SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization that involves tools and techniques for sites to rank higher and more accurately in search engines. The sole purpose of SEO is to increase a website’s SERP (Search Engine Result Page) ranking. WordPress has emerged as a powerful and effective tool for SEO, helping websites achieve desired results. However, one needs to bear in mind that WordPress.com – the blogging platform is different from WordPress.org – the SEO tool.
What is WordPress?
WordPress is a free open source tool and content management system (CMS) based on PHP and MySQL platforms. It has emerged as the most popular and largest self hosted blogging platform in the world, being used by millions across the globe. Since it is open source, there is no restriction for the purpose of its usage and one is free to use it for anything completely FREE of cost and is completely customizable. Though it started out primarily as a blogging tool, it has evolved as a complete content management system through countless plugins, widgets and themes.
Why is WordPress free?
WordPress is open source software that gives immense freedom to users to use, modify, build upon, redistribute and customize it in any way depending on requirement. However, the most interesting part is that this powerful tool is almost FREE as it is not owned by an individual company and has millions of people contributing to writing patches, bugs, features, answering support questions, etc. The usage of WordPress is guided by the fact that once software is created, it can be copied by others at very little or negligible costs. However contributors who work their way about themes, plugins and other features can earn by developing them. Every contribution made to the software is copyrighted and released under GPL license that gives others the right to further use modify or resdistribute your code and create any kind of website. All that you would need is WordPress web hosting and you are good to go!
Why should you use WordPress?
WordPress started out as a free blogging platform but that soon transformed into a powerful open source software that aids building functional websites and mobile applications for any and every kind of business. A recent survey revealed that more than 20% of the world’s top 10 million websites on the internet were powered by WordPress. Some reasons why more and more businesses are opting for this software are:
- Robust features
- Free – which means users are free to download, install, use and modify it to create any kind of website with only a domain and web hosting as prerequisite
- More than 2500 themes and more than 30,000 plugins
- Flexible, easy to use and learn with a plethora of guides, articles and tutorials making it easy even for non – web developers and designers to create a website
- Easy to customize through thousands of free templates allowing you to change colors, upload logo, change backgrounds, create attractive sliders, etc.
- Easy to manage through admin dashboard
- Supports different media like images, audio and video content
WordPress and SEO
WordPress is SEO friendly because the codes have high quality compliance that result in websites attractive to search engines. Websites can be made all the more SEO friendly by using WordPress SEO Plugin. Though WordPress is designed for SEO and allows every page to be indexed, additional efforts need to be put in for desired results. A website powered by WordPress can be treated as the starting point, but continuous SEO efforts form an integral part of online marketing. A few examples will illustrate the importance of constant SEO efforts being in sync with WordPress:
- Upgrading to a WordPress website or installing a plugin will alter the website’s code which if not accounted for may affect SEO adversely.
- Setting up an appropriate permalink structure. It is a simple procedure that can be done by altering options in the settings. Go to Settings > Permalinks option and choose the one best suited for your website.
- Adding new plugins affects the speed of a website, especially the loading time which is a crucial parameter for Google rankings.
- Optimizing content based on specific keywords and key phrases derived from SEO analysis will help immensely.
- Periodic evaluation and assessments of SEO efforts will ensure that you are on the right track. This exercise will help identify flawed processes and help take corrective action.
- WordPress allows you to optimize meta description as well as the meta title and meta tags of each of the pages in your website by adding relevant information in the description box.
- It is also important to optimize images used by adding ‘title’ and ‘alt’ tags for every image that you use in website.
- While choosing a theme there are few things you need to look out for that could be harmful for SEO. Consider feedbacks and users’ reviews before choosing a theme. Make sure that it follows Google’s SEO best practices.
There are thousands of plugins, themes, widgets, etc. that users can choose depending upon their requirement for successful SEO implementation and reap rich results. In addition to making the above changes in a website there are few other things that help greatly in boosting SEO. You can simply choose a SEO plugin to work the wonders for you!