In this episode Chelsea and James discuss how a WordPress website bolsters your SEO strategy.
How WordPress benefits SEO
Podcast How WordPress benefits SEO
On today’s episode, we’re going to be talking about SEO friendliness on WordPress websites.
One of the main reasons that people have a WordPress website is to improve their search engine optimization and sort of how they show up on search engines. WordPress is a platform that we are really massive fans of here at So marketing is absolutely brilliant for clients that are looking to focus on their SEO, we actually find it’s commonly a reason why people replatform to WordPress from another content management system altogether. And their main sort of benefit to it really is that because WordPress is such a massive platform in the world, Google really understands how WordPress websites are made up with it originating as a blogging platform. Content was said at the core of it. The whole structure of WordPress the way it manages its URLs and the way it organises content into sort of subcategories and areas is absolutely perfect for search engine optimization work. So one of the things that we work on here. So marketing when we have clients coming over to us and we’re moving their content into their WordPress websites, is to set it up in a way where the SEO can be absolutely maximised for them. Based on the content they’ve got based on the sort of changes they want to make, and the keywords they want to optimise on going forwards. The other good thing about WordPress really is that SEO companies understand it too. So here at the marketing, we are very agency agnostic in terms of we don’t insist to our clients that we do all the all the parts of a project. And we’re quite happy to work with third party SEO companies. So quite typically, we have an arrangement where we build the website developer support it going forwards. However, the SEO and online marketing side of it, sometimes it’s done by third party agency that was either always in place with the client or the client just got a preference to use another company. So we worked really quite close with them. And because we’re on WordPress, they really understand it already, because they’re used to seeing it a lot. So because there’ll be dealing with WordPress websites day in day out, if we can involve a third party company when we’re building websites in terms of how they would like it set up for this specific SEO task that they’ve got. They completely get it from from day one. It takes away any confusion around how the platform set up. They’re familiar with WordPress, so we have a lot to retrain them. And it generally leads to a much better result for them. So there’s some great benefits to using WordPress for SEO.
So I guess I’m just adding on to that James, some of the features and our inbuilt into WordPress for optimised SEO, kind of like marketing is I guess proper HTML markup, SEO friendly permanent links, title tags and headings, easy content creation and optimised photos. How does this ensure effectiveness then for clients SEO?
Yeah, that’s absolutely right. So WordPress has got a lot of built in features that have got SEO in mind. So just taking one recent change to WordPress. For example, when clients upload images into WordPress, it automatically creates scaled versions of these for the different device sizes that are going to be displayed on each of those device size. Version images can also have SEO specific alt text and meta information changed directly in the WordPress admin. Likewise, on the permalink structure, Google actually lets you manually log in WordPress actually lets you manually edit the permalinks for a particular page or post or any other content that’s within the WordPress site structure. So this really allows people working on SEO to be very, very specific about changing what Google sees with regards to that. So yeah, it’s all completely built in from the ground up with with WordPress, some of it obviously require some elements of time and like work to set up properly. And I think you know, as a novice client user when just adding content, there’s a basic level of things that WordPress automatically does. But this can certainly be improved upon by adding certain extensions to WordPress that’ll add functionality to that.
I’m really glad you mentioned the extension capability of WordPress because I want to talk to you about one of my favourite plugins, the Yoast SEO plugin. So Yoast is quite user friendly and it does it does make it easy for people to do their own SEO with a little prior training. Can you talk a little bit more about that and how Yoast is useful for clients once they go into managing the content of the website for themselves?
