WordPress SEO Tips to Rank Higher

Search engine optimization (SEO) is not a luxury anymore. It is a necessity for running an online business.
SEO is serious business. But if you are using WordPress for your website, you are already one step ahead since it is a very SEO-friendly content management system (CMS).
Related : How to Choose the Best CMS for SEO?
But just having a WordPress website will not ensure good rankings on the search engine pages. You need to put in place the right SEO strategies to get the desired result.

Tips to Improve Your WordPress SEO Rankings

1. Use Appropriate Keyword Research Tools

Unless you do proper keyword research, you will not be able to optimize your website properly. Keyword research is, in fact, the most crucial aspect of SEO strategy for efficient on-page optimization.
Doing keyword research will allow you to:

  • Understand the market requirement in your niche
  • It is vital to learn what your audience is looking for and create content based on their search requirements.
  • Generate organic traffic to your website
  • Track and analyze the success rate of your content on the website

There are several tools that you can use to identify the keywords for generating content for your website.
Some such keyword research tools are Google Keyword Planner,, and KWFinder.
You have to ensure that there is at least one proper keyword in each of your posts. However, also remember that you should never overstuff keywords in your webpage, but use them in a way that reads naturally.

2. Use Optimized Headings on Your Website

The heading of your website plays a vital role in SEO too. It gives a context of what your website is all about to your users and also to the search engines.
When you use appropriate headings, it improves the user experience for the visitors. It also helps your website rank on search engines’ result pages.
Use the main keywords on the heading of your website. Then add variants of keywords in the subsequent subheadings. But make sure that the inclusion of the keywords is natural and well-fitting.
Adding several subheadings to the content of the website will give structure to the website. And, this structure makes reading through the web pages easier for the visitors.
You must have noticed that there are different heading levels, from Heading 1 to Heading 6. The headings you use should be decided based on the importance and context of the content.

3. Use SE-Optimized Titles and Meta Descriptions

The title tag of a website is an important SEO factor that can significantly impact the search engine rankings. The title tag informs the search engines and also the visitors what your webpage is about most concisely.
The title tag appears in different places on the web and also on your web browser. So, to make the most of website optimization, use the most searched keywords related to your company in the title of your website.
Similarly, meta descriptions provide a concise summary of your website to the search engine pages and visitors. Earlier, meta descriptions were allowed to be less than or equal to 160 characters. But since 2017, Google has expanded the length of meta description and shows up to 275 characters on the search engine pages.
If you write long phrase keywords in the meta descriptions, they will impact the organic footfall on your website. Make sure to write enticing descriptions that will attract users to your website from the search engine pages.

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4. Interlink Your Content to Establish Relevance

Use interlinking to connect your internal web pages within your website. Interlinking content will give a clear picture to Google about the structure of your website. It will make it easier for the users visiting your website to go to relevant pages as per their requirements.
Interlinking pages will also enhance the user experience for your visitors. And who doesn't know that an improved user experience is an important SEO ranking factor?
From the SEO perspective, it will also give a hierarchy to your website. You can allow the more important pages to have a better link value than that of the older and less valuable pages. Hence, make sure to use appropriate internal links to boost the SEO of your website.

5. Index Your Website on the Google Search Console

To track your website's performance on the various search engine pages, you should index your website on the Google Search Console. It is a free tool to help you monitor the crawling of websites, check indexing errors, and track other security issues.
Indexing the site on Google will allow the search engine to crawl through your website to check the information available. The Google bots will crawl through your website and store the details based on relevance, niche, authority, etc.
The console will alert you if any errors on the website can negatively impact your rankings on the search engine pages. All you need to do is enter your domain name in the Google search console and click continue. However, you must verify the domain name on your web hosting provider before entering it.

6. Name Your Website Images with Optimized Keywords

To tap the potential of SEO, use rich media and images in the content of your website. Upload unique photos in the correct format. Do not forget to compress the images. Make sure to name them with optimized keywords. It will give context to the webpage.
Expect a better user experience, better ranking, and quicker loading time with such optimized images. It will help Google in crawling the images on your website better. It will also help Google in correlating the images with the text of the website for relevance. It is an essential factor of SEO for search engine ranking.
Also, give a thought to the image file structure. Are you aware that the file path and the file name for any image is also a ranking factor in SEO?

