If you’re running a WordPress blog or website, you’re probably aware of the importance of Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, for your site’s visibility. But if you’re not already an SEO expert, you may find the whole idea of optimizing your website a bit intimidating. You’re not alone; with the fast-changing rules and algorithms, even experienced marketers can have a hard time keeping up with the latest SEO practices. Not to worry, there are plenty of tools and easy techniques to help you optimize your site without being a tech expert. Here are a few basic tips to get your WordPress site optimized for the search engine and readily visible to all your readers.
Confirm Your Visibility Settings
Perhaps the easiest and most important way to ensure your site is visible on the search engine is checking your visibility settings in WordPress. There is a built-in feature that allows you to work privately on your site while it’s in progress without being visible to search engines. The problem is, it can sometimes remain checked by accident once your site goes live. If you haven’t already done so, go to your admin page >> Settings >> Reading. In the Search Engine Visibility section, make sure the box next to “Discourage search engines from indexing this site” is unchecked; then save your settings.
Use a WordPress SEO Plugin
It’s simple to get a plug in to do just about anything in WordPress, and the same goes for SEO. Though there are thousands of options out there, Yoast SEO and All in One SEO Pack are generally considered the best options. They are both effective solutions that allow you to automate a good portion of your SEO duties away. However, even with a plugin, there are still other steps you can take to grow your site’s visibility and reach.
Use the Right Keywords, Title, and Description
Know what keywords pertain to your business and use them in clusters in the titles and descriptions of your content. Generally, it’s advised that you keep your titles to a maximum of 55 characters, and your meta-descriptions to 155 at-most. But beyond numbers, you also need a catchy title that commands the readers’ attention.
Basic SEO Rules for Content
When you’re starting out, it’s easy to get confused about how to use Categories and Tags to designate your blog posts, this can make them less searchable on the web. Think of Categories as broader “chapters” within the book that is your website. Tags are the specific designations within each Category. For example, “Soups” can be a tag within the “Recipes” category on your website.
Also, make sure to create internal links within each blog post that navigates to an existing blog or page on your site. For optimal results, link each new post to at least three other blog posts or pages.
Pay Attention to Speed
You may think that adding a ton of high-pixel, high-quality photos will attract people to your site, but if the size of your media is weighing down your site’s loading speed, you may actually be hurting your SEO score. It’s a known fact that search engines prefer and give higher visibility to faster-loading sites. For best optimization, choose smaller images, and include “excerpts” for your blog posts to avoid lengthy duplicate texts and slower loading speed.
We hope these tips get you well on your way to mastering SEO on your site. For a more in-depth look at SEO standards visit: https://yoast.com/wordpress-seo/.