7 On-Page SEO Necessities in 2021

If you want to make your site appears on the new digital age, pay close attention to the following 7 on-page SEO necessities this year.

By Claudio Pires
Updated on March 15, 2024
7 On-Page SEO Necessities in 2021

The list of potential SEO pitfalls is long. A site is much more than attractive design, it’s backlink profile and keyword-optimized content. Many things happen on a page every time a person navigates to your site that could be making or breaking their experience and therefore your ranking. If you want to make sure you are giving your site a fighting chance in the cut-throat world of digital marketing, pay close attention to the following 7 on-page SEO necessities this year. 

Fix Keyword Cannibalization On-Page SEO Necessities

Keyword cannibalization is often misinterpreted as exclusively a keyword issue, but it also concerns a page’s intent. If you are cannibalizing your keywords and hosting multiple pages with the same intent, you will find it difficult to move up the SERPs for competitive keywords because search engines will struggle to determine which of the multiple pages to show. For example, if you are trying to rank for something like “digital marketing agency Brisbane” but you have multiple pages on your site with this longtail keyword, the two pages are cannibalizing each other. 

Another reason to get rid of keyword cannibalization is that it can end up not only making it harder to rank for specific keywords. It may also hurt the ranking of other keywords on any of the pages where cannibalization, decreasing the pages’ rank overall. 

Image Optimization

Google doesn’t just crawl, index, and evaluate your blog content for SEO optimization. It also pays close attention to how your images to SEO. This means it is important to go through your site and make sure that images are properly with relevant names. Make use of descriptive file naming conventions. So, are also for size and quality. Particularly with respect to how quickly they load and how well they display across devices. The bare minimum you should have are main images on every page of your site that make effective use of alt tags to adequately describe the image to visitors and search engines. 

Focus on Readability On-Page SEO Necessities

Readability is a somewhat difficult metric to pin down, and search engine crawlers use several algorithms to quantify an article’s readability, but your readability scores factors into your overall SEO score in a big way. Content is not just about strategic keyword optimization, Google increasingly judges your content on how “readable” it is. 

Whether you are starting a brand new site with brand new content or you want to audit your current website content for readability, there are free online readability tests you can subject your articles to. Yoast SEO, which is one of the widest plugins in WordPress. Provides you with a readability score while you are creating new content.  

Don’t Neglect Your Sitemap

A sitemap is simply a collection of your site’s URLs, composed of your main content. So, it is to make sure search engines are crawling everything you want to be on the index. Additionally, it helps search engines decide not only which pages need to be in review, but also establish the canonical version of each page.

Google will support a number of different sitemap formats, but XML is the most common in use. You can usually locate your sitemap at www.domain.com/sitemap.xml. If you are using a WordPress site, there are plugins that help you do this, but there are many sitemap generator tools out there to make the process easy. 

Get Rid of Multiple H1 Tags On-Page SEO Necessities

Your H1 tag is the main heading on a page, it is the most important heading on the page, and there should only ever be one per page. If you perform a site audit and the report says there are pages with more than one H1 tag on them, get rid of the redundancies.

The primary reason pages have multiple H1 tags is that the site logo is also by one. Additionally, make sure that your H1 tags contain a page’s primary keyword target. So, keep them within the recommended 60-character limit. 

Mobile-Friendly Site

A simple reflection on your own internet browsing habits will likely drive you home. The fact that the majority of web traffic is now mobile. This means people are seeing and browsing your website through a phone screen. More often than they are on a desktop. It should go without saying that the size difference necessitates certain design considerations. Including image and text size and layout specifications. 

But a responsive design isn’t just a matter of aesthetics. Google will actually penalize you in the SERPs if you make it unpleasant for mobile users to navigate your site. If you are building your own site, many web builders give you the option. So, to view your site from the perspective of different browsers as you design and make changes. Additionally, many new themes, recognizing the importance of responsive design, incorporate these principles into the structure. 

Focus on Page Load Time On-Page SEO Necessities

Your page load time is affected by a wide range of things. The hosting server, the bandwidth in transit, your web design and, importantly, the number. Weight and type of elements you have on a page. These latter three are easier to tweak because they are directly under your control. You decide how many videos, large high-res images and other multimedia elements appear throughout your website. 

Page load time is important because it is a reliable predictor of your bounce rate. I.e., the rate at which people navigate away from your site after arriving) and bounce is something Google frowns upon. Make sure your images are compressed and optimized for mobile browsing. Be judicious with the videos and other code-heavy elements and you will make your visitors’ browsing experience much more enjoyable. 

On-Page SEO Necessities Conclusion 

On-page SEO is often neglected in favor of more time invested in links and content. While links and content are the foundation of page rank, the little details matter. When you consider the compounding effect of many small things done incorrectly, they matter a lot. Keep the above on-page SEO necessities in mind throughout 2021 and make this year the year you take your SEO game to a whole new level.

Claudio Pires

Claudio Pires is the co-founder of Visualmodo, a renowned company in web development and design. With over 15 years of experience, Claudio has honed his skills in content creation, web development support, and senior web designer. A trilingual expert fluent in English, Portuguese, and Spanish, he brings a global perspective to his work. Beyond his professional endeavors, Claudio is an active YouTuber, sharing his insights and expertise with a broader audience. Based in Brazil, Claudio continues to push the boundaries of web design and digital content, making him a pivotal figure in the industry.