The 10 Actions you should do to improve your SEO in WordPress

Right now there are about two billion websites in the world . It is true that the vast majority of them are inactive (abandoned websites, etc.), but the figure allows us to intuit the degree of competition that exists in any relevant niche today.

This figure also allows us to intuit that it is increasingly difficult to achieve visibility by simply creating content and waiting for it to position itself, without working specifically on its positioning .

Even in established sites with a lot of traffic, such as this blog, where we have already achieved high visibility and we have it much easier than a newly created site, we notice this increase in competition a lot.

Therefore, knowing how to position your website in search engines or, what is the same, knowing how to do SEO , at this point I consider it simply mandatory . Don’t expect great results if you don’t take this seriously.

On the other hand, more than 32% of websites use WordPress , an upward trend. Therefore, apart from having to learn SEO, if you have WordPress, you have to learn how to do it in WordPress.

What will you find here?

  • False beliefs about SEO for WordPress
    • With WordPress you will automatically have a better SEO
    • An SEO plugin for WordPress doesn’t do the job for you
    • The best SEOs are the ones who master the best tricks
  • How to do basic SEO in WordPress
    • The SEO problem on WordPress.com
    • The basic setup for SEO in WordPress
    • How to do SEO On Page well done in WordPress
    • How to optimize the speed of your WordPress site
  • Advanced SEO in WordPress
    • Rich Snippets in WordPress
    • Pages not found (Error 404)
    • 301 redirects
    • Robots.txt configuration
  • SEO plugin tutorials for WordPress (free and paid)
    • Configure Yoast Seo for WordPress
    • Configure All in One SEO for WordPress
    • Configure All in One Schema org Rich Snippets
  • SEO optimized WordPress templates
    • WordPress template speed
    • Responsive design (adaptation to mobile devices)
    • Specially designed templates for SEO
  • Checklist to optimize SEO in WordPress
  • Last conclusions

So in this guide I am going to tell you everything you need to know to do a good job of SEO on your WordPress site.

And don’t worry if you’re a total beginner at all of this – I’ll guide you in a way that you’ll understand everything, even if you’re starting from scratch .

False beliefs about SEO for WordPress

SEO (the acronym in English for Search Engine Optimization ) is an area with many false beliefs that refuse to disappear completely. You should have clear ideas of how things really are .

With WordPress you will automatically have a better SEO

This is not 100% false, but it conveys the false idea that SEO consists of having a website prepared for SEO and that with that the problem is solved.

As you will see in this post, it is true that WordPress makes it easy for you with SEO because it has good support tools, but nothing is further from reality than the fact that using WordPress you will automatically have better SEO.

An SEO plugin for WordPress doesn’t do the job for you

In line with the above, many people continue with the false belief that SEO in WordPress basically consists of installing an SEO plugin .

Nothing could be further from the truth: SEO plugins are by no means the crux of the matter in all of this. The crux of the issue you have to focus your attention on is the content . If you don’t write the content with SEO in mind from the beginning, the rest of the work is useless .

SEO plugins are simple support tools, very useful, but supportive . The key to SEO is the work you do before ( keyword analysis ), during (writing and structure of the content) and after the creation of the content (dissemination actions, getting links, etc.).

The best SEOs are the ones who master the best tricks

The last point I want to talk about is that aura of the ball, that belief of the “secret and definitive trick” that only the best SEOs (SEO professionals) know, the Holy Grail of SEO, with which you are going to position your website in the highest Google positions from one day to the next.

Fortunately, online marketing has matured and this has diminished, but SEO tricks continue to give off a lot of fascination and there are still posts and videos on YouTube that continue to fuel that hope for the “ultimate SEO trick” .

The reality is that the tricks that really achieve significant effects are not within the reach of a “normal” person .CAN’T GET VISITS ON YOUR WEBSITE?

With this free eBook you will get to the top of Google results:

  • In 1 hour you will learn the SEO you really need.
  • You will learn how to know what people are looking for on the Internet.
  • You will know which searches interest you and which ones are not.
  • You will arrive at the top of the search results.
  • You will multiply the visits to your website.

