11 tips to be well referenced

11 tips to be well referenced

WordPress is one of the most used CMS to manage a website, and is aimed at all audiences. To increase the visibility of a WordPress site, it is necessary to follow some recommendations in terms of natural referencing.

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Here are 11 SEO tips, both general and CMS specific, to improve your ranking in the search results (SERP).

How to optimize SEO on your WordPress site?

SEO is based on three pillars which are content, technique and netlinking. It is therefore necessary to take these three elements into account to improve natural referencing on WordPress.

Focus on speed and safety

First of all, you should know that one of the criteria on which Google bases itself for natural referencing concerns the speed of the site. This not only involves choosing a good host and the need to set up a cache plugin to best optimize the size of certain files and reduce page loading time. It is also necessary to optimize the size of the images to increase the download speed.

Beyond speed, security is also essential for the search engine. To do this, you must install an SSL certificate to secure the site and visitor information. It is also often integrated into the offer of the host.

Choosing an SEO WordPress Theme friendly

When creating a WordPress site, choose a theme that is optimized for SEO. All the models offered are not equal and some can be a hindrance for SEO. An SEO WordPress theme friendly should be lightweight, updated regularly, responsivewith clean code and adapted Hn markup.

Among the themes that meet the constraints of natural referencing, there are: Avada, Divi, Astra, Neve, SEOWP, Writer or Yosemite.

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Check visibility settings

On the CMS, there is an option that does not make the website indexable on search engines. This function is interesting when the site is under development. On the other hand, when putting it online, it is necessary to ensure that the box is unchecked. Otherwise, the site cannot be referenced and therefore positioned in the search results.

From the WordPress dashboard, go to “Settings”, then “Reading” and check “Visibility by search engines”.

Adopt a good URL and permalink structure

By default, WordPress creates URLs that are not necessarily suitable for SEO. It is therefore necessary to change them so that they contain the keywords of the content and that they are short. It is recommended to choose the “post title” permalink structure or to customize it. Be careful not to include specific characters, accents, and unnecessary words (like pronouns or prepositions) in URLs.

If this adjustment is made after certain pages and articles have been put online, it will be necessary to perform URL redirections.

Use an SEO plugin

Installing an SEO extension allows you to have optimal control over the site’s SEO. The reference in this area is Yoast SEO, which is aimed at all WordPress site owners, even the most novice. This plugin is available in free or paid version depending on the desired features.

It is a tool that makes it easy to manage and optimize many SEO parameters, such as tags title and meta description, the sitemap, the breadcrumb trail or the robots.txt file. It also gives indications on the editorial optimization of the content.

But beware, the use of such a plugin does not guarantee good positioning in the SERPs.

Generate a sitemap

A sitemap is an XML file that facilitates the navigation of Google robots within the site. It contains all the pages of a website. This is a key point to promote good SEO, because without a good understanding of the structure of the site or the pages, there can be no indexing.

To generate it, it is possible to activate the function from the SEO plugin used. Then copy-paste the sitemap URL to submit it to Google Search Console.

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Target the right keywords

From a content point of view, SEO requires the use of keywords related to the subject of the page. On the other hand, it must be kept in mind that the content must be written for the Internet user and not only for the search engines.

It is therefore necessary to target a keyword for each page (1 page = 1 main keyword). For this, it is useful to carry out keyword research around the theme to be addressed. Tools like SEMRush or Ubersuggest help determine which ones have potential and are relevant, based on search volume and competition. They also help to come up with ideas for new keywords.

To achieve SEO success, it is recommended to favor specific (long tail) keywords rather than generic ones. The competition will be lower, it will be easier to position yourself in the SERPs and therefore to reach the right target.

Optimize Tags title and meta description

Tags title and meta description are two key elements of SEO in general and for WordPress. They are part of editorial optimization that should not be overlooked.

The tag title corresponds to the title that appears in the SERPs. It is important for users because it is what will drive them to click on the site; and it allows a good understanding of the content by search engines. It must contain the main keyword of the page.

The meta description tag informs the user about the content of the page and allows him to define whether it can answer his problem. It must be attractive and arouse the desire to visit the page or article. It is a crucial element to increase the click through rate. Which, in the long term, will have a positive impact on SEO, because Google will judge that the content is relevant.

It is easy to populate these two tags using an SEO plugin, like Yoast. This indicates the length to respect and allows to preview the appearance in the SERPs.

Populate header tags

Generally speaking, content should be structured with HTML header (Hn) tags such as H1, H2, H3, and H4. WordPress is no exception to this useful prerequisite, both to readers and to crawlers. This is to prioritize the page with a main title (H1) and subtitles (H2, H3 and H4), which contain the keyword or close variants.

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WordPress allows you to assign different headers when writing content in the selection “Title 1”, “Title 2” and so on. Moreover, if the theme used is correctly optimized for SEO, the title will automatically be placed in H1.

Add alt text to images

Each image used must contain an alternative text (ALT tag), a title and a description. This increases visibility on search engines. The alt text informs the content of the image to search engines and is also read to visually impaired people. It is therefore necessary to describe the image with a few specific and relevant keywords.

On WordPress, this feature can be accessed by clicking on the image in the media library, which opens a block on the right for this information.

Take care of your content

The last tip is to pay attention to the quality of the content when you create your site on WordPress. This must provide the best response to the user. To do this, you have to look at the search intent, the keywords and use a rich semantic field.

On the internet, the user is looking for a quick answer, it must then be in the first third of the page or article.

We must first think of the user, making it easier for him to read. With WordPress, it is possible to use specific formatting, such as bulleted lists or boxes.

It is also necessary to insert internal links in the contents, to facilitate the navigation of the Internet user between the different pages of the site, taking care to optimize the anchors.

The main thing is to offer qualitative, complete and relevant content.

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