish to be, but this is a great start.

    I will follow the tips on this one and give you feedback on how my most recent post is performing. Thank you for sharing this.

  148. Your content is always amazing, Brian Sir !

    Can you write an article more indeep about Internal Linking Strategy for an Affiliate Marketing site ?

    Thank you so much. Best wishes for you 🙂

  149. Hi Brian,

    Another priceless piece of info from you, thank you!

    Just one thing i wanted to comment… When you talk about image file names, it’s better to use hyphens instead of underscores. So instead of on_page_SEO.png , should be on-page-SEO.png . Because SE’s see the underscored combination of words as a single word, in this case ” onpageSEO ” . And you need ” on page SEO “. It’s the same as in URL’s, you use backlinko.com/on-page-seo and never backlinko.com/on_page_seo .

    Regards

    1. You’re welcome, Leo. I’ve seen that said but haven’t seen a source. Do you have something from Google on how they look at it?

  150. Hi Brian, quick question – did Google started to treat underscores as word separators in images or you use them because of habbit?

    1. Stjepan, I’m not sure there’s an official word from Google on that. I honestly don’t think it matters much. Google is smart 🙂

  151. Hi Brian,

    Thank you for the awesome tips! I really liked the tip about just using one keyword in the URL. One question about this though: What if I have multiple articles about the same topic with the main keyword? How would you handle this? Just add another modifier?

  152. Amazing post Brian !!

    It covers all the aspects of on-page required for website optimization.
    Especially the 15th point about the post long content. It’s true “length is strength”

    Thanks for this updated post 🙂

  153. I have followed Brian’s principles (where applicable) and my website is ranked quite high under the most frequently searched keywords in a very competitive market, selling real estate in Fort Lauderdale

  154. Excellent! Thanx very much.
    I learn something every time I read your posts

    I’m going to add modifiers, and POWER words

  155. Hi Brian,
    Thanks for the great post, I’ve learnt a lot here and try to put your instructions into practice for long, much appreciated !
    I got a question, for B2B product site ranking, do you have any good suggestions ?
    Thanks for your valuable time!
    Have a great day !

  156. Hello Brian okay ? I already follow your blog while I am an administrator of a group of SEO Facebook and always put some of their tips there.

    I would like to take a course too ..

    You custuma use other heading tags h3 , h4 , h5 and h6 or just the h1 and h2 even …

  157. Perfect Infographic .
    Thanks for this updated post Brian. Your post covers almost everything about onpage SEO. Now I will definitely use LSI keyword in my blog post, I am totally unaware of this point before reading your article. Thanks for this awesome tip I hope it will really helpful for improving my posts performance.

  158. I read that you recommend only one tag per page.
    I noticed that my site has both a “Site Title” and “Entry Title” tag on each page: Website Name and Page/Post title. Is the harmful in your opinion?
    I’m using WordPress with a customized Genesis theme.

  159. Hi Brian,
    Your above mentioned strategies were very helpful for me, thanks a ton for such a great article. I had recently started working with an B2B portal, so there is no such place for posts or articles to fill with, site contains product categories, sellers, buyers and all that stuff. So, i want to rank this website for any long tail keyword, as there is no such written article on my website, i can’t use any keyword. Please tell me some tips for that.
    thanks

  160. Question after all that! whew! a looong post but very good. My question is: Does every page need to be optimized on the site? Im wanting to organize my funnel pages under a page in WordPress like F1-Beginner Secrets to Success.. The place pages under this one so I know where the funnel related pages are. Do I need to optimize this organizing page? Do I get dinged for setting up my site this way? Thanks man!

    1. Ed, it’s up to you. If you want the page to rank it’s probably worth optimizing it at least a little bit.

  161. Hi Brian,
    ive been using many of your tips since 3 months. My visits doubled last week. I won in google 2 positions. And i think it is related to on seo page. But I am still suffering from black hat backlinks and guys who are copying all of my exclusive content And are still in top position since more than 2 years. I hope to read something in backlinko to know how to beat them with a correct strategy.
    THanks Again Brian

    1. You’re welcome, Cassidi. That can be frustrating. But if you continue with white hat strategies you’ll win at the end.

