On-Page SEO VS. Off-Page SEO

What are On-Page and Off-Page SEO?


Search Engine Optimization is a process where businesses optimize their online content so that when someone does a search with specific keywords, it is shown at the top of the search engine. This is a marketing strategy that most businesses use to increase both the quality and the quantity of website traffic.

SEO is the magic that every business needs to include so that when anyone makes a random search on Google using a specific keyword then the results of the business appear at the top of the search.

There are many elements that are incorporated in SEO, and understanding how they work is the key to knowing the importance of SEO. However, one main importance of SEO is that it makes your website to be more visible; When many people can view your website, it means that you will get more traffic and these clicks will be converted into clients! Therefore, companies that want to increase their traffic usually focus on SEO more to be visible to the public.
How SEO Works?

Most businesses only know about SEO but they do not know how it works. In the simplest term, SEO is all about making changes to your website content in such a way that your site becomes more valuable to the search engine. Businesses do this with the expectation that the search engine will place their websites at the top of the results.

SEO marketing is also another best form of marketing that you should consider using in your business. In addition to that, search engines always work towards providing the best service for their users. What this means is that the results that are delivered on the search engine should not only be of high quality but also relevant to what the searcher is looking for.

Having relevant information on your website is very important since it makes it very easy for the searcher to get what he or she is looking for. SEO works in that, assuming that you have a blog post about losing weight, for example, then you will try to optimize it in such a way that it comes at the top of results when one searches for “weight loss”(the keyword). If you work on different ways of improving your SEO then you can work hard to expand your visibility. This is what brings traffic to your website.

On-Page SEO vs Off-Page SEO

There are two main categories that fall under search engine optimization; these are on-page SEO and off-page SEO. At this point, you may probably be asking yourself what is on-page and off-page SEO. Well, before we dive into that, you should know that both of these two categories are very important when you are thinking of having a successful SEO campaign. However, they have major differences that you should also know about so that you know when to use on-page and off-page SEO.

Mainly, on-page SEO looks at what your site or your page is all about. What this means is that this category of SEO bases its focus on optimizing parts of your website that you can get control of. In other words, on-page SEO is where you make direct manipulations to your webpage so that you can facilitate its ranking.

Off-page SEO on the other hand looks at how authoritative and popular your site is. In simpler terms, off-page SEO is more about all the practices that take place outside of your website. Some of those practices include backlinks and link relevancy among others. The above is just a brief of what SEO is and how it works, and a snippet of on-page and off-page SEO before we look deeply into what is on-page and off-page SEO.

What is On-Page SEO?

As discussed earlier, on-page SEO means that you have full control of what is happening on your website. Furthermore, the place where your website appears on the results page of the search engine is determined by various factors. Some of the factors that determine where your website appears on the search engine results page include accessibility to the site, keyword optimization, title tags, Meta description, headings tags, internal linking, quality content, URL structure, and mobile-friendliness among others. All of these are important factors that you need to put into consideration when trying to differentiate what is on-page and off-page SEO.

Keyword Optimization

Keywords are the main words that people type on the search engine page, to find exact or closely related results to what they are looking for. The keywords that you use in your website are very important and they should be ones that give the “searcher” the results he is looking for or something closely related to what he is looking for.

In the past, businesses used to win traffic to their website through a process of “keyword stuffing”. This is where you repeat important keywords multiple numbers of times on the web page. Although this was very effective for many, nowadays you face a penalty when found keyword stuffing. In addition to that, it can be easily detected if you are using the keyword stuffing process because when you do this, users quickly exit the search page since it has not met their needs!

Keyword optimization is one factor that speaks loudly when you are looking at what is on-page and off-page SEO. Therefore, it is important that you use quality keywords in the content that you are trying to rank for. In addition to that, the keyword of choice should be relevant to the people who are searching using those keywords.

Title Tags

As usual, the title of an article will automatically tell you what the rest of the article is talking about. The title tag that you choose to use should include the keywords you intend to use and talk about what the rest of the page is about. When using title tags, limit it to about 55-60 characters. Furthermore, ensure that the keyword you want to use is closer to the beginning of the title, and only do this if the whole title will sound natural with the keyword at the beginning.

Meta Description

This is the element that summarizes the contents that are on your page for the benefit of the users. Usually, this description appears below the URL on the search engine results page.

Headings Tags

The search engine gives the headlines more weight than any other copy of the page. It is always better to add the target keywords to the headlines of each web page. However, you need to make sure that the heading tag of choice reflects the great contents of the page.

Internal Linking

Internal linking to the other pages of your website also has its usefulness. This implies that it is useful to visitors and also to search engines. When determining what is on-page and off-page SEO, internal linking makes it very easy for search engines to come to your site and keeps the users engaged for longer periods.

