WordPress SEO: How to Get Your Site on the First Page of Google

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After several months of studying, and reading various SEO articles, now it’s time to do the real work; to optimize the website for SEO.

If you are one of the avid visitors of this website, you have read all the various SEO terms, SEO techniques, WordPress SEO tips and various tools in SEO that I have posted. And today, we will use all that you have learned from those blog posts for this task. In this article, we will discuss the step-by-step guide on how to do SEO on a WordPress website. You will learn a lot from this article, so make sure to read from start to finish.

What is WordPress SEO?

WordPress SEO is the process of optimizing WordPress website traffic for search engines. This includes optimizing the website content, titles, and metadata, as well as building links to the website. By optimizing a website for search engines, you can improve the visibility and ranking of the website in search engine results pages (SERPs).

what is wordpress seo

What Is WordPress CMS?

WordPress is a popular content management system (CMS) used by millions of people around the world, including many large organizations, such as The Guardian, Forbes, and The New York Times. WordPress is used to create websites and blogs. It’s free and open-source software released under the GPL. You can create a unique website for your business, blog, portfolio, or online store using WordPress’s plugin architecture and a template system.

WordPress.org vs. WordPress.com: What’s the Difference?

WordPress.com is a website service that hosts your website and provides you with a generic domain name. WordPress.org, on the other hand, is the software itself that you need to download and install on your own web server or chosen web hosting provider in order to create a website.

One of the key differences between wordpress.org and wordpress.com is that if you downloaded the WordPress CMS from wordpress.org and host it from your hosting provider, it gives you more control over your website content. With wordpress.org, you can install any WordPress plugin or theme that you want, whereas wordpress.com restricts you to a limited number of plugins and themes unless you upgrade your account to premium. Additionally, with wordpress.org you can create as many blog posts as you want, whereas with wordpress.com you are limited to just one blog post on the standard membership per month unless you upgrade to a paid account plan.

WordPress SEO Tips and Step by Step Guide on How to do SEO on WordPress Site

If you’re in the market for a way to improve your WordPress website’s SEO, there are several different ways you can go about it. However, if you’re new to SEO and aren’t sure where to start, this step-by-step guide will outline the basics of how to do SEO on a WordPress website.

wordpress seo for beginners

Step 1: Choose a Reliable Hosting Company

One important decision you want to make in improving your WordPress website for SEO is to choose a reliable hosting provider, and when it comes to website hosting, there are a lot of different providers to choose from. How do you know which one is the best for your business? And more importantly, how do you know that they will provide the level of service you need in order to maintain and improve your website’s search engine optimization performance?

There are a few key things you should look for when choosing a hosting provider. First and foremost, make sure they offer core web vitals like unlimited storage and bandwidth. Additionally, look for providers who offer website optimization tools like caching and Gzip compression. These tools can help improve your website’s performance, making it faster and more responsive for users.

Another important factor to consider is customer service. When something goes wrong with your website, you want to be able to rely on your hosting provider to help you get it fixed quickly.

That being said, we recommend https://rootpal.com/ as one of the reliable web-hosting providers, with cheaper monthly plans you can from at blazing speed and 24/7 support.

Step 2: Choose Your Preferred Domain

Now that you already have a good hosting provider, the next thing to do is to purchase your domain name or your site URL (Uniform Resource Locator). Remember that when it comes to optimizing a website for search engines, having a good domain name is key.

Here are some tips on how to choose a good domain name for search engine optimization:

1. Choose a domain that is relevant to your business or website content. The more relevant the domain is to your content, the better it will rank in search engine results pages (SERPs).

2. Make sure your domain is easy to spell and remember. If people can’t remember your domain name, they’re unlikely to visit your website again.

3. Include main keywords in your domain name if possible. Keywords help improve your website’s SEO ranking and make it easier for potential customers to find you online.

4. Keep your domain name short and concise. Longer domain names are harder to remember and can be more difficult to type into a web browser address bar.

