What is the point of having a beautiful website with a killer theme if the search engines do not present it to the prospective users? You should know that Google, Bing, and the other leading search engines care less about pretty themes and photos on your web pages. They care more about the technical aspects such as alt tags, file names, key phrases, and much more to be compliant with their rules.
However, the success in maintaining a website for your business lies in understanding these technical aspects and managing them well. If you own a WordPress site, then it is essential to learn about Essential WordPress SEO Strategies to ensure maximum reach and acceptance of your website.
Understanding Search engine optimization
SEO is a group of techniques used to improve the quality and volume of traffic to a particular website from search engines. It is done through various organic (natural or unpaid) methods and also through some paid methods. By optimizing a site as per the rules and regulations of the search engines, business owners can enhance their exposure in the search results.
The ultimate goal of SEO is to help a site climb on top of the SERPs. The higher your website ranking is, the more likely you are to receive the most visitors. With increased number of visitors, you stand to gain more leads and conversion. Through search engine optimization, you can target various types of searches including global web search, image search, video search, and local search.
Further, we will discuss a few crucial things you need to know to ensure SEO value of your WordPress website. Web developers often overlook these points not knowing that these are the most effective.
Crucial SEO steps to ensure in web development
1. Content is the key to optimization.
Any optimization effort is only as good as the quality of the website content. The content should be unique and informative so that it is acceptable to the users and search engines. Ideally, text content should contain essential keywords and should reflect the overall theme of the post. Content must be easily understandable and properly readable. However, you cannot stuff the content with a large number of keywords. Instead, you must use keywords wisely and contextually. For modern SEO value, the text should be written for the users, not for search engines.
2. Exchange quality backlinks.
Earning relevant and high-quality backlinks from trusted sources is crucial. As per Sioux Falls SEOexperts advice, this needs to be done naturally. Marketers should never fall prey to scams such as ‘1000 backlinks in 10 days’. Using black hat methods to generate backlinks can even get your site penalized! Try to create an internal link structure and external links to pages of authority in a logical manner to enjoy optimum value.
3. Name the images correctly.
Using relevant and quality images on web pages can surely grab user attention. However, you need to put good and contextual names to the images files. Google now considers images when deciding website ranking. The search engine displays text as well as the image on search results by drawing relevant pictures.
So, putting generic keywords like DSE9548.jpg will not work. Instead, you need to follow a specific naming convention. For example, Tennis-Rafael-Nadal-US-Open for an image of Rafael Nadal playing US Open tournament. It is also important to use proper alt tag and title tag for the pictures as they also play vital in page optimization.
4. Use proper permalinks with keywords.
As like in the case of image naming, it is essential to use logical permalink structure for your pages and blog posts. For example, a URL as http://websitename.com/page-id?495/ may not work well when it comes to SEO performance as it does not give any clues as to what it represents. On the other hand, http://websitename.com/Rageal-Nadal-Winning-US-Open/ will give the readers and the search engines a clear overview of what the page is all about.
5. Use themes which are search engine optimized.
Some of the WordPress themes use a lot of codes to create the design and layout. Google crawlers will wade through source codes to find relevant content. The longer your code is, the lesser the content and keyword density will be. So, it is always ideal to use the fast-performing WordPress themes for better search engine rankings. Performance and speed of the website are the top criteria to determine your page ranking.
6. Create an XML sitemap.
Creating XML sitemap for WordPress sites is easy with the use of plugins such as Google XML Sitemaps. Webmaster Central and Website Optimizer are some other handy tools for this purpose. Creating an XML sitemap will help search engines to identify the logic of your site components and navigation to mark it as a user-friendly and performing site.
There are more than 200 criterions Google uses to determine the ranking of a website. The above few can be a good start with which you will be able to explore more to ensure top search engine ranking of your WordPress site ultimately.