I’m talking about things that require a great deal of effort , for example, creating PBNs ( “fake” blog networks ) that expose you to penalties from Google (deleting you from their results) because they are “illegal” SEO (practices that Google considers fraudulent, known as “Black Hat SEO” ).

My advice: “legal” SEO (which Google looks favorably upon) has a long way to go if you take it seriously and is relatively straightforward. Learn the “trade” from below, putting in the necessary hours, without shortcuts. I guarantee that it will make up for you a lot.

This same website is a good example, take a look at the people who come to us every month (+ 90% from Google), an upward trend.

How to do basic SEO in WordPress

Now that we have laid the foundations for you to take this with the right mindset, let’s get down to business with all the specific points that you must take into account in WordPress.

Anyway, allow me the parenthesis to comment that this post focuses on how to do SEO in WordPress, not on teaching SEO itself . Therefore, this post assumes that you already have at least some basic knowledge of the subject.

If this is not the case in your case, read this post first:What is SEO, why is it so important and how does it work?

On this and many other sites, more than 90% of the traffic comes from SEO. Learn what SEO is, why it matters so much, and how to start using it now.

And if you want to learn SEO a little more thoroughly, download also our free SEO guide for beginners that you can see a little above.

The SEO problem on WordPress.com

Much has been written comparing the downloadable version of WordPress that is installed on a hosting ( wordpress.org ) versus the version of WordPress that the company Automattic (from the creator of WordPress, Matt Mullenweg) offers as a service in the cloud, free or of payment, according to the chosen plan ( WordPress.com ).

31.7% of the websites use WordPress. And not just blogs, all kinds of websites. Here I explain what WordPress is, how it works and what makes it so special.

In our case, we defend the position of preferring WordPress with its own hosting because, except in its most advanced plan , the Business plan , the functionality of WordPress.com is severely limited compared to WordPress installed on a hosting.

WordPress.com plans (click on the image to see the details on the web).

Well, SEO is one of the facets in which these limitations are most noticeable and that is why one of the most weighty criteria to incline us to recommend WordPress.org in projects that go beyond simple entertainment.

The problem is that many important things about SEO, such as a custom page title or a custom meta-description , you can only do with plugins and plugins can only be used on a WordPress site with hosting or the Business plan, in case of use WordPress.com.

Therefore, keep in mind that, as a general rule, when we talk here about using the X plugin to do Y, if you use WordPress, unless you have the expensive WordPress.com plan, you will not be able to implement them .

The basic setup for SEO in WordPress

Let’s start at the beginning: the initial setup.

Create and connect your account in the Google Search Console

The first thing I would worry about is creating an account on the Google Search Console ( GSC ), the free SEO tool provided by Google itself.

It is designed to measure the performance and search traffic of your website , correct problems and thereby help optimize the positioning of your website in Google.

You create the account by going to their website and registering as is done in the rest of Google services (Gmail, Drive, etc.).

It has a lot of functions, among the most important and the ones I use the most today are:

  • The analysis search : Here you can see exactly what and how many searches are bringing traffic to your site, what positions your pages appear in the results, etc. You can filter all this to analyze specific pages, etc. All of these are very important things for SEO.
  • The reports on problems of your website (broken links, blocked resources, etc.).
  • The sitemaps and indexing explicit pages: Sitemaps (site maps) let Google know every page of your site and can be automatically generated from WordPress, as we shall see. And indexing pages manually in Google is something that is sometimes very important, for example, in the face of changes that you have made and that you are very urgent to see them as soon as possible in Google, etc.

To connect your WordPress site with the GSC there are plugins such as Yoast SEO , which make this task very easy for you. We will talk about this plugin many times in this post …

There are several good SEO plugins, but for practical reasons, I recommend using Yoast. It is good, the most popular and, therefore, the one for which you will find the most help (tutorials, etc.).

