WordPress Search Engine Optimisation

Please note: There is no point jumping to this section if you haven’t addressed and fixed the WordPress Performance Issues you can find here

SEO will make no difference to your search engine rankings if you don’t make your WordPress website a lean, high performance, fighting machine first!

On-Page WordPress SEO

On page optimisation refers to everything you need to do to the pages of your website.

Install the Yoast SEO WP Plugin. When you add a focus keyword the plugin will show you how well optimised your page content is for that word or phrase.

If you need to find a list of suitable keywords to optimise for, see here for keyword research information.

The second important feature Yoast offers is a readability analyser. This provides information as used by Google to determine if your content is easy to read.

In an ideal world, each of your pages needs a Green tick for SEO & Readability.

Read more about on-page SEO here…

Off-Page WordPress SEO

Off page SEO is the same for wordpress as it is for other website platforms.

Backlinks at the fuel that powers search engine rankings and building these links is at the heart of off-page SEO. It is everything that you do to your site off-page.

This also includes social media activity.

Read about off-page SEO…

Important Wordpress Set Up Factors:

  1. Choice of Hosting
  2. Choice of Theme
  3. Choice of Plugins
  4. Loading Content
  5. Managing Content

For 2020 and beyond, there is one website metric that is more important than ever...... performance.

Little by little, Google is dragging all website owners kicking and screaming into the 21st Century, pushing them towards fast loading, high performance, mobile friendly website to represent their businesses.

The days of publishing something that looks like a website but doesn't perform like one are long gone.

If you want search engines and your customers to take you seriously, you need to tick ALL the performance boxes, not just one or two...... so here is a comprehensive guide to set up and optimise wordpress to work like a finely tuned machine for your business.

Wordpress - The Good, The Bad & The Ugly

Wordpress is a great platform for any website, flexible, endlessly customisable, open ended and with a seemingly endless supply of functionality in the form of Wordpress Plugins.

However, Wordpress does have its issues too.

Left to its own devices and not managed correctly, Wordpress can be susceptible to chronic weight gain!! If you don't look out, your Wordpress website will have its head in the biscuit barrel and before you know it, you'll have a heavy old Hector on your hands.

It's easier to set up Wordpress to stay slim and fit than it is to lose the weight once its gained it!

Weight is important for websites because all the code in your website has to be delivered to whoever wants to view your pages.

Each time a request for one of your pages is made, the whole page has to be packed up and sent across the ether to their device.

While of course some users will be on superfast broadband, many won't be. Spare a thought for the man stood in a field using a 3G mobile connection to attempt to read your page content. He needs to get the page loaded just as much as the city dweller with his 4 or 5G download speeds.

What makes this even more critical, is that Google use just that scenario - a man on a 3G mobile connection - to assess website load speed before they decide whether they will include your site in their all important search listings.

If your Wordpress site is data heavy, it won't get delivered to that mobile device in the field before the chap presses the back button and looks for a better alternative.

You may offer the best service, products, advice or whatever, but if your website set up doesn't deliver the goods fast enough, it won't matter..... Google will hate you!

WP Hosting

Fast hosting is a necessity if your WP site is going to load quickly. Free and low cost hosting options are a mistake that many business owners make, thinking that good quality hosting isn't very important.

Think of your web server as the engine in your car. You wouldn't put a diesel van engine in a Ferrari would you? Not if you expected it to perform when you pressed the pedal hard.

A website is the same, if you want a high performance site, you need a high performance server.

Not all hosting companies provide the same quality of server, so it pays to choose wisely. Otherwise your website will be parked on a rickety old server, creaking at the seams, unreliable and slow.

More about Wordpress Hosting

Getting Wordpress Right

Getting Your Wordpress Set Up right is important.

Wordpress Core is quite slim and efficient code.

However, it soon becomes bloated when you start adding Themes, Plugins & Addons, much of which you don't need or won't use.

Every bit of code adds to the overall size of the files that need to be sent and received. The more code you can trim the less data you will send and the faster your site will load on each request.

Next - Choosing Your WP Theme