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What are the differences between On-Page and Off-Page SEO?

An effective SEO campaign utilises both on-page and off-page SEO strategies, in this article, we take a deep dive and explore some of the key differences and what’s involved with each.


What is on-page SEO?

On-page SEO relates to anything that’s done on your website to improve its search engine rankings. This can involve content creation e.g. blog posts, improving metadata, SEO friendly URLs and technical enhancements such as code optimisation and improving website performance and loading speed.

On-page SEO enables search engines to better understand what your content is all about. With user experience becoming of increasing importance to Google, we wrote an article on their upcoming algorithm update here, technical enhancements which improve UX are vital for your website. Examples of effective on-page SEO techniques include:


  1. URL structuring – Google and other search engines use URLs to understand the hierarchy of the page, and so it's important your page address structures are as SEO friendly as possible. There isn’t anything too complicated to focus on here other than to make your URLs as short as possible and include a keyword in every URL.
  2. Meta title and description tags optimisation – In our opinion, the title tag is the most important on-page SEO factor as it gives search engines a high-level overview of what your page is all about, together with the meta description it is also the first element a user sees when they come across your listings in the search results. Your primary keyword should be included in the title tag for the page as a best practice measure. The description tag content should be unique and feature your target keyword, when well structured it can stand out to your target users in the search results as Google also bolds terms that match the person’s query.
  3. Unique and high-quality content – As well as being unique your content should also be valuable, well structured and thoroughly researched to satisfy both the user and the search engine. Strong copywriting and the use of images illustrating the concepts being explained are encouraged to be used.
  4. Page loading speed – The new Page Experience algorithm update by Google has placed more emphasis than ever on a fast and intuitive user experience, Google wants to present its users with high performing websites, which means those that are optimised to load fast will be well-positioned in the search results. This can be quite a technical process but your site will be rewarded by Google.
  5. Internal linking – Linking to other pages within your website helps the search engine crawlers to find their way around your site and discover more of your pages and associated content.


What is off-page SEO?

Off-page SEO involves using ways to promote your website externally, the most common is building outbound links, but there are other factors such as brand mentions and reviews on thrid party websites that are important as well.


  1. Link building – Perhaps the most well known and effective off-page SEO method, building high-quality outbound links from high authority referring domains will improve your ranking in search results pages and could place you above the competition.
  2. Social media marketing – although they don’t have a direct impact on search rankings, if a good quality post gets a high level of attention on a popular social network like Twitter will allow your brand to reach a wider audience and indirectly affect search rankings.
  3. Brand mentions – Brand mentions involve your site URL or brand name mentioned on another site with or without a backlink, brand mentions can also occur on social media platforms, forums, articles or review websites.
  4. Page loading speed – The new Page Experience algorithm update by Google has placed more emphasis than ever on a fast and intuitive user experience, Google wants to present its users with high performing websites, which means those that are optimised to load fast will be well-positioned in the search results. This can be quite a technical process but your site will be rewarded by Google.
  5. Reviews – Reviews on Google and on websites such as Trustpilot and social networks like Facebook inspire trust amongst website visitors, they also play an essential role in your local SEO. Google places a lot of relevance in reviews and uses them as part of its decision in how it ranks your website.

Conclusion

As you can see on-page and off-page SEO involve different techniques to form part of your overall SEO strategy. We have only covered a small part of what is involved, please feel free to get in touch with us if you wish to discuss how you can utilise these in your SEO campaign.


 

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