In our previous tutorial, we discussed SEO and got an introduction to what is SEO and the techniques used for SEO, now in this tutorial we will learn how we can do SEO for our WordPress blogs and pages easily and what tools we can use for our SEO purpose. So let us begin.
If you are new on WordPress you can follow the installation guide here:
How to Install WordPress Step by Step Tutorial
How to SEO WordPress properly?
As WordPress is a Content Management System (CMS), the pages and posts are dynamically created with data we feed in from admin dashboard, hence it is nearly impossible to add SEO contents in our individual pages and posts without the help of a tool. WordPress has a rich plugin collection, we can use SEO plugins for our WordPress websites and blogs to perform SEO on our WordPress websites. There are many WordPress SEO plugins available in the WordPress plugin library which can be installed in our WordPress install and used for SEO.
Here Is My SEO for WordPress Tutorial
The best-known SEO plugins for WordPress:
As mentioned before, there are many plugins for WordPress SEO that may give you complex in making a choice but the leading plugins in the WordPress industry for SEO are:
- All in One SEO
- SEO by Yoast (Yoast SEO)
Both of them are best in doing their job and capable of ranking your website higher in SERPs if properly used. I in my projects use All in One SEO
because it is simply easy to use and I am used to it, you may give a try to Yoast SEO and find out the one you feel comfortable to use.
Note: In this tutorial, I will use All in One SEO as my SEO plugin.
Installing the All in One SEO plugin:
Plugins in WordPress are very easy to install, you can either upload the plugins manually or install them with one click from WordPress plugin gallery in the WordPress admin section, Search for All in One SEO from your WordPress admin add plugins section and click install then activate the plugin
Setting the All in One SEO plugin’s important parameters:
Now as we have installed our WordPress SEO plugin (All in One SEO) next in this tutorial we will know about different parameters for the plugin to function properly. I will try to keep this section as short as possible.
All in One SEO admin Settings:
Home Page Settings
- Open the All in One SEO settings page by hovering the curser over All in One SEO link on the left navigation menu on admin dashboard and then clicking “General Settings”.
- Canonical URL’s: Checking this will generate canonical urls for the entire WordPress site. This will help to prevent duplicate content penalties by Search Engines.
- No Pagination for Canonical URLs: Checking this option will set the Canonical URL for all paginated content to the first page. I keep this unchecked.
- Enable Custom Canonical URLs: This allows to customize canonical URLs for every post and page, again I keep it unchecked.
- Set Protocol For Canonical URLs: This allows us to select what protocol our website will use (HTTP or HTTPS) my website is HTTP and I have no SSL on it so I will keep it to HTTP, if you have SSL and your website uses HTTPS then you should use HTTPS rather keeping it to auto.
- Use Original Title: This is disabled by default. This allows using the original title for post or page to be used as SEO title. In case many themes may use the original wp_title and modify them to use the theme title so you can create your own post and page titles and keep this unchecked.
- Use Schema.org Markup: If checked, All in One SEO adds support to schema.org markup, I keep this checked.
- Log important events: This will enable All in One SEO to create a log for all important events happening on the website which can be later used for debugging purpose.
Once you are done with the general settings of All in One SEO then the next section is the “Home Page Settings” where you can customize the WordPress website's home page settings for the SEO instance
- Home Title: This is one of the most important things for SEO, the title of your home page is a definition for the entire website in few words, be specific and pointed to the title write it with all time you can take, keep it short, attractive and meaningful.
- Home Description: Enter a description for your WordPress website's home page, i.e. the purpose of creating this website and what role it does in 2-3 lines or 165 words.
- Home Keywords (comma separated): These are the set of keywords being used for meta keywords of the home page, search engines are no more dependable on these meta keywords they crawl through the page and find keywords instead.
- Use Static Front Page Instead: If you are using a static home page for this WordPress install then enable this, it will force All in One SEO pack to use the meta description, title and keywords those are specified in the page.
