It’s important to get more traffic to your site by increasing SEO. But unfortunately, the vast majority of WordPress SEO guidelines are too technical for beginners to get started. If you value the importance of improving your website traffic, then you need to pay attention to the practice of WordPress SEO. In this guide, we’ll share some of the most important WordPress SEO tips to improve your WordPress SEO and bring you more natural traffic.
You may have heard some experts say that WordPress is very friendly to SEO, which is why many people choose to use WordPress to build blogs or websites. While WordPress ensures that the code it generates follows the best practices of SEO, you still need to do a lot of things if you want to maximize SEO. We need to take a series of actionable methods to properly optimize your WordPress SEO. For your convenience, we have created a directory to help you navigate our WordPress SEO authoritative guide.
Table of Contents
- What is SEO?
- Why is SEO so important?
The basics of WordPress SEO
- Check your website visibility settings
- Use SEO-friendly URL format in WordPress
- The difference between WWW and WWW in URL
WordPress SEO Best Plugin
- Selecting the best WordPress plug member
- Add an XML Sitemap in WordPress
- Add your website in Google Search Console
- Optimize your blog post
WordPress SEO Best Practices
- Use categories and tags in WordPress correctly
- Use internal links
- Optimize WordPress reviews
- External link setting in WordPress NoFollow
- Full text vs abstract
WordPress SEO speed and security
- Optimize your website speed and performance
- Improve WordPress SEO by optimizing images
- WordPress website security
- Start using SSL/HTTPS
Finally, you can view more SEO tools and resources to further improve Word Press SEO.
We know that the idea of optimizing WordPress SEO may be daunting for you, especially if you are not a technology enthusiast. But don’t worry, what we’re talking about won’t be complicated. Start by learning the basics and start applying to your personal website.
What is SEO?
SEO is the abbreviation of Search Engine Optimization, which is used by many people to improve the ranking of search results to get more natural traffic.
Search engine optimization is not used to trick Google search engines. It just optimizes and normalizes the website code to make it easier for search engines to find your website.
When a user searches for keywords related to your website using a search engine, your search engine optimization work will make your website rank higher in the search results, which will attract more people to click to bring to your website. More traffic.
Why is SEO so important?
Search engines can be said to be the source of most website traffic.
Like other search engines, Google uses advanced algorithms to understand web content and rank them in search results. However, these algorithms are not perfect, they also need your help to understand the content of your website.
If your site content is not optimized, the search engine doesn’t know how to rank it. When a user searches for keywords related to the content of your website, then your website will not appear in the search results list, and you will lose all access to search traffic.
So, for all webmasters, it’s important to make your site search-friendly so you can maximize your search traffic.
The basics of WordPress SEO.
SEO is very skillful, but you can also optimize your website by mastering some basic SEO techniques to significantly increase your website traffic.
If you are already using WordPress, you don’t need to ask the technology to teach you the following tips, you can easily master it.
Let’s start optimizing your website.
Check your website visibility settings
WordPress has a built-in option to hide your site in search engines. The purpose of this option is to allow you to spend more time on the site before publishing the site.
However, sometimes this option may be accidentally set so that your site cannot be indexed by search engines.
If your site hasn’t appeared in search results, then the first thing you need to do is check to make sure this option is not selected.
Log in to WordPress with administrator privileges and go to Settings >> Reading Page .
You need to scroll all the way to the ‘Search Engine Visibility’ option and make sure
‘Discourage search engines from indexing this site’ is not selected.
Finally, don’t forget to click the “Save Changes” button to save your action.
Use SEO-friendly URL format in WordPress
The text contained in the SEO-friendly URL clearly explains the content of this page, and it is also very easy for people and search engines to read.
Using an SEO-friendly, permanent connection structure gives your site a chance to get a better ranking in search results.
Here you can check and update the permalink structure of your WordPress site:
You need to visit the Settings » Permalinks page. Select the Post name option and click Save.
If your site has been running for more than 6 months, then please don’t change your permalink structure unless you are using a link structure with numeric options. If you are using Day and Name or Month and Name, continue to use it.
Changing the permalinks of an established website will cause you to lose all your social media sharing counts and possibly lose your existing SEO rankings.
If you insist on changing the permalink structure, it is best to hire a professional person and ask them to give you a jump link. But in this way, you will still lose all social sharing counts.
The difference between WWW and WWW in URL
If your site is still getting started, then you need to choose whether the site’s URL link uses www
(http://www.example.com) or non-www (http://example.com).
