Isn’t it the most important reason to choose WordPress is it is SEO friendly? I think so too. WordPress is an SEO friendly infrastructure that many people have experience with.
However, this does not mean that sites built with WordPress will achieve good rankings in search engines from the start-up phase. Your site needs to be optimized for SEO. You need to know how to apply them. The good thing is that WordPress makes it all easy and even offers beginners the opportunity to rank.
The platform has many features that fit the best practices of SEO to make your life easier. Therefore, your efforts and efforts will not be wasted. Ready to get ranking and organic visibility?
Below you will find the best WordPress SEO tips to help you optimize your site and enjoy SEO success. However, it is necessary to consider a small detail in advance.
What is WordPress?
WordPress is a platform that powers 35% of all sites on the internet. It is important to remember that it powers the world’s largest sites, including Sony, BBC America, Time.com and TechCrunch. If WordPress works for global giants, it is inevitable to work for you. Moreover, there are quite valid reasons for this.
WordPress started its journey as a blogging platform in 2003. But it takes a long time before it can become a powerful and flexible solution for running all sites. It is important to remember that it is now used as an e-commerce solution.
So why has WordPress become so popular? There are of course some valid reasons for this:
- It is simple and easy to use. You don’t need to be a developer to start a WordPress site. It is extremely user-friendly, even for beginners.
- It is a flexible and adaptable system. It has literally thousands of themes and thousands of plugins. Thanks to these, you can improve the functionality of your site in the best way. If you are an experienced developer, you can even develop a theme or add-on.
- It has a great community. WordPress is open source. The community behind the platform is extremely active. You can easily get support from support forums. You can find a solution quickly when you have a problem.
Of course, it is not the right platform for everyone. You should know that there are other content management systems options that are more suitable for your individual needs. Commonly mentioned disadvantages and shortcomings of WordPress are often that a little learning process is required to use frequent updates, potential vulnerabilities and bespoke themes. However, WordPress is an extremely powerful platform for everyone. It also provides you with a strong foundation for SEO success.
What is WordPress SEO?
WordPress alone cannot replace a solid SEO strategy. Even if the content management system guarantees you to use the most accurate methods, you need to make some effort. Otherwise, you will not be able to get a ranking on Google.
You will have a chance to rank unless your choice of content management system is left alone with extensive technical issues that prevent your site from being crawled and indexed. You shouldn’t think that WordPress is a magic weapon that doesn’t require much more effort. SEO can be a very technical issue from time to time, but considering the issues provided by WordPress, it is possible to make it applicable to everyone.
Using WordPress does not mean that the SEO tactics you use will change. However, you need to create great content, gain great links and make sure you optimize your site in the best way. But WordPress will help you get through many of the key features that help rank your site. For this, you can take advantage of the tricks and tips you will find below.
Getting Started: WordPress SEO Basics
You may be wondering how to properly optimize your WordPress site. Especially before you start increasing your organic traffic values, you need to make sure that you are working in a solid structure. For this, you should be familiar with the following basic information.
1. Choose a Trusted Hosting Provider
You should try to host your site in a reliable hosting company. It is important to choose a hosting company that will not bother you on issues such as site speed, uptime and security. This is one of the basic requirements you need to think carefully about to get started.
Site speed has a direct impact on the SEO performance of your WordPress site. In addition, both poor uptime and vulnerabilities can cause site quality issues. If you do not want to struggle with performance problems, you should not think about turning to the cheapest option.
WordPress itself recommends three different hosting providers. If you’re not sure where to start, just consider the options that WordPress offers.
2. Install SEO Friendly WordPress Theme
When you first install WordPress, you will encounter the platform’s default “Twenty Twnety” theme. However, this theme will be a theme you will not want to use for your site.
You can find thousands of free themes directly from the admin panel. If you want to use a paid theme, you can manage to find different designs on various theme sites. You need to choose the theme carefully. Because you may encounter a theme that is not SEO friendly.
