No matter how perfectly you have crafted your website, or how great your content is, it needs to be optimized for search engines to succeed.
For the best WordPress SEO, you need to fully understand what search engines are looking for on your website. Not knowing what to focus on could really cause some damage.
The Top SEO Tips for WordPress
To get started, let’s discuss some of the the top SEO tips for WordPress. This advice will ensure that your website is headed in the right direction.
1. Make a Sitemap for Your Website
Creating a Google XML sitemap is very easy, and is one of the best SEO tools to start out with.
Basically, your site is able to offer hundreds of pages, and Google needs to know your website structure in order to have the web pages indexed.
WordPress also offers a very helpful plugin called Google XML sitemaps, which will automatically create a sitemap of your website. This will help search engines index your site more successfully.
2. Set Your Permalinks
A permalink is the URL of your website posts and pages. To put it simply, they are what your consumers type into their address bars to find the relevant page they are looking for.
Permalinks are also used by search engines and other websites to link to your site.
WordPress provides you with default permalink settings, and you can change them as you would like. These are found in Settings –> Permalinks.
To make it easy on yourself, it’s a good idea to change whatever the default setting is to the name of the page or post. It will be easier to remember for users, and search engines will have an easier time indexing them.
3. Optimize Media
Media is an aspect of your website that can completely help improve or utterly destroy your WordPress SEO attempts. Most importantly, you need to consider how you are tagging and naming your images.
With appropriate tagging, you are more likely to improve your ranking when it comes to image searches.
Instead of just going with a more complicated name, which is a common mistake, consider adding a caption, description, and alt text. Take advantage of every option you are given when it comes to renaming your media.
Taking special care to utilize these options will cause a significant improvement for your site’s search engine rankings.
4. Use SEO Optimized Themes
When choosing a WordPress theme for your website, it is most likely going to be tempting to only think about the site’s aesthetics when making your choice. However, it is more important to think about how well your theme is optimized for search engines.
For a theme that is optimized well for SEO, it needs to have code and speed. Having a well-written theme that goes along with the newest SEO tips will ensure that Google bots will find the appropriate option in the source code.
So how do you choose an appropriately SEO-optimized theme?
For one thing, make sure that the heading and meta title tags are being used and optimized correctly. Also look for a very clean, neat structure that uses proper and valid HTML, as well as an open graph meta tag being incorporated to allow for better sharing on social media.
Lastly, make sure that the canonical URL meta tag is being used correctly.
5. Use the Right Heading Tags
You should also ensure that you are using the appropriate heading tags for ideal WordPress SEO. If you are completely new to this concept, let’s review how to use heading tags properly.
There are going to be heading tag options in your editor, between heading 1 all the way to heading 6. How are you supposed to know what to choose?
H1 is always reserved for your blog posts’ title. It should be informative and clear – your readers should know your content’s topic and be hooked with that title to make them want to read more.
After using H1, you are going to want to switch to the H2 heading tag for any additional headings throughout the post. For subheadings within the H2 heading, continue with H3, H4, etc.
Not only is this going to make a drastic difference when it comes to your SEO, but it is also making your content far easier and more engaging to read. It is much easier to get and keep the reader’s attention if your content is consistent and organized.
Now that you have a good idea of the SEO tips you will need to get started, let’s discuss some of the best WordPress SEO plugins for you to incorporate.
The Best WordPress SEO Plugins
Plugins are going to be some of the best WordPress SEO tools you can utilize. There are a plethora of different options out there you as well – here are some of our top choices.
The first option on our list is the SEMrush plugin.
The plugin is used by professionals everywhere in order to gather insights and analytics from their competitor’s websites to make their on-page SEO better.
You can find information about the best organic keywords you can rank for, insight into competing advertising strategies, possible backlink locations, and so many other great SEO tools.
This is a paid subscription, but it is well worth the cost. Most SEO experts use it, and it provides a wealth of information you won’t necessarily find elsewhere.
2. WordPress SEO by Yoast
Arguably, WordPress SEO by Yoast may be the best WordPress SEO plugin out there. It is one of the most downloaded plugins for WordPress of all time, and it offers an incredible, comprehensive solution for any and all of your SEO needs.
In this Yoast SEO program, you can write custom title for your actual site, archives, tag pages, and category. You can also add SEO title, meta keywords, and meta descriptions to each and every page and post on your site.
On top of that, it adds Sitemaps, Twitter Cards, Open Graph meta data, and will ping search engines whenever there is an update to your site.
The list is endless when it comes to all of the features WordPress SEO by Yoast has to offer – it is essentially an all-in-one SEO tool.
3. Outreach Plus
If you are looking for an excellent email outreach software option, you cannot go wrong with OutreachPlus.
This incredible program offers amazing features like automated responses, smart personalization, and email insights like whether something has been opened, replied to, the links clicked on, etc.
They make it incredibly easy to use, and they offer a built-in email client which makes sure that your emails won’t end up in someone’s spam folder. You are able to get a full circular view of your campaigns, follow up with prospects, and add multiple email accounts.
For press mentions, connecting with big influencers, and growing your authority, OutreachPlus is the ideal tool. It will do a great job of bringing traffic to your site.
4. Rel NoFollow Checkbox
Rel NoFollow Checkbox is a fantastic way to avoid giving away your site’s authority to external sites.
When you link an external site on a web page or blog post, you are essentially giving the other site some of your site’s authority. Rel NoFollow Checkbox will help you add a nofollow attribute to that external link.
This SEO tool will even allow you to make all of your external links nofollow in WordPress. However, if you are dealing with a sincerely helpful site, sometimes you may want to give a dofollow link.
Rel NoFollow Checkbox is a WordPress plugin that adds a checkbox in the insert link portion of your post editor. This is an additional check box to the one that allows you to open links in a new tab. Now when you go to add an external link, you have the option of making it nofollow by checking that extra box.
SEOquake is an excellent SEO tool that you can add to your Opera, Google Chrome, Safari, and Mozilla Firefox browsers.
Essentially, this browser addon will provide you with the SEO website data you’d like. This information includes age, page rank, Alexa rank, last updated, and many, many other factors. It is extremely popular among SEO professionals.
If you are gauging competition for different keywords, the SEOquake toolbar can provide you with parameters for all the search results. If you need to, you are even able to download search results in CSV format to make it easier to import into Excel.
Practices for the Ideal WordPress SEO
Now that we have taken an in-depth look at optimizing your WordPress SEO with our favorite tips and plugins, let’s finish with a few easy practices and last minute reminders to send you on your way.
We discussed optimizing media and your WordPress theme to be ideal for search engines. Another factor to consider is the speed of your website. Make sure that your site loads quickly and properly, and consumers are more likely to stick around.
Also, weed out any content that is “thin” and lacking. Producing high quality content is ideal for drawing in customers.
Lastly, while it may be tempting to dive headfirst into everything we have said and expect change right away, that isn’t going to be realistic. Make all of the changes you need to, and give it a little time. Patience is definitely necessary when it comes to SEO.
Which of our optimal WordPress SEO tips are you the most surprised about? Which ones are you the most excited to implement for your own website?
Share with us in the comments below!