What On-Page Optimization Changes Can Positively Affect Rankings?


    What On-Page Optimization Changes Can Positively Affect Rankings?

    Diving into the world of on-page SEO can yield unexpected victories; we've gathered insights from SEO Specialists and Digital Marketers to highlight such triumphs. From optimizing content above the fold to crafting keyword-rich image alt text, explore the 12 transformative on-page optimization changes that have led to surprising ranking boosts.

    • Optimize Content Above the Fold
    • Implement Semantic SEO Practices
    • Enhance Meta-Tags with Long-Tail Keywords
    • Conduct Competitive Analysis for Content
    • Incorporate Keywords into Headings
    • Craft Compelling Meta Descriptions
    • Write NLP-Friendly Content
    • Switch to Unique, Relevant Images
    • Optimize Internal Linking Structure
    • Include Relevant Local Keywords
    • Improve Local Search with Descriptive Titles
    • Craft Keyword-Rich Image Alt Text

    Optimize Content Above the Fold

    What really made a difference was delivering value right above the fold for that search query. The content and key information hit you right in the face as soon as you landed on the page. Basically, we made sure to nail the searcher's need without making them scroll.

    For example, with a local gardening business, we spruced up the opening bit to instantly drop their unique offers, like 'Get your garden sorted the same day' and 'We only use green stuff.' This minor change led to a solid uptick in how high the site ranked and how sticky it became for visitors, since it matched what people were after and kept them hooked.

    Harry Boxhall
    Harry BoxhallFreelance SEO Consultant, Boxhall SEO

    Implement Semantic SEO Practices

    Applying Semantic SEO best practices has become a cornerstone of my strategy. After hundreds of audits, it's clear that many technical suggestions go unapplied, often because clients lack the knowledge or resources to hire developers.

    This realization prompted me to search for easily implemented techniques. My goal has been to equip my clients with clear, actionable steps they can take within a week of receiving their audit. Semantic SEO, especially when utilizing the TF-IDF formula, has proven to be a powerful method for making straightforward adjustments with a direct impact on search rankings.

    Marco Genaro Palma
    Marco Genaro PalmaFreelance CMO and SEO Consultant, GenaroPalma.com

    Enhance Meta-Tags with Long-Tail Keywords

    The advantageous effect we experienced when we optimized meta-tags for all long-tail keywords was a sudden boost in our ratings on Google search.

    For instance, we discovered that the client in the home decor niche was failing to write specific meta descriptions that did not accurately reflect the content of their pages. Upon reviewing the keywords, we identified long-tail keywords related to the particular product categories and incorporated them into the meta descriptions effectively.

    The impact was remarkable: within a couple of weeks after we launched this SEO campaign, it resulted in about a 30% growth in click-through rates from search engine results pages (SERPs) as well as in the direct correlation: the rankings of those targeted keywords. Through the implementation of meta descriptions infused with the relevant long-tail keywords, we not only achieved quality rankings, but the website also became more visible, leading to increased traffic.

    Kartik Ahuja
    Kartik AhujaDigital Marketer, kartikahuja.com

    Conduct Competitive Analysis for Content

    One effective strategy I have used to improve on-page optimization is to conduct a competitive analysis for on-page content and meta-titles seen among competitors who are out-positioning me. Based on my analysis of effective strategies, I revise and tweak on-page content and titles on my website to fit my unique brand and audience. Lastly, I monitor the performance based on the changes I have made.

    Justin Staples
    Justin StaplesBusiness Entrepreneur, Business Owner, JS Interactive, LLC

    Incorporate Keywords into Headings

    Adjusting the heading structure by incorporating relevant keywords into H2 and H3 headings will make the content more scannable for both users and search engines. This subtle change can have a surprisingly positive effect on rankings, as it helps to better organize and prioritize the content for search engines to understand the context and relevance of the page.

    Tom Molnar
    Tom MolnarOperational Director & SEO Specialist, Fit Design

    Craft Compelling Meta Descriptions

    Optimizing Meta Descriptions: Fine-tuning meta descriptions had an exceptionally high-quality impact on rankings. Crafting compelling and relevant meta descriptions increased the click-through rate from search engine results pages (SERPs). A higher click-through rate signaled to search engines that the webpage was relevant and valuable to users, resulting in improved rankings. Additionally, well-written meta descriptions provided more precise expectations for users, decreasing bounce rates and increasing dwell time. This simple but impactful on-page optimization change improved overall user traffic. It helped the webpage stand out in search results, leading to higher rankings and increased organic traffic.

    Oliver Andrews
    Oliver AndrewsDigital Marketing, OA Design Services

    Write NLP-Friendly Content

    Answering the question in an NLP-friendly way was one of the best on-page tactics that drastically improved my rankings for a couple of reasons. First, it tackles the question right from the start and gives a full-blown answer a reader wants to know immediately. Secondly, it's much cheaper for Google to analyze your content when you write it in an NLP-friendly way.

