Improving Website Rankings with Technical SEO
In my experience I’ve met a handful of web developers who lacked knowledge in Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and vice versa (SEO experts who lack knowledge in web development). Having a technical SEO background can be a tremendous benefit to understanding the overlap between WordPress and SEO which can help give your website the competitive edge to help you outrank your competitors in search.
Why is it important to understand both?
Google’s algorithm has evolved from looking at factors such as content, keywords and backlinks to the infrastructure and usability which require technical knowledge to address.
As a web developer/WordPress and SEO expert I’ve come to realize there is much overlap between these areas which not only allowed me to identify areas for improvement but also address these issues myself.
Here are a few technical improvements that your web developer can provide to make your WordPress website rank better in search and improve usability.
1. Site speed
Site speed isn’t a new factor but it’s definitely an extremely important one for a couple reasons. 1) Improving the site performance can improve visitor experience which can directly translate to how long people spend on your website and bounce rate (how quickly people leave your site). Think about you reacted when you visited a slow loading website and how quickly you left. 2) Page loading time is a ranking factor. If you have a site that requires 40 seconds to load rather than your competitors site that is lightening fast and loads in 3 seconds. Guess what? Google will rank your competitor higher in search.
2. WordPress Plugins for SEO
As a WordPress enthusiast I’m always on the lookout for the best plugins. I’ve identified a handful of plugins that have become standard with every site I work on. Plugins such as YOAST for SEO which I don’t only install but also make sure it’s configured correctly so that Google will be able to interpret a website correctly.
3. Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) setup
Accelerated Mobile Pages is a very simple configuration however one that is overlooked by many SEO experts and web developers. AMP was created a method to deliver content quickly on mobile devices. Google has officially launched AMP listings for mobile results in February of 2016, so it only makes sense that this configuration is setup to improve your exposure on mobile devices.
4. Image Optimization
Images can drastically slow down a websites loading and much like site speed and affect how users respond to your website. WordPress has a handful of plugins that allow compression or resizing that will make image file sizes smaller and therefore load faster in the browser. I recommend WordPress plugins such as Smush Image Compression and Optimization which easily optimizes images for your website.
5. Mobile Friendly/Responsiveness
It’s amazing how many websites in 2017 still aren’t mobile friendly despite the increase in mobile search trends. In fact nearly 60% of searches are from mobile devices . Is your site mobile friendly? If you have a WordPress website that isn’t mobile friendly maybe it’s time to give your website a much needed face lift. Most WordPress templates are designed to be mobile responsive so switching to a new WordPress theme might be an easier way to solve this issue rather than trying to add CSS to transform your current theme.
There are many more technical factors that can improve your site performance and search rankings which you’ll only receive when you hire the right web company. If you’re looking to give your site the competitive edge it needs then contact NexToronto today for a free estimate.