Here is a tutorial in which you can see how to connect your WordPress site with your Google Search Console account and that Yoast SEO uses precisely to do it:

And here I leave you a recent tutorial that gives a review of the new user interface that the tool has just released and that will help you to have some first guidelines on how to work with it:

Create and connect your account in Google Analytics

As you can imagine from its name, Google Analytics is also Google you. And also this tool is free . It is a very powerful web analytics tool and the reference in web analytics tools.

Google Analytics is a very powerful and essential tool.

Here you will find a different type of information than what you find in the GSC, but also very important, because it gives you very relevant information.

You will find things like:

  • Statistics of visits to each of the pages of your website and users in real time.
  • Information on the behavior of users on your website. For example: you can see the average time of stay of the users of each of your pages.
  • Extensive information on your audience (country, age, gender, interests, …).
  • Tools to create custom reports . A typical example would be to measure the conversion rates of those joining your mailing list .

And with this I have only scratched the surface a little …

As I was saying, it is a very powerful tool, but don’t let this weigh you down. You do not need everything that this tool can do and even less at the beginning . Even in my case, to this day, I still don’t use 10% of what this tool is capable of.

For now, connect your Analytics account to WordPress, which, again, you can do very easily with the Yoast plugin.

Here is a small Google Analytics tutorial in Spanish that will be useful to get started with this tool:

With the information that the default tool gives you (visits, sessions, bounce rate, countries, etc.) and that is what is reviewed in this video, it will be more than enough for a long time.

Enable permalinks

Now let’s go to something very simple, but important: permanent links or “permalinks” in English. It is the option that you will find in the menu “Settings / Permalinks” of WordPress.

Here we look for “indirect” SEO as it is, for example, the simple fact that a friendly URL is one of the things that gives a better image of the page and puts its grain of sand for the user to click and be encouraged also to share the content .

That is, these pages, instead of having the ugly structure that you can see in the highlighted part above in the following image, have a “beautiful” structure like the one you see below in the same image:

The option highlighted at the bottom of the image is the one I recommend for your permalink configuration.

One last thing: watch out for this if you already have a blog up and running.

If you change the URLs, you will need to redirect those pages, if not, you will lose traffic to them. I’ll explain “what’s up” this in more depth below in the section on 301 redirects .

Treatment of categories and tags

Category and tag pages in WordPress can be very interesting for SEO, but for that you have to work on them specifically, which is a whole theme in itself.

However, if you don’t use them well, they can backfire . Therefore, my recommendation is that, by default, as long as you do not dedicate a specific SEO work to them, you make them invisible to Google (configure them as non-indexed pages).

You can do that in the Yoast plugin, in the menu “Appearance in the search engine / Taxonomies” . Make sure to configure categories and tags to not show in search results:

In the “Taxonomies” tab of Yoast’s “Look and feel” menu, you can make the settings for categories and tags.

The reason is that, on the one hand, these pages, if you don’t work them a bit (and the information in the posts they show), are “poor” content (known as “thin content” ). Publishing this type of content does nothing for you and you risk things like duplicate content, which harm you.

If you want to take advantage of WordPress categories and tags for SEO later, I recommend that you research this topic, there is a lot of specific material published on this.

How to do SEO On Page well done in WordPress

Let’s talk now about the SEO issue, in my opinion, by far, the most important of all : SEO On Page .

SEO On Page refers to the SEO that you do within the page, to make them understand what your content is talking about or in other words: what search intention of the user it responds to .

Here is an entire post dedicated to SEO On Page:SEO On Page: A practical example to master it in 5 minutes

A good SEO On Page is a must if you create web content. It is one of the simplest and most profitable things you can do to get traffic.

Given how important it is, I highly recommend reading it.

Know your search intent and find interesting keywords

I say that this is the most important SEO aspect because it is the mother of the lamb , the base from which everything else is spun. Without this, the rest of the actions will be much less effective .

If you want to position a content in a search engine, it is logical that this only makes sense if you give a reasonable response to one or more searches that users make in the search engine.

SEO On Page tries to make it as clear as possible to Google (and the rest of the search engines) what search intention or intentions you are responding to .

For this reason, if you want traffic, it is a very bad idea to write the content “haphazardly” . Google will try its best to figure out which searches your content responds to and come to its own conclusions.