Consequently, it is important that you also consider the anchor text choice when adding internal links. The hyperlink used should also be clickable and should be relevant to what the rest of the content is about.

Quality Content

The content that you are planning to have on your page should be of high quality, useful, and relevant content for your visitors. Click here to discover how to write great website content; If a person makes a specific selection to your website and then tries to find something specific on your page, then they should be able to find exactly what they are looking for. The quality of the content that you are working on is important in that it should also be easy to read and be of value to the users.

URL Structure

When differentiating what is on-page and off-page SEO, it is important to factor in the structure of the URL used in the website. An URL structure that is organized makes it easy for search engines to move from one page to the other, within your website without crossing paths. It is advisable that you insert keywords in your URL structure if possible.

However, that does not mean that you start changing all of your current URLs so that they all have keywords in them. You should only do this if you have plans of redirecting the old URLs to the new ones that you have. If you have no idea how to do this then you should probably consider using the help of a professional.

There are important factors that you should also put into consideration when working on your URL structure. They include the following;

  • Ensure that you have named your directories and folders in such a way that it makes sense for the users that visit your page.
  • Avoid repeating keywords in your URL more than once. This is because although using keywords is important, overdoing it can also affect the experience of your users.
  • Strive to keep the URLs as short as possible. This is because clear and short URLs are more likely to be clicked by users as compared to long URLs.
    Mobile Friendliness

You may probably be asking yourself how you can know if your website is mobile-friendly. Well, the answer to this is that you can tell if your website is mobile-friendly. All you have to do is to plug the site’s URL into a specific test, and Google will tell you if the website is mobile-friendly based on the algorithm that is currently showing.

The mobile user experience should also be considered by the website design beyond mobile page load. To check this, you can generate a mobile usability report, which will also help you in identifying any issues that your website may be having. Once you have detected these issues, you can easily correct them.

Alt text for Images

The alternative text for images is also another important on-page ranking factor that distinguishes what is on-page and off-page SEO. This helps the search engine to detect and understand what the alternative text is an image for. When used the right way, the alternative text for images can also help your website to rank at the top of Google images.
Page Performance

User experience is what determines if your page will rank at the top of the search engine or not. Positive user experience gives your website an upper hand in ranking whereas a negative user experience scares away users, meaning that no one will visit your website. Page experience signal consists of safe browsing, mobile-friendliness, and HTTPS security among other factors, which when optimized, makes the website more delightful for the users.

Consequently, there are other additional on-page SEO practices, such as related keywords and outbound links, which are all essential for getting started. You may have realized that all of the factors that have been mentioned above are within your control. This is entirely what on-page SEO deals with.

What is Off-Page SEO?

This is the opposite of the on-page SEO. The off-page SEO consists of actions taken out of your website to impact your rankings within the search engine results page. In other words, off-page SEO focuses mainly on increasing the authority of your domain by getting links from other websites. To calculate how authoritative your website is, you can use the domain authority platform to determine. All you have to do is to type in your domain name.

When looking at what is on-page and off-page SEO, the one element of your Google My Business page that you cannot manipulate is the customer review section. However, there are different strategies that you can use to obtain more Google reviews. Some of those effective ways are as follows:

  • Make a point of responding to both positive and negative feedback!
  • Request your customers to leave truthful feedback about your content!
  • Ensure that you are providing your clients with outstanding services and an experience that is worth leaving a review for.
  • Make it very easy and accessible for your clients to get into the review area of your Google My Business Page.
  • Consequently, there are different ways that you can use to build links to your website, and they include the following;
  • Focus on creating good and quality content that people want to link because they find it appropriate and valuable.
  • Have guests’ top blogs on sites that are related to yours. Their posts will have links that direct back to your website.
  • Share social media contents of your website which will ultimately generate links.

The quality of the link that is generated is more important than the quantity. This is why for you to earn valuable links, you have to create content that can be shared. This also improves your off-page SEO.

Furthermore, when determining what is on-page and off-page SEO, there are important factors that are to be considered. Some of the most important factors that rank off-page SEO are as follows:


The main reason why backlinks are very important in ranking off-page SEO is that they point back to your website. Consequently, backlinks can be generated through various forms from guest blogging, brand mentions, blog comments, participating in an industry community such as forums, and being featured in industry trade publications among others.

There are three main types of links that are important in off-page SEO. The good things about these links are that they are defined by how they were earned.