  162. I have a problem where I need to structure my website using child posts where it adds the url of the parent post before the url for the child so they are very very long.

    I’ve read that only the first so many characters are taken into consideration but I wonder how could this not be a really good way to structure my website if there is a feature that makes urls end up being so long. Why wouldn’t this feature existing mean that the internet’s mechanisms for decision making include my super long “also super awesome” urls for my posts?

    Thanks Brian Dean.
    I love that you do video content too by the way. It inspires me.

  163. Amazing amount of comments! Just scrolling down the page to post a thank you will keep readers on the page for an extra 10 seconds or so! Congrats on your success Brian.

  164. Great info for your readers and alot more. Thanks for the Seo tips Brian. You never can learn enough. Page loading time tool is awesome. You have a lot of good stuff here so I have bookmarked your site so I can come back and soak up some more.

  165. The most complete seo on page checklist I found so far. Already applied some on my site and I can confirm it’s work. Also found some new techniques that I found here, I will try it later 🙂

  166. I have been online for the past two years and indeed i have never seen help on SEO like this, my previous site was terribly hit by Google update and even with all my backlinks built from forum comments and comments on blogpost, my site still didnt rank well on Google, i actually thought it was a hidden manual spam action so i decided to move out of the domain, with all your guides including the unique post on the 17 untapped backlink sources i am sure to get good backlinks, though the few mails i sent have not been replied but i am sure it would come by. and considering Getting a back-link from you wouldn’t hurt in itself as i just started a new blog. you could consider it an assistant. lol it would be wonderful to have an awesome site like yours linked to my music blog

    Keep up the great works

    1. I’d suspect if all the backlinks to a site come from blog comments and forum comments that you wouldn’t rank well because those are all low quality links.

  167. Nice post Brian. I was wondering a few things on this topic:

    1. What’s your thoughts on using the default theme/wordpress comments system on posts you want to rank. Since they add overall text to the page when someone comments, can’t they throw off rankings if people mention the main keyword too often? This is why I was thinking of using Disqus on a new site, though, I prefer the level of control with the default system.

    2. In your SERP analyzing, have you noticed that long keywords (3+ words) seem to rank worse when the exact keyword is used in both page/serp title and url regardless of article body keyword density?
    I’ve started to notice this as of 2016 only.

    A hypothetical example of this is, say, the keyword “how to rank for any keyword” ranking better initially (pre-backlinks) when that exact phrase is used in the title and with a partial of that keyword in the url, rather than the exact keyword in url as well (ex: “/rank-for-any-keyword” — omitting the “how to”).

    Noticed this on a new site when, regardless of other on-page factors being manipulated, the page just remains buried in google. Yet only partial match urls blanket the front page.

    Just wanted an experts opinion 🙂

    1. Cheers, John.

      1. I don’t think Google uses the content in the comments as an on-page SEO signal. Or if they do it’s a very small one.
      2. I haven’t noticed that change actually.

  168. Hi Brian,

    Great info! Regarding cotent, if you have a page of 20 products and put content at botton of page below the products. How many words should the content be? If you have 1890 words below 20 products, would it looks spammy to G?

    1. Sunny, the 1890 is just a general rule of thumb. Especially for products I recommend focusing on what’s going to help the page convert well for you.

  169. Yet another awesome article, Brian!

    I wonder – what social sharing bar do you use? Is it developed in house?

    I’m currently using SumoMe, but it’s slowing down my page speed.

    Many thanks,
    Rob

  170. For sure this one is an amzazing post for bloggers like me. Going to recommended this to my team who publish on behalf of me.

    BTW I was missing the ‘Use of LSI keywords’ as of now, so going to include those in coming blogs.

  171. Hi Brian
    Sprinkling LSI keywords in the post is really a good idea; I have tested this, and this have always worked for me.
    I am using it since 2 months and seeing good organic traffic.

