On-Page Keyword Optimization for Content Sites

Note: This post was guest blogged by me, Mitchell Harper of www.HarpzOn.com

For those of you that read my blog, you’ll know that I spent the last 2 weeks or so on holiday in Japan. On the plane on the way home last Friday I had an idea to start a site about fear of flying and how to overcome it (up until a few months ago I was a fearful flyer). In this post I want to show you how how I’m using on-page keyword optimization to get my site ranked in the search engines for the keywords “fear of flying“.

On-page keyword optimization is a strategy you can use to get your blog or website ranked higher in the major search engines, including Google. It includes a number of different “sub strategies”, which are:

  • Keyword density: How often do the keywords you want to rank for appear on your page? This is measured as a percentage, such as 5.8%. So let’s say you want to rank on Google for “red sports cars”. On most pages of your site you’ll want to include the text “red sports cars” and also variations of this phrase, such as “red cars that are sporty”, “sports cars that are red”, “sports cars”, etc. There’s no hard and fast rule, but you generally want a keyword density of about 7-12% for the keywords you want to rank for. That means that if you have 100 words on your page, 7-12 of them should be “red”, “sports” or “car”. You can check your keyword density at www.Rank.NL.
  • Header tags: You absolutely MUST include the keywords you want to rank for in a <h1>…</h1> tag on your site. H1 tags tell the search engines that the text between them is important, and you should aim for just one <h1> tag on each page as close to the top as you can. In our example you might use <h1>Red Sports Cars</h1> on one page and <h1>Luxury Red Sports Cars</h1> on another page.
  • Page title: This is the most important on-page thing you can optimize. Your page title is the text that’s used to form the link back to your site from the search engines, so it needs to include the keywords you want to rank for, and usually in variations, such as <title>Red sports cars, luxury sports cars, racing sports cars , red sports cars</title>
  • Internal linking structure: You want to use the keywords you want to rank for to link between pages on your site. For example, on your home page you might link to a category page using the text “sports cars” and on that category page you would link back to your home page with the text “red sports car”. This is an internal two-way link, and although internal links don’t hold nearly as much weight as external ones, you should link to different pages on your site using a few different combinations of your keywords.
  • Keywords at the very top of the page: You should always include your main keywords as close to the top of the page as you can. If you look at ConquerFearOfFlying.com you’ll see how I’ve included this sentence at the very top, just after the logo: Fear of flying strategies, tips and help to overcome your phobia.

These are just some tips to get you started with on-page keyword optimization. I am running an entire series on how I am putting together ConquerFearOfFlying.com on my blog where I discuss everything from how to choose a domain name to on-page optimization, email marketing, linking strategies, etc, so if you’re interested you should follow along.