- Summary of Top 20 Best WordPress SEO Tips for Your Website
- What is WordPress SEO
- Why SEO is important
- Best WordPress SEO Tips
- 1: Install an SEO‐Friendly Theme
- 2: Choose www vs. non‐www
- 3: Set your Permalinks (SEO friendly URL)
- 4: Keyword Research
- 5: Install an SEO Plugin
- 6: Use SSL/HTTPS
- 7: Submit your Website to Google Search Console
- 8: Producing High-Quality Content
- 9: Optimize Blog Posts for SEO
- 10: Make Internal Linking a Habit
- 11: Improve The Site’s Speed and Performance
- 12: Build Some Quality Backlink
- 13: Security of your WordPress Site
- 14: Relevant Meta Descriptions
- 15: Sitemap
- 16: Remove Zombie Pages
- 17: Using Correct Heading Tags
- 18: Web Hosting
- 19: NoFollow External Links in WordPress
- 20: WordPress SEO Tools and Resources
Now a day WordPress is one of the best CMS because of it’s SEO Friendly & User-Friendly. in This article I have given you 20 Best WordPress SEO Tips for your website & then you can boost your website like a rocket.
Summary of Top 20 Best WordPress SEO Tips for Your Website
- SEO Friendly Theme
- Choose www vs. non‐www
- SEO friendly URL
- Keyword Research
- SEO Plugin
- Use SSL/HTTPS
- Submit your Website to Google Search Console
- High-Quality Content
- Optimize Blog Posts
- Internal Linking
- Site’s Speed and Performance
- Quality Backlink
- Security of your WordPress Site
- Meta Descriptions
- Remove Zombie Pages
- Using Correct Heading Tags
- Web Hosting
- NoFollow External Links
- WordPress SEO Tools
We have been hearing that practice makes perfect. And this fits to the WordPress SEO as well. The hard truth about SEO is it’s always changing.
Moreover, there are not many rules written on the stone in SEO. Search engine giants like Google is always crafting their algorithm to provide the best possible result that the searcher wants.
Many people have the misconception that Google is doing algorithm changes to punish webmasters and website owners. Actually, that is not cent percent true. If you have SEO optimize site and provide what searchers want to get, then you will get the most from the search engine.
Every website owner has a dream to get rank higher and get free organic traffic. Well, it is only possible if you have done the right SEO for your blog post or pages.
Thanks to WordPress for giving such a great platform to manage the entire backend process. WordPress is powering around 30% of the websites on the internet. No need to describe a long paragraph to justify that WordPress is great and have it all because everyone is aware of it. If your site is in WordPress, then it will be very easy to optimize for search engines.
Those days are gone where keyword stuffing is allowed and you can fill keywords as many times as you want. Beyond that, you can do some tricks to fool the search engine boot and convenience them your site is good to rank that time.
Nowadays you need to do some proper SEO practices to make your site Google ready. So without further ado let’s jump to the list of best WordPress SEO practices list.
What is WordPress SEO
Before going to discuss long on best WordPress SEO Tips and all, let’s start from the root. What is WordPress first? WordPress is a content management system (CMS) that simplifies the process of managing, editing, and publishing content on the web.
Search Engine Optimization(SEO) is the best way to drive traffics on your website & Get more customers & Increase yours Product Sales. Over 200 Factors are affected to Make an SEO Ready Website.
In WordPress, you can easily create SEO Friendly Website & Rank on First Page. So, WordPress SEO is one of the most important. WordPress provides many plugins to improve your WordPress SEO.
Why SEO is important
SEO is one of the biggest sources of traffics. most of the website get huge traffics using Search Engine Optimization. Google and other search engines use advanced algorithms for understanding content and rank pages.
First of all focus on content because the content is the king of SEO, so make a well-optimized content, your content is Unique, valuable and relevant. Your website with poor quality content, a Search engine can not appear on first pages & you have lost you all traffic.
Best WordPress SEO Tips
Are you ready to learn some best practices to improve your visibility? Of course yes. Before getting into it, let’s allow me to discuss something you might want to if you are a complete beginner.