Even though many themes claim to be SEO friendly, it is not uncommon for themes to come with scripts and plugins that you won’t use. This will negatively affect the performance of your site.
You can use Google’s web.dev tool to learn about potential performance and SEO issues before installing a theme . This will help you at least choose a theme that won’t make you behind.
3. Install Free WordPress SEO Plugin
Before you start optimizing your site, you need to install an SEO plugin. There are several commonly used and recommended options, both for free:
- All in One SEO Pack
- Yoast SEO
- Rank Math
All in One SEO Pack will be used throughout this content. However, I would like you to know that there are different options between both free and paid options. I was using the free version until April 2020. I upgraded to PRO to improve my categories.
Installing a plugin on WordPress is quite simple. After logging in to the Admin panel, you should follow the Plugins> Add New path from the menu on the left. When you come to the relevant page, search for the add-on and click the “Install Now” button.
Once installed, be sure to enable the plugin. While trying to implement the best WordPress SEO tips, you will have to install different plugins. So it is very important to keep in mind how the plugin was installed.
4. Choose Preferred Domain Name
You can choose the domain name as https://www.ayhankaraman.com/ or https://ayhankaraman.com. Your domain name will not have an impact on SEO. However, you must accept that your site is accessible only in one of them. Because these are considered by Google as different URLs.
To carry out the checks. Login to the WordPress admin panel and follow Settings> General. Here you can choose your preferred domain name.
The other domain version will then be redirected to your preferred domain. If you are someone who starts a new site, feel free to choose both options. However, if you are replacing an existing site, you should make sure you stick to the version you used in the past.
You should also make sure that you have an SSL certificate. You need to run your site using HTTPS. If you don’t have a certificate installed, you can consider contacting the hosting provider or the developer of your site. You can try using Let’s Encrypt solution for free.
5. Check Your Site’s Visibility
WordPress gives you an option to prevent search engines from indexing your site. This option is often used by developers when developing a site, before pages and content are ready.
You should keep in mind that this is one of the settings that remain open even when the site is ready for opening. So you need to check the visibility settings of your site. You should go to Settings> Reading and remove the confirmation in the option “Try to prevent search engines from indexing this site”.
6. Activate SEO Friendly Persistent Links
WordPress offers you a number of different options for configuring URLs. You need to make sure you use the most SEO option.
WordPress uses the following URLs by default: https://www.ayhankaraman.com/?p=123. These URLs are not search engine friendly. Even if it is not possible to determine only what the page is about from the URL, this is one of the first points to look at.
If you are using WordPress, you can choose a custom URL structure. You can make your selection here via Settings> Permalinks. If you want to use an SEO friendly structure, the “Post Name” option will be the right option for you.
7. Verify Your Site in Google Search Console
If you have not already done so, you must verify your site with Google Search Console. You may never have done this before. This is a fairly simple step. All you have to do is use one of the Google Search Console verification methods.
Follow the verification steps listed and select the “HTML Tag” method. From there, follow the All in One SEO Pack> General Settings> Webmaster Verification path to enter the settings of the All in One SEO Pack plugin. Then enter the HTML tag in the “Google Search Console” box.
After verifying your site, you need to submit your sitemap. To do this, you need to go to the sitemaps section of Google Search Console. It creates an XML sitemap by default with the All in One SEO Pack. You can find it on your site (such as https://www.ayhankaraman.com/sitemap.xml) in the relevant section.
You can submit your sitemap to the relevant part in Google Search Console. The relevant section will appear in Google Search Console as follows:
WordPress SEO Tips: Optimizing Pages and Posts
After learning and applying WordPress SEO basics, you can start optimizing your site and working on things that will create a real ranking.
First of all, you need to optimize your site’s pages and posts before installing a set of advanced tips and tips to take your site to the next level.
8. Do Keyword Research
Without keyword research, you don’t know which search terms you need to optimize for your site’s content. In fact, keyword research should be done at the start of any SEO project. The information obtained later should be used to plan site content and page optimization.