7. Add Alt Text to the Website Images

Add alt text to all the images on the website. It will help visually impaired visitors to go through your website. It will also add context to your website for the search engines.
For instance, consider this scenario where your users might be facing connection issues. Even if they cannot view the images on your website, they will still understand what the image is supposed to be. It is only possible with the SEO-friendly Alt text.
The alt tags must also have a clear description of the image. Be descriptive. Use unique words for each image to gain maximum visibility on the search engine pages. Alt text also acts as an anchor text for the internal links within the website.

8. Add Google Analytics to Your WordPress Website

Google Analytics will help you gain insights into how your website performs on the Google search engine pages. It is an important tool and will help you with in-depth reporting on how to modify your website based on the SEO tactics, like:

  • How can you use relevant keywords?
  • What are the users searching for online?
  • What number of visitors are visiting your site? and
  • What are they searching for?

All these insights, when implemented with proper SEO strategies, can work wonders for your website. There are numerous advantages of adding Google Analytics to your website. Even if you are not technically sound, your professional SEO team will immensely benefit from this tool.

9. Design a Sitemap of Your Website and Submit it to Google

Sitemaps guide Google and other search engine bots in taking proper pathways for going through your website. A sitemap helps search engine bots in crawling a website better, thus helping you rank higher. So, it is evident just how important creating a sitemap for your website is.
The sitemap also helps Google crawlers to crawl your website and understand the relevance to users’ search.
Even when you do not have a sitemap, the search engine's crawlers will still crawl your website. But when you use a sitemap, you are showing Google how to crawl your website, like giving it a proper pathway.
Having a sitemap will also give precedence and value to the more important pages of your website over others. Besides, a sitemap can also organize a large website in a better manner. It can highlight the purpose of the website and also speed up the crawling process for Google.

10. Make Your Website Mobile Responsive

Most users around the world browse the internet on their mobile phones. So, Google will also determine the ranking of a website by tracking the performance and functionality of the pages on smartphones. Hence, the ranking of your website also depends on how mobile responsive your website is.
Having a mobile responsive website design will ensure that the site is user-friendly. Users can navigate the website with minimum scrolling and resizing. It will improve the user experience, which in the long run will also translate into brand loyalty.
So, make sure your website is based on a mobile-friendly theme.

11. Improve the Website Speed with a Cache Plugin on WordPress

A cache is the temporarily stored data of a website that can be quickly accessed when required. It means the website information gets stored on the hard disk of the users. When a user visits your website more than once, the cache memory of the website will load the site quickly for the user.
Great site speed is a ranking factor in Google. The simple logic is, the attention span of the users is limited.
If your website speed is relatively slower, the audience will instantly click on a different website without waiting for your page to load. Hence you should ensure that the download speed of your website is at its level best. Why risk losing your website traffic with a slow website speed?
Although WordPress offers good speed for websites, you can still make some improvements on the website speed with the help of a cache plugin.
Installing a cache plugin on WordPress will cache your pages and posts as static files. The website will load faster since these static files will be served to the new visitors. Generating dynamic instant files take more effort and time for the servers.

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12. Use Schema Markup for Your Website

Schema Markup is a structured data language that can help the search engines understand what your website is trying to say. Using schema markup on your website can help Google understand your website's content like the location, the content of the website, etc.
It will serve as an essential SEO ranking factor for your page. Adding a Schema markup will add an extra layer of data to your website. If your website has schema markup added to it, even users searching for a specific topic are more likely to get a particular result.

13. Upgrade the Host for Your Website

It is crucial to have an excellent hosting platform for your website. It is often the most ignored factor when creating a website. If there is any misconfiguration in the website or even in the server, it can cause your website to slow down.
When you have good WordPress hosting, it can improve the SEO of the website, thus increasing the speed and the revenue for your business. There are several WordPress-specific hosting packages available on the internet.
Some of the WordPress hosting sites are free, while others are shared and dedicated. Choose the one that is custom-made for the setup of your website.
It is recommended not to use free web hosting companies. The reason is that more often than not, such companies place random advertisements on your website, making your website look like spam to the users.

