On-Page Optimization is the New Off-Page

Google algorithm updates are happening more frequently these days, scaring webmasters and local SEO companies around the world. It’s tough to keep up with your own / client sites with the unpredictability of Google updates. Panda and Penguin have hit SEOs hard over the past year and a half, making it difficult if not seemingly impossible for webmasters to obtain their old positions.

Personally, I know many SEOs who have decided to quit the game. Maybe I acquainted myself with shady black-hatters who did questionable tactics during their reign in Google which has caused them to fall behind in the search engine optimization game. Perhaps that is why I have always devoted myself to white-hat techniques of ranking a website high in the search results. It pays off. You aren’t penalized by Google and your rankings last through all the changes in the search engines. It’s simple marketing best practices.

I am writing this post to share how one of the most basic, fundamental techniques is beginning to make a rise in the search engines once again. “History repeats itself.” and this is a trend that I’ve seen before in my short 7 years of SEO work. That is ‘on-page optimization’. Many SEOs and webmasters seem to forget this little golden rule of making sure each page of your website is built meticulously. Instead, they focus on getting the site up as quickly as possible and trying to build links to the site through article marketing, press releases, social bookmarking, etc. While these things are great if done correctly, A great site that is fully on-page optimized will outrank these websites with tons of backlinks any day.

Over the past 3 website designs projects I’ve taken on, I’ve noticed how Google is giving higher prominence to a well-designed site. This includes the keyword ratios, title/alt tags, optimized headers and meta tags, etc. I’ve played with all these variables and watched the rankings fluctuate accordingly. There seems to be a special recipe of synonym usage, keyword density and prominence with the keywords that is directly related to higher listings. Now I won’t give out all the details of my discoveries over the past 3 months, I will say this. Take your time on designing your new website. Craft it as if you were building your own baby’s genetic code. The more care and love you show your website, the better it will rank. Don’t worry about your backlink portfolio. Your site won’t even make the second page without paying attention to the fundamental SEO principles. On-page optimization trumps off-page SEO any day.

Have any other SEO basics that make a difference? We’d love to hear what you think in the comments section below.

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