But think about this: if you haven’t even thought about it enough yourself, what miracles is Google going to do to get it right?

Therefore, first think about what questions to answer with your content that are searched on the Internet. The wonderful thing is that there are tools that make it very easy for you, because with them you can see exactly what people are looking for on Google .

One of the best free ones is Ubersuggest :

Ubersuggest is a free SEO tool that is great to start with.

And, among the professionals, SEMrush :

FREE ACCESS TO SEMRUSH WITHOUT TIME LIMIT

In this blog we use SEMrush . It is the SEO tool that we like the most because:

  • It has 20 million keywords in its database.
  • It has the best keyword analyzer on the market: Keyword Magic Tool .
  • It allows you to know the keywords for which your competition is positioned .
  • You can compare competitor backlinks and domains side by side.
  • It has the best SEO tracking we’ve ever tested.

You can try it for free (normal price: $ 99 / month).

And if you want to get the most out of it, don’t miss our SEMrush tutorial either .

These tools will give you the keywords (the exact words used in searches) to use, although sometimes the search intent behind them is unclear .

For example: what does “malt beer” answer to ? What is malt beer for? ¿ Where can I take malt beer? ¿ Where to Buy malt beer …?

The trick to finding out is simple: do a search on those keywords and examine the results. The first ones will reflect what Google considers the predominant search intention and to which you should target your content if you want to rank in those searches.

The search intent that Google considers predominant is easy to find out by examining the existing results for that search. Here we see that when people search for “malt beer”, what they are most interested in is learning more about the characteristics of this specific type of beer.

Once we have this clear, the rest is quite simple: there are certain “sensitive” places on a web page, these Google will examine with special attention and must, therefore, contain the keywords that you have determined to use in your content.

The meta information (<title> and <description> tags)

The titles and descriptions that you can see above in the image of the search results correspond to a “meta-information” that is very important, precisely because Google uses it in this way: in its SERPs.

First of all, you should know that the titles you see in the search results (also known as SERPs) do not correspond to what is the main title in HTML (<h1> tag), but to the page title (<tag title>).

WordPress generates the <title> automatically from the main title of the post or page (that is, <h1> of the content).

However, many times you will want it to be different. For example: when the main title is very long and a shorter version should be seen in the SERPs.

This with WordPress, in principle, can not be done .

However, the aforementioned Yoast plugin comes to the rescue here.

Yoast allows you, among many other things, to edit the page title (title) and its meta-description (description) and preview (at the end of the WordPress editor) how they will appear in the search results.

As you can see in the screenshot above, with this plugin you can not only expressly edit the <title>, along with the meta-description (<description> tag), but you can even preview the result of how it will look on Google.

This last tag (<description>), by the way, does not have as much direct weight to position, but it corresponds many times (as Google wants …) to the description that you see under the title in a search result.

Therefore, it is an indirect positioning factor insofar as it can contribute to increase (or discourage if it is poorly done) clicks on your result, an important signal for Google to position that content higher or lower.

The structure of titles and subtitles (<h1>… <h6> tags)

We now talk about the content of the page itself.

HTML includes 6 levels of titles and subtitles that correspond to the <h1>… <h6> tags.

In WordPress you can see them in the HTML tab of the classic editor. In the visual editor (which is what most use) you should know that these titles correspond to the styles “Heading 1” to “Heading 6” .

But, in addition, the main title of a post or page in WordPress corresponds to the title that you can see at the top of the whole in the editor:

The main title of the WordPress editor is converted to an HTML h1 tag and in the rest of the content you can insert titles from level 1 to 6 that correspond to the h1 to h6 tags.

At the SEO level it is very convenient that you only use a level 1 title in your content and that level is the one used in the main title that you edit at the top in WordPress.

In the rest of the editor (in the content text) you should use “Heading 2” downwards, that is, use subtitles , but not “Heading 1” .

Very important : take advantage of subtitles to add long-tail searches related to the main one.

For example: if your main search is “how to get followers on Instagram “ , you can use subtitles to “target” things related to the intention search engines that are also searched, such as:

  • Does it work to buy followers on Instagram ?
  • Apps to get followers on Instagram
  • How to know who unfollows me on Instagram?
  • Etc.