In brief, you can divide SEO as to parts like on-page SEO and off-page SEO. On-page SEO contains all the activities that you do on your site like content creation, adding main keywords and LSI keywords, add title, meta description, etc. Check Google’s Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Starter Guide to know more. Off-page SEO contains to contain the activities you need to do outside of your site like guest posting, link building, social bookmarking, etc.
Another approach to SEO is a white hat SEO and black hat SEO. White hat SEO is the strategy and rules recommended by SEO experts and search engines. It has long-term value and you will get most out of it. On the other hand, black hat SEO is the nasty tricks and techniques uses by some site owners to fool the crawlers. It gives an instant result and also ruin your site soon. If you found using black hat SEO techniques red-handed by Google, your site will get penalize and all your hard work will be sink.
So I come up with some best WordPress SEO practices that you should follow to get the most from search engine.
1: Install an SEO‐Friendly Theme
Nowadays hosting service providers are making the WordPress installation process easier. One can install WordPress in a few clicks. After successful installation, you will find a simple looking WordPress theme has automatically installed.
It is default theme and you should change it right away. WordPress repo is full of nice looking themes. You can find themes in every category. But one thing you should focus beyond the user interface. That is SEO-friendly nature.
You will find the “SEO‐friendly” tag in most of the themes. So you may have doubt that what makes a theme SEO‐friendly WordPress theme?
Responsive design is one of the must-have quality. It should adjust the whole site according to the size of the device. Not just resizing the interface, but should properly place every aspect clearly and differently. As searches from mobile are increasing day by day, your site should ready for that. Google also rolled out mobile-first indexing to give the mobile visitors the best experience. You check the mobile-friendliness of your theme through Google’s Mobile‐friendly Test tool.
Lightweight is another must have a quality that your theme must have. Page loading speed is also a ranking factor and you must not skip this. Some themes install unwanted third-party plugins that lead to slow loading. As a site owner, you don’t want your site loads slow and loose visitors and an increase in bounce rate.
So you can check your sites loading time through Google’s PageSpeed Insights or Pingdom Website Speed Test tool. If you find the loading speed is low then might change the theme or apply some speed optimization techniques.
2: Choose www vs. non‐www
www vs. non‐www is a topic for a long discussion. To keep It short and simple let’s see what Google is saying about this. Google has no preference for any of this.
Example of www & Non-www
Google views the www and non‐www versions of the same URL as separate pages.So you never want to waste your SEO efforts just for the www prefix. To say technically, there are no SEO effects on both the versions. www version makes the URL quite long and seems some ugly when someone scans the URL. It may also create confusion on your brand domain name.
So you can choose a preferred version of your site and set it in the WordPress backend. Set theWordPress Address URL and your Site Address URL.
You can find those two options under Settings > General.
It is up to you what you choose. WordPress will automatically redirect to the other version of the URL. Means if you choose the non-www version and someone tries to search for the www version, then WordPress will automatically redirect it and vice versa.
It seems a minor change but has a big impact on SEO efforts, especially in link building. You can set this option at the beginning of a site. For the old site, you can choose based on the Google index of both the versions. Prefer the version that has the most number of index. Following are the example…
Search for site:www.yourdomain.com
And without www – site:yourdomain.com
I prefer the non-www version. Then it’s up to you. Which one is your favorite? Let me know in the comment.
In plain English, The permalink is the URL you see when viewing any post, page or other pieces of content on your site. It’s a permanent link, hence the name fails like permalink.
WordPress has a default permalink setting which you should change. The default is quite ugly and difficult to understand what is it.
Example of Some Bad URL Structure.
https://example.com/?p=15467 http://example.com/archives/123 http://example.com/2019/08/example-post
The permalink setting can be found in settings -> permalinks.
You will find various URL structures in that page. Among them, Post name is the recommended option you should select. It is easy to remember by your audience and simple to understand by search engines.
A well-structured URL gives users to understand what the page is about from the URL alone. If this URL pop-up in the SERP you can expect higher click‐through rate which leads to more organic traffic. A good URL is always welcome by users as well as search engines.
Example of Some Good URL Structure.
https://example.com/this-is-a-demo-post http://example.com/best-seo-tips http://example.com/example-post
If you are starting a new blog, it is highly recommended to go with Post name URL structure. Do you have an old blog and have not set this URL structure? If your answer is no then you can also switch to this setting also.