    For example, if the question is 'How much does an average monthly SEO service cost?' then you should start your answer with: An average monthly SEO service costs. This way of answering was derived from the Google patent about the cost of retrieval, which I won't dive deep into now because it is complex. However, what it basically means is you want to write content in such a way that Google doesn't use its advanced and more expensive algorithms to understand and categorize your content. That's the whole point of NLP-friendly answering to questions, but you can really apply this methodology to regular headings as well.

    Jason Vaught
    Jason VaughtPresident, Houston SEO Company

    Switch to Unique, Relevant Images

    One on-page optimization change I have made for clients that had a surprisingly positive effect has been changing stock images to unique images highly relevant to the page we are trying to rank.

    Unique images rank better on Google's 'Image Search' feature.

    This change has resulted in more organic clicks from image searches on related topics.

    Milad Hashemi
    Milad HashemiCo-Founder, Pineapple SEO Inc.

    Optimize Internal Linking Structure

    One on-page optimization change that had a surprisingly positive effect on rankings was optimizing the website's internal linking structure. By strategically linking relevant pages within the website, I improved the flow and distributed link equity effectively. I identified pages with valuable content and inserted links to other relevant pages within the site. This helped search engines discover and index new content more efficiently and showed the importance of these links to search engines.

    I also optimized text to include keywords that described their content. This provided search engines with context about the topics, enhancing their visibility in search results. The result of this internal link optimization boosted the rankings of pages for keywords, as they had higher authority and relevance through strategic linking. Overall, this on-page optimization change provided significant improvements in rankings and traffic for the website.

    Nicholas Robb
    Nicholas RobbHead Honcho, Design Hero

    Include Relevant Local Keywords

    As an SEO Specialist, one on-page optimization change that significantly boosted our rankings was optimizing the website's title tags and meta descriptions to include relevant local keywords. By incorporating localized terms such as 'best [service/product] in [city/region],' 'top-rated [service/product] near [city/region],' and 'trusted [service/product] in [neighborhood],' we were able to enhance our visibility in local search results. This strategy not only improved our overall ranking but also attracted more qualified leads from our target area. It's remarkable how a simple adjustment tailored to local search preferences can make such a substantial impact on organic traffic and conversions.

    Katlyn Paskorz
    Katlyn PaskorzSEO Specialist, Katydid PGH

    Improve Local Search with Descriptive Titles

    As an SEO specialist, you're always on the lookout for those little optimizations that can make a big difference. That was definitely the case when I worked on improving the local search visibility for an IT services provider here in the Seattle area just a few months ago.

    The company specialized in managed IT support, cloud services, cybersecurity—all the goods for small and medium businesses. Despite being a top-notch local provider, they were really struggling to rank well for searches like "IT support Seattle" or "managed IT services near me."

    One of the first things I noticed when auditing their website was that many of their location pages had pretty bland, generic title tags. For example, their page for their Bellevue office just had the title "Bellevue Office | Company Name."

    That's not doing them any favors for local SEO! The title tag is one of the most important on-page elements for indicating to Google what a page is about and where it's relevant. So I knew we needed to punch those up.

    I reworked the title for that Bellevue page to be "Managed IT Services in Bellevue, WA | Company Name"—packing in their focus service and the location in a natural way. We followed that same pattern for all their local office pages.

    Additionally, I optimized titles for their core service pages like "Cloud Migration for Seattle Businesses" and "Cybersecurity Solutions | Protect Your Seattle Company."

    The results were pretty wild! Within about eight weeks, we started seeing a noticeable uptick in their rankings for those local IT services keywords they coveted. The local office pages, in particular, surged up the map pack results.

    What I thought would just be a minor adjustment ended up being one of the biggest impact optimizations we made. Just taking the time to make those titles more clearly descriptive and location-specific gave them a huge visibility boost in Seattle and the surrounding areas.

    It was a great reminder that even those small metadata fields can be critically important for local businesses trying to increase their organic search presence. If visitors don't have a clear idea of what a page is about and where it's relevant from the title alone, you're already fighting an uphill battle for rankings!

    Santosh Jha
    Santosh JhaDigital Marketing, Webjalebi Hosting

    Craft Keyword-Rich Image Alt Text

    One significant on-page optimization tweak that yielded unexpectedly positive results for our rankings was optimizing our image alt text. We realized that search engines rely heavily on alt text to understand the content of images, so we diligently crafted descriptive and keyword-rich alt text for every image on our website. This seemingly minor adjustment helped improve our website's accessibility and made our content more indexable for search engines, ultimately leading to higher rankings for relevant keywords. It's a testament to the importance of paying attention to every detail when it comes to on-page SEO optimization.

    Gabrielle Yap
    Gabrielle YapSenior Editor, Carnivore Style