HOW TO SEO MY WEBSITE IN WORDPRESS

Matthew Carter
Hello friends, my name is Matthew Carter. I’m a professional link builder for a large SEO agency in New York City.

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By default, WordPress sets the URL to the full title of the post or page. This is rarely ideal because it’s usually long, and long URLs tend to get truncated in the search results.

Every page and post in WordPress needs a title, which you set here:

To see which version this is, plug them both into Ahrefs’ Batch Analysis tool and check their referring domains.

Alt text is important because it:

For example, you can see above that many of the pages ranking for “SEO tips” talk about boosting traffic or rankings in their SERP titles. So this is probably a good angle for a clickworthy title for this topic.

10. Write a “clickworthy” title.

The next three tactics are about page speed. Use these to speed up your website and improve its performance. Note that we haven’t covered every optimization you can make here, as page speed is a complex topic. So if you want to delve deeper into this side of things, read our full guide to speeding up your WordPress website.

For that reason, it’s important that your title entices visitors to click through to your page while accurately describing what the page is about. In other words, the title should be clickworthy but not clickbait.

Make sure this is unchecked if you want to stand any chance of ranking whatsoever.

You’ll find this under Settings > Reading > Search engine visibility :

Google usually uses your title tag for the snippet in the search results.

If you’re not sure if and where to add internal links, sign up for a free Ahrefs Webmaster Tools (AWT) account, run a crawl in Site Audit, then go to the Link opportunities report to see relevant internal link suggestions:

For example, you can see above that it recommends we internally link the phrase “link building tactics” in our guide to bad links to our list of link building strategies.

To install it, go to Plugins > Add New > Search for “Yoast SEO” > Click Activate > Click Install :

Sitemaps list the important posts and pages on your site to help search engines discover them. Yoast SEO creates a sitemap for you, but you need to make sure the option is turned on.

8. Exclude low-value content from indexing.

Shows how many different websites are linking to this piece of content. As a general rule, the more websites link to you, the higher you rank in Google.

For a new website, it doesn’t really matter which version you choose. But if your pages are accessible at both URL versions, your best bet is to use the version with the most backlinks.

The beauty of WordPress is it automatically redirects the other version to the preferred version so that search engines and visitors can only access your site at the preferred domain.

If there are any, you’ll want to use a WordPress plugin like Redirection to redirect the old URLs to the new ones.

Here’s what your URL structure will look like by default:

To do that, go to SEO > Search Appearance > Taxonomies > Toggle “Show Tags in search results?” off :

2. Set preferred domain.

Pretty much all WordPress themes are responsive and mobile-friendly these days, so there’s not much to worry about there. What you really need to check when choosing a theme is its performance.

WP Rocket describes itself as a web performance plugin that boosts your page speed. The beauty of the plugin is that it makes a bunch of useful optimizations out of the box, including browser and server caching.

This title usually gets shown elsewhere on your WordPress website. For example, the title for this post shows up on our blog archive page:

Permalinks are basically the URL format for your posts and pages, and the “post name” option tends to be the most SEO-friendly because it helps:

Our free WordPress SEO plugin audits and monitors content performance and gives recommendations on how to improve it.

You can do this in Settings > Discussion > Comment must be manually approved :

Minification removes unnecessary white space from your code to reduce file sizes.

As of June 2005, Google is now accepting sitemaps of your site as part of their website submissions. Google needs to have this sitemap formatted in a special way using XML. You can find more information about Google’s Sitemap Submissions from Google, and the discussion on the WordPress Forum about WordPress and Google Site maps.

Search engines can’t “see” a site. They can only “read” a site. Looks do not talk to a search engine. What “talks” to a search engine are the words, the content, the material in your site that explains, shares, informs, educates, and babbles. Make sure you have quality word content for a search engine to examine and compare with all the parts and pieces to give you a good “score”.

Your site may not have much text, mostly photographs and links, but you have places in which to add textual content. Search engines look for alt and title in link and image tags. While these have a bigger purpose of making your site more accessible, having good descriptions and words in these attributes helps provide more content for search engines to digest.

WordPress comes with several built in search optimization tools, including the ability to use .htaccess to create apparently static URLs called permalinks, blogrolling, and pinging. There are also a number of third party plugins and hacks which can be used for search engine optimization (SEO).

To submit your site’s feeds, you need to know the link to the various feeds your site provides. The article WordPress Feeds lists the various links of the feeds that come built into WordPress.

Link Relationships # Link Relationships.

