On-page SEO is an important factor when it comes to optimizing your website. On-page SEO in WordPress is easy with the help of plugins. But, before adding a plugin we must take care of some important optimization techniques to rank your website. Let us discuss some of the not-to-be-missed aspects of doing On-page SEO in a WordPress website.
Here are 8 ways you can do On-Page SEO on WordPress:
- Check search engine visibility
- Optimize permalinks
- Install a good SEO plugin
- Optimize page titles and descriptions
- Add quality content
- Ensure good internal linking
- Optimize images & other media
- Properly structure the content
Let’s discuss it further.
1. Check search engine visibility is turned on
WordPress has built-in features to optimize for SEO. This is one of the benefits of using WordPress. You can easily optimize your WordPress website without having a deeper understanding of how SEO works. So, WordPress offers this functionality where you can either turn on or off, the visibility of your website for search engines.
You can access this feature in the settings tab of the dashboard. This will completely shut your website from crawling and indexing. This is why you need to make sure that this checkbox is unticked to turn on search engine visibility.
2. Optimize permalinks
Another important step when doing On-Page SEO for your WordPress website is optimizing permalinks. But, what are permalinks?
Permalinks are the links that are visible to the user when they want to access your website. Permalinks have an important role in SEO. Not only users but also, search engines use the permalinks to access your website. This is why you will have to take at most care when creating permalinks.
This is a sample of the permalink. You can customize permalinks in your WordPress dashboard.
As you can see, there are different options available for you to customize permalink. However, you should maintain certain guidelines when creating a permalink.
- Use a simple format for permalinks
- The permalinks should be easily readable
- Permalinks should not contain numbers or other symbols
- Permalinks must contain the focus keyword
3. Install a good SEO plugin
Plugins are one of the strongest features of WordPress. The usage of plugins makes it easier to add more features to the website. Also, plugins improve the speed and performance of your WordPress website.
WordPress has thousands of plugins available. You can download and install it directly from the WordPress dashboard. So, when talking about the SEO plugins, Yoast SEO, RankMath, and All-in-One SEO are some of the obvious choices.
Most of the SEO plugins include features that help you to do on-page SEO of your website. However, we suggest that you look for these features when choosing the right SEO plugin:
- Keyword optimization
- Readability check
- Content insights
- Internal linking check
- Structured data editing
- Feature to edit robots.txt and .htaccess files
- Generate sitemap
- Ease of using
4. Optimize page title and description
The page title and description will show up on the SERPs (Search Engine Result Pages) when the user searches for a query related to your website. Optimizing the page title and descriptions is crucial for on-page SEO. Adding a good page title and description will help you rank better.
We must make sure that the title and description are in a viewable limit. Here are the guidelines for optimize them:
- Must contain focus keywords
- The page title should range between 30-60 characters
- The description should range between 70-130 characters
- Include variations of keywords
- Should be unique for each page
- Must be in a human-readable format
- Should be simple and provoking
- Good to include a call to action
5. Add quality content
As we always say, content is king. Content drives traffic to your website. This is why it is very important to have good quality content. Good content is unique and specific. Remember the content is for users first then search engines.
So, how will you know your content is good?
Check if the content is:
- Useful and informative
You should use content that adds value to the users. Make sure that you have trustworthy content by adding credible resources and statistics that support your statements. Also, you can add images and videos that can be interactive. You should also make sure that your content is simple enough to understand for any users that visit your website.
When it comes to writing for search engines, Google has provided us with some guidelines. This was specifically stated in its search quality guidelines update in 2014.
This set of quality guidelines maintained by Google is known as E-A-T (Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness).
E.A.T basically states that your content should be reliable and credible enough to provide real value to users. E.A.T was Google’s attempt to fight against misinformation. Although, it doesn’t directly impact the algorithm or considered a ranking factor. But, content writers must focus on following E.A.T guidelines strictly to optimize the content well for Google.
Finally, add appropriate keywords that you intend to rank. Do proper keyword research and strategize the usage of keywords. You can look at your competition when choosing the relevant keywords. Focus on one keyword specifically for a page and use variations of it. Avoid keyword stuffing.
6. Ensure good internal linking
Internal linking is the process of linking to another page within the same domain. Internal linking is an essential factor for on-page SEO because it structures the website’s content making it indexable for search engines.
With good internal linking, you can prioritize the pages in your website.
You can create internal links with anchor texts (i.e. the visible texts where the hyperlinks are attached).
For example, you are writing a big blog based on the topic SEO. You have already written articles on different types of SEO topics like ‘on-page SEO and off-page SEO’. You can add links to these articles in the main post. Also, you can divide ‘on-page SEO’ into subtopics like ‘different methods to do on-page SEO’ etc… This will help the readers to get deeper knowledge about the topic and will help you to maintain more user sessions on your website.
Here are some other uses of internal linking:
- Improve user navigation throughout the website
- Increase site conversion rate
- Improves page rank
- Help the flow of ‘SEO juice’ efficiently
- Ease out crawling and indexing
7. Optimize images & other media
Google allows the images to show up on webpage results and in Google’s image search platform. You can rank well if the image optimization is done right. Images & videos can be troublesome if it uses a large space or put without correct dimensions.
WordPress comes with some default settings to edit images. You can access all the media from the dashboard and edit it individually or in bulk. Here, you will get basic options to crop, rotate, flip or scale images.
But, when it comes to on-page SEO, what we need to consider is the ALT tags.
ALT tag is an accessibility feature that allows understanding the purpose of images used in the website. ALT tags are accessed by screen readers to help blind people to understand the content. It is basically an alternative text which enables these screen readers to read content from the image. An example fo ALT tag:
<img src="img_girl.jpg" alt="Girl in a jacket" width="500" height="600">
You will get options to edit the ALT tags when you open an image in the media gallery. Also, you can edit it from the posts themselves when uploading. You should also fill out other fields like TITLE, CAPTION, and DESCRIPTION which will help to optimize images.
When it comes to videos and other media files, you have to make sure the dimensions properly fit making it responsive. Also, you can embed media from other sites which are found to be more effective and reduce loading speed. You can also use content delivery networks like Cloudflare to reduce loading time.
Things to take care of when optimizing media on WordPress website:
- Include ALT tags for all images
- Add proper descriptive texts that fit the context
- Use keywords in ALT descriptions
- Proper linking to the media
- Use proper dimensions
- Reduce file size
- Use preferred file formats
8.Properly structure the content
A proper structure will always help to access content easily and it will give positive signals to search engines. Structuring the content is not only for users but also, the search engines. Properly structured content will help the crawlers to understand what your site is about and why they should rank your pages.
Search engines like Google use the platform Schema.org to validate structured data. It includes a small collection of codes that are in a machine-readable format. These are basically the content of the websites which got converted into codes.
You can use Structured Data Markup Helper by Google to tag the data and then convert it into code.
Also, you can use the Structured Data Testing Tool by Google to check if it is working
WordPress has different plugins that help to structure the data automatically. However, you can do some basics to structure the content on your website.
- Plan the hierarchy of the website content
- Add a good sitemap
- Use H1-H6 tags to structure content
- Use tags and categories when needed
- Give proper information about an article like author name, published date, etc…
- Use structured data markup
These are some of the important steps to note when doing On-Page SEO on WordPress. Hope it will be of help. Comment any tips we might have missed.