I highly recommend using this technique, an exhaustive work on this can do wonders , believe me …

What I have told you is valid for the “classic” WordPress editor , the one that came with versions prior to WordPress 5.0 and that many people still use.

But with this latest version , Gutenberg , the new WordPress default editor, has also been introduced . In this editor things change radically, although the SEO On Page principles that I just explained remain exactly the same .

Now if you haven’t used Gutenberg yet , it requires some learning. I leave you a short and good tutorial from Gutenberg:

Having seen this, you shouldn’t have any problem doing SEO On Page in Gutenberg as well.

And if you really don’t like Gutenberg and want to continue using the classic editor for your content (as is also my case today), I recommend the Classic Editor plugin .

The content text

This is simple: use the keywords in normal content as well. If you have used them in titles, this will usually be done naturally.

The images

Many people forget that Google also searches for images . This is where specific SEO for images comes in.

In image editing, you have three factors with weight in the positioning of the images: the <alt> attribute , the <title> attribute and the name of the file .

Dialog box that appears when viewing an image uploaded to WordPress in the media library. In the highlighted parts you can see the file name, image resolution, file size, its title and the alternative text.

In this regard, I recommend using the keywords in the following image editing options in WordPress:

  • Alternative text (corresponds to the <alt> tag.
  • The <title> attribute of the image.
  • Filename: in this case, you cannot edit anything. You have to edit the filename before uploading it to WordPress. My recommendation is that you use the keywords separated by a hyphen (minus sign). With multiple images, take the opportunity to target different keywords.

How to optimize the speed of your WordPress site

Now let’s go to a last SEO factor that also has a lot of weight: the speed of your website .

As a general rule, it is contemplated that a web page should not take more than 2 seconds to load , above that value is how much users begin to perceive slowness and the% of people who leave the page begins to shoot.

And you will not only lose visits, Google does not like websites either and takes this into account when positioning them.

Here is a post that explains in depth how to optimize your WordPress site:Checklist: 10 Key Points to Optimize WordPress

Find out how to optimize WordPress and take it to another level of blogging. Your blog will load faster and your readers will be much happier.

However, I also want to talk here about the three most important aspects and the ones that people fail the most to achieve this goal of a fast website:

  • The hosting or specific plan that they have contracted.
  • Don’t use a cache .
  • How images are uploaded to your website.

Hire a good hosting

If you use a website on WordPress.com, forget about this point, it is one of the advantages of creating your site on this platform. They are hosting themselves and their servers are good.

If you use a WordPress site with its own hosting (where you have had to hire it), it will depend on the hosting you have contracted.

Especially in cheap hosting (€ 10 or less per month), you have to be careful : in Spain there are already very good providers and low prices such as Webempresa , SiteGround or Raiola Networks , but unfortunately there are still really bad providers in that price zone. .

Here is a list of providers that we have tested and that we can recommend, with 1and1 Ionos and Hostgator clearly inferior options than the previous ones, but with very aggressive price offers that, nevertheless, maintain an acceptable level of quality:

If you need hosting for your website or your blog, act!

  • Hostinger : with a 90% discount here
  • SiteGround : with a 60% discount here
  • Webempresa : with a 25% discount here
  • Raiola Networks : with a 20% discount here

Notice: these offers are valid now , they may expire in a few days.

I also leave you a reading about WordPress that delves into the differences between WordPress.com and WordPress.com, along with a more in-depth comparison of hostings:What is WordPress, what is it for and how does it work?

31.7% of the websites use WordPress. And not just blogs, all kinds of websites. Here I explain what WordPress is, how it works and what makes it so special.Where to buy a domain and good cheap hosting

In Spain there are excellent cheap hosting options of good quality. However, the red line between affordable but good quality hosting and junk hosting is very fine. Here I explain how to choose well, I reveal the best brands and I explain how to get the maximum discounts.