5. Avoid using hyphens or numbers in the domain name.

6. Register the domain with a reliable registrar agency.

Step 3: Download and Install WordPress CMS

Now that you have your domain and hosting, it’s time to install WordPress CMS. First, download the latest version of WordPress from wordpress.org/download/. Next, unzip the file and upload the contents to your web server using an FTP client like FileZilla. Once you’ve uploaded all of the files, navigate to your website in a web browser and follow the onscreen instructions to complete the installation.

You can also ask for support from your hosting provider to install the WordPress CMS for you inside your hosting account.

Once WordPress is installed, it’s important to configure some key web vitals like site title, description, and main keywords. You can do this by going to Settings > General in your WordPress dashboard. Additionally, you’ll want to optimize your website for search engines by installing a WordPress plugin like Yoast SEO. This will help you improve your website’s visibility on search engine results pages (SERPs).

Step 4: Choose and Install an SEO-friendly WordPress Theme

If you’re running a WordPress website, it’s important to make sure that your content is reaching its full potential. That means optimizing your website for search engines and using a WordPress theme that’s SEO-friendly.

Your website’s core web vitals are its most important elements for website search engine optimization. These include the title of your page, the description, your focus keywords, and the content itself. These factors all affect how well your website ranks in search engine results.

A good SEO-friendly WordPress theme like Genesis Framework, Avada, Astra or Ocean WP will help you to focus on these core web vitals while also providing an optimized layout and design. This will help you to get the most out of your website’s content and attract more visitors from SERPs.

Installing WordPress SEO- Friendly Theme to WordPress CMS

Installing a WordPress theme is a pretty straightforward process. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to do it:

1. Log in to the WordPress dashboard and click on Appearance > Themes.

2. Click on the Add New button at the top of the page.

3. Type in the name of the theme you want to install in the search bar and hit Enter.

4. Click on Install Now and then Activate once the theme has been installed.

5. If you want to activate the theme for all users, check the box that says “Activate this theme for all users” and then click on Save Changes.

Step 5: Choose and Install WordPress SEO Plugin

In order to do SEO on a WordPress site, you need the help of one third-party tools SEO plugin. There are many WordPress SEO plugins to help optimize your website for Google SEO.

The most popular plugins are Yoast, SeoPress, and Rank Math. However, there are also many other great plugins, such as the AllinOne SEO plugin and Better WordPress SEO.

Each plugin has its own strengths and weaknesses, so it’s important to choose the plugin that will work best for your website. Yoast is a very popular WordPress plugin and is great for beginners. It offers a lot of features, such as creating a sitemap and optimizing your titles and descriptions for Google.

Seopress is also a popular plugin and is great for more advanced users. It offers more options than Yoast, such as setting canonical URLs and tracking rankings. Rank Math is a newer plugin but is quickly gaining popularity.

Installing SEO Plugin Inside WordPress Dashboard

One of the quickest and easiest ways to improve your website’s search engine ranking is to install an SEO plugin. These plugins help you optimize your website for better search engine visibility and help you track your website’s progress over time.

Follow this guide on how to install an SEO plugin on your WordPress dashboard.

Log in to your WordPress dashboard and go to Plugins > Add New. In the search bar, type “SEO” and hit enter. You will see a list of SEO plugins. Select the one you want to install and click Install Now. After the WordPress plugin has been installed, click Activate Plugin.

In the later part of this article, we will show you how to use the SEO plugin to optimize the title tag, meta description and other components of the WordPress site.

Step 6: Create an SEO Friendly Permalink Structure

In order to have a well-optimized WordPress site, it’s important to have an SEO-friendly permalink structure. This means that when someone visits your website, the URLs for your pages are easy to read and understand. They should also include the focus keywords you’re targeting so that the search engines can better understand what your content is about.

A good permalink structure can help improve your website’s ranking in the search engine results pages (SERPs). It can also help you get more organic traffic, as people are more likely to click on links that contain relevant keywords. Additionally, a good permalink structure has a good impact on your search engine consumption as Google makes it easier to crawl your content, which can help you rank higher in the SERPs.

