33.2% of all websites use WordPress. With so many websites using WordPress, knowing WordPress best practices will allow you to have a very marketable skill.
Whether you plan on ranking your own website or you want to boost search engine rankings for client sites, learning these practices is a must. Continue reading this article to learn the best WordPress SEO tips.
WordPress Best Practices – Don’t Get Left Behind
Whether you’re just learning how to use WordPress or you’re a seasoned pro, it is important to continue your education. With more experts shedding light on the SEO topic, there is much less guesswork and much more need for actual work to rank sites.
1. Build on a Strong Foundation
Like any solid project, you need to have a good foundation. The foundation we are referring to today is the hosting and domain your site is hosted on as well as the coding of the site.
Choose a host that is safe and reliable. You want the host to be fast and to have security measures in place to protect your website.
Your domain should be easy to read and remember. If your domain is difficult to remember or hard to spell, then you might not get the results that you want in the SERPs.
2. Pretty Up Your Permalinks
Your permalink settings determine the link structure of your site. How you set your permalinks means the difference between yoursite.com/date/category/postname and yoursite.com/postname. The shorter your “slug” is while still containing the target keyword, the better for SEO purposes.
3. Develop a Quality Content Library
Your content is going to make or break your site. If your site doesn’t offer great content, it’s already dead in the water. The only reason your site exists is to serve the reader.
If your website readers visit your site and don’t get any value out of your site, then there is no reason for Google to rank your site. While you might not think there is a way for Google to tell if your site has a helpful content library, that’s not the case.
When your website visitors get value from your site, they will visit multiple pages and stay on the website for longer periods of time. If your website doesn’t serve their need, many times, people will visit and click away quickly.
4. Use No Follow
No following links means you place a rel=”no follow” tag on links on your site that you don’t vouch for. If a link is unrelated to your site or you aren’t sure it is a trustworthy link, you should use this code.
When you use this code, no link juice is passed from your site to the other site listed. The SEO value is that search engines won’t associate you with this site should it ever go downhill.
5. Cache for Speed
Caching makes your site faster and reduces the load on your server. Caching works by storing static content from your site on user browsers. While this only works for people that have visited your website before, it is a great way to help their user experience.
6. Hello CDN
A CDN or content delivery network is a network of servers that are located around the world. Your website is stored on each of these servers, and when a person queries your site, the CDN determines which server will deliver your site the fastest.
The calculation of which server to serve the site from happens very quickly. While it might take 8 or 9 seconds to serve your site from Dallas, TX to a user in the United Kingdom, if the site is served from the United Kingdom, the site might load in 2 seconds.
CDNs enhance the user experience by speeding up the load time.
7. Keep an Eye Out for Comment Spam
If your website has spam links on it, that’s a bad SEO signal. One of the most common spam techniques that has been happening for years is comment spam. Spammers are getting more creative and are learning how to sneak by spam filters.
You might see a comment that says something like, “Wow! Your site is amazing. I love the content you have here. My site is site xyz, and I would love for you to leave feedback for me. I can tell you’re an expert and I’d love to get your opinion.”
While this might seem like a harmless and even flattering comment, that’s not necessarily the case. Having links to other sites in the comments is generally a no-go for SEO.
Interlinking is a powerful way to let Google and other search engines know what your content is about. It’s also a great way to let them know which content is the most important and how they should structure your content for display in the search engines.
When you write a new post, you should link to your older content. The content you link to shouldn’t be at random. You want to link to content that will be a relevant and helpful resource to the people that come to your website.
You can use SEO plugins to help you figure out relevant pages and posts to link to if you want to save time.
9. Optimize Your Images
While images help make your site more engaging, images are also helpful to SEO. The way images can help your SEO is through the alt tags you add to them. Adding a keyword to your alt tag lets the search engines know what the photo is about.
The more relevant your post is to the keyword, the more likely it is that search engines will pay attention to your content.
Boost Your Search Engine Rankings
Now you know WordPress best practices and you can start to successfully rank your sites. Another article that will allow you to continue your education on ranking websites is about website speed. Read our article on website speed and whether it weighs in on your search engine ranking.