You can use a variety of tools to identify the keywords you need to use and optimize. The most well-known of these are Ahrefs and SEMrush tools.
In my video content I shared below, I explained how to analyze competitors and discover keywords. Your review will give you serious experience to get started.
You should strive to learn more about keyword research. You may be starting to optimize your site from scratch or creating new content. It is very important to know the keywords you are trying to rank on the page.
9. Use the Hemingway App Tool
Before you start creating or optimizing the content on your site, you should consider using the Hemingway App tool. The tool will help you prepare the content for readability.
Write your content with the Hemingway App and make sure the Grade score on the right is 4 or below.
If you want to rank high on Google with your WordPress site, you need to make sure you create great content.
10. Create Custom URLs for Pages and Posts
By default, WordPress uses your page’s title to generate the URL. This can sometimes mean that the URL is long and cut off on the search engine result page.
Let’s say you launched a content titled “WordPress SEO: Great Suggestions and Improved Guide”. Depending on how you have set up your permanent link, you will have a URL like this: https://www.ayhankaraman.com/wordpress-seo-muhtesem-oneriler-ve-gelistirilmis-rehber/
However, you know that the keyword you target with the content is “WordPress SEO”. The good news here is that WordPress gives you the freedom to choose a custom URL. Just click the “Edit” button next to the URL. So you can enter your preferred URL.
11. Optimize Titles
In addition to creating the default URL for your page, the page title also defines your H1 title. You may not have an idea of what this is. However, you need to learn this.
The H1 header of a page is designed as a way to provide context for what your page is about to both users and search engines. You can think of it the same as the title of a book.
Best practices often require the use of an H1 title (the title of the page). However, you should know that you should also use H2-H6 headers. These add structure to your content. They also break the text into pieces and make it easier to read.
The title of your H1 book will be the H2 chapters and other titles will represent the sub-chapters. Page titles are a great place to use the main keyword and variations of your page. However, you should not overdo it.
12. Create Original Title Tags and Meta Comments
The title tag of your page tells users and search engines what your page is about. They are generally considered to be an important ranking factor. The title tag is what feeds the clickable page title you see in Google search results.
All in One SEO automatically adjusts your page’s title tag using your page’s title. However, it is up to you to improve it and add additional words to the title of your page. While doing this, you should try to use variations of keywords in general. I have configured my general settings as follows. In this way, I automatically ensure that my brand name comes to the end of each title.
You can use snippet variables, add custom text as a title tag, or use a mix of both. You might consider rewriting your title tag to include variables that define the location or purpose:
Meta descriptions are no longer a direct ranking factor. These affect the organic performance of your site indirectly due to the click-through rate. It is worth taking time to write attractive descriptions. It is important that these are 160 characters (110-145 characters long). You can add meta descriptions in the same section as the title tag:
As can be seen in the Snippet Preview section above, Ayhan KARAMAN was added automatically. In the meta description, being interesting and having a call to action was a move that increased the click-through rate.
13. Use Internal Links
You must use internal links in the content to help build current relevance between the different pages on your site, pass the authority gained from external links, and help users navigate efficiently.
Adding internal links to other pages in WordPress is really simple. All you have to do is select the URL you want to link to and click the link button in the toolbar.
14. Optimize Images
You should use images or rich media in your content.
It is very easy to use a screenshot or picture with a useless file name. This is not something we always pay attention to. For this reason, we often encounter images with wrong names.
Before uploading an image to the WordPress media library, you should make sure to use optimized file names. This helps you to give more context to a page. SEO tools for image files must use the /gorsel123.jpg /seo-araclari-baslangic.jpg instead. You only need to make sure it meets the visual typed name.
If you need to rename images after uploading, you can consider getting support from various plugins.
15. Add Alt Text to Images
When using the pictures in your content, be sure to add alternative text to each. Sub-labels provide visually impaired users the opportunity to understand images when using a screen reader. In addition, they provide search engines with explanations about the content and images.