How to Create an SEO- friendly Permalink Structure?

The first step is to log into your WordPress dashboard and navigate to the Settings page. From here, select Permalinks and then click on the Custom Structure tab.

In the text box, enter the following custom permalink structure: /%category%/%postname%/ . Click on the Save Changes button and then test out your new permalink structure by visiting a few of your posts and pages.

If everything looks good, then congratulations! You have successfully created an SEO-friendly permalink structure in WordPress.

A number of tags are available on this link that you can use for you to create your friendly permalink structure.

Step 7: Connect and Verify Site To Google Search Console

Adding your website to Google Search Console is one of the most important things you can do to help ensure your site is found by potential customers and to help improve your website’s visibility in search results.

Once you add your website, you can check on your site’s core web vitals report, such as indexing status, crawl errors, and security issues, as well as get insights into how people are finding your site content and what focus keywords they’re using to do so. You can also verify your site ownership with Search Console in order to receive notifications from Google about issues with your site or changes to how it appears in search results.

To add your site to Google Search Console, follow these steps:

1. Go to google.com/searchconsole and sign in with the same Gmail account you use for Google Analytics. If you don’t have a Gmail account, you can create one for free at gmail.com.

2. Click Add a Property in the top right corner of the page.

3. Enter the URL of your website and click Add Property.

4. Verify your website by following the instructions provided on your screen.

 Step 8: Submit Your XML Sitemap To Google Search Console

For WordPress site SEO optimization to be effective, it’s important to make sure that you’re doing everything to optimize your site for Google search. One of the most important things you can submit your XML sitemap to Google Search Console. This will help Google crawl your site and index your pages.

Adding your XML sitemap to Google Search Console is easy. Just go to https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/ and sign in with the same account you use for Gmail. Once you’re logged in, select a property or a website you want to add a sitemap.

Next, click on “Sitemaps” and then “Add/Test Sitemap.” Enter the URL of your XML sitemap and click “Submit.” You should see a message that says, “Sitemap uploaded successfully.

You can also add your site XML sitemap to the google search console inside WordPress Dashboard using Yoast SEO.

Adding XML Sitemap to the Google search console is not a difficult task, but for someone who is not familiar with it, the process could be confusing.

Follow the instructions below on how to add XML Sitemap to your website using Yoast SEO plugin in WordPress Dashboard.

First, you will need to install and activate the Yoast SEO plugin. Once the plugin is activated, you will need to go to SEO » General and click on the Features tab. Scroll down until you see XML Sitemaps and check the box next to Enable XML sitemaps.

Now, you will need to create an XML Sitemap for your website. To do that, go to SEO » XML Sitemaps and click on the button Generate Sitemap. You can also manually create an XML sitemap if you want.

Step 9: Create SEO Friendly URLs for Pages & Posts

URLs are an important part of SEO. They can help you rank higher in search engine results pages, and they can also help people know what a page is about before they click on it. That’s why you should always create SEO-friendly URLs for your pages and posts.

This will help optimize your WordPress site for search engines and improve your ranking in search results.

Start by incorporating the keywords you wish to target in the page or post title to generate an SEO-friendly URL. Then, use those focus keywords in the URL slug (the part of the URL after the domain name). For example, if you’re targeting the keyword “SEO Tips and Tricks”, you would create a page with a URL like this: /seo-tips-and-tricks/

The more relevant the URL is to your content, the better. But don’t go overboard – stuffing your URLs with main keywords can actually hurt your ranking.

Step 10: Write An Optimized Page Headings

SEO on your WordPress site is important to getting your content found by search engines. The Core Web Vitals report in Yoast shows you the core vitals for your page, including the status of your heading tags. These are important for both users and search engines, as they indicate the structure of your quality long-form content.

The Heading 1 tag (H1) is the most important, as it tells both users and search engines what the main topic of a page is. Pages that lack an H1 or have an H1 that isn’t properly used as a heading lose out on this valuable real estate.