Search engines will think of these two as different sites, so you need to choose one and stick to it.
You can do this on the Settings » General page and add your favorite URLs in the ‘WordPress Address’ and ‘Site Address’ input boxes.
Some people may say that from the perspective of SEO, choosing any one is actually no different for SEO.
WordPress SEO Best Plugin
One advantage of using the WordPress blogging system is that you can find a variety of plugins, including plugins for SEO. There are hundreds of SEO plugins in it, which is hard for beginners to choose.
Next, we’ll help you choose the best SEO plugin instead of installing plugins for each SEO task, and these plugins are 100% free.
Choose the best SEO plugin
When it comes to choosing the best WordPress SEO plugin, you are likely to narrow your choices to two: Yoast SEO or All in One SEO Pack .
Both of these are good SEO plugins, and we have made a detailed comparison of the two plugins .
On the WPBeginner website, we use Yoast SEO, so in this article, we will use Yoast SEO as an example.
Add XML sitemaps to WordPress
An XML Sitemap is a formatted file that contains a list of all the pages on your site. This makes it easy for search engines to find your content.
But adding an XML sitemap doesn’t improve your site’s search rankings. This only allows search engines to find and rank your pages faster.
If you use the Yoast SEO plugin, it will automatically create an XML sitemap. If you want to find your sitemap, you can access it by a URL similar to the one below (don’t forget to replace example.com with your site).
We will show you how to submit your XML sitemap in Google.
Add your website in Google Search Console
Google Search Console , also known as the Webmaster tool, is a set of tools provided by Google that lets webmasters understand how search engines see their content.
It provides reports and data to help you understand how your pages appear in search results. You can also see which keywords the user is using to find your page, how your page appears in search results, and how much traffic your page has.
With all this information, you can quickly understand the health of your site and then adopt appropriate strategies for your site content based on these conditions.
When there is a problem with your page, Google Search Console will alert you, for example, that the search crawler can’t access it, find duplicate content, or limit resources.
We have written an operating guide that teaches you how to add a WordPress site to Google Search Console .
If you are using Yoast SEO, you can follow Step 11 of the setup guide in our Yoast SEO .
Once you’ve added the site to Google Search Console, click the Crawl button and select the Sitemap option.
Then click the Add Sitemap button.
Your sitemap is sitemap_index.html, confirm and click Submit.
After successfully submitting the site map, it will become a wait state. Google needs to spend some time crawling your site. After a few hours, you can see the status update of the site map. It will show you how many links were found in your sitemap, how many links have been indexed successfully, the image and page ratios, and so on.
We recommend that you check the basic data of Google Search Console at least once a month to understand the SEO of your website.
Optimize your blog post
Many beginners think that installing and activating the WordPress SEO plugin is all done, but know that if you want to get as much traffic as possible, SEO is a long-term process.
Yoast SEO allows you to add titles, descriptions, and keywords to every blog site and page. It also provides a preview view of when a user searches for your site on Google.
We recommend that you optimize your site title and description to maximize your clicks.
When writing a blog post, you can scroll to the Yoast SEO action section to take advantage of the features here.
If you don’t know how to choose keywords, how to finalize the title, and what kind of meta description is the best, then you can read the beginner’s guide we wrote “Optimize your blog post SEO”
We strongly recommend that you read this article because on-page SEO is critical to your success.
WordPress SEO Best Practices
If you follow the basic requirements of WordPress SEO and use the best WordPress SEO plugin we recommend, then you have successfully surpassed most of the sites.
If you still want better results, then you need to master the following WordPress SEO best practices.
The following methods do not have too many technical requirements and do not require you to modify the code. But if you follow these practical requirements, they will have a great effect.
Use categories and tags in WordPress correctly
WordPress allows you to categorize categories and tags, which allows you to manage content based on themes, and lets users find what they need to see.
The categories and tags of the article can also help search engines understand the structure and content of your site.
In general, many beginners don’t know how to fully use the two functions of categories and tags. Below we will show you how to use categories and labels correctly.
Categories are primarily used to categorize your articles. If you think of your blog as a book, the category is a list of content.
For example, you can sort by music, food, travel, etc. on your personal blog. Of course, these categories can be further divided into subcategories.
Labels, on the other hand, are more specific keywords that provide a more specific description of an article’s content. For example, a blog post under the food category, its label can be salad, breakfast, pancakes, etc., just like the index of a book.
To learn more about this, read the “Category vs. Label, Best Practices for Article Classification”.
