Over the past decade, WordPress use has grown tremendously, and it has evolved from a blogging platform into the world’s most widely implemented content management system (CMS). According to studies, over 34 percent of all websites run on the WordPress CMS platform, built on PHP and MySQL technologies.
Most website owners choose WordPress to manage their websites because of the minimal resources and technical skills required. All you need is a domain, web hosting, basic understanding of on-page SEO best practices, and most importantly, an SSL certificate.
The rest of your time, money, and effort can be directed towards implementing SEO strategies, which always pays off in the long run. Plus, when you use WordPress to build your website, SEO becomes a lot easier and convenient. Here are seven of the best WordPress SEO tips that no one else—or at least not everyone else—is talking about.
1. Pick the Right Web Hosting Plan
Your choice of a web hosting plan can make or break your website and is a selection you mush evaluate with utmost caution. It’s wise to pick a dependable web host recommended by WordPress.org.
You can choose from shared, cloud, or VPN WordPress hosting packages offered by a variety of companies. Most of these web hosting companies offer free SSL certificates—but only for a limited period, and then they charge for it.
If you are concerned about price, SSL2BUY is a smart option to check out for an SSL certificate. You could choose a cheap SSL from SSL2BUY for your domain with same encryption you’d get from a direct certificate authority.
Note that WordPress runs on PHP and MySQL technologies, and regularly releases security updates. It’s important to stay current as only the latest versions of these technologies incorporate these security features. That’s extremely important because truly optimizing WordPress SEO requires the use of third-party plug-ins.
2. Choose an SEO optimized Theme
Independent WordPress developers collectively offer thousands of themes, but the key is to pick one that will help you rank highly in search results. Select a WordPress theme that is lightweight, loads fast, and functions smoothly.
Among the most recommended SEO-optimized WordPress themes are MH Magazine, Schema, Genesis, and Pofo. Make sure to pick a responsive WordPress theme (most now are), which loads fast on all types of devices: smartphones, desktops, tablets, etc..
3. Unleash the power of Yoast SEO
Yoast offers a full-featured, premium WordPress SEO plug-in, starting at $89 with discounts for multiple sites. But it also offers a free version of the Yoast SEO plug-with limited, but still highly useful, functionality that lets you use one focus keyword with guidance on your post’s readability and SEO scores.
To get the most out of your WordPress website, download and install at least the free version of the Yoast SEO plug-in.
4. Optimize Images and Don’t Let Them Hurt Your SEO
Though it’s time-consuming to skim through images to choose the right one for your post, it’s worth the effort. Images serve both aesthetic and SEO purposes, as you can easily optimize the images (file name, title, and alt text) on WordPress.
However, simply uploading a bunch of inappropriate images won’t help; you need to choose relevant images carefully. The search engine results pages (SERPs) are focused on content that is relevant and delivers excellent user experience, and this is where images come in.
Including images in your posts can add life to even the most boring text and increase audience engagement. But images can actually hurt SEO if the file sizes are too large and slow down page loading. Minimize image file size before you upload them. Some of the best WordPress plug-ins to compress images are reSmush.it, EWWW Image Optimizer and ShortPixel Image Optimizer.
5. Implement AMP
Google is all about delivering excellent user experience, so to accommodate the increasing use of mobile devices for web access, it’s best to optimize your website for mobile browsing. This is straightforward when you use WordPress because you can quickly implement AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages). All you need to do is to download and install an AMP WordPress plug-in.
This is critical for the success of your website because for typical Google searches, most of the top results include AMP-enabled sites. Google’s current mobile-first approach requires you to optimize your website for mobile devices to rank highly. Without mobile optimization, you may lose out on some serious traffic.
6. Get an SSL Certificate
According to a study carried out by Brian Dean, the founder of Backlinko, Security Socket Layers (SSL) certificates and HTTPS seem to improve your SEO rankings. An SSL certificate also adds credibility to your website, putting visitors at ease.
So, to boost the rankings of and add trust in WordPress website, purchase an SSL certificate from a reputable vendor. SSl2BUY is one leading provider of SSL certificates.
7. Use Google Search Console
Most SEO tips are based on analysis, and though Google doesn’t tell anyone how it ranks websites, it does provide clues. To optimize your Google search rankings, you need to look at your site as Google sees it; Google Search Console (GSC) lets you do just that.
One of the best features of WordPress is it makes integrating GSC extremely easy. All you need to do is copy the HTML code and paste it on your website’s home page. To do this, simply download and install a header and footer WordPress plug-in and paste the HTML code in the footer section. Now that’s the power of WordPress SEO.
To optimize search visibility for your website, make use of all the WordPress SEO tips above. Don’t rely on the free SSL certificate that comes bundled with the web hosting beyond its trial period. Keep all of your plugins updated, and keep yourself updated on the last best practices.