Jonathon Roberts

Technical SEO vs On-Page SEO

Key Takeaways

Distinct Roles in SEO: Technical SEO and On-Page SEO serve unique yet complementary roles in improving a website’s search engine ranking. Technical SEO focuses on optimising the website’s backend infrastructure for better crawling and indexing, while On-Page SEO concentrates on the content and elements visible to users.

Technical SEO Essentials: Key elements of Technical SEO include site speed optimisation, ensuring mobile-friendliness, effective indexing and crawlability, structured site architecture, and SSL encryption for security.

On-Page SEO Fundamentals: On-Page SEO revolves around producing high-quality, relevant content, strategic keyword usage, proper structuring with headers, image optimisation, and internal linking.

Interdependency for Maximum Efficiency: A robust Technical SEO foundation is essential for On-Page SEO efforts to be effective. Conversely, even the best technical setup is limited without optimised on-page content.

Practical Implementation Strategies: Regular audits for technical issues and consistent content quality checks are crucial. Using tools like Google Search Console for Technical SEO and focusing on natural keyword integration and content value for On-Page SEO are recommended practices.

Holistic SEO Strategy: Both Technical and On-Page SEO should be integrated into a comprehensive SEO strategy for optimal website performance, ensuring both search engine friendliness and a superior user experience.

Many people are unaware that there is a difference between technical SEO vs On-page SEO and think that they are both the same element of SEO. However, there are some key differences between the two, therefore, they should be counted as two different elements of any SEO campaign.

Technical SEO

Technical SEO

Definition and Overview

Technical SEO refers to the process of optimising a website’s technical elements to facilitate better crawling and indexing by search engines. This aspect of SEO focuses on enhancing the site’s infrastructure, making it easier for search engine bots to access, interpret, and index the website’s content.

Key Elements

Site Speed: Site speed is crucial for user experience and search engine rankings. Fast-loading websites are favoured by search engines, as they provide a better user experience. Optimising server response times, reducing file sizes, and leveraging browser caching are some ways to enhance site speed.

Mobile-Friendliness: With the increasing use of mobile devices, having a mobile-friendly website is essential. Responsive design, which ensures that a site looks and works well on all devices, is a key aspect of Technical SEO.

Indexing and Crawlability: Ensuring that search engines can crawl and index a website effectively is fundamental. This involves managing robots.txt files, creating sitemaps, and addressing crawl errors.

Site Architecture: A well-structured website helps search engines and users navigate the site more effectively. This includes a logical hierarchy, clean URL structures, and the use of breadcrumbs.

Secure Sockets Layer (SSL): SSL encryption (https://) is vital for website security and is a ranking factor for search engines. It ensures that the data transmitted between the web server and browser remains secure.

Importance and Impact

Technical SEO lays the foundation for a website’s search engine performance. Without it, even the best content may remain unseen. It directly impacts a website’s ability to rank by ensuring that search engines can access, crawl, and index the site without issues. Additionally, it significantly affects the user experience, which indirectly influences SEO through metrics like bounce rates and time on site.

On-Page SEO

On-Page SEO

Definition and Overview

On-page SEO encompasses the strategies involved in optimising individual web pages to rank higher and earn more relevant traffic in search engines. It deals primarily with the content and HTML source code of a page, as opposed to external links and other external signals.

Key Elements

Content Quality: The cornerstone of On-Page SEO is high-quality, original content that delivers real value to users. Content should be engaging, informative, and tailored to the target audience, addressing their needs and questions.

Keyword Optimisation: Identifying and incorporating relevant keywords is vital. This includes using keywords in titles, headings, and throughout the content in a natural and reader-friendly manner.

Headers and HTML Tags: Proper use of headers (H1, H2, etc.) helps structure content and makes it more readable for both users and search engines. Title tags, meta descriptions, and alt tags for images also play a significant role in On-Page SEO.

Image Optimisation: Images enhance user engagement, but they need to be optimised for size and loading times. Using descriptive, keyword-rich file names and alt tags helps in optimising images.

Internal Linking: Effective internal linking (linking to other pages within the same website) improves navigation and helps search engines understand the site structure and content hierarchy.

Importance and Impact

On-page SEO is critical for search engines to understand what a webpage is about and gauge if it answers the search query effectively. High-quality, optimised content is more likely to rank higher in search engine results. Keywords, when used appropriately, help in matching with the right search queries. The overall user experience, influenced by content readability, structure, and visual elements, significantly impacts engagement metrics and, by extension, SEO performance.

Comparative Analysis

Target audience

Distinctions between Technical SEO and On-Page SEO

Technical SEO and On-Page SEO, while both crucial to a website’s search engine performance, address distinctly different aspects of SEO. Technical SEO is primarily concerned with the website’s backend and infrastructure, ensuring that search engines can efficiently crawl, index, and render the site. It deals with the technicalities that lay the groundwork for a site’s visibility, such as site speed, mobile responsiveness, secure connections (SSL), and site architecture. These elements are largely invisible to the end user but are fundamental for search engines.

On the other hand, On-Page SEO focuses on the content and elements that are visible to users when they visit a website. It includes optimising the content quality, ensuring the strategic use of keywords, structuring content with appropriate headers, and optimising visual elements like images. On-page SEO makes the content more appealing and relevant to users’ search queries, enhancing the chances of ranking higher in search engine results pages (SERPs).

How They Complement Each Other

Technical SEO and On-Page SEO are interdependent and complement each other. A website with solid technical SEO sets a strong foundation for its content to be effectively crawled and indexed. However, without high-quality, well-optimised on-page content, the site might still struggle to rank well. Conversely, excellent On-Page SEO can only perform to its fullest potential on a website with a robust technical setup. Together, they create a comprehensive SEO strategy that caters to both search engines and users, maximising a website’s visibility, usability, and ranking potential.

Practical Application and Strategies

CSS and Javascript

To effectively implement both Technical and On-Page SEO:

Technical SEO: Regularly audit your website for technical issues. Focus on improving site speed, ensuring mobile-friendliness, and securing your site with SSL. Use tools like Google Search Console to monitor crawl issues.

On-Page SEO: Produce high-quality, relevant content regularly. Incorporate targeted keywords naturally, optimise your headers, and use descriptive alt tags for images. Maintain a logical internal linking structure to enhance user navigation and content discoverability.


In conclusion, Technical SEO and On-Page SEO are integral, complementary components of a holistic SEO strategy, each addressing distinct yet interconnected aspects of website optimisation.

Frequently Asked Questions

While focusing on just one can yield some results, a combined approach is essential for optimal performance and ranking.

Regular updates are necessary as both technical standards and content relevance evolve over time.

Basic SEO practices can be implemented individually, but for more complex aspects, especially technical SEO, professional assistance is often beneficial.

Technical SEO involves optimising site speed through various methods like image optimisation, server response time improvement, and file compression.

Yes, there are numerous SEO tools available that can assist with both technical and on-page SEO strategies.

Jonathon Roberts

Jonathon Roberts

Jonathon has been working within the SEO and Digital Marketing industry since 2019. Jonathon started in the industry while completing his degree in Business Management & Marketing Management at the University of Chester. He's now Senior SEO Executive at Fly High Media, helping businesses to grow their presence through SEO. Previously working at other local digital marketing agencies.
View All Posts