14. Deliver Seamless Viewing Experience Using CDNs

A Content Delivery Network (CDN) is a distributed platform of servers. It speeds up the loading of the website content on the user’s screen by choosing the server location that is closest to the users.
With a CDN, you will be able to enhance the speed of your website. It will store the different versions of the website on servers all over the world.
When visitors visit your website, they will view that version of your website, closest to their location. It will speed up the website loading time, thus ensuring a great user experience for the visitors.
In other words, a CDN will reduce the virtual distance between the user location and the server location for your website. Without a CDN, the source server must make extra effort to respond to all the user requests single-handedly. It can result in a bottleneck since the request load can lead to high traffic to the server. It can also result in the risks of server failure if the traffic is very high.
A CDN will evenly distribute the traffic load to different servers. Users will be able to view the website at a uniform speed no matter which part of the world they are accessing the website from.

15. Fix Broken Links on Your Website

To provide a great user experience, you have to ensure there are no broken links on your website. It is disappointing for visitors when they land on a broken link.
Having broken links on the website can also make it difficult for the Google bots to crawl your website. Thus, broken links can hamper the quality of your website and also affect the SEO by:

  • Affecting the bounce rate and how much time users spend on your site
  • Sending signals to Google and other search engines that your website is too old and not trustworthy

Using the Google Search Console, you can check your website and fix any broken links on the pages. If the page is an old one that you no longer need, you can always redirect it to a new landing page. Or, you can also choose to recreate the page and make the link live again.

16. Create High-quality Content

Content is the king of a website. And Google loves high-quality, long content that boasts of rich, valuable information.
The search intent of a user must be satisfied with the content of your website. Long and well-written content that satisfies the search intent can impact the website's ranking on the search engine pages.
Sometimes, the website's content is so valuable that it becomes the deciding factor for its ranking on the search engine pages. At other times, the domain's strength that contains a relevant keyword can also impact the ranking on the search engine pages.
The content of the website should primarily give an excellent experience to the visitors. The content should be engaging and enticing so that visitors find it helpful and reliable.

17. Rank Better By Using Short URLs

The shorter the size of the URLs, the better it is. If possible, try to use relevant keywords in the URL too.
Having a long URL will not impact the rankings on the search engine pages. But it can make the users think of your website link as spam. Thus, it can lower the click-through rate. It is, hence, better to use shorter URLs.
How do you shorten an URL?
Filter out the filler words from the URLs and match the titles with the URL. The URL should be readable, and there should be fewer categories and folders wherever possible. In WordPress, use permalinks to change the URL to make it shorter.

18. Add HTTPS Secutiry Layer to Your Website

Not many are aware that HTTPS is also an important SEO ranking factor. If you upgrade the security feature of your website, it will gain an advantage on the page ranking.
Upgrading your website to an HTTPS factor will allow a secured connection with your browser and other external websites. It will encrypt any data exchange between the website and the browser, thereby making it secure.

Best WordPress SEO plugins

1. Rank Math

Rank Math is relatively new in the WordPress SEO Plugin genre. Nonetheless, it is already having a pretty significant impact on website owners.
Rank Math plugin helps you optimize your website's content for the search engines through an enjoyable process.
Depending on the level of optimization of the page, each web page can get ranked on a scale that has up to 100 points.
Rank Math is integrated with the Google search console. It also has some other SEO features that can help you implement different SEO strategies for your website.
There are free and paid versions of Rank Math available. The paid version price starts from $59 per year.

2. Yoast SEO Plugin

One of the most used and popular WordPress SEO Plugins is the Yoast SEO plugin. It is effortless to use and comes with preloaded configurations.
It shows up simple SEO recommendations along with a list of keywords relevant to your business.
You can choose the targeted keywords from the recommended list and optimize your website accordingly.
Yoast SEO Plugin also lets you know how to design better your page title and the meta descriptions, amongst other things.
There are free and pro versions of the Yoast SEO plugin available. The pro version pricing starts from $89 for a single site.

Related : Top Yoast SEO Plugin Features & FAQs

3. Elementor

One of the most popular and leading page builders for WordPress is Elementor. It allows you to drag and drop various page elements on a WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) interface. It is a simple and easy-to-use plugin that is compatible with several themes within WordPress.
If you are a website owner with limited technical knowledge, this plugin is just perfect for you. There are free and a pro version of Elementor available. The pro version pricing starts from $49 per year.