But wait before the rush to your WordPress backend and changing setting. You may want to change your ugly URLs to the well-formatted structure. But it will lead to broken pages. Broken pages or 404 errors are very bad to SEO and you should definitely care about it. You may have earned some backlinks from your old URL and will lose it if you change your URL structure.
However, if you want to set up your URL structure in this way, then you may need to setup proper redirections. Thanks to Redirection WordPress plugin for giving an easy way to redirect links.
An SEO friendly URL is one of the best WordPress SEO practices every website owners should know.
4: Keyword Research
Keyword research is one of the most important parts to grow organic traffic. Every blog owner should set their goal to rank on a keyword that drives traffic and conversion.
Suppose you have a blog and you write in SEO stuff. Suppose you want to write on a topic “SEO tools”. So first you need to do some research about the keyword. Like the monthly search volume, keyword difficulty, etc.
Means you are researching what people are searching for and what long tail versions you can target.The long tail usually has 4 words or larger. To make this process quick, you can some free as well as some paid tools. A low competitive long-tail keyword help to get better ranking in minimum effort.
Some of the free tool I recommend, Google Keyword Planner, Ubersuggest. You can also go for some paid tools like Ahrefs, SEMRush, etc. if you have a handy budget.
The days of keyword stuffing is gone. It is no more helpful if you think you can get success by doing this. By using keywords naturally and sprinkle them in the article is always a good SEO practice.
The keyword research phase should be the first phase before creating a post. Although there are hundreds of factors affects ranking, and you should take care of them as well.
5: Install an SEO Plugin
One of the best thing about WordPress is It houses thousands of plugins. You can find a plugin for every purpose.
As you know SEO has several individual tasks. Instead of installing various plugins for individual SEO tasks, you can use the best WordPress SEO plugin that does it all. And the cool thing this is 100% free.
One name came when someone talks about the SEO plugin for WordPress i.eYoast. Yoast SEO is one of the most famous plugins in the whole WordPress repo. It handles various aspects of SEO and makes the whole process simple.
From on-page SEO to XML sitemap summation, it does all. And you can get it for free. There is a premium version also available that gives some extra functionality. If you have the budget then you may go for the premium otherwise free version is very good.
Check out our detailed guide where we have discussed 10 best SEO Plugins for WordPress that will improve the SEO of your website.
6: Use SSL/HTTPS
Google is focusing on users security and making their algorithm changes according to them also.
Recently, Google has added HTTPS as a ranking factor as well. This clearly indicates that.
SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) is a web technology that encrypts the connection between your browser and the server they are connecting to. If your site hasan SSL certificate then you will see https in your URL instead of default http.
Websites protected with SSL are indicated by a green color padlock sign in the browser’s address bar (left side of the address bar).
Recently, Chrome browser is also prompting a red color “not secure” warning in the address bar, if any site is not protected with SSL. This feels something uncomfortable and users may hit back button after seeing this sign.
A site having HTTPS seems more trustworthy and creates a good impression to the users.
Some hosting providers give free SSL certificate with their hosting plan. If you have not, then you can use some WordPress plugins to do this.
This adds an extra security layer to your site. We have discussed the security in no 13 and you will find how important it is.
7: Submit your Website to Google Search Console
So you have developed your website/blog, created some awesome contents and finally feeling ready to show it with the world.And when you publish new your site for the world to see, each of your content will immediately start appearing in Google SERP, right?
Well, it maybe. This can start appearing on Google but takes a lot of time. Google needs to crawl your site and then it will index your content. As a site owner, you would never want to show lately.
So you can do this process manually. Google provides a tool named Google Search Console for this. You need to submit your site to Google Search Console and allow Google to crawl your site. After successful crawling, Google index the pages and show it accordingly.
Want to check your site is listed in Google or not? Search Google for “Site:Sitename.com”. If your content is not indexed yet then will see did not match any results message.
Now Google is showing many stats in the Google Search Console dashboard. You can check indexed pages, ranking keywords, its position, CTR, etc. It also gives some technical stats like crawling pages and errors in your site if any. New search console also starts showing the backlink report as well.
It is a very helpful tool to test your site’s organic ranking. So include this one in your list.