    Thanks

  172. Hey backlinko, I like the way you teach, I have ranked for this keyword “web design in Kenya” using your tactics, I believe in the last tactic you have mentioned on encouraging you readers to leave comments, I have read through all of them and I have noticed that your reply have the keyword “on-page Seo technics ” I took my time to search for this keyword and and I discovered you’re in page one, that tells me that encouraging readers to comment really increase ranking and keyword density work.

  173. Hey Brian,

    really helpful article (as always) and i do enjoy reading a lot. I have one question: How long does it take for you to write such articles? I want to use the skyscraper technique but never read about what time it takes.. 😛 thanks 4 your anwser

  174. Yep, yep, yep, some website url just go all the way out of the browsers. Even SocialMediaExaminer, sorry for mention the name there. and It’s hard to find it when need to read the article.

  175. Thanks for the great tip on LSI, I hadn’t read that one before. That’s a great way to find some related phrases to included in my content. I’ll be using that tip ASAP.

  176. Have I learnt a great deal from this article. Hell Yeah. Awesome piece Brian. But I would actually like to know how you create such beautiful infographics. I love them but cant seem to design one myself. Any tips?

  177. Hi, Brian,

    I just finished this article and I love it! As a matter of fact, I love your content SO much that I downloaded each article (and I intend to print them so I can study them in-depth). I am an absolute newbie in SEO and I always thought that SEO is something very complicated and technical. Thanks to you, I understand SEO way better and I will start to optimize my page and my articles right away.

    I just wanted to let you know how much your work means to me and to congratulate you for it. I will come back with specific questions when I’ll start to apply your tips on my website. Most of them seem pretty straightforward and it should not take me too much time to implement.

    THANK YOU!

  178. It took me ao long to find on page seo tips like this one.

    Very informative! I heard of backlinko before for best information giver site and I found it so true.

    It’s just very helpful. I’m excited to do this for my future post.

    Thank you brian!

  179. Wow, I’m constantly impressed and overwhelmed at the information available for SEO. We build our own website for our Photography business and I’ve spent so much time learning… and I’m still learning. So, thank you for all the helpful articles, knowledge and insight! Keep ’em coming!

  180. I am from Indonesia ,, this is my first visit to this site ,, and I immediately subscribed … I want to ask about the contents of LSI , Is synonymous in the spread of many influential articles ,,, How many percentage ideal of synonym in articles ?..thanks

  181. You wrote fabulous on on-page optimization. . Specially Info graphic!!! Quick view of Topic. You also explain each point in brief. It help me learn about On page SEO in 2016. Really very nice post, I had ever seen.
    Thank you so much.

  182. Hi Brian, That is a useful article you have presented and keywords play an important role in SERP. So content and keywords should go in hand to hand and make it as usual without overloading it.

  183. Brian, amazing post as always – Thanks!

    Quick question on H1 tag and title tags – My interpretation is that you are saying we should wrap the title tag and it’s content within the H1 tag.
    Eg: Title is here

    OR do you mean we should have no title tag at all and just have an H1 tag with the title.
    Eg: Title is here

    Which one is your recommendation? Doesn’t the latter hurt as the page technically has no title?

  184. Hi Brian,

    Recently I started concentrating on perfect on-page SEO techniques, I did some mistakes in my previous articles which I have to update now, I never used my keyword in first 100 words in all my articles and not concentrated on LSI keywords.

    Thanks for sharing this infographic with perfect examples in the article, you are the right person to follow when it comes link building and SEO.

  185. Thank you Brian, it’s really educational and quite comprehensive, i’ m a beginner in the SEO thing and i’ m looking forward to learn and understand more. Kindly recommend anything that could be helpful to me.