As search engines use links and the title as part of their information gathering, links to posts and articles within your site gain importance with Permalinks.

Search Engines read a file at yourdomain.com/robots.txt to get information on what they should and shouldn’t check.

Write Your Content with Searchers in Mind.

Good, Clean Code.

It is also useful for traffic generation and search optimization purposes to submit your site to directories. Both comprehensive directory sites and those specific to the subject or localisation of your site can be used.

Good Navigation Links.

Content Talks.

It is not how good your site is, it is how good the sites are that link to you. This still holds weight with search engine favoritism. It’s about who links to you. Blogrolls, pingbacks, and trackbacks are all built into WordPress. These help you link to other people, which gives them credit, but it also helps them link to you, connecting the “links.” The number of incoming links your site has that have been recognized by Google can be checked by typing link:www.yoursite.com into Google (other search engines have similar functions). Other ways to generate incoming links to your site include:

WordPress comes built-in with various feeds, allowing your site to be viewed by various feed readers. Many search engines are now accepting feed submissions, and there are many site which specialize in directories of feeds and feed services.

A search engine enters your site and, for the most part, ignores the styles and CSS. It just plows through the site gathering content and information. Most WordPress Themes are designed with the content as close to the top of the unstyled page as possible, keeping sidebars and footers towards the bottom. Few search engines scan more than the first third of the page before moving on. Make sure your Theme puts the content near the top.

Search Engine Site Submissions # Search Engine Site Submissions.

How do you find information on the Internet? If you are writing something that you want to be “found” on the Internet, think about the words and phrases someone would use to find your information. Use them more than once as you write, but not in every sentence. Learn how search engines scan your content, evaluate it, and categorize it so you can help yourself get in good favor with search engines.

Some utilities have been created to help the WordPress user to create a Google site map of their site for submission to Google. For more information on these and Google sitemaps:

Make sure your site’s code validates. Errors in your code may prevent a search engine from moving through the site successfully.

Search engines do not evaluate your site on how pretty it is, but they do evaluate the words and put them through a sifter, giving credit to certain words and combinations of words. Words found within your document are compared to words found within your links and titles. The more that match, the better your “score.”

The WordPress Custom Fields option can also be used to include keywords and descriptions for posts and Pages. There are also several WordPress Plugins that can also help you to add meta tags and keyword descriptions to your site found within the Official WordPress Plugin Directory.

There are many resources that will “help” you submit your site to search engines. Some are free, some for a fee. Or you can manually submit your site to search engines yourself. Whatever method you choose to use, once your site has been checked for errors and is ready to go, search engines will welcome your WordPress site.

Permalinks are enhancements to your existing URLs which can improve search engine optimization by presenting your post, page, and archive URLs as something like <nowiki>http://example.com/2003/05/23/my-cheese-sandwich/</nowiki> rather than <nowiki>http://example.com/index.php?p=423</nowiki> . See Using Permalinks for more information.

Robots.txt Optimization # Robots.txt Optimization.

Keywords, Links, and Titles Meet Content.

A sitemap or “site map” is a single page listing of all the posts on your website. It is intended for your visitors to get a good overview on what your site is about and to find a blog post quickly but it also has great benefits in the search engines as a good link is always pointing to all your blog posts. By having a link to your sitemap on all your sites pages both visitors and search engines will easily get to it and find all your posts.

If you have translated this article or have some similar one on your blog post a link here.

Directory Sites.

Meta Tags contain information that describes your site’s purpose, description, and keywords used within your site. The meta tags are stored within the head of your header.php template file. By default, they are not included in WordPress, but you can manually include them and the article on Meta Tags in WordPress takes you through the process of adding meta tags to your WordPress site.

Adding entries to robots.txt to help SEO is popular misconception. Google says you are welcome to use robots.txt to block parts of your site but these days prefers you don’t. Use page-level noindex tags instead, to tackle low-quality parts of your site. Since 2009, Google has been evermore vocal in its advice to avoid blocking JS & CSS files, and Google’s Search Quality Team has been evermore active in promoting a policy of transparency by webmasters, to help Google verify we’re not “cloaking” or linking to unsightly spam on blocked pages. Therefore the ideal robots file disallows nothing whatsoever, and may link to an XML Sitemap if an accurate one has been constructed (which itself is rare though!).

WordPress by default only blocks a couple of JS files but is nearly compliant with Google’s guidance here.

For information on customizing these links, see the article on Customizing Feeds.

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