Mark Twain once quipped, “Clothes make the man.  Naked people have little or no influence on society.”  Today, the humorous quote came to mind regarding on-site optimization.  Search engine optimization expands all the time; as SEs change algorithms, the definition and scope of search engine optimization services remains malleable.

While such practices as social media optimization and link building focus on attracting attention to individual pages, on-site practices implement and “dress” them.  A well-structured SEO campaign develops a purpose for each page.  Once a page’s purpose is understood, it’s time for proper attire.

Keywords

We know good keyword usage is part of on-site optimization, however, considering a page’s purpose helps properly dress the page with appropriate keywords.  In some cases, a brand may wonder how to delegate usage on the page.

Do you want the page to inform about a particular service, serving as part of the sale cycle?  Optimize the page for that particular service.  Do you want the page to inform customers about your brand?  Optimize the page for your brand name, helping it rank well in association with brand-related queries.  While some clients are in love with particular campaign words and phrases, it is necessary to understand some words “clash” with a page’s purpose.  You may want to wear your ripped, $500 designer jeans because they’re comfortable and “cool,” but you’re meeting a potential business client; ripped jeans don’t fit the occasion regardless of the jean-brand popularity and prestige.

In some cases, stark, keyword focus may take a backseat to viral intentions.  For instance, your brand may develop a resource page highly relevant to your industry.  At conclusion, the page may lack particular keyword focus, yet it’s highly valuable to users, making it a target for social sharing.  Grandma’s old necklace doesn’t really flow well with the rest of your outfit, but it always attracts compliments and starts conversations with onlookers.

Pictures, Banners, Navigation Bars, Etc

Pictures and banners supplement text, offering additional information or aesthetic displays.  Also, geometric shapes help segment a Web page, providing more white space.  Including keywords and meta information along with banners and pictures facilitates search engine optimization.  Navigation bars also help users browse and are noticed by search engine bots.  However, sometimes it’s advantageous to block bots from crawling particular aspects of your site.

In some cases, the ancillary presence of banners, pictures, navigation bars, pulls from others pages, and so on, are not best serving the purpose of the page.  You want to add to your look, donning that new pillbox hat, but it’s not helping matters much.  Maybe it’s better left in the back of the closet for now.

External Links

SEs love sites that regularly produce content.  They also love sites providing additional resources, making external links an element of a properly dressed page.  Adding high-quality, on-topic external links enhances the authority and usability of the page.  It aligns the page with other pages and browsers of similar interests.  You’re an individual but you’re also part of a larger realm of interest, your city’s football team.  You wear your jersey out in public, calling attention to your interest, attracting others with the same hobby or on-topic curiosity.