  • Natural links: these are links that are given through editorials and without any actions on the part of the page owner. An example of a natural link is where a fitness blogger adds a link that points back to their favorite fitness center.
  • Manually built links: these are links that are acquired through link-building activities. A good example of a link-building activity involves engaging customers to link your website or asking social media and other types of influencers to share your content.
  • Self-created links: from the name, you can already tell that these are links that you create on your website. They are created by different practices such as adding a backlink in an online forum or blog comment with an optimized anchor text.
    Domain Authority

This is another important off-page ranking factor that should be put into consideration when you are trying to differentiate what is on-page and off-page SEO. Domain Authority is another factor that is less in your control, meaning that you have no ability to control it. The main use of Domain Authority is that it helps search engines to determine how much they can trust you. However, Domain Authority is affected by different factors, some of which include the following:

  • How long you have had and maintained the domain name? The longer the period, the better.
  • What is the history of the domain name? If the domain name that you are using had previous owners, who never complies with the best laid-out practices, then the search engine will put that into consideration.
  • The number of the referring domains!

The two factors that play an important role in the growth of your business are search engines and organic traffic. This is because many people from your audience use a search engine to help in locating you. This is why implanting both types of search engine optimizations helps in finding more potential clients.

Social Signals

Social signals are basically the human interaction metrics on social platforms such as Facebook, Reddit, and LinkedIn among others. Some examples of these human interactions include likes, views, dislikes, and shares. I bet these are things that you have come across at one point when you are using your social media platform. These social signals communicate a lot in that it helps to showcase popularity and affinity for a given piece of content.

Irrespective of how links are generated, the links that offer the most contributions to SEO efforts are generally those that pass the most equity. There are many signals that positively contribute to the equity passed and they include the following:

  • How related is the linking site’s topic to the site that it is being linked to?
  • How popular is the linking site?
  • The originality and freshness of the link.
  • The anchor text used in the linking site should be completely relatable.
  • The trustworthiness of the site being linked.
  • The number of other links that are on the linking page.
  • The authority of the linking domain and the linking page.

In addition to that, when doing a comparison between what is on-page and off-page SEO, you will realize that in the off-page SEO, there is non-link related off-page SEO. The most commonly practiced off-page SEO strategy is earning links from external websites. Any of the activities that occur outside of your website and those that help in improving your search ranking position fall as part of the off-page SEO category. Just as a recap, these activities include social media marketing, influencer marketing, guest blogging, and linked and unlinked brand mentions.

You may probably be asking yourself how you can do off-page SEO. Well, at a higher level, improving the off-page SEO of a website basically involves improving the user perceptions and the search engine of the quality of the site. This only goes through by getting links from other sites, especially those sites that have a good reputation and are trustworthy, mentions of your brands, getting votes of confidence, and sharing your content from other sources outside of your website.

Which one has a more Impact on Website Ranking

What is on-page and off-page SEO is a topic that you may probably have an interest in, especially since SEO is known to be one of the most effective strategies that any business can use to make itself known to the public. Making a choice between the two types of SEOs, that is the on-page and the off-page SEO is sometimes not easy since it is like choosing between the foundation and the roofing of your house. One fact is that both on-page and off-page SEO work together to help in improving your search engine rankings.

However, one of these SEOs has more weight when compared to the other. It is important that you first focus on getting your on-page SEO before putting too much focus on off-page SEO. Remember, on-page SEOs deal with things that are within your control. This means that these are things that you can easily adjust to working for the better of your website. To make you better understand why you need to focus on the on-page SEO first, we are going to use an example of a house. When you want to build a house, you will focus on laying the foundation first before you think about putting up the roof. The foundation in this case is the on-page SEO whereas the roofing is the off-page SEO. Although both support that house, without the foundation, there is no house.

With on-page SEO, you can always come back from time to time and do necessary adjustments to your website. After you are satisfied that you have done your best, then you can comfortably move to off-page SEO. However, it is also important that you balance the two since this will help in making your website bilingual. This means that your users will be able to understand how you navigate your website as well as the search engine robots. This is how you start improving your website rankings. Therefore, although both SEOs have strong points, on-page SEO has a more impact on your website ranking. This is why more emphasis should be put on it before starting on the off-page SEO. All in all, both on-page and off-page SEOs work together to improve your search engine rankings on the search engine results page.


In summary, one of the best ways to get your website to be known is to strive to rank at the top of the search engine results page. How do you do this? You can achieve this by ensuring that you use keywords that users will automatically use, and use short URLs. This gives your website an upper hand especially since you know that users will find relevant and usable information when they click on your page. In addition to that, the anchor texts used should have titles that are in relation to the link when clicked. Therefore, using SEO strategy correctly is the best way to get your website ranking at the top of the search engine results page.

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