WordPress gives you all the tools you need to get your SEO right, but there’s still some work required on your part.
Around 450,000,000 websites – 33% of the internet – is powered by WordPress, so there’s nothing holding yours back from featuring at the top of the rankings. With consistent effort, and by following a few simple steps, you can start to get the organic, free traffic that’s going to help make your website successful, and it’s not that complicated.
Here are six ways to get your WordPress website ranking better.
1. Create Quality Content
If you’re going to get your website to the top of the rankings, then you’ve got to offer value to the people that visit it. Google and the other search engines’ mission is pretty simple – they want to send people to the content that best answers that person’s query, and if your website does that, then it’s got a great chance of ranking.
However, if you’re not investing enough time and effort into your pages, then you’re simply not going to have the best content out there, and therefore, there’s no reason for Google to send people to your site. If you want to get organic visitors to your site, then you’ve got to offer something in return, and what you can give people is high-quality content that answers their questions.
WordPress gives you all the tools you need to produce excellent content, so make the most of them, and be deliberate about creating the best content out there.
2. Answer the Questions Your Audience Has
One of the most important things about search engine optimization (SEO) is understanding the questions your target audience are asking.
You might be creating great content, but if it’s not reaching the right people, then it’s not worth much to you. This is why there’s so much emphasis placed on keyword research in SEO. If you’re going to put lots of time and effort into your content, then you want to make sure it covers topics that your audience is interested in.
Keyword research is important for this, but it’s also a great idea to ask your audience what content they want to see. This can give you a good idea of the kind of content you should be producing, and then you can work in the keywords that have good search volume.
WordPress has some great features that help you with your SEO, but you’ve got to start at the beginning and find out what it is your audience wants to see.
3. Make Your Site Fast
As internet users, we all know how frustrating it is to wait for a site that takes ages to load. The truth is, most of us are only willing to wait so long for a website, which means every extra second your pages take to load, you’re losing people.
There are lots of little things you can do to improve your site speed, and Google Analytics provides you with lots of helpful data. One important step is choosing a good theme that’s fast. WordPress is amazing because it allows you to choose from so many different themes, but not all of them are created equal. Make sure you’re doing your research and finding one that balances user experience with fast load speeds.
Likewise, lots of plugins and big multimedia files can really slow down your site, so be conscious of the extra baggage you’re adding to your pages.
4. User Experience
Perhaps even more frustrating than waiting for a page to load is trying to interact with a website that doesn’t function properly.
Little things like the odd broken link, or messy navigation might seem like small errors, but they really frustrate your users, and the search engines take a dim view of it as well. As much as possible, you want to give your visitors a simple, clean experience that works.
Make sure you’re getting the basics of user experience right and that your site is easy for people to navigate.
5. Build the Right Links
Backlinks are an important part of how the search engines decide where each page ranks.
Google and the other search engines want to know that the results they show have accurate information, and they partly do this by looking at the links. If your page has lots of links from other good websites in the same niche, then Google will take this as a pretty good sign that your information must be good.
Say you’re writing about “tiger conservation,” and big organizations like the WWF are linking to your content – this is a great sign that your content is good.
Whether you’re doing SEO for a client, in which case it can be helpful to use an SEO reseller program to build links, or you’re doing it for your own website, backlinks can make all the difference to your website’s ranking ability.
6. Share on Social Media
Social media plays a big part in the modern world, and the search engines recognize this. Sharing your content on your social media platform allows you to get your work in front of a big audience, but it’s also going to help you with your rankings.
Social shares are seen as a positive sign and can help boost your ranking ability. It’s a similar idea to backlinking; if lots of people are sharing your content, then it must be good, which is going to make Google a little more certain about ranking it.
Social media allows you to get a bit more out of your content than when you just post it to your website, so you should make the most of it. Work on building up your following on platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Pinterest, and don’t be afraid to share your work.