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How To Make Your Wordpress Site SEO Friendly

Discussion in 'Content Management Systems' started by mrdeposit, Dec 18, 2012.

  1. ducklord

    ducklord Member

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    I never "got" SEO. Could someone please explain to me why...

    If your theme properly "shows" H1, H2... as titles...
    If your theme properly "pulls" and shows tags, marked as "meta"...
    If your theme properly "pulls" and "tags" the sites name, the posts title and content...
    If Google and all other search engines advice you to set up your theme like that so that it will be easy for them to index your sites name, titles, tags...

    WHY do you also have to add AGAIN the same things as "title", "tags", "author name"? "To use a different title and tags on a page"? Why not do that in the first place?!

    As I've told you, I never "got" SEO :)
     
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  2. web craftsman

    web craftsman New Member

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    I think you missunderstand what "title", "tags", and "author name" means and does in wordpress and in html. h1, h2, etc. are not titles, they are headings, supposed to be used to seperate different paragrahs in a post you write. You should only have one h1, but you can actually have multiple h2, h3, etc.

    In the html (view source code) there is a < title > < / title > element in the header (< head >) section, it defines the title of your website (the big blue line you see in google search results, and also the text you see in the Tab of your browser), its content is not always the same as the Title field you fill out when creating a post in WP. It depends on the theme you are using, but usually the Post Title is used as the H1 and also put in the < title > element. You could install the WP SEO by Yoast plugin (if you self-host WP) to define the text in < title > individually as well. I usually remove all Heading (h1, h2, etc.) from the theme, and then define them myself in the actual post, while the Post Title ist just displayed in bold ( < strong >) by the theme.

    In html there are a few meta tags, most importantly the description meta tag. The meta tags are not the same as the tags you set in WordPress. The tags in Wordpress help you to group posts, so you could for example post in the "webdesign" category, then add tag for the post like "html" "php" etc. and when you browse a Wordpress tag, it will show all posts that have that tag defined.

    Not sure, if I explained this well enough... but it's also just a very small part of SEO.

    Some things I try to do on a page when optimizing it for a particular search term (keyword) is this:

    1. make sure the keyword is present in the title element inside the header section
    2. make sure the keyword is present in h1, or at least in h2 or h3
    3. make sure the keywords is written once in bold text
    4. make sure the keywords is written once in itallic text
    5. use a few variations of the keyword, so I don't repeat the keyword too often (called keyword stuffing), while still writing strongly related text.

    Again, this is also just a small part of SEO... I suggest having a look at the guides on moz.com, they help a lot when starting to do SEO.
     
    #22
  3. SillyBilly

    SillyBilly Member

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    Yeah, I remember learning this a few years ago, it helps just like an EMD, because the keyword will be in the title of the url. Every little bit helps.
     
    #23
  4. ducklord

    ducklord Member

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    @web craftsman You are correct, I did mix those two up, thinking that it somehow happened "auto-magically" in the "WordPress core" (if I might call it that), when it parses the PHP, HTML and calls to a sites database to "produce final HTML" - as it's rendered in the users browser. I thought "WordPress took the tags and added them as meta keywords, added a `title` markup to any H1" and stuff like that.

    Whoa. Was that a kick in the gut. What a revelation for something I already "knew", but didn't actually know!

    On the other hand, I am using an SEO plugin, "All in One SEO", that had got stellar reviews among similar offerings. Do you suggest I swap it for Yoast? You're the third person I see mentioning it as great in just two days, so I guess it should be better than what I'm already using.

    But, anyways, I mentioned the SEO plugin not just to ask about it, but also to ask about my previous question in regards to it: doesn't the SEO plugin I'm already using "take" the tags, titles and "stuffs" from each page and "mark them up correctly" as you say? 'Cause in its instructions it does say that if you don't enter anything manually, it "pulls" the info from the appropriate fields in each post. Is that true, or should I change my theme to "mark correctly" all stuff in a post by itself as well?

    Gee... A whole new world in front of me. And so, the trip begins!
     
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  5. web craftsman

    web craftsman New Member

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    I would definitely switch to Yoast's plugin. It has a lot of features, and even tells you how well each post/page is optimized to the given keyword in form of a simple "red,yellow,green" icon. Another thing I like about it is, that it also helps you to optimize the actual text you are writing.

    Neither plugin can place something within the theme whereever they want. A theme has certain placeholders that can be filled, and that's pretty much all that the SEO plugins have to work with. It really depends on the structure of the theme you are using, and it may require some theme adjustments in order be able to fully optimize a page/post. I can recommend odesk.com for this kind of work, lots of clever kids on there that will modify a theme for little money. Of course you'd first need to get someone who knows SEO to look at your site/theme and tell you if anything needs changing, so you can communicate that to the programmers.

    Another plugin I can recommend is called "Little Hippo", it's relatively new and was actually developped by friends of mine. It makes adding/updating all meta tags as well as alt tags for images super easy. Alt tags are another cool way to do SEO, as google can't see an image but read the alt tag of it. ;)
     
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2014
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  6. Aree Wongwanlee

    Aree Wongwanlee Member

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    Yes, I can see the benefits of using alt tags. As you said, @web craftman, search bots are picture-blind. However, they can parse text very well. That's where the alt tags become useful.
     
    #26
  7. ducklord

    ducklord Member

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    @web craftsman Heh, I don't need ODesk to tweak my sites theme, as I've created it myself. That's what worries me: I don't know much about SEO, so I pretty much followed WordPress' official advice and guidelines on "how to build your own theme", mixed with info from other online sources. Thus, my theme may not be "SEO optimized". I kept seeing articles from my site, though, appearing on the first and second page of google.gr (Google modifies the results it shows for each country to be more relevant) when you searched for words in their titles, so I guess "what I did works" :)

    It's when searching for keywords in their text they didn't come up, but, on the other hand, I didn't know anything about in-content and on-site SEO up to now, so... yeah... :-D

    Apart from that, I've switched to Yoast and it does, indeed, seem if not better, at least way more user friendly. I've got an issue with it, though: it keeps adding the string "%EF%BB%BF" in each posts URL - right after the category, right before it's "unique name" coming after the last slash. Any ideas why that might happen and how to fix it?

    I'm checking Little Hippo right now (installing as we speak) and I'll get back to you with more. Seems very promising from what it... er... promises. :)
     
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  8. web craftsman

    web craftsman New Member

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    I have never seen Yoast do that. I would take a screenshot and contact yoast directly. Maybe it's a bug...
     
    #28
  9. ducklord

    ducklord Member

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    @web craftsman Well, I'll try to find a solution with'em - thought maybe it was something "normal" in some option I missed. Anyways, as for the Hippo... Unfortunately, no go. After completing its installation, it borked my site. Might be some incompatibility of my theme with it being based, from what I saw, on BootStrap, but on the other hand the problem was that even my back-end wasn't accessible until I removed it through FTP.

    Sorries for not testing it more. Tell your friends it looked cool, though, and I did want to use it.
     
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