Yeah, so Yoast is actually probably the number one most frequently used plugin or extension to nearly every WordPress website we see. It’s, it comes in two versions is a free version and a premium version. And the free version is the one that we typically see on nearly every single website. And what it does is it basically adds additional options regarding SEO to every item of content within the WordPress admin structure. So just give you an idea. It actually shows you a preview of how that pages Google entry would look. It shows you the title, the meta description, the the URL that shown, it actually lets you manually edit it on an individual page by page basis. So you can completely control where you put your keywords in regards to the title tag. The other great thing it does is it lets you focus on a particular keyword on a page. So for example, say you’re making a website that you’re selling picture frames, and you’ve got a page where you want to focus the keywords on that page around picture frames. And it can actually review the content that you’ve got on your page against a particular keyword and give you like a traffic light guidance score in terms of how well it’s been optimised, and then it gives you as the user some tips. So for example, one of the most commonly sort of popped up items is it says you need more content. So there’s a minimum amount of content and words that Google is looking for on a page. And the Yoast plugin to WordPress actually tells the user Yeah, it’s looking for 400 words, you’ve got 200, you might want to think about adding more. So it uses a red, green and Amber kind of system to let you at a glance look at how well the Yoast plugin considers that your page content is suitable or optimised best for Google. And working through it can be quite time consuming. So if you’ve got a very large website, where hundreds of pages 1000s of products, and you really want to obsess over getting green on all of these, then it could take some significant amount of time. That said if you’ve got a smaller website, maybe 20 3040 pages, it’s not too time consuming. And it’s certainly valuable time spent. It’s it’s part of the overall SEO mix. One of the ways that we typically sort of describe on page SEO work to clients is that around sort of 30% of why websites are where they are on Google is related to what’s actually on the webpage. The rest of it all relates to Off page SEO, sort of more technical structure of things. And that sort of link backs from high quality domain websites, the site its own domain authority and other issues. But the 30% of reasoning of why websites are where they are, that can be done in site. Yoast as a plugin to WordPress is very, very helpful for that. Because it couples with the inherent SEO friendliness of Google, it’s a WordPress itself. And the other great feature of Avios is it actually automatically creates your website sitemaps. And a lot of people who run websites or just think you know the phrase Sitemaps, but maybe not quite sure what they do. So with the sitemap function in Yoast, it will actually create individual Sitemaps for each content type within your WordPress website, you can then submit those Sitemaps into Google Webmaster Tools or Google Search Console, as they call it nowadays, that then tells Google the structure of your site and how to index it better. And the Yoast plug in automatically dynamically keeps it up to date as well. So you don’t have to resubmit that Sitemap. It has a direct up to date link with the Google Search Console when it’s been done. And this massively speeds up, indexing time and also really makes Google understand that website because the Yoast plugin and WordPress combined, sort of are explaining to it how the content links together and how it all works.
So just picked up that you use the word dynamic. And it’s a well known fact that Google likes websites that have their content updated quite frequently, because it signifies to Google that the content is valuable and up to date. Does this have an effect on how WordPress is effective with SEM?
Yes, definitely. So again, one of the benefits of using a content management system is that the clients can update the content frequently. We encourage all of our clients to update content as often as possible, because when Google calls websites, it looks for changes between the previous version and the version that you’re looking at now. Now, if your website never changes, there’s no incentive for Google to come back to it. So it tends not to crawl it very often because it’s a waste of resources. If your website is changing very frequently, whether you’re adding New blogs, you’re adding new products, change your content on the website. And it’s constantly evolving and dynamic way, it really does encourage Google to come back to the website more frequently. This then will be put into the overall Google mix with other websites. So if you, for example, had five identical websites, and the one that was updated more frequently that Google saw as more relevant and more accurate and more frequently changing, would actually have a higher SEO value than the ones that never changed. So there is some real benefit to doing it, not necessarily just for the sake of it. So it has to be as part of a, an SEO strategy to do typically, clients would use their blog or new section to create SEO relevant keyword, blog topics, which is a really great opportunity to put those keywords into your website. Google then has something to index LLC, something changing frequently, using the Yoast plugin in WordPress, they can be optimised for particular keywords as well. And and it should be part of the content marketing strategy for any agency to work with a client really to make sure that they understand that content does need to change frequently, and just having a website and then forgetting about it for five years. And maybe the last blog post on there was Christmas opening hours. 2015 actually has got a negative effect on the website from the outside appearance of new clients looking in to check into this business. And also Google looking at it saying this website never changes. Why should I ever come back to it. So the combination of using WordPress and the Yoast plug in actually is ideal. And a lot of this can be done by clients themselves. They don’t need to come to the agency to do this. It just requires a little bit of training and a lot of explaining of what they need to do. And yeah, especially the basics of it can certainly be done client side without too much technical knowledge.
Thanks very much for your time again, James. So yeah, I guess the key takeaways from this one RM a dynamic site gets you crawled more frequently by Google, which helps you rise up the rankings and definitely make sure that you’re making use of the Yoast SEO tool as well on your WordPress website to ensure that your SEO is as effective as possible. If you have any questions on what we spoke about today, or you just want to get in touch about your own SEO strategy, feel free to email us at Hello at SU marketing.com