SEO best practices recommend using one H1 per page and using it to introduce the topic of the page. Subheadings can be used for additional topics covered on the page, using lower-level headings (<h2> tags).

Here is a step-by-step guide on how to write heading tags for your WordPress site:

1. Topic Relevancy. When you write your heading tags, make sure that they are relevant to your content and that they are also something that people will be interested in searching for.

2. Make them catchy. Headline tags should be catchy and interesting to readers, so they will want to continue reading your content.

3. Include keywords. Be sure to include your focus keywords in your headline tags, as this will help improve your site’s SEO ranking.

Step 11: Craft Unique Optimized Title Tags & Meta Descriptions

Crafting unique, optimized title tags and meta descriptions is essential for any WordPress site looking to rank higher on Google and other search engines results page (SERPs). Including the right mix of relevant keywords in these elements can help your site’s visibility and click-through rate (CTR) while also enticing users to click through to your content.

When creating title tags and meta descriptions, it’s important to keep the following tips in mind:

1. Make sure your title tag is no more than 60 characters long, including spaces. Google will truncate titles that are too long, so make sure the most important information is at the beginning.

2. The meta description should be around 150-160 characters long, again including spaces. This is the text that appears in SERPs under your link and should entice users to click through to your content.

3. Include Call-To-Action in your title tag and meta description, indicating what actions you want users to take after clicking through.

4. Include Your Focus Keyword in your title tag and meta description. The focus keyword is the most important aspect of your page, as this will show up in SERPs. It’s critical to include it in these areas, so Google knows what it’s trying to display to users.

Steps on How to Optimize WordPress SEO Title Tag and Meta Description Using Yoast SEO Plugin

When you install and activate the Yoast SEO plugin, you’ll see a new SEO tab in your WordPress dashboard. This is where all the plugin’s features are located. The first thing you’ll want to do is add your focus keyword. To do this, go to the General tab and type it into the Focus Keyword box.

Yoast will now start analyzing your content and giving you feedback on how well you’re using your focus keyword. One of the things it looks at is your title tag and meta description.
To optimize these, go to every page and your blog posts and scroll down to the bottom, where you’ll see two boxes: one for your title tag and one for your meta description.

Step 12: Optimize Internal Linking

Internal links are one of the best ways to optimize your website’s organic traffic and growth increase. When done correctly, it can help you improve your site’s content, grow your audience, and even rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs).

But how do you go about optimizing your internal links on a WordPress site? Here are a few tips:

1. Make sure all of your content is well-linked. This means linking to other posts and pages on your site whenever possible. Not only does this help improve the usability of your website, but it also helps Google crawl and index your content more effectively.

2. Use descriptive anchor text when linking to other pages on your site. This will help both users and search engines understand what the link is about.

3. Keep 2-3 internal links per page – adding more links will make your internal linking more difficult for search engines to follow and could even cause Google to penalize you.

4. When linking to other pages on your site, don’t use the same anchor text over and over again.

5. Set Do-Follow link attributes for every internal link to pass the link juice from page to page.

Step 13: Optimize Images Sizes for WordPress SEO

Images are important for any website, but especially for blogs. Images can help break up text and make a post more visually appealing. They also help to improve your site’s SEO. However, if your images are too large, they can slow down your website and cause people to leave before they even see your content.

Fortunately, there are a few things you can do to optimize your image sizes and improve your website’s performance. First, make sure that all of your images are the correct size before you upload them. WordPress has a built-in image editor that makes it easy to resize images. You can also use a plugin like WP Smush to smush to resize and compress your images automatically.

You can also use plugins like ShortPixel or Imagify plugin to compress image sizes to speed up your website.

Step 14: Optimize Images File Names for WordPress SEO

Images are a huge part of web content and blog creation stages, and they can be optimized for better SEO. Aside from adding image alt text, Properly naming your images also contribute to WordPress  SEO and builds traffic.

When naming your image files, including the focus keywords that are relevant to your blog or website, this will help your images rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs), which can increase traffic and growth.

