What Is The Difference Between On-Page & Off-Page SEO

difference between off-page seo and on-page seo

Why You Need SEO

Whether you’re a novice or a pro, it’s likely that at some point you’ve asked yourself how to get your site to rank higher. There are two main ways of doing this: on-page and off-page SEO. Both of them are important and can help your rankings but only by focusing on one will you really be able to achieve the best results in the long run.

Search engine optimization (SEO) is one of the most effective ways for attracting potential customers to your website. But here’s the thing—you need to use it in the right way. To generate organic traffic, you need to rank on page one of the SERP. And that’s where you need SEO.

Search Engine Optimization is usually split into two general areas On-page SEO and Off-Page SEO. In this post, we are going to look at each and explain what they are. Which one is better. Are they even worth the time? What is the difference? They both play an important role in your website’s performance, so let’s take a closer look at each one and determine which one is more important.

There is no question that an effective SEO strategy is composed of both on-page and off-page components. The question is no longer whether you should have an on-page or off-page strategy, but rather how much time and effort should be allocated to each.
Both play an important role in making your website more visible resulting in more organic traffic.

  • On-page SEO refers to factors on your own website that you can optimize such as the underlying code and the content.
  • Off-page SEO refers to actions taken to affect your site’s trustworthiness and authority by building the right inbound links and social signals.
(Source: The 10 Essential SEO Ranking Factors You Need to Rank #1– OptinMonster).
VIDEO: On-Page SEO vs. Off-Page SEO

On-page vs Off-page SEO

On-page SEO refers to how search engines rank your website based on content and on-page elements. Off-page SEO is the process of generating backlinks to increase popularity and improve the visibility of your website.If you want to succeed with search engine optimization SEO, it’s important to know and understand the difference between On-page SEO and Off page SEO and how to apply them.

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INFOGRAPHIC: What’s the Difference Between On-Page SEO and Off-Page SEO?

On-page SEO

On-page optimization includes:

  • Adding relevant keywords to your content (keyword research)
  • Using H1-H6 heading that includes keywords you want to rank for
  • Optimizing titles and meta tags
  • Ensuring that all images have an alt tag that describes what it shows
  • Making the website easy to navigate with clear site architecture.

On-page SEO refers to factors affecting the ranking of a website on search engine results pages (SERPs) that are controlled by the website owner. The most important factor of on-page SEO involves developing high-quality content around relevant keywords and topics.

It includes elements like page titles, meta descriptions, headings, optimized images, alt text, and much more. On-page SEO involves various techniques that help to improve the user experience of your website, make it easier for search engine bots to find your content, and ultimately increase your chances of ranking higher in the SERPs.If you want to maintain or improve your rankings you need to constantly review and revise your pages and optimize them based on data found in Analytics.

On Page SEO Checklist for Higher Google Rankings

On-page SEO is the only thing you have full control of when it comes to SEO. It mainly consists of optimizing your website so that search engines can easily crawl and understand your website content. There are a number of essential on-page elements you need to include. These elements are the foundation of your on-page SEO strategy, and they can help you increase your site’s ranking, bring more traffic to your website, and boost your business.

Source: i.Visual.ly

On-Page SEO Factors

Off-page SEO refers to techniques that can be used to improve the position of a website in the search engine results page (SERPs). Many people associate off-page SEO with link building, but it is not only that. In general, Off-page SEO has to do with promotion methods – beyond website design – for the purpose of ranking a website higher in the search results.

Below is the list of elements located on every page that are important for on-page SEO optimization. If you’re looking for a full list check out On-Page Ranking Factors on Moz’s website.

  • Page Title
  • Meta description tag
  • H1-H5 tags
  • Optimized Image with alt tags
  • URL structure
  • User-friendly navigation
  • Fast loading pages
  • Hi-quality content
  • Optimized internal links

Title Tags

The most important web optimization element is the title tag. The title tag should be a short but descriptive one, which will help the visitors learn more about you and your business. The title tag is indexed on the improved search engine rankings engine search engines, so the title tag has greater importance than other components. Your title should include keywords you want your page to rank for.

Meta tag

The meta tag is a short description of your webpage. Web pages without proper meta tags are less likely to get indexed by search engines. Search engines use different algorithms to determine which pages are relevant for a query. Meta tags tell search engines about the page’s content and help Google determine the pages’ importance and relevancy. A well-written meta tag can greatly increase Click Through Rate.

H1,H2, H3 Tags

You must optimize your content for H1-h6 tags. You should only have one H1 tag containing the keywords or key phrases you want your search engine results pages SERPs page to be optimized for. Also, add sub-heading that use H2 or H3 to break up the long blocks of alt text and assign variations of keywords to these tags.

Internal Links

Internal links are the connections between web pages on your site. They show the user where they can quickly get from one page to another. In addition, internal links will also help users find related content and keep your site navigation streamlined.

They help users navigate from one section to another, increase the discoverability of content, and improve search engine ranking.

The importance of Internal linking can’t be underestimated. It’s one of the most essential aspects of a well-structured blog post.

Image optimization

Image optimization is another important aspect of on-page SEO you need to pay attention to. In addition to adding alt tags, you need to optimize your images. The first one is the file size and loading speed of an individual image and the second is proper file naming and optimization. Search engine spiders can only read the text and not images, so alt tags are used to make them comprehensible to search engines.

INFOGRAPHIC: Top On-page SEO factors

Off-Page SEO

Off-page SEO refers to the components of search engine optimization (SEO) that happen “off” or outside a website. Understanding how off-page SEO works and how it affects website authority is an important element for online marketers who want to improve organic search rankings for their websites.

Off-page SEO includes all the factors that aren’t under your control, but could still help with your website’s ranking and visibility in the search engine results pages. So what are the Off-page factors you need to pay attention to? Below you’ll find a comprehensive list of top Off-page factors that influence website domain authority and search engine rankings.

Off-Page Ranking Factors

  1. Link Building
  2. Social Media
  3. Brand Mentions
  4. Guest Blogging
  5. Local Directories (Google Business Directory, Yellow Pages)
  6. Business Review Websites (Yelp)
  7. Influence Marketing
  8. Participation in Forums & FB Groups
  9. Creating Content for Q&A sites (Quora)
  10. Designing Infographics
VIDEO: Off Page SEO: 7 Powerful Techniques to Grow Your Website Traffic

Link Building

Link building is one of the most important factors determining how well your website will rank. Having external links pointing to your site directly impacts your website visibility. It is not the number and quality of links pointing to your site that is the important consideration, but the websites from where these links come. You need to add links from websites that are rated high.

Social Media

Almost everyone has a social media account either on Twitter or Facebook or Google+. Effective social media marketing will make your profile more attractive and more people can find your profile and visit you. Social media optimization is a very efficient method for promoting an online business.


Both On-page SEO and off-page SEO have vital importance in bringing valuable traffic to online businesses. You need to understand the difference between on-page SEO work and off-page SEO and how to utilize them in your marketing.

On-Page and Off-Page Resources and Links:

Infographic: On-page & Off-page SEO Checklist

Image by Photo Mix from Pixabay

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    About Author: Gene is the co-founder of both Big Apple Media and Happy Website Design. He shares his expertise on SEO, digital marketing, web design and development. He also created and manages Creative Web Design & Digital Marketing Group on LinkedIn. Join to learn more about these topics.

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