Proper use of categories and tags allows users to easily browse your site, which of course also helps search engines browse your site.
Use internal links
As we mentioned above, links can help search engines determine which pages are important. When you set up a link to jump to another website, it is equivalent to giving you some of the SEO scores of your website. This SEO score is also called “link juice”.
To get a good search ranking, you need to make sure you get more link juice from other sites instead of giving link juice.
By adding “nofollow” attributes to external links (other sites), you can let search engines not pay attention to these links, which can help you save link juice.
A normal external link in HTML is like this:
<a href="http://example.com">Example Website</a>
The external link that sets the “nofollow” attribute is like this:
<a href="http://example.com" rel="nofollow">Example Website</a>
You can set the “nofollow” property in the bulletin when you insert the link.
Full text vs abstract
WordPress can display and link to your articles from many pages, such as: home page, category archive, tag archive, date archive, author page, and more.
By default, WordPress will display all the content by default, which will affect the SEO of your website. Because search engines may find it to be a duplicate content, a full article may also slow down your archive page loading.
Displaying the full content may also affect your page views. For example, if a user subscribes to your website via RSS, then the user can read the complete article content directly through the RSS reader without visiting your website, which will result in a decrease in page views.
The easiest solution is to display only one article summary instead of the full text.
You can do this by using Settings » Reading .
WordPress SEO speed and security
Even if you follow the above WordPress SEO skills to optimize, if your website access is slow or hacked, then your search ranking will suffer huge losses.
The following methods can help you avoid loss of search traffic due to slow access and low security.
Optimize your website speed and performance
Studies have shown that in the Internet age, humans’ average attention is even lower than that of goldfish.
Some SEO experts even believe that users can decide to stay on a page, and it only takes a few seconds to visit the website.
This also means that as a webmaster, you only have a few seconds to show your website content and attract users. You don’t want users to waste precious time when loading web pages. Search engines like Google also admit that websites with high access speeds will rank better than websites with lower access speeds.
Improve WordPress SEO by optimizing images
Images are more appealing to users than words, but images take more time to load than text. If you don’t pay attention to the size and quality of the image, this may affect the access speed of your website.
You want to make sure that the images you use are optimized and can be loaded very quickly. Check out our article on improving the speed of WordPress access: “Optimize Website Pictures . “
You can use the title description and the alt tag to optimize the image to improve SEO. These tags can help search engines understand what the picture is about. It can also help some visually impaired users to read these alt tags and title descriptions through the reader.
WordPress provides the ability to add image titles and alt tags.
If you are a photographer or need to add a lot of images to a WordPress site, then you need a gallery plugin.
We recommend Envira Gally, and in our speed test we found it to be the fastest of the WordPress Gallery plugins. It has adaptive features and is very friendly to SEO.
WordPress website security
Google will blacklist about 20,000 malicious websites and 50,000 phishing websites every week. Once the site is blacklisted, these sites will no longer appear in the search results, which means that the site loses search traffic.
Therefore, the security of your website is also crucial, and you will not want all SEO efforts to fall short because of hacking.
The good news is that it’s not difficult to keep your WordPress site safe. You can follow the guidelines we wrote: The WordPress Security Authoritative Guide .
The WP Beginner website uses Sucuri for protection. As for why it is used to provide security services, you can see WP Beginner’s case: ” Scuri intercepted 450,000 WordPress attacks in 3 months .”
Start using SSL/HTTPS
SSL (Secure Socket Layer) technology is an encryption technology that encrypts communication between a user’s browser and a server. This can give your website an extra layer of security.
Websites that use SSL protection will have a padlock prompt in the address bar of the browser, which means your website is trustworthy. If your WordPress involves sensitive operations such as online payments, then you need to use SSL to provide protection.
You can pay for an SSL certificate, such as Bluehost. You can also use the free SSL certificate from Let’s Encrypt.
You can check out our article tutorial to protect with SSL: “How to use Let’s Encrypt’s free SSL certificate in WordPress” .
More SEO tools and resources
If you master the best practices of WordPress SEO, you may want to go further and improve SEO technology to surpass more competitors.
We also specifically list a list: “The best WordPress SEO plug-ins and tools you should use” , you can use the tools and plug-ins described to improve SEO. If you’re ready to use some of the more advanced methods, you can check out our documentation set: WordPress SEO article collection .
We hope this article will help you optimize your WordPress site to improve SEO. After you’ve practiced these SEO techniques, the search engine will handle the changes, and in a few months, you’ll see an increase in traffic to your site.