8: Producing High-Quality Content
If you are in the online industry, then you may have heard about “Content is king”.
Content is one of the great things that enhance your changes to get a higher ranking. So you need to produce high quality, user-engaging content.
Google hates low quality and plagiarised contents. You can copy your competitor’s content strategies but don’t steal somebody’s work directly.
People are searching on the internet to get informative and valuable information. So what if you provide in-depth, informative content? You will get a higher ranking as well as more traffic. As user matrix is also a ranking single (measured by Google through AI), as a site owner you should focus on the visually rich content.
To make your content stand out of the competition, you can add images, graphics, charts, infographics, videos, podcasts, etc. Nowadays content creators are preferring to add visually rich infographics to increase user interaction.
The more you can engage your visitors in your site, the better you will get. If your theme does not have social share buttons, then add a social share button plugin so that users can share your contents easily. Again social media sharing also helps to get better ranking.
In addition to that shared your user will share the article with their friends and followers. So indirectly it also produces more visitors to your blog.
9: Optimize Blog Posts for SEO
After producing high-quality in-depth content, what’s next? Well, optimize them for SEO.
As you know there are two phases of SEO. One is on-page and the other one id off-page. Here you have to apply some on-page SEO rules to optimize it for better ranking.
Sprinkle your main keyword and LSI keywords throughout the content. Produce high quality contents and also don’t forget to add the SEO tweaks.
If you have installed an SEO plugin, then the process is very simple. Yoast SEO gives awesome recommendations based on on-page SEO rules. You can easily identify it and makes modifications to makes them right.
Yoast SEO allows you to add a title, slug, meta description, and focus keyword to every blog post and page. It also shows you a preview beneath the input field of what users will see your title and meta description when they Google your website.In addition to that, it also recommends you to improve your readability score.
10: Make Internal Linking a Habit
If you are writing on a specific category then mostprobably you are writing some related articles. Here the concept of internal linking came.
Rather describing the same piece of information again and again in articles, you can produce separate articles for them and link them in your new article.WordPress makes the whole process simple and you can do that by clicking the anchor icon.
Search engines like Google assign each page on your website a score. It SEO industry it is commonly named as page authority. Google keeps the criteria secrete so that people cannot game the system.
However, the most common signals Google uses to define the authority are links. When you are writing a new blog post, link to your old blog posts.
This way you post feels more authoritative and tells Google that pass some link juice from the old posts. It is recommended that you should add minimum 5 internal links (the number is not hard and first) to a post.
You may consider adding a “popular articles” widget in the sidebarand link the pages or posts that you want to rank.
This will help you to boost your number of pageviews, increases the time users spend on your site. Overall it will improve the SEO score of your pages and individual blog posts.
11: Improve The Site’s Speed and Performance
Website speed is one of the most important ranking factors one should consider. No one likes a slow loading site even Google.
According to some SEO experts, users decide whether they want to wait or leave within a few seconds of visiting a website. So you have a few seconds to engage your audience and you never want to leave any visitor.
As you are in the WordPress environment, you can do this with the help of some plugins. If you are not techy, then this is one of the easiest ways you can follow. Sometimes heavy images and files lead to slow loading speed and you may easily overcome it by compressing the images and files.
You can play with the code to improve the page speed if you have enough knowledge on it. You can follow this guide to boot your page loading speed or Google and find some useful resources.
No matter what is the latest Google algorithm change, the number one ranking factor is a backlink. Link building is an important part of WordPress SEO best practices and if you are not doing this, then you are missing something.
To be honest, building a link is not sufficient. Have to notice that I have used a word in the above heading, “quality”? This defines that your focus should be building quality backlink.
To build backlinks, people use blog commenting, automated tool, spammy sites. So these type of backlinks will not go to help you to increase your SEO score. This may lead to gettinga penalty from Google.
Instead of that try to build backlinks from authoritative sites. It tells Google that your post is quite helpful to readers and ranks them higher.
When someone links to you, in the backend the site provides some link juice to your post. So this tells Google to pass some link juice when evaluating the link profile of your site.
Do you have the doubt that how the link juice is measured and how much you will get? Well, Google only knows the answer. There is no evidence that how Google calculates it and how much juice passes to the referred link. All we know that this thing happens and the linked site get some SEO boost.