Remember that the topic of this post is precisely one of the most important to opt for one or another version of WordPress, since most of the things we talk about here require the use of plugins, which you will not be able to do with the plans WordPress.com basics.

Cache plugins or server cache

WordPress is a web application implemented in the PHP programming language and with a MySQL database that dynamically generates its web pages (their HTML code) : every time a user enters a page it is “composed” on the March.

Without going into the technical details of exactly what this means, suffice it to say that this allows you to add a ton of functionality to the web, from very simple things like comments to advanced things like order management in an online store .

The price you pay for this power is the level of server load : a system like WordPress (which is normal in any website today) demands much more from a server than a classic HTML website (which nobody uses, for other part).

The idea of “cache” is a trick whereby, each time a page is dynamically generated, a “photo” is saved in HTML that will be used in the next accesses to the page while the content of that page does not change. If it changes, it is regenerated and the “photo” is taken again .

With the trick of the photo we once again have HTML files like the classic ones, with the advantages of less load for the server and speed that it implies.

This is done by caches and that is why they are so important.

In good hosting providers (such as those mentioned) you have plans with server cache (the server itself takes over, which is the most efficient option). If not, you must install at least one cache plugin, such as WP Fastest Caché .

Image optimization

Digital images are of increasing quality. But that causes them to also get bigger and bigger sizes and that’s a big problem in WordPress, because large images on the order of mega-bytes slow down a web page enormously .

Optimizing to the maximum involves two things:

  • Reduce the pixel dimensions of the image to the minimum that looks good (you see that “by eye” by testing). In our case, for example, having the blog columns 800 pixels wide, all the images have that width.
  • Reduce the file size to the maximum without losing quality (or with minimal loss).

You can do this “by hand” on websites like these:

  • Picresize : allows you to reduce the dimensions. It’s our favorite because of how well it maintains sharpness when zooming out.
  • TinyPNG : allows you to reduce the size of PNG and JPG files. It is our favorite because, of all the ones we have tried, it is the one that reduces the most without losing quality.
  • Imageresize.org : it does both at the same time, but it does not get as good a result as using the previous two (first resize and then reduce the file size).

There are also plugins to do this automatically, such as Resize Image After Upload (reduce to the maximum dimensions indicated), Compress JPEG & PNG images (optimize the file with the TinyPNG service) or Optimizador.io (optimize the file), a plugin « made in Spain » created by Webempresa .

In our case, for example, with this it is very rare that any image is above 150kb and the normal thing is that it is less than 100kb, which are very reasonable sizes . We are talking about images that in their original version occupy several megabytes many times.

Advanced SEO in WordPress

As you can imagine, advanced SEO is a vast field that we can spend dozens of hours talking about.

Let me mention here a few aspects that I consider key and where WordPress can help you a lot:

Rich Snippets in WordPress

Rich snippets, so to speak, are the continuation of SEO at the page title level and meta-information that appears in the SERPs.

They are additional information, often graphic, such as stars or photos like the ones you can see in the search results below:

Lookup of search results with rich snippets.

The idea of ​​Google is to give richer information at first glance, but what interests us in the first place is to use this to encourage them to click on our result through striking results.

Rich snippets are a whole world, that’s why I refer you from here to a post that talks about them much more thoroughly:Rich Snippets: Everything you need to know to get to the top of Google

Rich snippets are here to stay. In this guide I tell you everything you need to know about them, as well as tips to get a “Rank # 0”.

Comment here also that to implement them you need, again, plugins . Below, in the plugins section, (and in the post above this line) I present the most popular one today .

Pages not found (Error 404)

Over time, it is natural that your site accumulates more and more broken links that will cause a “page not found ” error , also known as a “404 error” . You change the content URL or even delete content and, if you have linked them from other content, the old links are broken.

The problem, apart from a bad image and reducing the usability of your site, is that Google does not like broken links too much either: a large number of broken links take them as a sign of poor site quality .

In addition, they consume “crawl budget” , the time that Google allocates to crawl your website and, therefore, it will crawl less content in X time.

Therefore, keep an eye on your broken links .

You can do with plugins like Broken Link Checker or link checker . These plugins also allow you to comfortably edit the broken links from the list of broken links provided by the plugin interface itself.

