While it can be incredibly simple to set up a WordPress website, what’s not so easy is making sure that it is properly optimized.
WordPress is ideal when it comes to SEO. However, that doesn’t mean that there aren’t a few changes that you can make in order to make it even better. Let’s discuss a few easy strategies that you can implement to boost the SEO for your WordPress site.
Optimize your theme
Whether you have a free theme or you are using one that costs hundreds of dollars code can be extremely complicated. Unfortunately, this is bad news for your SEO and website performance. And what’s worse, if you’re not advanced at coding, then there is very little that you can do.
However, if you are someone who is able to understand at least a little bit of code, then take a look at yours. You should be able to tell if your theme is performance oriented or not. If your theme is highly rich and makes queries to the server while it loads, then you should get rid of it if you don’t need this level of functionality. If your theme works fairly well and only has a few problem areas, then you can always patch it based on tips from your developer.
Block all spam comments
The new versions of WordPress are very efficient when it comes to nofollow links that are posted by the users in the comments. But you need to take steps to prevent these comments from ever showing up in the first place. Why is this? Well, spam comments don’t contribute any real value and they can also be bad in terms of search engine optimization if they are off-topic. In fact, your page may be penalized or flagged as spam.
Use a responsive design
Google tends to favor websites that are responsive in the searches from mobile devices. And that’s because they usually offer a better user experience. It offers the same experience no matter what device visitors are using. So if you would like to improve user experience and SEO, switch to a responsive design. Default themes such as Twenty Eleven and the Twenty Thirteen offer excellent custom themes.
Link your new posts to old posts
One of the best ways to feed the search engines relevant content from your website is to link internally. Not only does this practice create a virtual map for your site, but it also makes it easier for both bots and users to navigate it. The best strategy is to manually link to your old but related posts using anchor text that you have chosen manually. This ensures that your old posts get more traffic.
Tweak your titles
The titles of your blog posts can have a huge effect on the SERPs. So your titles need to be informative and include the most relevant keywords. This can be particularly helpful when it comes to ranking in the search engines. The key is to place low-competition keywords in the title. Just make sure that people are actually searching for them. Use the Google’s keyword planner in order to check local and global search stats and competition.
Use relevant keywords within the first 100 words
When it comes to indexing your page, Google will give the first couple of paragraphs the most weight. So use this to your advantage.
Use these paragraphs to describe what your post is about. Also, include your keywords within these sections. You should also link to your most important internal posts within the first couple of paragraphs.
Fix your broken links
If your website has too many broken links, the search engines will assume that it is not being maintained or abandoned. In certain instances, this may result in a penalty. So use the Broken Link Checker plugin to identify and correct these links.
It can automatically mark your broken links as ‘nofollow’ so that search engines don’t get a bad impression of your site. It will also send you an email notification whenever it detects new broken links on the site.
Limit the length of your URLs
You don’t have to avoid long blog post titles. However, you should stay away from long URLs. Luckily, you can easily use a shortened version of the post title for your permalink. If your link is more than 15 words long, then you should alter it.
Why is this? Well, URLs that are too long are often difficult for people to read and remember. This lowers your chances of getting direct traffic. Also, search engines tend to prefer shorter URLs. Also, if it’s too long then it will get cut off in the SERPs. The most important thing is user experience. You must consider what the users need and want.
Optimize your images
It’s important that you optimize your images by resizing and compressing them. This will ensure that you have a fast load time. There are lots of resizing and compression tools online and offline. You may also use a plugin like Smush.it.
Optimization also requires that you use the proper image tags. This helps them to rank in the image searches. You should include alt tags as well.
While WordPress is considered to be one of the top CMS to date, it’s not perfect. There are still a few factors that you should consider. By using the above techniques, you can ensure that you get the most out of this platform.