On-Page SEO Ranking Factors

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What are the ranking factors on the page for SEO?

The ranking factors on the page can have a great impact on the ability of your page to rank if optimized correctly. The main factors on the page that affect the rankings in the search engines are:

Content of the page

The content of a page is what makes it deserve a search result position. It is what the user came to see and, therefore, is extremely important for search engines. As such, it's necessary to make sensible content. So, what is good content? From an associate SEO perspective, all good content has two attributes. Good content must satisfy demand and must be able to be linked.

Good content satisfies a demand:

As in world markets, information is affected by supply and demand. The best content is the one that does the best job of supplying the highest demand. It could take the form of an XKCD comic that is providing nerd jokes to a large group of technologists or it could be a Wikipedia article that explains to the world the definition of Web 2.0. It can be a video, an image, a sound or a text, but it must satisfy a demand to be considered good content.

Good content is linkable:

From an SEO perspective, there is no difference between the best and the worst content on the Internet if you can not link. If people can not link to it, it is very unlikely that search engines will classify it, and as a result, the content will not drive traffic to the given website. Unfortunately, this happens much more often than one might think. Some examples of this include slide shows with AJAX-based images, content accessible only after logging in, and content that can not be played or shared. Content that does not meet a demand or that can not be linked is bad in the eyes of search engines, and most likely some people as well.

Title tag

Title tags are the second factor on the most important page for SEO, after content. You can read more information about the title tags here.

URL

Along with intelligent internal linking, SEO must ensure that the hierarchy of categories of the given website is reflected in the URLs.

The following may be a good example of URL structure:

http://www.example.com/pc-tips/how-to-update-windows
This URL clearly shows the hierarchy of information on the page (the history related to pc tips in the context of games in general). This information is used to determine the relevance of a web page determined by the search engines. Due to the hierarchy, the engines can deduce that the page probably does not belong to the how to in general, but to that of how to update windows. This makes it an ideal candidate for search results related to how to update windows. All this information can be speculated without the need to process the content of the page.

The following is a bad example of URL structure:

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0468569

Unlike the first example, this URL does not reflect the website's information hierarchy. Search engines can see that the given page is related to titles (/ title /) and is in the IMDB domain but can not determine what the page is about. The reference to "tt0468569" does not directly infer anything that an Internet user can search. This means that the information provided by the URL is of very little value to the search engines.
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The structure of the URL is important because it helps search engines understand the relative importance and adds a metric of useful relevance to the given page. It is also useful from the perspective of the anchor text because people are more likely to link to the relevant word or phrase if the keywords are included in the URL.

SEO best practice

Content pages are the meat of websites and are almost always the reason why visitors visit a site. Ideal content pages should be very specific to a given topic, usually a product or object, and be highly relevant.

The purpose of the given website should be indicated directly in all the following areas:

  • Title tag
  • URL
  • Content of the page
  • Image alt text

This is an example of a well-designed and easy-to-use web page for search engines. All its factors on the page are optimized.

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The content page in this figure is considered good for several reasons. First, the content itself is unique on the Internet (which makes it worthwhile for search engines to rate well) and covers a bit of specific information in great depth. If a user has a question about Super Mario World, there is a good chance that this page responds to your query.

Apart from the content, this page is well presented. The theme of the page is found on the title tag (Super Mario World - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia), URL (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Super_Mario_World), the content of the page (the header of the page, "Super Mario World"), and within the alternative text of each image on the page.

The following example is from a poorly optimized web page. Notice how it differs from the first example.

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This figure shows a less friendly example for the search engines of a content page directed to the term "Super Mario World". While the theme of the page is present in some of the important elements of the web page (title tag and images), the content is less robust than the Wikipedia example, and the relevant copy on the page is less useful for a reader.

Note that the description of the game is suspiciously similar to a copy written by a marketing department. "Mario is in his greatest adventure, and this time he has brought a friend." This is not the language in which the search engines write the queries, and it is not the type of message that responds to a search query. Compare this with the first sentence of the Wikipedia example: "Super Mario World is a platform game developed and published by Nintendo as a package, launch title for the Super Nintendo entertainment system." In the poorly optimized example, all that is stated in the first sentence is that someone or something called Mario is in an adventure that is bigger than his previous adventure (how do you quantify that?) And is accompanied by a friend with no name

The Wikipedia example tells the reader that Super Mario World is a game developed and published by Nintendo for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System game system; the other example does not. The search results in both Bing and Google show that the page is better optimized.

An ideally optimized website

An ideal web page should do all of the following:



  • Being hyper-relevant to a specific topic (usually a product or a single object)
    • Include theme in the title tag
    • Include subject in URL
    • Include subject in the alternative text of the image.
    • Specify the topic several times throughout the content of the text.
  • Provide unique content on a given topic
  • Link to your category page
  • Link to your subcategory page (if applicable)
  • Link to your home page (usually achieved with an image link that shows the website logo at the top left of the page)

  • Final words
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