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SEO for a WordPress website: a detailed guide

According to the Runet Rating study , at the end of 2018, WordPress website holds the lead among free CMS in australia and the other countries. If you also preferred this management system, our material will help you optimize your site for promotion in search engines.

Choosing an SEO-friendly template

For starters, the WordPress website source code is not very SEO friendly: no CNC, duplicate pages, multiple h1 headers in free themes, and other “gifts”. Most of these problems can be solved by installing an SEO friendly template (theme).

What options should you pay attention to:

  • automatic CNC shaping,
  • Adaptive layout,
  • availability and ability to edit headers h1 – h6.

If you choose among topics whose description is not translated into Australia, focus on the phrases “SEO friendly”, “SEO optimized”, “optimized for search engines”. To save time, use the rankings of optimized WordPress website themes that are easy to find on the web.

Basic site settings

wordpress website

Fill the section “Settings”

In the General settings tab, we indicate: the name of the site and its brief description, the main mirror, administrative e-mail, the role of the new user, date and time settings.

With the title, everything is more or less clear, with the appropriate setting, it will be indicated in the title everywhere or for a separate group of pages:

Setting up the main mirror

The main mirror of the site is its main address, which is involved in the search. From other addresses 301 redirects should be configured.

Indicating the address of a new site with www or without www is a matter of your choice, this has no effect on ranking. The main thing is that all pages are available strictly at one address: https://site.com/sale/ or https://www.site.com/sale/.

WordPress URL and site URL will be different if WordPress website is not installed in the root folder. Then the URL in the “WordP

ress Address” field might look like this: https://site.com/site.

The main mirror must be specified in Yandex.Webmaster. You simply indicate the new site with the preferred spelling. You can change the main mirror for an existing resource in the Indexing – Moving Site section:

In the new version of the Google Search Console, it is now impossible to specify the main mirror .

Google will determine it on its own based on:

  • rel = canonical settings,
  • sitemap
  • 301 redirect settings
  • AMP page options.
wordpress websites

General recommendations for setting up the master mirror:

  • install an SSL certificate (secure https protocol is one of the ranking factors);
  • decide on the spelling of the URL – with or without www;
  • configure 301 redirects so that each page is accessible only at one address;
  • add the resource in the Yandex and Google webmasters panel.

Also, in the “General settings” tab, specify the email to which messages about events on the site will be sent (for example, new comments or requests). A password recovery message will be sent to the same address in the administrative panel.

The site language, time zone, time and date format settings do not require special explanations.

By allowing registration on the site in the “Membership” item, you can select the role of the newly registered user. By default, “Subscriber” is selected; there is also an editor, author, member, administrator, and other roles.

CNC forming

In addition to “numerical control”, the abbreviation CNC means “human-readable URL” in the “SEO” language. This means that at the address of the page you can roughly judge its content, for example: https://sitemebeli.com/catalog/divany/detskie/divan_danya/.

To configure the CNC, go to the “Permalinks” section:

We advise you to choose from two options – “Record Title” or “Freely”. The latter is suitable for blogs, it is possible to compose an address from ready-made elements.

Search Engine Visibility

Responsible developers close an unprepared site from indexing so that search engines do not rank “raw” content. Your task is to check whether the site is open for search engines after it has been uploaded to the working domain. You can do this in the console section Settings – Read:

You can uncheck the checkbox immediately after the site is posted on the network. Then the pages will get into the index faster. Another option is to make basic settings for internal optimization and only then open the site for search engines. So there is a chance to take higher places in the results.

Ping settings

This feature is needed by blogs and news sites so that fresh content is indexed faster by search engines. In the console section “Settings → Writing” you can add update services, by default Ping-o-Matic is added, you can add more (lists of ping services are easily googled).

Robots.txt and sitemap.xml files

There are two ways to generate a robots.txt file with a set of rules for a search crawler:

  • SEO plugin module;
  • manually, then upload to the root folder of the site (you will need access to the hosting or ftp).

For those who are closer to the second option, we offer an example code. It can be used as a basis for generating robots.txt for your site. It contains general rules for Yandex and Google robots.

n March 2018, Yandex canceled the Host directive , so now you do not need to register it. Be sure to include the link to the XML sitemap at the end of the file. The address may differ from the one shown in the example, for example, it may look like this: mysite.com/sitemap_index.xml.

You can generate an xml sitemap using:

  • online generator;
  • special programs;
  • SEO plugin module;
  • plugin Google XML Sitemaps .

If the plugin generates several sitemap files, you need to specify all the addresses in the appropriate directive:

Optimizing images

This item is often left until better times, but in vain. Optimized images will not slow down the site loading speed (one of the most important ranking factors today) and will allow you to participate in image searches.

What do you need to do for this?

  • Upload images no larger than 800 pixels in height and no more than 1024 pixels in width, no larger than 100 kilobytes.
  • Use lossless image compression. This allows programs, services, applications ( TinyPNG , Compressor , ImageOptim ), as well as plugins for WordPress ( WP Smush , Imagify ).
  • Name images according to their content, for example: orhidei-v-gorshkah.jpg.
  • Fill in the fields for the title and alt attributes. The first should contain the name of the picture, the second – a short description of what is shown on it. It is not worth spamming with keywords in title and alt, but you can use the ones that are suitable in meaning – this will help search engines rank visual content from your site in search by images.

There is a problem with the fact that WordPress website creates a page for each image attached to a post with the address: site.com/1/ or site.com/?attachment_id=1. You need to “glue” such pages using a 301 redirect with the main ones. This functionality is available in popular SEO plugins – Yoast SEO and All in One SEO Pack, and there is also a separate Attachment Pages Redirect plugin .

Best SEO Plugins for WordPress website

Specialized plugins for SEO are a kind of harvesters with which you can perform the main points of the checklist for internal website optimization . Consider the functionality of the most popular SEO plugins for WordPress website in Australia , with the exception of SEO Press, which is not Russified as of July 2020.

SEO Press

  • Easy setup, intuitive interface, suitable for inexperienced SEOs.
  • There is a dashboard with a notification about website optimization problems and links to solutions: