How to optimize your existing content for SEO

by Andrew Larson
Published 10-3-2016

Businesses often fall into the trap of spending big bucks to revamp their content in the interests of climbing the search engine rankings. We’re here to tell you that, often, there’s a simpler and cheaper solution, and it’s called on-page optimization.

What is on-page optimization?

This term relates to tweaking or improving your existing content so that it performs better in the search engine rankings. By following the below tips, you should start to see a spike in your traffic, without spending unnecessary amounts of money on new content. For the purposes of this article, we’re going to assume that you haven’t done any keyword research.

Research your keywords

If you’ve started blogging without any thought as to what your audience are searching for, it’s time to start considering keywords. You can use Google’s Keyword Tool for this. You can discover what phrases potential customers are actually typing into Google's search bar. You're also able to filter this by region in case you're only looking for business in your area. Once you’ve found a relevant keyword, or keywords, based on impressions and clicks, you’re ready to get started!

Prioritize your existing content

It’s likely that you’ll have hundreds of pages of content already on your site, but it’s best to start with pages that attract a large number of impressions but a low click-through rate; this is because you’re more likely to rank for pages with a higher amount of impressions and, once you’ve optimized, you should be able to use the increase in click-through rate as a barometer for success for the rest of your site.

Updating content

Once you’ve identified the pages you’re going to start optimizing, there are a few things you need to check through. These will be easier to monitor and update if you’re using WordPress, if you’re not, learn or ask your site admin how.

  • Ensure all page titles, meta descriptions and main body content include at least one of your target keywords.
  • Check titles and page descriptions are within character limits – they should be 65 and 160 respectively. 
  • Make sure you have internal links to your targetted page.
  • Ensure all content has at least one internal or external link – ‘link juice’ is a huge contributing factor to ranking.

Bear in mind that on-page optimization should be a constant process – book some time in your calendar every couple of months to ensure your existing content is performing as it should, and review keyword usage regularly.