WordPress can help you build a beautiful site from the ground up in no time, but it does not mean you can easily get great rankings in search engines. As the most complicated field in online marketing, SEO requires you to look into a variety of factors that are affected by your on-page and off-page activities.
These factors cover almost everything you have done so far in building an online presence—from choosing a web host to your structuring your site’s internal links.
You can see our infographic to help you understand the ten SEO factors you need to consider when building a WordPress website.
Whilst knowing these factors are great, remember that knowledge without action never accomplishes anything. You still need the right tools that will help you optimise for these SEO factors and improve the visibility of your site. Without further ado, below are some of the best tools you need to consider:
1. Managed WordPress Hosting
Due to the popularity of WordPress, many hosting companies started offering special packages that are tailored to the needs of WordPress users. These services are called managed WordPress hosting solutions, and one of the best providers you should consider is WP Engine.
With managed WordPress hosting, the server resources will be optimised to run the WordPress infrastructure. This results in faster loading speeds and better uptime. Additionally, the WordPress installation process is simplified, and customers will have access to a technical support team that is dedicated to handling WordPress-related concerns.
2. Content Delivery Network
A faster website leads to better user experience; which, in turn, leads to higher rankings in search engine results. With a high-end CDN like CloudFlare, you can speed up your site by connecting users to the physically nearest network of servers.
CloudFlare has deployed data centres across 36 global locations in America, Europe, Asia, and Australia. They also offer security features such as an integrated Web Application Firewall (WAF) and DDoS protection.
3. WordPress Theme
If you want to ensure the best experience for your audience, make sure you judge a WordPress theme by its performance, not just looks. Moreover, it should perform consistently regardless of the device being used. By far, Schema is the most popular and highest-rated theme to date that fits the bill perfectly.
Take note that the name “fastest SEO WordPress theme” is backed by data. According to tests, the loading speed of Schema’s default homepage is one second faster than mainstream themes like Genesis Framework. Furthermore, the theme’s layout is preconfigured to give the audience a great experience while maximizing the visibility of ads for bigger revenue.
4. Caching Plugin
A caching plugin works by generating a static version of your site’s content to be retrieved faster by repeat visitors. This substantially decreases the time it takes to load entire pages and therefore improves the overall user experience.
Fortunately, caching is the simplest optimisation to implement with WordPress. All you need is a caching platform like W3 Total Cache and make a few permission tweaks in your wp-content folder, and you’re ready to go.
5. Spam Comments
Spam comments used to be a problem for WordPress websites since they can leak out “link juice”, especially if you don’t moderate comments with URLs. Although this is no longer a problem, spam comments can still ruin your site’s reputation by links that are irrelevant to the content’s topic.
With a spam prevention tool like Akismet, you can quickly filter out spammy comments with little setup. Once activated, it will automatically delete suspicious comments, reveal “hidden” links, and records a comment history for manual moderation. Although there are new plugins that contain extra features such as captcha, very few site owners ever need something more than what Akismet have to offer.
6. Metadata and XML Sitemap
Finally, metadata and the XML sitemap are two critical factors for SEO. Metadata such as the meta description works by giving search engine users some context on what your site is about. It may not directly affect your rankings, but it does boost the click-through rate and therefore contribute to your site’s traffic.
An XML sitemap, on the other hand, helps search engine crawlers navigate your site and index pages by providing it with a map that covers all your links. To optimise both your site’s metadata and sitemap, you can use Yoast SEO — an all-in-one on-page optimisation tool for SEO.
Having the ability to learn new tools and adopt new strategies is the key to competing in an ever-changing landscape like SEO. With the tools above, you have more than enough to carry your site’s SEO for the next few years—or until Google shakes things up with a major update again.
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