Google processes over 40,000 searches per second, 3.5 billion searches per day, and more than 1.2 trillion searches per year worldwide.
That’s incredible, if you ask us.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)–if done well, consistently, and for an extended period of time–can get you plenty of traffic all by itself thanks to millions of searches on Google for your specific keywords.
Simple SEO tips for WordPress users
Is SEO Dead? No!
Is SEO easy? No!
Does SEO deliver traffic and results? Absolutely yes!
Is WordPress SEO simple? It can be!
WordPress SEO can drive free traffic to your funnels
Sales funnels stand all alone, by themselves. Without traffic, there are of no use to your business. SEO can help bring in relevant traffic but it requires plenty of investment in terms of time, resources, content, and some more content.
You could hire help for SEO if you need to, but you could also do it yourself without getting too involved with SEO nitty-gritty.
You could make SEO work for you (at least the basics) without actually doing any of the song and dance that SEO pros do–all by yourself. That is without actually spending any more time than you’d spend to write blog posts and do the rest of the digital marketing that you do anyway.
Tip #1: Pay attention to your WordPress foundation
Once upon a time, SEO was just about the keywords found within a piece of content on your page.
Today, it’s a bewildering mix of attributes and factors that can help rank your pages, starting with where your WordPress website lives (hosting), the speed with which your page loads, how your WordPress website is built (architecture), the code running behind the theme (Is it a bloated theme?), and more.
Before you even think of SEO ensure that you use the right kind of hosting which is in turn backed by the most optimum technology stack for WordPress–most managed WordPress hosting providers do this for you.
Tip #2: Start with Yoast SEO plugin
Yoast SEO plugin is the easiest way to get started with your WordPress–we use it here for Doneforyou too.
Yoast SEO plugin takes all the heavy work out of the equation for you and makes it relatively easy for you to do On-page SEO for every single blog post you write and publish.
You can also extend the inbuilt functionalities of Yoast SEO Plugin to help you write meta information for your WordPress pages and the overall website itself.
Yoast lets you pick a primary keyword that you want a blog post or page to rank for and then quickly analyzes the page (while you are writing the blog post) to let you know whether or not it’s optimized for the keyword you selected.
If you see a green dot (right above the page), your post is well-optimized for that particular keyword.
Yoast WordPress SEO plugin also recommends the steps you should take–one by one–to help you optimize so it works like an in-house SEO mentor.
Look for the green signal. Hit publish!
Tip #3: Use short, SE-optimized link structures
The first step for you to do before you get to creating SEO-optimized links is to change the permalink structure.
By default, WordPress permalinks look something like this: https://yoursite.com/blog/your-content?p=12543
That’s a non-SEO friendly link structure and it won’t help you at all.
By changing permalinks slightly, you can modify your links to have a pre-defined structure such as
WPBeginner has a simple tutorial to help you with this.
Get to your WordPress Dashboard> Settings > and change your permalink settings.
Once this is done, you’d only have to edit your permalink appropriately while you create your blog posts or pages as shown below:
Tip #4: Do your preliminary keyword research
With the help of tools like Google Keyword Planner (free) or Ahrefs (paid, while allowing you to check on your competitors’ keywords), do some initial research on the keywords you ought to target along with Keyword volume.
You’d then get plenty of long-tail and medium-tail keywords you can target. Structure your titles around these keywords and start writing away.
Ilia Markov of Ahrefs also recommends many other ways for you to target appropriate keywords easily:
- Listen in and gather ideas from Customers’ emails, social comments, live chat, phone calls, etc.
- Use Google’s Autocomplete (when you start typing in your keywords)
- Pick up ideas from Google Trends
- Gather keywords from “related searches” you’d find right below each search results page.
- Dig for questions asked on social communities and forums such as Quora, Reddit, and other forums around the topic you are interested in.
- You can also build keyword lists off Podcasts (on your topics), books listed on Amazon (on your topic), and more.
Tip #5: Publish on your blog regularly
If you had to only top off this list to help you with your WordPress SEO efforts in 2018 (and forever and ever), just pick this: Publish regularly on your blog. Follow a schedule and publish at an established frequency.
You can publish once a week, or three times a week, or every single day of the week.
Some publications and blogs also publish multiple times per week.
How many blog posts you publish is really up to you, but you’d have to think about the quality of your blog posts, your resources, budget, time, and many other constraints.
If needed, you can create a simple editorial calendar to help you plan your content strategy or even use a tool like CoSchedule.
Every time you hit publish, share your posts on social media. Google takes the social signals of your published content into account too.
This is in addition to getting direct traffic, fuel for conversations, a chance to network with others, and a way for you to establish your thought leadership on social media.
Tip #6: Say “hello” to Google RankBrain
Google recently introduced machine learning into its algorithm to help make rapid decisions on whether or not a page should rank. It’s apparently Google’s third most important signal and it only gets more important per day.
Brian Dean of Backlinko has a fantastic guide on Google Rankbrain. According to Brian, Google Rankbrain is looking specifically for:
- Organic Click-Through-Rate: How Interesting, relevant, and attention-grabbing are your posts when they show up on search?
- Dwell Time: How long do people spend on your posts after they arrive?
- Bounce Rate: How quickly do they leave, after consuming your content?
- Pogo-sticking: If more people click on a search result and seem happy, that link goes up the ranking hierarchy.
What does Rankbrain force you to do now, as far as content goes?
- Focus on writing headlines and meta information in a relevant and attractive way (much like ads) so that people who are searching tend to click-through
- Write long-form content, with plenty of information loaded into each post to keep them on the site.
- Try to make sure that your content is the most comprehensive answer to the question users seek when they search on Google.
Tip #7: Get some backlinks
Links are still the currency of the web. Google determines how important and relevant your site is (for a given keyword) based on how many links are pointing to you from other sources. But buying links, submitting your links to directories, link farming, and keyword stuffing won’t work.
Don’t get ahead of your yourself when trying to do backlinks for SEO–it’s not a one-time thing; your efforts won’t stop with a couple of links earned; you won’t ever be done with it.
Creating amazing content that others will automatically link to, doing guest blogging by actually writing up high-quality content on other blogs, and creating tools or products that people can use while simultaneously linking to you–now, these are a few ways using which you can certainly build links.
Tip #8: Curate content
What’s the next best thing you could do for your content marketing strategy apart from blogging regularly and going all out with content marketing?
Curate content. With all of the tools available for you to curate content, you’d only have to schedule your time or deploy resources to curate content which also adds incredible value for your long-term SEO strategy.
By curating content, you’ll essentially create your own point of view and spin on existing content which makes your content curation unique by itself.
Need more content sources and topic ideas for your blog? Try Curately, the ultimate tool for fast content creation. With Curately, you will have an endless supply of new, fresh content that will get you traffic, leads and sales! Visit http://curately.org/ to learn more.
You’ll also link out to several resources (both Internal and external) giving you a healthy link distribution & spread.
Additionally, point to other influencers, blogs, and publications which might link back to you (any one linking back to you will help boost your rankings in addition to traffic, of course)
Focus your WordPress SEO efforts for better results
WordPress SEO takes a lot of work, and time. Instead of trying to manipulate or wasting time looking for shortcuts, you are better off focusing on developing great content and then optimizing what you create for search results.
What are you going to do for your WordPress search optimization in 2018 and beyond?