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Off-Page or On-Page SEO: Which Should You Prioritize?

When it comes to business technological advancements, search engine optimization is among the most invested in. However, there are two categories of it – on-page and off-page SEO, both vital for a success of an SEO campaign, yet somewhat different when it comes to the way you want to improve your search engine rankings.

How Do Search Engine Algorithms Work?

At their very core, search engines rely on ranking websites according to two basic metrics:

  • On-page – The content of your website
  • Off-page – How authoritative and/or popular your website is

What you rank for is by-and-large determined by your on-page factors, while the height of your rank is based on the off-page factors.

On-Page SEO

On-page SEO is focused on optimizing a variety of parts that constitute your web site to effect the search engine rankings. You have a complete control over it and can change on your very site. Getting familiarized with on-page SEO is vital for realizing how search engine algorithms work; these are the biggest included factors:

  • Tags – The targeted keywords should be put into the title tag of each page on your site.
  • Headings – Search engines give a lot of weight to headings that should contain targeted keywords. Nevertheless, the very content of the page should not be neglected.
  • Your URL – If possible, your URLs should contain keywords, but this doesn’t mean all of your current URLs have to be changed.
  • Page loading speed – If you aim towards achieving optimal speeds, not only will your site be more user-friendly and attract more visits, but you will receive some help from Google when it comes to the promotion of your website.

The main objective of on-page SEO is making sure that your site is not only read by search engine robots, but potential customers, as well. Having a good on-page SEO means making it easier for search engines to index your pages.

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Off-Page SEO

With off-page SEO, the story is a little different – it focuses on increasing your domain authority, based on getting links from other websites. This helps keep relevant sites, such as Wikipedia, on the very top of search results. Domain authority is used to calculate how authoritative your website is in comparison to other websites. These are some ideas of how you can build links to your website:

  • Use social media websites such as LinkedIn, even Facebook and Twitter to generate links
  • Try guest blogging on sites relevant to yours, which will, in return, provide links back to your own page or a website
  • Use emails to outreach to influencers within your industry and they will ultimately link to you
  • Lastly, make sure that your website is a source of great content and people will link to you – this is, perhaps the most important part.

With a huge amount of websites available out there, SEO professionals don’t find link quantity all-that important, but link quality. The number of links you need for a good off-page SEO is based on the Domain Authority of your peers.

Which of the Two is More Important?

This is not something to be settled with a simple judgement. In fact, it can easily be said that not only are both SEO types equally important, but also work together in order to improve search engine rankings. It should be mentioned, however, that off-page SEO depends on on-page SEO, which is exactly why content marketing services strongly advise to dedicate more focus on the latter. On-page SEO is the foundation of your website – although other parts of it play important roles, your site would be nothing without a proper foundation.

Keep in mind, though, that performing occasional maintenance of your on-page SEO aspects should be done more than occasionally.

Regardless off the fact that on-page SEO should be your primary concern, balancing between the two to make your website, well, bilingual. This ultimately helps both users and search engines understand it, which is exactly the approach to use for improving your website rankings.

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Marcus Jensen

Marcus is an Australian IT support professional. He’s running his own business, working with companies that outsource their IT maintenance. He often writes about technology, business and marketing and is a regular contributor on several sites.
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