tips to help you achieve a better Google organic ranking

Improving the organic ranking of your WordPress website involves implementing various strategies to optimize its content, structure, and performance. Here are some effective tips, according to ChatGPT, to help you achieve a better organic ranking:

1. Keyword Research:

  • Identify relevant keywords related to your content and target audience. Use tools like Google Keyword Planner or SEMrush to find keywords with high search volume and low competition.
  • Comment: You are the expert in relation to your business, and the sector you operate in. You will know the keywords instinctively. Also its a good idea to check out what your main competitors are using as keywords.

2. Optimize On-Page SEO:

  • Ensure that each page and post has a unique and descriptive title tag, meta description, and URL. Incorporate your target keywords naturally within these elements.
  • Comment: Get to know the Yoast SEO plugin. It’s quite intuitive, and gives you hints as to what works well. Our WordPress training courses all contain a strong element of SEO.

3. Quality Content:

  • Create high-quality, informative, and engaging content that adds value to your audience. Google values content that meets user intent and provides a positive user experience.
  • Comment: Set up a Blog. AI tools are available to help you generate your additional content. ChatGPT is free and is a great tool.

4. Mobile Optimization:

  • Ensure your website is mobile-friendly. Google prioritizes mobile-first indexing, so having a responsive design is crucial for SEO.
  • Comment: Always check how your website looks on your mobile. Its a good idea to check the iPhone view, as well as the Android view. WordPress allows you to select what displays on PC, Tablet or Mobile.

5. Page Loading Speed:

  • Optimize your website’s loading speed. Use tools like Google PageSpeed Insights to identify and fix issues that may be slowing down your site.
  • Comment: Your web partner (and your hosting service) should be working to ensure you get fast page loading speeds.

6. Secure Your Site (HTTPS):

  • Switch to HTTPS by obtaining an SSL certificate. Google considers secure sites as a ranking factor, and it can also improve user trust.
  • Comment: Check that your website URL has the https:// format – it’s in the address bar at the top of your browser. Google will be reluctant to guide visitors to your website if it doesn’t have this format.

7. XML Sitemap:

  • Create and submit an XML sitemap to search engines. This helps search engines understand the structure of your site and index it more efficiently.
  • Comment: Your web partner will create this for you. If you have a lot of pages or posts on your website, a Sitemap page featuring all internal links is a great addition to the website and can help visitors find their desired content faster.

8. Optimize Images:

  • Compress and optimize images to reduce file sizes. Use descriptive file names and include alt text with relevant keywords.
  • Comment: This is a key area of SEO that you can influence. All your images should have file names that include some of your keywords. Designers often forget that this is an important requirement and tend to give images cryptic filenames (e.g. headerimage123.jpg). Also, the Media area gives you access to the images that are used on your website and in there, you can add important extra keywords via ALT tags and Description fields. Ask for some training in this area.

9. Internal Linking:

  • Add internal links within your content to other relevant pages on your site. This helps distribute authority and assists with navigation.
  • Comment: Internal page linking is very easy to do, and has the advantage of giving Google and your website readers the links they may need to find related content within the website.

10. External Linking:

  • Link to authoritative and relevant external sources. This adds credibility to your content and can improve your website’s visibility.
  • Comment: Be aware of external websites or social media content that linking to will enhance your standing, both with Google and your website visitors. Ensure that external links open a new browser window, so that your website is still open in the original window.

11. Social Media Integration:

  • Promote your content on social media platforms. Social signals may not directly impact rankings, but they can contribute to increased visibility and traffic.
  • Comment: There should be a “virtual circle” between your website and your social media presence: the website should display icons (in the header or footer, or both) that link to your chosen social media pages. On the other side of the coin, you should provide links to your website on these platforms, and within the material you are posting about. With WordPress plugins, it is a relatively simple task to set up a feed for your LinkedIn, Twitter or other posts on a page of your website (normally somewhere on the Home page).

12. User Experience (UX):

  • Ensure a positive user experience by having clear navigation, easy-to-read content, and a well-designed website. A good UX can indirectly impact your SEO.
  • Comment: UX is tech-speak for “User Experience”! It just means that what your website visitors see needs to be attractive, clear and intuitive to navigate. Try to imagine what the visitor is looking for: your phone number or email address, your social media links, a profile of you or your business, an explanatory video of what you can offer, etc. If you are taking orders online, provide clear links to the products or services that are for sale, or just to the Shop area.

13. Regular Content Updates:

  • Keep your content fresh and up-to-date. Regularly update and add new content to show search engines that your site is active and relevant.
  • Comment: For a lot of service businesses (QFAs, Accountants, Solicitors etc), what you offer doesn’t change that much from year to year. Getting your accounts audited or setting up a pension can be a fairly static, if technical, business. You need to identify other areas where you can introduce new content, and Blogging is a natural area for this. It gives Google new content to “crawl” and gives you an opportunity to put content that is text and keyword rich, as well as unique to you, on your website on a periodic basis. You can, of course, pay to have this done (by a copywriter or blogger), but to keep costs down and put more personalised content on your website, it may pay to do this yourself. A monthly blog post is often sufficient.

14. Backlink Building:

  • Focus on building high-quality backlinks from reputable websites. Quality backlinks can significantly impact your site’s authority and search engine rankings.
  • Comment: All very well for AI to suggest this, but incredibly challenging to achieve! If you are part of an Association, they will probably have a Members listing with links to Members’ websites. Links from Social Media are the easiest backlinks to achieve.

15. Monitor Analytics:

  • Use tools like Google Analytics to monitor your website’s performance. Analyze user behaviour, identify popular content, and make data-driven decisions to improve your site.
  • Comments: Google Analytics is a free tool that will give you vital data on how your website is performing – how many visits, the average time spent on your website, the “referral” sources etc. Get your web partner to add it, if it’s not already there. Scrutinise the reports, they can be very revealing.

Remember, SEO is an ongoing process, and it may take time to see results. Consistency and a holistic approach to optimization are key to achieving and maintaining a good organic ranking for your WordPress website.

Comment: Once the website is “optimized”, the on-going updating and adding of new content is the key to maintaining and growing a solid organic ranking in Google!

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Ian Jackson

ianj@go2web.ie

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