Make sure that the alternative labels reflect a clear description of what the image shows. You can add alternative text to any image in WordPress in the “Image Settings” section of the “Blocks” menu:
You should be careful when adding alt text. You should take care to find sub-text that best reflects the image.
Advanced WordPress SEO Tips: Take Site Performance to the Next Level
If you follow the tips and advice above, you will quickly learn the basics of WordPress SEO. You should consider these steps as a checklist for every page and post you create.
However, there are other things you can do to improve your site’s performance and help your competitors stand out. You can try using the ones you need from a number of advanced SEO tactics below.
16. Install Cache Plugin
Although a strong performance even water as possible out of the box WordPress, especially when you consider that there is a strong factor in ranking a site’s speed must do better. In other words, there are some site speed improvements that every site should consider.
You may not want to struggle with too many technical details about increasing the speed of your site. However, one of the most effective ways to increase the speed of your site is to use a cache plugin to cache your articles and pages as static files. These static files are presented to users in a ready-to-use format rather than being dynamically created each time, and can significantly improve performance.
Rocket for WordPress WP, WP Fastest Cache, W3 Total Cache, you can use one of the WP Super Cache plugin or Cache Enabler.
17. Optimize Images
Another proven way to increase the speed and performance of your site is to optimize images. Because they are one of the most common things that contribute to your site is slow.
If you are using lots of visual and rich media content on your page will be able to increase the size of their markedly. However, this is often because images are not optimized properly. A common problem with images is to use a much larger version of the image than necessary. This is a sign that the image is not optimized.
You can manage to optimize the entire media library of your WordPres site and future images using the Smush or ShortPixel plugin.
18. Make Noindex with Label Pages and Low Value Content
WordPress uses a number of different page classifications, including categories and tags. Categories serve a great purpose, especially to bring content together. For example, you have started a collection of recipes and you may want to use categories for different cuisines.
Tags are smaller. They usually focus on specific issues. For example, you’ll use in a recipe parmesan cheese, pasta and butter will be the label for you.
Tags are rarely useful for users who are not on your site. From an SEO perspective, these pages rarely offer anything valuable. Generally, these pages do not need to be indexed. You don’t want these to receive traffic from Google because the traffic quality is poor.
The same goes for the media pages and other post formats that WordPress uses. Usually, you don’t want them indexed by Google. For this, you can use the “noindex” tags in Yoast.
All in One SEO> General Settings> Noindex by visiting the Settings section you can choose which partitions will appear in search engines.
Also, by visiting the media tab, “Do you redirect the attachment file URLs to the attachment file itself?” You must make sure that the option is yes. I have shared the markup you need to do in this as a screenshot below.
19. Use Schema Formatting
Schema formatting can help you improve your SEO work by adding context to your content and data. It helps Google understand your content and present it in different and useful ways. This means developing a search experience.
Simply put, by adding context to your pages, you not only rank higher. You also increase the likelihood of clicks when your page gets impressions.
You can access these settings in the All in One SEO Pack section. My settings are as follows.
20. Use Update Date
You should update your ageless content regularly to make sure it is always up to date and relevant. However, a frequently asked question comes to mind. It would be much more accurate to highlight the update date instead of playing with the publication date of your page.
If you show users the last updated date of the content, rather than the publication date of the content on the search engine results page, you can rely on them to be up to date and reliable. You can easily add the last updated date information to your WordPress pages and posts using the WP Last Modified Info plugin.
It would not be wrong to say that WordPress is one of the most SEO friendly content management systems. One of the main reasons WordPress is so popular is that it is user friendly. However, the situation is not limited to being user-friendly. By installing just a few plugins, you have the chance to make your site competitive in terms of SEO.
If you are using WordPress, you have made a good choice. By following the steps above, you can manage to outstrip your opponents. If you follow the tactics correctly, after a while you may see yourself as an administrator of a site that achieves great rankings.