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The Fundamentals of natural referencing

SEO, called SEO by professionals which means Search Engine Optimization in English, is the optimization of the visibility of a website in the various search engines (eg Google, Yahoo, Yandex or Baidu) . Before continuing on the fundamentals of SEO, it is important that you know what SEO is?

Search engines

All search engines can find one or more resources by entering different keywords. The results can be web pages, answers to a forum topic, images, videos and even PDF files. Search engines are based on robots that browse websites automatically to discover new URLs to crawl. Each page that a robot visits is indexed in a given database, accessible by Internet users from keywords.

The latest update of Google’s SEO algorithms

A lot of Google’s algorithms aim to improve the relevance of search results. A number of them is to penalize sites or web pages that do not comply with the guidelines established by the search engine. On the other hand, others favor sites or web pages that have a specific characteristic such as a good loading speed or an HTTPS secure protocol.

since April 21, 2015, your site must be mobile compatible (according to Google), if not, the ranking of your mobile website may be less good. The main algorithm of Google Panda is entered.

  • Panda is a filter designed to fight sites offering low quality content, it is being updated since July 2015.
  • Penguin  aims to penalize websites using too aggressive netlinking techniques. An update should be launched in early 2016.
  • Mobile Friendly has been in place since April 21, 2015. Web sites that are not mobile-friendly have a lower ranking.
  • Satellite pages was deployed in early May 2015, it seeks to penalize the satellite pages, that is to say, created only for SEO.
  • HTTPS  was formalized in August 2014, it favors pages that use the HTTPS protocol but its impact is very low.

To help you, you will find explanations in the list of Google’s SEO algorithms to find you in this jungle of algo and filter.

Tools for webmaster

Google’s Search Console is Google’s official platform for webmasters. They can retrieve all information related to SEO. The Search Console is not intended to be complete, this is voluntary on the part of Google so as not to reveal too much information on the operation of its search engine. A small overview of what the tool offers:

  • A research analysis report indicating how often the website is displayed in the search results.
  • An in-depth analysis of the main data of the website visit.
  • The ability to control the indexing status of URLs that the robot has been able to explore.
  • A feature to discover the pages of the website that refer to a 404 error.
  • etc …

Google Search Console is an indispensable tool, it is the first way to understand how a website is perceived by robots and therefore to ensure you optimize its SEO.

Google Analytics  is also a tool that Google provides for free for websites with less than 10 million page views each month and per account. The webmaster and webmarketer can follow very closely the way users browse their website.

Some features that Google Analytics offers:

  • Goal tracking
  • Follow-up of internal searches
  • Real time tracking
  • Content grouping
  • Multi-channel funnels
  • Attribution models
  • Analysis of web pages
  • Measurement of loading time
  • Custom report creation
  • E-commerce transaction tracking
  • etc …

When launching a website, e-commerce or internet blog, it is essential that it be linked to the Google Analytics tool. So that you get a lot of information about the number of views, visitors, location of readers …

On-page optimization of a website

Optimizing a website is usually the simplest part since we have the hands on what we want to change. The goal is to optimize the entire site to make it much more attractive for users and robots.

The tag “title”

The “title” tag is the title given to a page. This one is important since it will appear in the results of the search engines. It is therefore important that it be click-intensive and contain the keywords you want to highlight. For example :

<title> The fundamentals of natural referencing. SEO Guide </ title>

The size to try not to exceed is 512 pixels which is about 55 characters. By reducing the title tag to this length, we will avoid over-optimization and the risks of a possible penalty. A longer title will also be cut by “…” in the search results. This is highly detrimental to reading the title, which may result in a lower clickthrough rate.

The title is written between the <head> </ head> tags of a web page. This place is reserved to give information to search engine robots.

The meta tag “description”

The meta tag “description” provides a description of the web page to search engines so that it is displayed in search results or in web applications that need a quick summary of the page to display. The meta description has the advantage, if it is of quality, to encourage the user to click on the website. This text must be 1024 pixels, which corresponds to a size between 150 and 160 characters.

A meta description tag is as follows in the code of your page:

<meta name = "description" content = "The description of about 150 and 160 characters of the page">

In case we do not inform meta description tags, Google will resume content from your website, it may not be optimized for users.

The tag “Hn (h1 to h6)”

Hn title tags are used to prioritize the content of a web page to indicate the titles, subtitles and the axes of argumentation. This beacon goes from h1 to h6. For natural referencing, these tags have an importance that is not negligible since they are used to make search engines understand the structure of the page everything.

These tags can be recognized and coded in HTML as follows:

<h1> Title H1 very important </ h1>
<h2> Title H2 important that H1 </ h2>
<h3> Title H3 a bit important that H2 </ h3>
<h4> H4 title even less important than H3 </ h4>
<h5> Title H5 not important that H4 </ h5>
<h6> Title H6 not very important that H5 </ h6>

Note that the H1 tag specifies a very important title and the tag H6 a very small title. The other <hn> tags between these two tags are ranked from the most important to the least important.

The “alt” attribute of images

The Alt attribute refers to the alternative text of an image on a website. It must describe the content of the image when it can not be loaded or viewed. This text appears inside the image’s container, when it can not be displayed.

It is very important to know the Alt attributes of the images of a website in order to obtain better positions in the image search of the engines. Without this attribute, search engines can not identify what an image represents.

Optimized URL

The URL of a page is a basic element when you want to optimize your page for SEO. A page URL should ideally consist of intelligible names: avoid complicated combinations, ampersands and other signs.

The length

A short page URL will perform better in the search engine results and will be much easier to copy / paste to be shared unlike larger URLs.

The keywords

The  targeted keywords should be closest to your domain name. Your page will have better performance. For example my-site.fr/my-mot-clefs will be easier to position more easily than a page with a URL where the keywords are more distant as my-site.fr/categorie/dossier/my-mot-clef even though URLs are not a very influential factor in SEO.

Word separators

It is recommended to use URLs with “dashes (-)” to separate your keywords rather than the choice of “underscores (_)”. The use of hyphens for separating keywords is always the best way to use in your URL.

Keywords or expressions

In order to target users, you must define a list of keywords or strategic expressions on which you want to position your website in search engine results. When you are going to define a list of keywords, it is preferable that it be restricted to well-targeted keywords. Indeed, it will be more difficult to position yourself with a larger list without being sure that these keywords that keep users. The full article on keywords for SEO can also interest you.

The choice of keywords

When it’s time to define a list of keywords on which you want to position your website, there are 3 important criteria you need to consider.

  • The traffic generated for each keyword:
    This first criterion is consistent with the number of times a user enters the keyword in a search engine.
  • The quality of the traffic generated by the keyword:
    This criterion represents the adequacy of your content with the request of the user.
  • The lust that the keyword arouses:
    The last criterion refers to the number of competing websites that also want to position themselves on the same keyword.