WordPress is known as the best blogging platform for a reason, which enables you to build Blogs, Web sites and powerful online applications. Many aspects, including its ease-of-use and extensibility, have made WordPress the most popular blog software available. Best of all, WordPress is an open source solution that is freely available to everyone.
There are so many ways that you can use WordPress to gain an advantage in terms of traffic, keyword rankings, and links, but you have to know how to optimize your website. The options to customize your WordPress site are limitless and there are multiple ways to do to everything, so it can be very confusing at times. Here are some simple SEO hacks for WordPress that really work without you having to be an SEO mastermind.
1. Use a WordPress update service
A WordPress update service is basically something that notifies other website when you have new content in order to drive traffic. WordPress automatically pings certain sites anyway because Ping-O-Matic is one of the default listings, but you can actually add more sites manually. Go to settings, select the writing tab, and then add websites where it says update services.
2. Keep it natural and organic
Optimizing your website in terms of SEO is definitely a good thing in and of itself, but doing too much can actually be detrimental. Although Google does appreciate your effort to optimize the your website, they do not like it when it comes across as too perfect or artificial. It seems that Google is starting to look more favorably upon organic SEO strategies that come from having strong content and a real following.
3. Focus on evergreen topics
Evergreen topics are like gifts that keep on giving because they will always have the ability to draw people to your website. News stories can attract people temporarily, but they will have little draw after that event has passed. However, evergreen topics will continue to reach people months or even years after you have posted the article.
4. Use meta descriptions and keywords
A meta description is a like brief summary that appears in search engines when people look for a certain post or website. It is optional to create add a meta tag description, but it is recommended that you add one to every post. Ideally, a meta description should be an accurate description of the post, include relevant keywords, and be no more than 150 words in length.
5. Be generous linking to other sites
Being generous linking out to other websites is beneficial in many ways. Linking to another site makes them more likely to reciprocate and link back to you or at the very least mention your site in some way. It is a good SEO practice to link to other sites in general when it is convenient to do so anyway.
6. Use an analytics program (Google, Piwik, etc)
Everyone needs to have at least one analytics program installed on their website. Google Analytics is one of the most popular ones, but definitely not the only one. There are free and open source programs like Piwik and Open Web Analytics that work fine, but require some technical knowhow. The programs you have to pay for like Woopra, W3Counter, and Clicky are slightly easier to use. The bottom line is that you need to have some way to figure out how many people are coming to your site, how they got there, and what they do once they have arrived. Knowing the answers to those questions will help you create a more effective strategy to promote your website.
7. Optimize your images with ALT Attributes
An ALT attribute tag is just a basic description of the what the image is for search engines. All you have to do is add ald=”write the description”. It is also helpful if you name the file of the image with keywords too.
8. Create an internal linking structure
An internal linking structure is a like a web of links that ties your site together. It is always good to link to other pages and posts on your own website. Your homepage should have a lot of internal links and your blog posts should link to other blog posts. One of the easiest ways to do this is to use plugins like SEO Smartlinks or Best Related Posts.
9. Use an SEO plugin (SEO Moz, All in One SEO, WordPress SEO by Yoast)
Having an SEO plugin can streamline a lot of SEO functions and there are a few plugins that are particularly good for this like SEO Moz, All in One SEO, and WordPress SEO by Yoast. They all have similar functions, but some people prefer certain ones depending on what they trying to do.
10. Focus on only 4-5 keywords per post
Although it would seem like using a lot of keywords in a post is a good idea, it is really not. Only focus on 4 or 5 different keywords at a maximum and use them without sacrificing the quality or readability of the post. Using too many keywords in a post is not just a way to turn off readers, but it can actually be a red flag to search engines too.