301 redirects

Closely related to broken links, we have 301 redirects .

This concept is very useful, above all, for two reasons:

  • It supposes a solution (in part) to 404 errors insofar as it allows to establish an automatic redirection of the URLs to pages that replace them.
  • It allows to maintain the page authority in Google before a change of URL. You do not lose positioning, what’s more, you can take advantage of the authority of obsolete content to transfer it to new content that is thematically related.

In WordPress, this issue is partly fixed because when you modify the URL of a content in WordPress, WordPress automatically performs a 301 redirect.

But the fact of the matter is that, if you are serious about SEO on your website, you will find more than one occasion where this is not enough and where you will need to create a 301 redirect “manually” .

For example: if you unify several posts into one and you want to recycle the authority of all three, the way to do it is to redirect all three to the new page.

Let’s now see how to do a 301 redirect.

301 redirects are implemented in the .htaccess file in the root directory of your website , you can easily access it with your hosting file explorer.

Each redirect is a simple line of text like this:

redirect 301 / get-quality-links / / what-is-link-building /

Here you can easily sense that the page “ / get-quality-links /” is redirecting to the page “/ what-is-link-building /” . As you can see, it is not necessary to include the domain part of the URL, your domain is assumed by default.

In fact, the one above is a real example of ours in which we have “retired” an old post on how to get links taking advantage of its authority for a new post on link building that we recently published. This way you will position yourself much better from day one.

My recommendation is that you do this directly, as I say, in the .htaccess file. But if you give some respect to touching this type of thing in your hosting, you can also use a plugin like the “classic” Simple 301 Redirects to do the same from WordPress.

Again, sadly this is something you can’t do on the “small” WordPress.com plans.

Robots.txt configuration

The robots.txt file that is in the root directory of your website is another relevant topic within SEO.

In principle, it works for you as it comes by default with WordPress, but it can be optimized to scratch Google a few tenths and, above all, it is convenient to check that you do not have serious errors in that file that are generating a significant SEO problem.

The problem is that its configuration is not a trivial issue , so I am going to refer you to this great post by Raiola Networks that will explain the details:

SEO plugin tutorials for WordPress (free and paid)

There are many SEO plugins for WordPress, some general, others more specific.

I am going to list you here, among the generalists, some of the most popular that you should know yes or yes. To find plugins that respond to more specific needs, I recommend you do your own research via Google and in the WordPress.org plugin repository.

Configure Yoast Seo for WordPress

We start with the SEO plugin par excellence. That is undoubtedly Yoast SEO . It is no coincidence that I have mentioned it several times throughout this post.

With the free version, you will perfectly cover all the basic aspects that I have discussed here and much more.

This video will explain how to configure Yoast SEO to optimize your website to the maximum, along with the guidelines to follow in your day-to-day work when you create each of your content:

And if you prefer the text format, on our blog you can also find this same tutorial in “post” format:How to configure the WordPress Yoast SEO plugin – Tutorial

Yoast SEO is the reference in SEO plugins for WordPress. Here you will learn to configure everything important from scratch.

Important : remember what I said at the beginning that SEO “really” is going to be done with SEO On Page .

What you do with Yoast is very important, but it is only part of the work that needs to be done.

Configure All in One SEO for WordPress

Yoast’s closest competitor is All in One SEO for WordPress .

So I also leave you a video in which you can get an idea of ​​how this alternative to Yoast works:

Now you decide which one you feel most comfortable with 

Configure All in One Schema org Rich Snippets

And finally, here is also a video about the most popular plugin for creating rich snippets , the famous “rich Snippets” that we already talked about above:

SEO optimized WordPress templates

Choosing your WordPress template is an important decision, but many people are not aware that it is not important only for its usability and aesthetics. It is also important for SEO.

WordPress template speed

A good template should be lightweight, that is, the HTML and JavaScript code it generates should be as light as possible so that the page loads as quickly as possible.

Therefore, if you compare different templates, also compare the loading speed and size of the pages with different templates.

