There are nearly 2 billion websites in the world covering every possible niche and topic so there is so much competition between websites that if you want your site to rank higher and get more traffic then you need to make sure that you are doing everything possible to help it rank as high as possible in Google, Bing, Yahoo and the other search engine sites.
Using good SEO, which is short for search engine optimization, can help your site rank better in the search engines and their search results pages when people search for something. That will mean more traffic to your site as a result of more people seeing results for your site when they are searching for something that can be found on your site.
If you do not know what SEO is, it is things that you can do to or for a website that can help it to achieve higher rankings in the search engine results pages (SERP’s) so that it will get more traffic (visitors) as well as higher quality traffic. (Find out more about what SEO is and why it’s important, here.)
WordPress is the most popular website and blog content management system (CMS) and that is because of many the many great features that WordPress has, the ease of building and maintaining sites using it, because of the huge number of themes and plugins that are available for it and for because there is a huge amount of information and available support that can be found for it.
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Doing SEO for a WordPress website can be the same as it is for any other type of website but there are some things that are different and even some things that are easier to do. We will be covering some tips that are for mainly pertaining to WordPress sites but some of them will apply to other websites that are not built with WordPress.
Below are some important search engine optimization tips, pointers and information to help you and your WordPress website or blog achieve better rankings in the search engine sites and achieve a greater level of success.
WordPress SEO Tips
Use SEO optimized permalinks – The URL’s for the pages and posts of your WordPress site are called permalinks. These are what you see in the browser bar when you go to a page or post in a WordPress site.
By default WordPress sites have permalinks that look something like “www.examplesite.com/?p=1437”.
Use the “Post Name” option in the permalink settings for the best SEO benefits. The “Post Name option will have permalinks that look something like “www.examplesite.com/this-is-better-for-seo”.
Have an XML sitemap – An XML sitemap is basically a list of all of the URL’s for your website or blog so that Google, Bing and the other search engines can easily find and index the pages, posts, images and other things that are on your site.
You can create an XML sitemap many different ways but the easiest way is to us a plugin that will create an XML sitemap for your site automatically. Some SEO plugins like the “All in one SEO pack” plugin have an XML sitemap feature built in so that you do not need a separate plugin to make one for you.
Submit your sitemap – After you create the XML sitemap for your website or blog you will want to make sure to submit the sitemap to Google Search Console, Bing Webmaster Tools and any other search engine that is appropriate for your needs.
Use an SEO plugin – There are many great SEO plugins for a WordPress site that take care of many different thing that will help the SEO of a WordPress website or blog. Two of the top SEO plugins are the “All in one SEO pack” and the “Yoast SEO” plugins.
Optimize images – Images can affect the SEO of a site in more than one way. First, images have a big impact on the load times of the pages and posts of a website so making sure that they are optimized (sometimes called compressed) to be the smallest file size possible while still having good quality is important.
You can use a plugin that will automatically optimize images when they are uploaded to your WordPress site or you can use image optimizing websites that allow you to upload your images and optimize (compress) them then download them in an optimized form to be used in your site.
Besides compressing the images that you use on your site, using the proper alt tags/alt text and image title can have additional SEO benefits. (Learn more about Image SEO, here.)
Use an SEO friendly theme – Using a good SEO optimized theme for your WordPress website or blog can help the search engine optimization of a site and it is something that is an often overlooked.
Limit plugins – WordPress plugins are a great way to add features and to customize a WordPress site and there are thousands of different plugins that you can use on your site. Plugins can add additional load time to a site and cause its pages and posts to take longer to load.
Since the page speed (load time) of websites is a ranking factor in Google and many of the major search engines it is best to limit plugins so that pages and posts will load as quickly as possible.
Mobile optimization – Having a website that loads quickly on mobile devices and is responsive so that it looks good on smartphones and tables and not just on laptop and desktop computers will help it rank better in the search engine sites which will gain more traffic for it.
Have good internal linking – Having good internal linking for your WordPress site is important for not just its SEO benefits but it will also help visitors discover and visit other pages and posts on your site that they might not have found otherwise.
Use HTTPS – The HTTPS protocol is a secure protocol that encrypts data that is sent to or accessed by a web browser. The HTTPS protocol is a ranking factor for Google and some of the other search engine sites so using it over the HTTP protocol will help the SEO of your site. You would use an SSL certificate for your website to get the “HTTPS” protocol active for your website.
There are a number of other SEO tips and best practices but the ones that we listed above are some of the more important ones and are some that can have the biggest impact on the SEO of a website or blog and can have a big impact on the success of a site.
Learning more and more about search engine optimization can help you and your site achieve greater success and help your site climb the rankings in the search engines. Never underestimate the importance of SEO and try to read and learn as much about it as you can so that your website or blog can be the best it can be!
Good luck and may your website of blog reach the Apex in its Niche!