WordPress is a commonly used CMS. In fact, if we were to check how many sites are powered by it, we would surely get a staggering number, as there are definitely millions of them. However, despite being so popular, it is worth pointing out that WordPress has a drawback – and that is the out-of-box SEO is not a strong point for sure. So in this guide the main aim is to learn what works best to optimise your WordPress setup. This will help you to get more search traffic to tour site or blog. So let us go over some of the most helpful tips you can try to put into practice:
- Title Tags:
The title tag is what tells search engines what your site or page is all about. Thus it is a very important on-site factor. To put it simply, considering that your homepage is probably ranking according to the site name, it would not be a good idea to use the same words for the title tag. Otherwise you would end up ranking it more than once. So it is recommended that you actually remove the blog or site name altogether.
- Meta Tags:
Whenever you make a search in Google you are provided with a snippet of content underneath the page link. This can be customized by changing the meta description tag for your page. The search engines will be able to determine relevance and rankings through various means. Keywords used to be of critical importance, but nowadays the technology has become more advanced, and in effect search engines are not relying on keywords as much as they used to. But dynamic keywords should still be used. You can also use the plugin Headspace so as to auto-fill meta-descriptions. This is based on the description of your category. The best descriptions are always the ones that are manually written, but if you tend to post often, this tool might be helpful.
Simply put, permalinks are the URL’s for your posts. Often these links include numbers and signs, but you can change them so that they make sense when read. It will not only look better but it is also effective for SEO purposes too. In fact the words in the URL will be highlighted in the search engine results, making it more relevant for search queries. Permalinks can easily be changed in WordPress. In fact there is a specific section dedicated to Permalinks in the Settings. Here you can essentially choose the format you prefer.
- Focusing on a Keyphrase
It is always highly recommended to optimize your site around a keyphrase that can manage to send you search traffic. You can think of a keyphrase yourself, or else you could use the Google external keyword tool so as to generate some great phrases which people will commonly use when searching online. Once you decide on the keyphrase you can use it in your site’s heading, your logo, the title tag for the homepage and even as an anchor text in links.
- Turn on Pingbacks
Getting more links to your site will automatically help to increase your search engine rankings. In WordPress you have an option which you can turn on, which basically notifies any blogs that you linked to them. Chances are that they will return the favour.
Interlinking refers to the process where your blog posts are linked to your other blog posts. This is very useful for SEO purposes and it will also enable readers to access your other posts, which will ultimately mean more page views.
- Using www or not:
When accessing sites there are those which can be accessed with and without the www. WordPress will handle any redirects when the www is not included.
- Nofollowing sculpting
With nofollow sculpting you can divert to pages where you want the link weight to go. Nofollow links are commonly used for the contact form page and for the about us page.
- Turning off Comment Pages
Comments will affect your page speed. So if you receive a lot of comments for your posts, it may be best to turn them off rather than have them paginated. This can be done in the Discussion option in the Settings of WordPress.
- Google Webmaster Tools
There are various Google Webmaster tools that can offer you several benefits. Among these there are tools that suggest the keyphrases that will rank highly, if there are any broken links, or if your site has been hacked. With these Google Webmaster tools you will be notified of important matters relating to your site.
- Building Links
Finally, the most effective way to get traffic from search engines is through backlinks. It is crucial that you devote time to building links to your site as this forms an integral part of on-site optimisation. There are several ways with which you can build links including:
- Writing original content – writing interesting and valuable articles is very important. You can get lots of links from relevant bloggers which will in turn lead to more traffic.
- Guest posts – links from guest posts will send traffic to your site or blog.
- Link out – every time you link out, there are going to be people who link back. So if you encounter something on another site that is interesting or valuable in some way, it is a good idea to share it. Mind you – this is not about link exchanges.
- Collaboration with other influencers – there are several other influencers in your niche. So it is a good idea to connect to them so as to inspire more people to talk about you. The more involved they get, the more they will help to spread the word about you.