Pitch some authoritative sites in your space and ask them to link to your post or page. If they give so, then you are on the game of SEO.
Building quality backlinks is a time-consuming task. That’s why many people don’t use it. But it is the most important thing every site owner should use.
13: Security of your WordPress Site
Security should be one of the most important SEO practices every site owner should take care of. Unfortunately, is often neglected.
According to a report each week, Google blacklists around50,000websites for phishing and around 20,000 for malware and. If a site is blacklisted, it doesn’t appear in any search results at all.
As a site owner, you don’t want your site got hacked. So in the WordPress repo, there are many security plugins available. The WordPress platform is secure. By installing a security plugin, you are adding one more security layer to your site.
The features of security plugins include a web application firewall, IP blocks, malware scanner, protection from brute force attacks, etc.
By installing any one of the plugins, you are making the path difficult for the hackers. All your SEO efforts will go into waste if your site got hacked.
14: Relevant Meta Descriptions
One of the most important SEO Tips that most people ignore is the unique & relevant Meta Description. Generally, Search Engine Doesn’t like Duplicate Meta Content.
Meta Description is the first step to display your content in google to search page by users. The purpose of the meta description is to get someone searching on Google to click your link.
Characteristics of a good meta description length are up to 155 Characters & Sometimes more. must be focus keywords in Meta Description as well as SEO title.
A sitemap is literally a map of your site – showing all the post, pages, categories, authors, products and more. you can create a sitemap online and published on your website. If your website in WordPress you can easily create XML Sitemap using Plugins.
16: Remove Zombie Pages
Page Speed is the main factor in SEO because user can not wait for loading page in a minutes. So, Remove or Delete all zombie and loading pages from your website.
When you delete loading pages from your website, you can get higher rankings and more Google traffic. slow pages can irritated user and left your website. slow sites are not good for Search engine optimization.
Website speed is affected by SEO, 40% People can abandon a website that takes more than 3 seconds to load time.
17: Using Correct Heading Tags
Google updates its Algorithm and considers the header tag structure. Best SEO Practice is Manage Correct Heading Tags Structure. Each Header tags give an idea to the user for Information.
H1 Tag must be in your Post or Page Title because of Search Engine Fetch Title & meta for your pages or post. Make your H1 tag informative & readable for the users. Heading tags is not only Best SEO Practice but also for improving user engagement.
Search for “Best WordPress Hosting Providers 2020” and Google creates a list of answers using the H3s from the WordPressradar blog
Must include your main focus keywords in your Header Tags because of User can Easily access relevant content. Google will Display Header Tags on First Pages With Bullet List.
18: Web Hosting
Without web hosting, you can not host your website because you have need some space & resource for your website. There are many web hosting providers available in the digital markets and huge competition for the sale of its hosting plan.
Web Hosting is affected to SEO because your server Uptime, Load time, Resource, Bandwidth, and Many more things are affected. Your Server is good so, your website never down & search engine assume that this website is lightweight & smooth.
19: NoFollow External Links in WordPress
The backlink is one of the most important Google ranking factor. In a website or blog, there may be hundreds of outgoing links. Google is very curious to know more about the link that you have on your site.
So in SEO point of view, there are two type links. One is Dofollow and another one is Nofollow.
In SEO words, Dofollow links pass link juice and Nofollow links do not pass any link juice. You never want your site as a link manipulation hub. Google also very cautious about it.
20: WordPress SEO Tools and Resources
Finally we have reach 20th of tips, There are many WordPress SEO Plugins & Source Avaible on Internet. Here we are discuss best WordPress SEO Toos & Resources.
- Best SEO Plugins for Boost Your Website
- Best Web Hosting Site
- Google Web Master Tools
- Yoast SEO Plugin
- Google Analytics
- Google Page Speed
- Best Web Hosting for Small Business
So these are some WordPress SEO best practices you can follow to get more organic traffic. To be honest WordPress SEO takes time and you need to give enough time to see the results.
As WordPress SEO is getting is noisy and it takes more efforts than ever, you need to keep on doing many things simultaneously. Create high-quality content and also promote it on various platforms.
By following these practices you will be found on the first page of the search engines.