If your about to start using an SEO agency it’s important to know the difference between On Page and Off Page SEO. You are probably going to hear these terms quite often so it’s essential that you are armed with this knowledge’s the SEO landscape can often get very confusing for most business owners or people who are just starting out and want their site to rank on Google.
In determining the value of your website Google will look at 2 elements. One is called ‘on page’ and the other is ‘off page’.
On Page SEO is everything that’s visible to the user while Off Page SEO is everything that’s hidden; basically the work carried out that no one can see by your SEO company. I want to stress that you should leave both of these disciplines in the hands of professionals and taking a DIY approach is not advisable.
So what are some On Page SEO elements that you need to be aware of to help your website rank better on Google?
1. Website speed. This is probably one of the most important factors nowadays that Google is watching. Basically, your website needs to be lightning fast when it comes to download times. It has to load in a split second as users are now becoming extremely impatient and expect information to be in front of them immediately. Slow download times are going to hinder any chance of rankings so make sure that when your web agency is building your site they are also checking it for download speeds.
2.Duplicate content. This is another very important ‘on page’ element as Google wants to see fresh, unique copy on your site and not scared content or plagiarised copy from another website on your site. A golden rule here to remember is tomato sure all your pages are written wither by you or a copywriter. Anything less than this is totally unacceptable and will kill any chance you have of ranking. Google adores informative content so make sure this ‘On Page’ element is front and centre every time you publish a blog, page or article.
3.Site structure. Your website has to be really easy to use and navigate. From your URL structure right through to your page layout is must give the visitor a seamless and enjoyable web journey. This is not as easy as it would seem as many websites do not follow a cohesive structure and customers end up getting lost on the site which leads rot higher bounce rates and lost revenue. This is particularly damaging when it comes to shopping carts and eCommerce websites where customer abandon sites simply because they get frustrated wit the check to process or their ability to make a purchase. Google will (and this is really an important point) notice if your site is having a high bounce rate (people exiting the site from the page they arrived on) and will rank it accordingly. Basically, the higher this bounce rate the worse the ranking. Keep this fact in mind. Your SEO agency should be addressing issues such as bounce rates and be coming with design solutions to improve the situation.If they are unable to do this, then they are definitely the wrong people to be working with.
4. Missing links. Make sure all of you pages are linking correctly and that all internal links actually work. Sending people to non existent pages is a bad user experience and Google will penalise your rankings if there are too many broken internal links.
5. If your wanting to attract local customers then add a Google map and make sure you add your address and phone number. have a separate contact us page on your website so people can easily identify your location and be ablate contact you either by phone or email.
What is ‘Off Page’ SEO?
This is what happens behind the scenes. It’s everything you can’t see that your SEO agency is doing in order to help your rankings. Because you have little control over what they are doing it’s important that you choose the right SEO company who is proficient at SEO and knows better than anyone else what they are doing when it comes to all the ‘Off Page’ elements. I have spoken about this ad nauseam throughout all my blogs and cannot emphasise the fact enough that if you choose the wrong SEO agency to implement your ‘Off Page’ SEO then you are going to wind up in serious trouble with Google; penalties, lost rankings are just the beginning. Make your you are wise in your decision and choose the right SEO agency from the beginning.
Make sure you look out for these ‘Off Page’ factors when working with your SEO company. If you see anything strange (and I will list these below) you should bring this up with them.
1. Excessive use of back linking for a certain keyword. Back linking is the foundation of any SEO campaign and if you find that you SEO agency is pushing a keyword too hard (in order to help rank it) you need to question this activity. This is one of the most common ‘off page’ issues that we see all the time as SEO agencies with little regard for Google will over optimise a keyword or phrase to the detriment of the client. Ask them for a anchor text back link report every month to see what type of ‘off page’ back link activity they are doing.
2. Make sure they are not submitting your website to countless amounts of useless directories that you have never heard of. Yes you want to rank forGoogle maps but this will only happen if they register your site with credible local and well know directories. These are known as citations are and the best way to help your site get on maps. Over use of non Australian, cheap directories is only going to hamper any chance you have of ranking. In fact, it may go against you. Pleas eve very aware of all directory entries you are listed on.
3. If your ‘Off Page’ SEO is done properly than they should be out reaching to other websites in the hope of publishing content with a link back to your site. Ask to see some of this content and check the quality of it as well as the links pointing back to your site. This is a great way to tell if your SEO is being done by a professional outfit or a bunch of novices.
In conclusion you can see the difference between the two SEO elements. They are as important as each other and must work together in a cohesive and harmonious way if you are to succeed online. Your website and SEO is not a set and forget proposition. The truth is you have to be working on both Off Page and On Page SEO all the time. It is the way of the digital space nowadays where your attention to your website is more important than ever. If you ignore any element or are not continuously updating, refining and fine tuning your website then I’m afraid that the businesses that are more aggressive and vigilant than you in monitoring their ‘Of Page and On Page’ will perform better online. If you rely on Google for business and getting new clients (like we all do) this must become a little obsessed about this. Ultimately you are the only person that can decide the outcome of how well you perform online so make sure you make the right choices when deciding who will work on your website.