You can do this with pages like Pingdom Tools , GTmetrix and Google’s PageSpeed ​​Insights .

Apart from the times, the problems of the pages that they diagnose are very interesting, especially the Google tool.

And be careful with the location that the tool is using to measure the times, if it is very far from the location of your server, the times can artificially increase.

Responsive design (adaptation to mobile devices)

This is very simple: never use a template that is not responsive , that is, that is not adapted to mobile devices.

There are two reasons for this:

  • Around half of the world’s web traffic comes from these types of devices. If your website does not adapt and it looks bad on them, your readers will come out whistling.
  • Google considers it essential, if your website looks bad on a mobile device it will drop many positions in the positioning.

Specially designed templates for SEO

Although any quality template is reasonably good on an SEO level, SEO is not usually the main criteria in WordPress templates. It is its design. Therefore, it is difficult for you to find a template made optimally for SEO.

However, today there are templates that have been designed with SEO as criterion No. 1, fully optimized for it.

Two of these templates are Orbital Theme and Adsensei Theme , created by the teams of two of the great SEOs in Spain: Romuald Fons and Dean Romero.

To be frank, I have not tried them and I cannot comment on them, but you should know that these types of templates exist.

On the other hand, being templates where SEO prevails, it is possible that they do not adapt to all your needs, so here I leave you the reference so that you can continue investigating on your own.

Checklist to optimize SEO in WordPress

And since this has been, once again, a really long post, what better way to close it than with a summary of the comments in the form of a 10-point list that you can use as a checklist when you work on SEO on your WordPress site:

  1. Connect your site with the Google Search Console : you can do it with the Yoast plugin.
  2. Connect your site with Google Analytics : you can do it with the Yoast plugin.
  3. Enable permalinks : in the “Settings / Permalinks” menu in WordPress.
  4. Non-indexed tag and category pages : with the Yoast plugin.
  5. Keyword analysis : outside of WordPress with tools like Ubersuggest and [semrush].
  6. SEO On Page of the text in the posts and pages : <title> and <description> with Yoast, titles and text with the WordPress editor and <alt> and <title> attributes of the images with the WordPress image editor.
  7. Rich Snippets : with the All in One Schema org Rich Snippets plugin.
  8. Optimize the speed of your site : use good hosting, a cache (server or with a plugin), agile and responsive WordPress templates, and optimize images in pixel dimension and file size “manually” , with tools such as Imageresize.org or with plugins like Resize Image After Upload and Compress JPEG & PNG images .
  9. URL changes and recycling of old content : use 301 redirects, either by hand in .htaccess or with plugins like Simple 301 Redirects .
  10. Robots.txt : roughly the default robots.txt generated by WordPress should be enough, but it should be examined for errors and, if you really have the necessary knowledge, you can consider optimizing it.

Last conclusions

With regard to SEO I always give the same advice: it is essential, I cannot conceive of creating a website without doing SEO.

The really important thing is not so many things:

  • Do the basic setup described here.
  • Take care of the selection of your hosting, use a cache and pay close attention to the file size of the images you upload.
  • And most importantly : work on the SEO On Page of each content you publish, starting with keyword analysis.

But beware: don’t be obsessed either .

There will be content for which in the keyword analysis you will not find a clear niche. There is content that is interesting for your audience, that it even demands of you, but for which you cannot find similar searches on Google.

Nothing happens, that is part of content creation. That is not a reason not to publish them.

Also, after a few months, you can take a look at the GSC to see if there are searches for which Google has naturally positioned them. If there are, consider updating your content to reinforce the keywords for those searches in your content.

And don’t be obsessed with Yoast either. It has very expendable things.

There are even things like “Target Keyphrase” or “Readability Analysis” that people go crazy with to get ridiculous highscores while wasting tons of hours.

Don’t do it, these things are fine as a clue to review aspects of your content, but nothing more. I will even tell you that I don’t even use the famous “objective keyword phrase” because I don’t see any sense in it: good content must be positioned for several related searches, not just one.

In short, with time and practice you will see that all this is, in essence, simply applying common sense using the appropriate SEO tools 

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