Custom Post Types Settings
- Rewrite Titles: This enables or disables All in One SEO from rewriting the page/post SEO titles.
- Capitalize Tag and Search Titles: Checking this enables All in One SEO to capitalize the first letter of search and tag page titles.
- Capitalize Category Titles: Enabling this allows All in One SEO to capitalize the first letter of category page titles.
- Title Formats: These text boxes below the “Capitalize Category Titles” in title settings section allows to set different title formats and description formats for pages and posts of the website.
- SEO for Custom Post Types: Checking this enables to use All in One SEO pack with any custom post types.
- SEO on only these post types: This allows to select the post types where All in One SEO will be used for SEO purpose, check the selections according to your website needs.
- Enable Advanced Options: Enabling this will show the All in One SEO pack’s advanced options.
Here you can configure the display settings for All in One SEO plugin.
Here webmaster verification codes for bing google and Pinterest can be entered for site ownership verification purpose of your WordPress website/blog.
These fields can be used for different google’s configurations i.e. Adding Google analytics to the WordPress website and others.
This section can be used for search engine settings like no index, no follow and others.
- Use Keywords: If enabled this sets All in One SEO to use keyword Meta tag in pages and posts.
- Use Categories for META keywords: If checked All in One SEO will use the post category as a keyword with other keywords specified for that post.
- Use Tags for META keywords: If checked All in One SEO will use tags for the post as keywords in addition to other specified keywords.
- Dynamically Generate Keywords for Posts Page/Archives: If checked keywords on posts and archive pages are dynamically generated from the keywords of the posts on the page.
So now as we know about the general settings of All in One SEO plugin, we are good to go, let us learn about the settings we need to perform on our posts and pages for SEO and SERPs before publish.
All in One SEO on page SEO
Before we publish any post or page we need to perform certain SEO entries for better search ranking in our SEO plugin, as we are using the All in One SEO plugin let us perform the entries, follow these steps for on page SEO.
All in One SEO on page SEO parameters
- Add a new post or page or open any pre-created post/page from your WordPress admin dashboard.
- Scroll down till you find a panel named All in One SEO pack, if you cannot find that panel then on the top of the same page point a button named “Screen Options” and check “All in One SEO pack”, this will enable to display the All in One SEO panel. Now scroll down to that panel and we will set up various post/page parameters.
The following All in One SEO settings are specifically for WordPress pages, not posts:
- Preview Snippet: This section shows how the search result will look like on google.
- Title: The Meta title for that specific post/page to be entered here. Make sure title has the important keywords in it. Keep it 60-65 words in length. This is the bolder title text that will show up in search results.
- Description: The meta description for that post/page to be entered here. Keep this descriptive and up to a length of 165 characters. This text is shown in search results below title so it is important to have an eye catchy description also put your important keywords in this.
- Keywords: These are the keywords for your post or page that will be used by search engines to display your link, nowadays most of the search engines don't use keyword Meta tags hence it is not useful, yet you can fill in your targeted keywords here separating them by comma.
- Robots Meta NOINDEX: Checking this will discourage search engines from indexing that page and will not be displayed or indexed in search results.
- Robots Meta NOFOLLOW: Checking this will discourage search engines from following any links on this specific page.
- Robots Meta NOODP And Robots Meta NOYDR: Checking this will discourage search engines from using the information found in the Open Directory Project (NoODP) and Yahoo Directory (NoYDR)
- Exclude From Sitemap: This will exclude current post/page from showing up in the sitemap.
- Disable on this page/post: Finally checking this will disable any SEO on current page/post.
- Title Attribute: Sets the title attribute for menu links.
- Menu Label: Sets the menu label for the current page.
So here I have mentioned different attributes used for SEO on WordPress blogs and websites using SEO plugin to rank higher in search results. In next tutorial, we will learn to generate sitemaps and to submit to different SERP’s for indexing your website/blog on search engines. If you have any questions or suggestions let me know in comments below, do not forget to share with your friends.