  186. Hi Brian, Excellent piece of content as usual. I checked my source code & there was another H1 through my optin monster plugin. I just removed that. Thanks a lot.
    I have a query. My blog is old & 3-4 years back I was using the default permalink created with my post Title
    e.g. http://moneyconnexion.com/top-20-hottest-online-jobs.htm
    Earlier the post title was “Top 20 Hottest Online Jobs” but now I changed to “Online Jobs from Home – Free & Without Investment”.
    I am trying to rank with the keyword online jobs but as the URL is long & the keyword is in the end of the URL, I am not ranking on the first spot even after my page & my SEO is much better than other first 3 ranked sites.
    And there are number of post like that whose URL are long & are ranking on first page or second but not getting the top spot.
    Do you recommend me to change the URL to short like moneyconnexion.com/online-jobs.htm & redirect the old URL.

  187. Great infographic and info Brian. Have been reading about the different SEO factors recently, but its rare to find them listed all in one place.
    You nailed it – keep up the good work!

  188. Hi Brian, this was all very enlightening. Thank you, I am something of an SEO virgin, so I am keen to learn. I even googled LSI for more info, and that took me to Wiki which talked about the cosine of text and completely destroyed part of my brain…lol Just kidding!
    But seriously, as a copy editor, I was trained to keep things simple. From an end user / reader point of view, information should be clear and concise.I would agree that each point must be made in the first couple of lines of each paragraph for SEO purposes.
    But as I have also found myself writing more and more web content, I am not sure I quite understand the justification for long copy. I have seen your stats, I was wondering from a marketing/end user point of view. Do we really want our readers to be scrolling down a single page or offer them links that direct them to other dedicated pages/places on the same page with relevant information? Thanks.

  189. Great write up. Quick question though in regards to CTR. For local businesses that rely on phone calls, would you suggest NOT to have a phone number in title to show in SERPS?

  190. Hey Brian,
    I see that you dont have any pagination for comments, and interestingly, the length of comments is way more than the length of article.
    do you have a point here? I thought that maybe a 50 comments per page would be optimal. but now that I see you show all comments without pagination, I am wondering what is the seo secret behind it?
    please let me know
    thanks

  191. Hi Brian, As for Image Optimization, but when I type the Alt Text with hyphens ( _ ), Yoast SEO doesn’t recognize it. Then I use space instead. It’s ok with Yoast. So, Can i just use the space? What is the role of hyphen?

  192. Great post but probably common sense for anyone who’s been into SEO for more than a few months.

    One thing that really bothered me is that for image optimization you’re using underscores instead of hyphens.

    “Consider using punctuation in your URLs. The URL http://www.example.com/green-dress.html is much more useful to us than http://www.example.com/greendress.html. We recommend that you use hyphens (-) instead of underscores (_) in your URLs.” – Google Content Guidelines

  193. Just wanted to leave a quick comment and let you know that I found the infographic so damn useful that I decided to get a custom poster of it printed out so I can place it next to my computer for quick reference on the wall.

    Thanks for putting this together!

    ~Cheers

  194. Great post, very useful. I was unaware of the outbound links having such importance – will get to work on this and the other parts you mention. Thanks for posting!

  195. Great content posted. On-page SEO is powerful, if we update our website into a well-constructed on-page SEO even you don’t have enough backlinks or off-page SEO, can we still be on the top of the search engines?

  196. Great post! The infographic gives a great visual guide and the content is amazing! I really your pointer about including modifiers, and also the pointer about checking if a theme has the H1 title tag. I just assumed all of them did, but you learn something new every day.

  197. Thanks Brian for this post.
    After going through your article I have started incorporating many new things (which I did not care about earlier) in my every blog post. Even now there is more traffic on my site as compared to last month’s. Will keep looking forward to your future posts.

  198. Hi Brian
    Amazing to read your post on ON Page Optimization.
    I got detailed info for on page optimization here.
    What about AMP and Schema.org?
    These two are not on page ranking factors.
    Regards
    Anand Jha

  199. Perfect On Page SEO Optimization, I’m testing on my website about reviews and the serp’s having boost every single post.

    But….some outrank me because of “date of post”.

    You think the date of post can hurt rankings?

  200. The simplicity of the infographic is brilliant and the detail provided later is excellent. This is an excellent resource for the experienced SEO veteran and newbie alike. Great work Brian and thanks for this valuable resource.