When creating blog posts, add images at every stage of the writing process. This will help you generate more web traffic and attract new readers. Adding images also helps break up text and makes your blog easier to read.

Make sure all of your images are properly sized and formatted for the web. Large files will take longer to load, which can frustrate visitors and cause them to leave your site.  As I mentioned above, using compression tools reduces the file size of your images without sacrificing quality.

Step 15: Optimize and Add Alt Text to Images

Adding alt text to images is an important part of optimizing your website for search engines. Not only does it help with accessibility, but adding descriptive text can also help your images rank in search results.

Alt-text is the text that displays when an image can’t be loaded to help the visually impaired, and it’s also used by search engines to help rank your website. When adding alt text, be sure to use your keywords and make the text unique and descriptive to the image.

Here’s how to add alt text to images inside the WordPress dashboard:

1. Log in to your WordPress dashboard and click on the Media tab.
2. Click on the image you want to add alt text to.
3. In the Details section, type in your alt text in the Alternative Text field.
4. Click Save Changes.

Step 16: Install a Cache Plugin to Help Improve WordPress Site Page Speed

Cache plugins are a great way to improve WordPress site speed. They work by creating static files of your website pages and contents, which are then served to visitors, rather than having to generate the page on each request. This can dramatically speed up the loading time of your website.

There are a number of great cache WordPress plugins available, but my personal favorite is wp-rocket. It is easy to set up and use, and it has really helped to speed up my website. If you are looking for a good WordPress cache plugin, I would highly recommend giving wp-rocket a try.

WP-rocket is a caching plugin that speeds up your website by reducing the number of requests made to the server and by caching static files.

It also minifies HTML, JavaScript, and CSS files, which reduces the size of these files and therefore decreases the time it takes for them to load.

The plugin also comes with features like preload, instant purge, and cache exclusion which further improves your site’s page speed.

To install WP-rocket, follow these steps:
1) Go to Plugins > Add New in the WordPress admin area.
2) In the search box, type “WP Rocket” and press enter.
3) The WP Rocket plugin will be displayed in the search results. Click on Install Now.
4) After the installation is complete, click on Activate Plugin.
5). Go to WP rocket settings to optimize your website files.

Step 17: Add Structured Data to Your Pages

There are a few ways to add structured data to your pages, but one of the most popular methods is to use Schema.org. Schema.org is a collaborative project between Google, Bing, Yahoo, and Yandex that provides a set of schemas for marking up content on web pages. These schemas can be used by search engines to better understand the content on your pages and return more relevant results on their search results pages.

For WordPress sites, there are several plugins that you can use to add schema markup to your pages. One of the most popular plugins is called Yoast SEO. Yoast SEO includes support for all of the major schema types, including Article, Local Business, Product, and Review.

Step 18: Write SEO Optimized Blog Post Content

There’s one last step to optimizing your WordPress site for SEO – writing content that is both informative and keyword-rich. Your site visitors will appreciate well-written posts that are easy to read, and the search engines will love you for filling your website with valuable content.

But how do you know which keywords to target? One great content with keyword tool is the MarketMuse. MarketMuse software scans your content and compares it to the best content on the web in terms of relevance and authority. It then provides you with a list of targeted keywords that you can use to make your posts even better.

So don’t neglect your blog – focus on creating high-quality content, and let MarketMuse help you find the right keywords to target. Your readers will thank you, and your site will rank higher in the search engines!

Thank you for your time, and thanks for reading the whole article. If this topic helped you, please consider sharing it, and if you have questions, please put them in the comment section and we are happy to answer all of them.

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Alvin Silang

Alvin is is an SEO expert in the Philippines who has helped many business owners in growing their site visibility on the Google search engine. If you need a freelance writer, or you need his SEO expertise, you can contact him at alvin@vhinzborn.com and you can find him on Fiverr.

This Post Has One Comment

  1. Ryan

    Very helpful, now I am able to start optimizing my site with this tutorial. Please also post step by step guide on how we can acquire quality .edu backlinks for free.

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