I went to the Philly SEO Meetup last night and within the first ~15 or so minutes I heard some mildly shocking, but absolutely fantastic news. Now, the sample size was only about 25 or so people, but the overwhelming majority actually proclaim to believe that “On Site” SEO is 40-60% of what gets you ranked.
To repeat… in a room of either SEOs or people interested in SEO, most thought that at least half of what will get you ranked comes down to on-site factors.
I was floored.
Really? On site factors?
There’s no on-site secret here, people. I’ll cover this later on in a full on-site SEO post, but it really boils down to…
Keyword in URL (hopefully the domain name, if not, the file)
Keyword in Title Tag
Keyword in H1
Keyword in body copy (relevant text)
You do those few things and your on page SEO is handled. Your on “site” SEO would expand into things like topical coverage (having content covering related terms) and internal anchor text links to your target page.
How many people do those things for a term like “debt consolidation”? 3.4 MILLION sites have “debt consolidation” in the title. I’d wager at least 25% of those also have the keyword in their URL, body copy, and some sort of heading tag. If my ~25% estimate is close, that means at least 850,000 pages are optimized for that term from an SEO perspective.
If you do on-page SEO only for the term “debt consolidation”, you’ve effectively just reached a stalemate with 850,000 other pages that did, give or take, the same thing.
Now, even if on-page/site factors compose 60% of the Google algo. Or 90%. Or 99%. It simply doesn’t matter.
If the remaining percentage, whatever that may be, is what ultimately makes the difference between you and hundreds or thousands of other website owners/SEOs that are all in competition for the same term – then *that* is the most important part.
So – the good news is this…
It appears as if there are still, somehow, a lot of industry people that don’t *really* believe in link building. Or, believe in it to such a small degree that they’d proclaim it to be less than half of what gets your ranked. Even in the believers, there’s a huge percentage that know it’s important but don’t get it, or don’t dedicate the time to it, or do it in ridiculously sloppy ways.
Follow my upcoming posts/guides – and you’ll outrank every fucking “Just make great content!” optimist.