Optimize your page and blog content for search engines

Last updated: December 6, 2019

Applies to:

Marketing Hub  Professional, Enterprise
Legacy Marketing Hub Basic
HubSpot CMS

This article covers all available optimization recommendations in HubSpot, and how to fix them. Following these best practices over time will improve rankings in search results for phrases related to your topic and subtopic keywords. This means you'll see more traffic categorized as organic search in your sources data.

The optimize tool scans the HTML of your content for the page title, headers, links, images, and body, just like a search engine would. That's because the HTML markup of the page is what's most reliably scanned by search engines. Keep in mind that the HTML of the page doesn't include any text or links loaded over scripts, like a call-to-action.

Focus your content on one topic or subtopic

To help search engines understand your content, include relevant topic/subtopic phrases in your title, meta description, and the body of your page. By framing your content around a clearly defined topic or subtopic, search engines can more easily understand what your page is about.

For best results, include your topic or subtopic keywords in your title, meta description, and the body of your page. You can also use related keywords your target audience might be searching for. Learn more about using the Google Search Console integration to see which search phrases lead to views and clicks on your page in search results.

If your content is attached to a topic, the optimize tool will scan your page for the following:

  • Title mentions topic/subtopic phrase: including the topic phrase in the page title helps visitors and search engines understand what your page is about.
  • Meta description mentions topic/subtopic phrase: including the topic phrase in the meta description helps visitors and search engines understand what your page is about.
  • Page body has topic/subtopic phrases: content attached to a subtopic keyword should feature that phrase and related keywords in the content and meta description.

If your page or blog post is attached to a topic in the SEO tool, you'll see recommended phrases for your page in the sidebar panel.


How to get started with topic based content

Write a clear title

Your page title tells search engines the main idea of your page. The title also appears in bold on a search results page. A clear, descriptive, and compelling title gives you the best chance of being found by your target market.


The optimize tool scans your title for the following:

  • Page has a title: titles appear in search results, and help search engines know what your page is about.
  • Title is 70 characters or less: a title that's less than 70 characters is less likely to get cut off in search results. Your page title is 19 characters.
  • Title and domain name are unique: repeating the domain name in your title makes this content look less trustworthy to search engines and visitors.

How to fix a missing title

You're required to enter a title when creating a new page in HubSpot. When creating a new blog post, hover over the blog post title module and click the pencil icon edit to enter your blog post title.

If your page or blog post is missing a title:

  • Click the Settings tab at the top of the content editor.
  • Enter a title:
    • In the blog post editor, enter your title in the Blog title field.
    • In the landing page or website page editor, enter your title in the Page title field.

Include exactly one H1 tag

Headers on your page tell search engine what main topics are covered in your content. If there isn't an H1 tag, search engines will be missing information about the main theme of your page. Having more than one H1 tag is confusing for search engines, so consider using H2 or H3 tags for subheadings as you write about the main topic of your page.

The optimize tool scans your headings for the following:

  • Page has a single H1 tag: your page should have exactly one H1 tag to make it easier for search engines to know what your content is about. More than one H1 tag make it hard for search engines to know which one is more important.

How to fix your H1 tag count

  • If you're missing an H1 tag:
    • Highlight the text on your page that you want to use.
    • In the upper left, click the Style dropdown menu and select H1.
  • If you have extra H1 tags:
    • Highlight the extra H1 tag on your page.
    • In the upper left, click the Style dropdown menu and select H2.
  • If you're not sure where your extra H1 tags are coming from:
    • Open a preview of your page, or visit the live page.
    • Right click on your page content and select Page Source.
    • On your keyboard, click Command/Control + F and search for h1. This will highlight all instances of H1 tags on your page.
    • Make your edits to the additional H1 tags in the editor or on your template. If your H1 tags are embedded within a rich text module, you may need to access the source code to remove the additional <h1> tags.

