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How to Boost Your WordPress Site’s SEO in 7 Easy Steps

WordPress Site SEO

Written by Jeremy Earle, JD

August 20, 2022

Are you seeking alternatives to Yoast to help you boost your WordPress SEO? For immediate results, try the following seven pointers.

There’s a good chance you’re looking for ways to make your WordPress site more search engine friendly as you read this. Is what I’m saying correct?

No, I’m not seeking a new tool for my WordPress SEO.

I’m not clairvoyant in any way, shape, or form. This isn’t the first time this has happened to me.

If I had to guess, I’d think that a large number of us WordPress users are either attempting to improve our page performance or choosing a more SEO-friendly theme.

According to the stats, WordPress is utilized by 64% of all websites using a recognized content management system. That’s a total of 40.6% of all online pages.

You have a 40.6 per cent chance of getting a WordPress website if you flip a coin. That’s quite a bit of information. For example, TechCrunch, Star Wars, Beyonce and Beyonce’s blogs utilize it. Facebook’s Newsroom and eBay use it as well. Even Search Engine Journal is powered on WordPress. Every month over 2 million people come to our site from search engines like Google and Bing.

The Yoast plugin seems to get all the attention when it comes to optimizing WordPress sites for search engine optimization.

Is there anything more that Yoast does not have control over? After more than a decade of working with the platform, I’ve put up a list of practical SEO advice for WordPress site owners.

Is WordPress.com or WordPress.org a Better Platform?

When it comes to picking between WordPress.org and WordPress.com, WordPress.org is the obvious winner. Themes, widgets, and plugins on WordPress.org may all be completely customized. Open-source, self-hosted, and perfect for SEO. It’s the same technology that’s powering the sites as mentioned above.

No FTP access and local storage make WordPress.com a poor choice for SEO.

1. Select an SEO-Friendly WordPress Theme

Let’s get down to business. SEO is normally at the bottom of the list when selecting a WordPress theme. Understandably, you’d like to focus on aesthetics and user experience while creating your website.

SEO-friendly WordPress themes are easy to ignore, yet they are essential to the success of your website. These are my top picks for the finest SEO-friendly WordPress themes.

  • Astra.
  • Genesis.
  • Divi.
  • GeneratePress.
  • OceanWP.

2. Decide on Your Favorite Domain Name

When it comes to deciding on a domain name, you have two options:

web site vs non-website

Setting your chosen domain to www or non-www will not affect your search engine rankings. My website (https://annaleacrowe.com) does not utilize the www prefix.

When building a website in the past, the www prefix was automatically included.

As a major firm with a lot of web traffic, you may choose the www form of your selected domain name. You may use a CNAME record to assist reroute traffic in the event of failover with a www version.

3. Permalinks in WordPress may be changed.

It’s time for a test! Please tell me which of the following URLs is easier to understand.

https://www.example.com/seo-101/what-people-search-for/

https://www.example.com/seo-101/?p=12345

The recommended canonical URL is the first option, which is more readable and easier to remember. Visitors expect to see URLs like this. Your content may also benefit from a clean and SEO-friendly URL structure.

“The SEO impact of keywords in the URL is minor after the content is indexed,” Google’s John Mueller tweeted.

As soon as the content is indexed, the SEO benefit of including keywords in the URL diminishes. Make URLs for your consumers, not for search engine optimization. In addition, unless necessary, I’d steer clear of doing a site migration only to make a few changes to the URLs on an existing site.

— John, August 19, 2020 (@JohnMu), on Twitter

Even if you notice a little difference, it’s well worth upgrading for the sake of the whole experience.

Go to Settings > Permalinks in WordPress to alter the default permalink settings. Afterwards, choose Post Name as the choice. For the most part, a post’s name will suffice.

However, if you like, you may design your structure.

4. Activate the Breadcrumbs feature.

In the early days of SEO, breadcrumbs were as common as printing out those Mapquest instructions.

It’s critical to realize that I’m not referring to the breadcrumbs often found in chicken parmesan. I’m referring to the breadcrumbs that appear at the top of a page or in the navigation bar.

As in this case, Breadcrumbs may be implemented in about 5 minutes with the Yoast SEO plugin already installed. It’s easy to enable breadcrumbs in Yoast SEO under Search Appearance > Breadcrumbs.

5. Enable or Disable Comments in WordPress is the fifth step.

Do you have WordPress comments enabled or disabled? Your existing WordPress website’s condition will influence this selection.

According to Google’s John Mueller, removing comments from a site may influence search engine results. If the comments aren’t too spammy, you may want to retain them.

There’s nothing wrong with leaving comments disabled if you like. Comments with poor language and spelling might impact search engine results, according to Google’s Matt Cutts. In other words, you get to determine whether or not you want comments on your site.

Visit Settings > Discussion to activate or disable comments on WordPress.

6. Using SEO-friendly plugins is a must.

Please stop if you’re a plugin addict and keep downloading and installing new ones. Watching folks overdo it with the self-tanner is nearly as horrible as seeing them overdo it (almost).

When you add too many plugins to your WordPress site, you’re bringing their baggage along for the ride. Code bloat, thick markup, and non-semantic code may slow down a website if too many plugins are installed. It’s best to keep things basic when selecting SEO-friendly WordPress plugins.

  • Yoast SEO.
  • “Math Rank”
  • Check for broken links using this handy online tool.
  • Using WP Super Cache.

7. Using Your Robots.txt File, you may block certain URLs.

You must not cross a line while tinkering with your robots.txt file. Crossing that boundary is like an 11-hour tequila train journey for every SEO marketer.

More than I can count the number of people who have asked for a technical audit on their site, only to discover that the problem is a screwed up robots.txt.

Understanding the fundamentals of changing your robots.txt file is essential. Your robots.txt should look something like this if you want your site to be indexed by search engines, so stop what you’re doing right now and edit it.

No one will discover you in search results if your robots.txt file looks like this. There are a few sites that you should include in your robots.txt file’s forbidden sections.

The following are the pages that I believe you should read:

  • Archive.
  • Tags.
  • Admin-level web pages — (ex: login pages).
  • Thank you pages.
  • Classifications (unless you have a unique copy on each category page).

In the words of Matt Cutts, Google’s head of search, avoid using the robots.txt file to control how Googlebot searches your site.

It’s Now Easier Than Ever to Improve Your WordPress SEO

In the past, trying to enhance my WordPress SEO was difficult for me in every way: mentally, physically, and economically.

I can smell the triumph baking in my metrics now that I’ve begun tinkering with WordPress and executing the adjustments myself. From Shopify and Bigcommerce to Joomla and Drupal to Wix and Squarespace, I’ve tried a lot of different systems over the years, but WordPress has shown to be the most SEO-friendly.

In no way, shape, or form can WordPress be considered a close second. You won’t regret it at all!

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