Rand Fishkin’s Elements of a Well Optimized Website Page

Rand Fishkin uses the ludicrous title, Wizard of Moz. He’s founder and former CEO of Moz, co-author of a pair of books on SEO, and co-founder of Inbound.org. Rand’s an unsaveable addict of all things content, search, & social on the web, from his multiple blogs to Twitter, Google+, Facebook, LinkedIn, and a shared Instagram account. In his miniscule spare time, he likes to galavant around the world with Geraldine and then read about it on her superbly enjoyable travel blog. – Read full auto-biography here

Below are requirements Rand Fishkin believes a well optimized page should strive to meet:

Uniquely Valuable

  • Page provides authentic, obvious value beyond self-promotion of the host site /author
  • Content quality stands apart from the crowd by a significant margin
  • Text , images and multimedia are remarkable
  • Page would be described by 80%+ of visitors as useful, high quality and unique
  • Searchers who visit would b unlikely to go “back” from the page to choose a different result

Provides Phenomenal User Experience

  • Content and navigation elements are easily consumed/understood by users
  • Design is aesthetically polished, high quality and fit authenticity with the brand
  • Page layout makes scanning easy and important content elements obvious
  • Page renders fast (<0.5 secs to first response; <4 secs to primary content loaded)
  • A minimum number of browser requests are required to fully the page
  • Page is browser or device responsive(or specifically optimized to each as appropriate)

Keyword-Targeted

  • Page targets a single searcher intent (and associated keyword phrases)
  • Primary keyword is the first words of the title element
  • Primary keyword phrase appears in page URL
  • Content logical and comprehensive, employing related terms/ phrases
  • Keyword phrases are highlighted with bold/italic/sizing/etc as appropriate
  • Primary keywords are used prominently in the page headline
  • Primary keyword is found in the body content 2X+
  • Secondary keywords appear in headline/title/body as appropriate
  • Images on the page employ descriptive, keyword-rich alt attributes
  • Descriptive anchor text is used in links pointing to the page

Built to be Shared through Social Network

  • URL is descriptive and makes the pages topic obvious
  • Includes sharing options to the optimal social networks for page’s audience
  • Page has inherent sharing value (i.e. those who share it will be praised by their audiences and additional amplification is likely)
  • As appropriate, employ tags for Facebook Open Graph, Twitter Cards etc.

Multi-Device Ready

  • Renders in every (popular) browser properly
  • Optimized to render legibly and elegantly on every screen size
  • Employs the same URL when requested/loaded on every device

Crawler/Bot

  • URL is static (contain no parameters)
  • Content is unique to this URL (all duplicates canonicalize to it)
  • Content loads in page’s HTML (not via post-load JS/AJAX/iFrames//etc)
  • No more than 4 clicks are required from any page on the site to reach the URL
  • Redirects from other/older versions use 301s or rel = canonical (not 302s)
  • Redirects from other/older versions come from direct (no redirect chains)
  • If the page is temporarily unavailable, status code 503 is returned by the server
  • As appropriate, page is included in an RSS feed; RSS URL is canonicalized /redirects to original
  • Meta robots tag allows crawling and indexing
  • Robots.txt file does not block crawler access
  • Host server does not restrict search crawler IPs
  • Key page elements are character length limited:
    • Title <75 characters
    • URL <90 characters
    • Meta Description <160 characters
  • URL is included in site’s XML Sitemap file

Meta Data, Schema and Rich Snippets

  • As appropriate to the content/topic/vertical, page includes schema.org microdata markup options
  • As appropriate to the content/topic/vertical, page includes Google’s rich snippet markup options
  • Employs primary and secondary keywords in the meta description
  • Meta description inspires interest and click-through from SERPs/Social
  • Generally avoids meta keywords (unless used for internal search)
  • As appropriate to country/language, page employs hreflang

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