Include high quality links

Search engines scan pages for valid links to make sure your content is reliable and up to date. The optimize tool scans your entire page for the number of links, including your navigation menu and page footer.

  • Number of links: too many outbound links creates a bad experience for your visitors and may cause search engines to view your page as low-quality or as spam. The optimize tool also calculates the total number of links on your page.

How to fix broken links between your HubSpot-hosted pages

You can identify broken links to and from your HubSpot-hosted pages and blog posts in the page performance details in the Optimization tab.

Please note: for internal links to be detected, they must be hosted on the same subdomain as the page you're analyzing.

  • In your HubSpot account, navigate to your blog, landing pages or website pages.
  • Hover over an existing published page or blog post in your dashboard, then and click the name of the page or post.
  • Click the Optimization tab.
  • In the left sidebar menu, click Internal Links. The table displays a list of links to and from the page.
  • To find broken links on your page, click Links from page and review the Status column. A red circle with an X will appear in this column if a link is broken. Keep in mind that changes made to the links on your page will take 24 hours to appear here.


Write a compelling meta description

The meta description for your page appears under the page title in search results. Think about your title as the main idea of your page, and the meta description as compelling details about what this page covers. Giving visitors a preview of your content helps them decide whether it's what they're looking for.


The optimize tools scans your meta description for the following:

  • Meta description and title are unique: repeating your meta description in the title looks redundant to visitors, and can appear untrustworthy to search engines.
  • Page has a meta description: your meta description appears under the page title in search results.
  • Meta description is 155 characters or less: a meta description that's less than 155 characters is less likely to get cut off on a search results page.

How to fix your meta description

To add or edit a meta description for a page or blog post:

  • Click the Settings tab at the top of the content editor.
  • Enter your meta description in the Meta description section. The tool keeps track of how many characters are entered here.

Make images accessible to visitors and search engines

Search engines can't read images, but they can read alt text to learn what the image is about. Alt text is also a best practice to make your website content accessible for all types of visitors.

Good alt text is less than 125 characters and provides a detailed description of the image. Use natural language to write a clear and understandable phrase, instead of listing lots of keywords. Keep in mind what the text will sound like to a person using a screen reader to view your content. Learn more about how to write good alt text.

The optimize tool will check for alt text on every image on your page. If there's an image detected without alt text, you'll see the image file name listed under your optimization recommendations.

  • All images have alt text: alt text helps search engines and visually impaired users understand what your image is about.

How to fix alt text

Please note: for alt text to be detected by the optimize tool, it must be within the HTML of the page.

  • If you recognize the image by its file name, add alt text to your image.
  • If you don't recognize the image by its file name, you can open a preview of your page and inspect the page:
    • Right click on the page, then select Inspect.
    • In the inspector, click the selector icon in the upper left.
    • Click directly on the image to see its file name.

  • In some cases, the image might not be editable on the page. In this case, navigate to your page template to add alt text to your image in the design manager tool.
    • In your template, select the module that contains your image.
    • In the inspector on the right, modify the Default content to add your alt text.
  • If the optimization tool isn't recognizing the alt text for your image, it's probably because your template contains a custom module. In this case, work with your developer to add the alt text in the source code of the module.

Optimize your content for search terms

To improve search engines rankings, use keyword phrases directly related to the topic or subtopic you're writing about. Think about including search terms someone might be using if they wanted to learn more about your topic or subtopic.

The actual length of your content depends on what you're writing about. A great way to determine how long your content should be is to see what ranks highly in search results for your topic or subtopic phrase. If most content is short and concise, you should aim for a similar length. If you find more long form content that goes into great detail, try to do the same thing in your own content. The most important thing is to consider your audience and what they need to know about the subject.

The optimization tool scans your page to check the word count:

  • Page has at least 300 words: pages that rank well in search results give an in-depth answer to visitors' questions. Aim for at least 300 words.

The optimization tool recommends including at least 300 words as a general rule. Be sure to do your research and determine the best length for the topic you're writing about.