WordPress Search Engine Optimisation
WordPress is one of the most commonly used content management systems (CMS) across the globe and runs 27% of the entire internet. Just like any other website, a WordPress site must adhere to on-page SEO best practices such as incorporating title tags, meta descriptions, sitemaps, internal linking, and a blogging strategy.
To begin optimising your WordPress site and boosting your organic search engine traffic, follow our WordPress SEO tips below. And if you really want to transform your site into a lead generation machine, reach out to the Pure SEO team today.
Optimise your URLs
Ensure your permalink structure is changed from the default ?p=<postid> to something like /post-name or /blog/post-name. Don’t include stop words such as “a”, “the” or “and” in URLs. You also need to consider whether or not to use a ‘www’ or ‘non-www’ formatted URL and set this in search console. Lastly, decide if you want to create an HTTPS site; Google announced in 2014 they would give a minor ranking benefit to HTTPS sites over HTTP sites.
Follow best practices for title tags
Just like any other website, a WordPress site needs to have relevant title tags. Typically a blog title will look like “Blog Title | Keyword-rich Blog Title” – however best practice is to do this in reverse “Keyword Rich Blog Title | Blog Title”. Search engines read the first words as more important so you are more likely to rank for these terms. It is also good for the users reading your page as they want to see the keywords they have searched for in the content immediately.
Write unique meta descriptions
Try to avoid leaving meta descriptions as automatically generated sentences. This typically happens when you don’t define a meta description, so Google simply pulls the first two sentences of the web page and uses that instead. You should write a unique page description for each page, using the keyword(s) you are trying to rank for.
Optimise your images
This is a commonly overlooked part of SEO that many people don’t bother with. However, if alt tags are used and the images are compressed to a reasonable web size, you will see SEO benefits for the website as a whole. What are alt tags? Basically, they are textual descriptions that give context to images. Alt tags are important for search engine crawlers to understand the contents of a site; if left out, your rankings can suffer.
Make sure your WordPress site has an XML sitemap and that it is submitted to the Google Search Console. This will ensure that search engines can easily crawl your site and its contents. There are a number of sitemap generator tools on the internet, and WordPress plugins are available that can generate sitemaps as well.
Make the most of WordPress plugins
There are plenty of different WordPress SEO plugins that can help with optimising your site. Here are a few of the most popular:
- Yoast: One of the most widely used WordPress SEO plugins, Yoast is free and offers almost all the features needed to optimise a website. Its on-page analysis feature is one of its key highlights.
- All In One SEO Pack: This plugin provides all the features and options needed to make a site SEO friendly. It is a beginner-friendly plugin that is easy to use and automatically optimises the titles of blog posts for search engines.
- Premium SEO Pack: As the name suggests, this plugin is a high-quality comprehensive SEO plugin that will optimise your site to an advanced level. In particular, this plugin is useful for internal link building, image optimisation, sitemaps and rich snippet functionality.
Optimising your WordPress site is easy with the tips and advice above. If you’re unsure about any of the topics discussed or you want to take your WordPress SEO to the next level, contact us today or check out our services page.