Search engine optimization (SEO) is actually divided into two primary areas, namely: on-page optimization and off-page optimization. Both are merely important to make a website rank well in search engines.
Anything that is uploaded into a website’s domain is called on-page. In other words, it is the process of ensuring that your website is optimized and easily searchable in search engines. Otherwise, your chance of getting favorable results in the search engines is very slim. However, the on-page aspect of search engine optimization accounts for approximately 20 to 30 percent only of your page rank. The rest of the percentage is attributed to off-page SEO.
On-page SEO has three most important techniques, namely:
1. Create a unique and accurate page titles. It is important that each page that you create should bear a unique title, otherwise identical titles would be considered as “duplicates” by Google. The key here is to make your title speak of the content of the page. Refrain from making a title that is not related to the content. Likewise, do not stuff keywords in your title tags, and avoid ALL CAPS titles.
Moreover, if your title is more than 60 characters long, Google will only show a snippet in the search results.
2. Work with the “description” meta tag. When it comes to getting indexed by the search engines, “description” meta tag is the second most important on-page element. Meta descriptions accurately summarize the page’s content. Refrain from using descriptions that goes like, “this is a webpage”, nor from supplying too short description and keyword-stuffed description. Keep your meta description within the 160-character limit and unique for each page. Using the same meta description all throughout your website or for a large number of pages will compel Google to show only a page in the results, and send the rest into the supplementary result index.
3. Enhance the structure of your URLs. It is recommended that your URL (or Uniform Resource Locator) uses words instead of numbers, session IDs, and the like. By doing so, your page becomes friendlier to both users and the search engines. Avoid using URLs that are too long, having generic page names like “page1.html”, and/or keyword-stuffed.
On the other hand, off-page search engine optimization is focused on doing things off the site to improve your website ranking on search engines. Also known as backlinking or link building, off-page SEO is more concerned about building relevant links that leads to your site. This type of SEO is a continuing process, even a never ending activity, which can produce visible result only after a few months. If you cease to do off-page optimization, there is a high risk that your competitor will outrank you in the search engines.
Nevertheless, in order to stay on the upper ranks of search engines, here are a few basic techniques that you can apply through off-page SEO:
1. Building quality links. It is never enough to accumulate as many backlinks as possible into your site. Rather, you should aim for relevant or quality backlinks. In order to keep track if your backlink is relevant, you may follow this guide:
What is the relevance of the other website or web page to yours?
How is the ranking of the website you link to?
What type of traffic do you expect to generate for your website?
Do the websites you link to have several backlinks, too? If they do, what kind of links do they have?
2. Article submission or content sharing. Another method of generating traffic into your website is to submit articles to Article Directory sites. It is one of the oldest and most popular linking methods known to the SEO industry.
3. Directory submission. Most widely and commonly used approach to build backlinks, directory submission generates more traffic flow towards your website and improves its search engine rankings. Considered as the best suitable and affordable option of SEO, directory submission provides significant opportunities to promote a business online. It is even considered as the most essential factor to consider in building marketing strategies for the business.
4. Social networking/bookmarking. Commenting on other people’s blogs and participating in forum discussion are another methods of increasing traffic as well as generating backlinks into your website. Likewise, submitting your own articles to social bookmarking sites like Stumble Upon, Digg, Reddit, and the like is another form of building links.
5. Creating link wheels. This is another effective off-page SEO strategy where you create several small-scale one-way blog sites, and link each to the other, until all of which point to only one common source, which is your main website.