4. Jetpack

If you want to have a website with amazing features and tools, Jetpack is the SEO plugin you should install. It is a multi-purpose plugin loaded with amazing features.
You can improve the site's security and optimize the user experience smoothly with the Jetpack plugin. Some features of Jetpack include,

  • Real-time website stats
  • Performance improvement
  • Backups
  • Social media sharing
  • Contact forms
  • Activity logging, and many more.

There is a free and a pro version available. The pro version price starts at $7.95 per month.

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5. Akismet

It is one of the oldest and the most useful plugins of WordPress. It will block the spam content on your website. Once you install the plugin, it will automatically start the daily filtering of spam and prevent them from getting posted on your website.
There is a free and a pro version of the Akismet plugin. The paid version price starts from $10 a month.

6. Advanced Custom Fields

If you want to add customization to your website, then the Advanced Custom Fields or the ACF plugin is a must-have for your website.
With this plugin, you can add custom coding to different posts and pages. It can also display the custom field data of your website for making improvements. There are free and paid versions of this plugin available. The paid version price starts at $49 per year.

7. W3 Total Cache

It is a very popular caching WordPress plugin. It stores the previous version of the website so that the website's speed is quicker when the visitor visits the website next time. When the website's speed is high, it can boost the rankings of your website and even boost the conversion rates to a great extent.

WordPress SEO FAQs

1. Should I Use an SEO Plugin for My WordPress Website?

Of course, if you want to make your online presence meaningful, you must invest in good SEO services. And for WordPress websites, investing in efficient plugins is vital for enhancing the SEO of your website.
Installing an efficient SEO Plugin will give you valuable insights on what you can improve on your website. It will also tell you how Google crawls through a website for its search engine pages so you can design your website accordingly.
For example, when Google ranks a website, it looks into factors like:

You can check out the other factors that can impact the rankings of your website with the help of efficient SEO Plugins in WordPress.

2. Which Are Some of the Best SEO Plugins for WordPress?

As mentioned in the article, there are several great SEO plugins for WordPress. One of the most popular SEO plugins is Yoast SEO.
Kindly read through the article and choose the plugin that best suits your requirement as per your website requirements.

3. What Is a Better Choice? a Custom Website or a WordPress?

Both a custom-built website and a WordPress website offer certain advantages.
Most website owners prefer WordPress since it comes with built-in themes and some efficient SEO plugins. These features of WordPress can help in getting better page ranking on the search engine pages.
There are so many built-in features available on WordPress that it can be challenging to build a customized website that offers similar or better benefits.
Related : Guide to Optimize Your WordPress Website for Local SEO

4. How Do I Optimize the WordPress Website for SEO?

There are several ways in which you can optimize your WordPress website for SEO. Here are some steps that you can quickly follow:

  • Create a website with a domain name that gives a clear idea about the niche of your business.
  • Include at least one primary keyword in the URL of the website.
  • Make sure that the structure of the website is straightforward and up to date.
  • Never choose a dynamic URL. It is always better to choose a static URL.
  • The URL should be relevant with keywords and descriptive for the users.
  • Use title tags for each page of the website.
  • Use Alt Text attributes for all the images within the website.
  • Do proper keyword research for your website and use them in the website naturally.
  • If possible, you can also include a location in your long-tail keyword for your website.
  • Focus on a single keyword for each web page within the website.
  • Optimize all the images and the video content of the website for maximum SEO benefits.

5. Can I Do On-Page SEO for My Website on WordPress?

Yes, some of the plugins come coded with on-page SEO parameters on WordPress. If those parameters match with the content, the plugin will be able to tell you whether any kind of on-page SEO is performed on your website or not.
On-page SEO mainly deals with the analysis of the website. If you are good with analysis, you will understand how to design the website and present the content. For instance, you should use the researched keywords and use internal linking, etc.
Installing good SEO plugins and implementing proper strategies will help you get better rankings on Google.
Do you want to have a free consultation with our WordPress SEO expert? Drop your details here to get a callback.

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