Knowing how best to optimise the referencing of your web pages (a technique referred to as On-Page SEO) is becoming increasingly essential. A study by Raven, a software publisher specialised in auditing tools intended for marketers, gives some guidance on the most commonplace mistakes. Here are the three main ones to avoid.
78% of photos or illustrations are not referenced. Raven conducted its study between February 2013 and June 2015 by crawling some 200 million webpages from which it analysed 4 billion SEO On-Page issues (SEO work carried out inside the webpage and on its source code). It revealed the following three main characteristics:
- The importance of photos, images and illustrations: 78% of the pages crawled included photos or images that were badly referenced (missing title or alt attributes).
- The domination of Google Analytics for traffic analysis: 83% of the pages crawled had Google Analytics installed on them.
- Duplicate content continues to thrive: 29% of the pages had duplicate content.
The 3 most widespread mistakes. Among the lessons to be learnt from this study, here are the 3 most widespread mistakes concerning On-Page SEO:
- Images with missing title or alt attributes. The referencing of images and illustrations on an internet site is all too often overlooked whereas, every single day, Google Image search receives over 1 billion page views. According to the Raven study, 53% of the pages crawled by Raven had photos with missing title attributes. That’s a hefty percentage! As for alt attributes, used to describe the content of the image, 25% of the pages crawled simply didn’t have any. We advise you to check your site’s photos and images to make sure everything is in order!
- Meta-descriptions that are either missing or with the wrong length. The purpose of the meta-description is to give a concise, informative summary of your webpage’s content in approximately 160 characters. It must be entered inside “description” HTML meta name tags. 34% of the pages crawled by Raven had an incorrect meta-description: too short, too long, missing or duplicate. This is really unfortunate since this meta-description appears in the page’s title in the search results displayed; it helps to encourage the visitor to click.
- Pages with duplicate content. The last important finding concerns duplicate content, which accounted for 29% of the pages crawled by Raven. The indexing algorithms used by search engines such as Google tend to penalise duplicate content. Duplicate content consists of website pages with the same title or with blocks of text that match other content on the same site or on third party sites.
If all these referencing issues seem a little complicated, the best way to get started is with Europages! Simply create an E*Page optimised for search engine referencing. Find out more.