SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. It’s a good strategy used by website owners to get more traffic on their sites through the help of search engines like Google, Yahoo, Bing, Baidu, Ask.com etc. SEO helps to creating your website that has optimized code and formatting which make it easy for search engines to find your websites. You must need to make your website SEO friendly for getting high traffic and organic users.
When people search the topic on search engines & if your website have the same topic and content, search engines will indexed your sites on search results. If your site listed on search results, the chances of clicking by the visitor will be high. So, maintaining SEO for your website is one of the great task. If you want more traffic on your site, you must maintain your site SEO. If your site content isn’t optimized, then search engines won’t know how to rank and index your site on search result. It’s so important to all the website owners who wants more organic traffic on your sites.
Basic Steps for Maintaining SEO on WordPress sites:
1. Site’s Visibility Settings:
WordPress have the features to enable & disable site visibility i.e. options to hide your website from search engine and show your site on search engines. If your site is in development phase, it would be great to disable the site visibility. When your site is live, it’s highly recommended to enable the visibility. You can easily manage this visibility from Admin Panel and then Settings and Reading. In that page, you will get the options to Search Engine Visibility. Unchecked (If checked) discourage search engines from indexing this site. Click on Save Changes to save the changes.
2. SEO friendly URL or Permalinks Structure
Your site permalinks or URL is also the best factor for SEO. SEO friendly URLs contain words that clearly explain the content of page and they are easy to read and understand by humans and search engine. You can configure search engine friendly URLs by selecting the Post Name Permalink types on Common settings on Settings > Permalinks. See this blog post to know more about permalinks.
If your site has been running for more than 3 months, it is strongly not recommended to change the permalinks. All the data on your site already started indexing by the search engines and if you change the permalink, all your share counts of social media will lost and search engine need to index new URLs again. If users comes with the previous indexed URL from search engines, no result page or 404 page will appeared on your site and its bad impressions for your visitors.
3. WWW and Non WWW
Search engines considers this as two websites. Example: https://www.acmethemes.com and https://acmethemes.com. So you first need to know which URL you are going to fix for your website. Make sure you will never change the URL, otherwise if you changed it will downgrade your SEO ranks after you changed the URL. You can set the URL setting on Settings and General of admin dashboard. There is no any difference between using www and Non www. As per our suggestion, better to use www.
4. WordPress SEO Plugins
WordPress have more than millions of plugins and you can get thousands of plugin developed for SEO. Some plugins are available on free and some are paid version. There are some highly recommended free plugin which help to make your SEO friendly WordPress sites easily. Among all the available plugin, we recommend you to use Yoast SEO or All in One SEO Pack plugin. This plugin are really awesome plugin, easy to use and highly recommended for SEO purpose. You can use any one of them. You can get the respected plugin documentation and support forum for help and supports.
5. Site Maps in WordPress Sites
You will have your webpages and blog post included in the search index must faster if you provide the crawlers or bots access to HTML and XML sitemaps. You can find various plugins for adding site maps. Site maps doesn’t boost your site but helps search engine to find your content on your site. If you are using Yoast SEO plugin, then it will automatically add SML sitemap on your site. For example you can get Acme Themes site map on https://www.acmethemes.com/sitemap_index.xml if you want to get your own, change the website name to our own and find it.
6. Responsive Themes or Your Websites
Search engines like Google, Bing, Ask.com etc suggests a responsive design to encourage a better online experience and helps to indexing the sites. Most of the users nowadays using mobile phone so your site must be responsive on all types of devices so that the users engaging will increasing and ultimately it benefits for your SEO and traffic. Acme Themes have more than 2 dozens of responsive WordPress themes, you can check with the help of this link.
7. Add Your Site on Google Search Console
Google is one of the highest using search engine all around the world. Google offers Google Search Console also known as Webmaster tools to give website owners a look at how their content is seen by the search engine. It helps to increase the SEO and ultimately increase the organic traffic on your sites.
It provides reports and data to help you understand how your pages appear in search results. It helps to understand what’s working on your site and what not, you can prepare your strategy based on the results.
8. Google Analytics and Monitoring by Jetpack
Google analytics helps and Jetpack helps to monitor your site visit, returning visitors and new visitors, visitors from different country and locations. So, you can check the engaging of the visitor on the specific post, country and everything. So, based on the data you can make the proper strategy for your website and can plan for new SEO steps.
9. Optimizing your Blog Post
SEO is an ongoing process and you need to take care on every post you created. It’s not completed that you installed SEO plugin and it will work for you all in all cases. So, for better SEO, you need to optimize each blog post before published. If you installed Yoast SEO plugin, you will get various section to make your post SEO friendly. We recommend you to optimize site title, descriptions and images to get more traffic and click. Yoast SEO plugin allows you to add title, description and focus keyword to every blog post and page for making better optimized post for SEO. Check plugin documentation to know how to make your blog post optimized.
10. Properly Use Category and Tags on Your Posts
WordPress allows to add category and tags to manage the post you created on your sites. You must use the proper category and tags suitable for your post. If your post is about travelling, your post category will be like Travel, Business, and Tourism etc. You can give the tags like hiking, New Year, summer etc. will be your tags. Proper category and tags help o search engines to indexing the sites based on the keywords.
All the above optimization strategy are highly recommended and used by almost all WordPress sites. Beside this there are hundreds of plugin which may suitable for your site optimization. Find the better plugin or do manually for your site optimization. In addition, each and every site have their own way and strategy for site optimization.
Besides the above steps, you can add internal link of your site content on the post or page, optimize WordPress comments, Maintain Speed and Security of your websites, Optimize images, using SSL and HTTPS etc are the additional method for your better SEO.