The more optimized your website, the more people will interact with it. If people can find and consume great content, they will be more likely to come back to your site. Once your site is properly optimized, it will be easier to grow your audience. In just two months, you can get your content in front of more eyes.
Here is a list of five ways to do that.
Add or correct Titles and Descriptions
Each page contains elements that require optimization, such as
<description> meta tags that are contained in the HTML code of the page and show both search engines and users what the page is about.
Adding titles and descriptions to your pages is not so difficult, and it will improve your visibility for search engines.
The most important meta tag for good ranking is the
<title> tag. The title tag is the page title displayed in the search engine results.
The title tag helps search engines determine how relevant a page is to a query. Therefore, when compiling it, it’s worth including your main keyword, by which you would like this page to rank.
Common issues related to title tags:
1. Absence of title tags
Of course, the main mistake is the lack of title tags. Don’t miss a chance to rank highly and gain a higher click-through rate and put a unique and concise title tag containing your most important keywords on every site page.
2. Duplicate title tags
Identical title tags confuse both users and search engine bots. In the case of exact match title tags, users don’t understand which webpage they should follow.
At the same time, exact match title tags make it difficult for search engines to determine which of a website’s pages is relevant for a specific search query, and which one should be prioritized in search results.
3. Too much or not enough text within the title tags
Titles containing less than 10 or more than 70 characters. Incomplete titles look unappealing to users and won’t entice them to click on your page, while too long titles will be truncated by search engines.
<description> tag is designed to create a brief description of the HTML page.
The meta description tag can be taken by the search engine and used as a snippet – a small piece of text that we see as a description of the site in the search results. Make sure to keep them to about 1-2 sentences, somewhere between 140-160 characters.
See the meta description not as an extra job, but as an opportunity to impress your potential readers. When you are not familiar, they just scroll the Google results and select a site to visit. This is your chance to send a meaningful message to searchers.
When creating a description, offer them a good reason to visit, add a call to action if it’s relevant, and don’t forget to include your keywords.
Common issues related to Meta Descriptions:
1. Absence of meta description tag
Although meta descriptions are not a strong ranking factor for search engines, they have significant power to encourage clicks and bring visitors from search to your site.
2. Duplicate meta descriptions
As with the title, It’s important to have unique descriptions for every site page. Exact match meta descriptions make it difficult for search engines to differentiate between different webpages.
With SEMrush Site Audit, you can pick up great keywords for Titles and Descriptions, and also audit the site to avoid issues.
To edit these elements on your WordPress site, use the Yoast SEO plugin.
With its help, you can add titles and meta descriptions and see the snippet preview: how your post will appear in the search results.
Yoast SEO also checks whether you’ve used your target keywords in your title and meta description and offers the ability to set templates with various variables.
3. Optimize pages with high chances of quick success
It can be frustrating to see other sites using the same keywords ranking more highly than you. It is important to know what needs to be done to outrank your competitors.
You can do this with SEMrush. Upload your list of pages with their corresponding keywords into the On-Page SEO Checker tool and get a list of recommendations based on common SEO elements for the top domains in Google results.
On a page that is already ranking highly, don’t change anything to avoid any damage. But you will significantly increase traffic to the page by moving it from the 2nd page to the 1st page of the Google results.
Here you could take advantage of the Auto Import option when configuring the tool: it offers the pages with the highest chances of quick success and the relevant keywords.
4. Optimize website images
It’s great and the right thing to use pictures in articles on your site. They make your content easier to understand And it’s also an opportunity to get additional search traffic.
But in order to have all these advantages, images must first be correctly optimized.
It’s worth doing 2 things:
- Reduce the size of images without resizing them or reducing their quality;
- Write alt-attributes.
The first will help increase the site speed, and
<alt> attributes will help both search bots and users to understand which pictures are placed on the page.
Reduce the size of images
Large picture size is one of the reasons for a site’s long loading time. To prevent your site’s loading time from slowing down, images need to be compressed. There are various plugins that perform this task, you can choose the one that suits you best.
One of them is WP-Optimize. The plugin converts large images (PNG, JPG, GIF, BMP and TIF pictures up to 5MG in size) into compressed files; does bulk compression, allowing you to compress multiple existing images at the same time; and has an auto-compress function, which automatically compresses images as they’re added to the site.
Smaller yet high-quality images mean significantly faster page loading time, which is important for Google when indexing your website.
<alt> attribute is the “alternative” text version of an image specified in the HTML code.
The alt attribute is not visible to users, however, it is read by bots and is used to index and search for site images. It’s with its help that search bots understand what is shown in the picture and rank it when users search by pictures.
Specifying alt attributes is also a question of user experience because if the browser doesn’t show a picture, it displays the text of the alt attribute instead. Therefore, they are extremely important.
Alt attributes usually consist of 2–5 words and should exactly describe what is shown in the image. When creating alt attributes, be sure to include your keywords for the page where the picture is placed. Thus, when searching the pictures by your target keywords, users will get the appropriate content on your site.
When you upload an image using any WordPress File Upload Plugins, several fields are available to fill in the image attributes. Set the alt attribute in the corresponding field.
Identify outdated content in articles and update these articles
Regular content updates are important to a site. Fresh content attracts and retains users, helps to rank in search engine results and gives a signal to search engine bots that the site is being maintained and developed.
A large amount of outdated content slows down indexing, as search robots spend a lot of time double-checking pages that no longer have any value for users.
What are the stages of work with outdated content?
Detect outdated content and divide it into 2 categories: what you update and what you ruthlessly delete.
Analyze the Google Analytics metrics for each article such as pageviews, average time a user spends viewing a specific page, and bounce rate. For example, if the bounce rate is high, there may be no links in the article to go further on the site, or the content is outdated or low quality.
Most likely, some of the pages that you want to delete can be ranked high enough and bring traffic to your site. Consider trying to update content in most cases to save existing ranking URLs. But if you decide to delete some pages, then don’t forget to set up a 301 redirect.
How to audit content
Use SEMrush Content Audit to audit your site’s content and reveal pages that need your attention.
After you have connected your Google Analytics account, this tool will categorize your pages into the following groups: “Rewrite or remove”, “Need to update”, “Quick review” and “Poor content”.
For each specific page, you can see insights about user interactions with your content. Depending on the statistics, you can update the site pages and prioritize the work with these pages.
When you return to the old pages of the site, this is also the time to check the relevance of their titles and descriptions. Updating them will also help search engines re-look at the page and present it higher in the results.
How to update outdated pages?
When updating site pages, don’t forget about the immediate SEO optimization that you can do with the help of SEO Writing Assistant.
After you connect the plugin to your WordPress draft, it analyzes how well the text complies with SEO recommendations based on the top 10 ranking pages for your given keywords and gives you real-time suggestions.
The plugin will tell you your article’s general SEO quality, and semantically related keywords you can add to the text, evaluate your readability score and tone of voice, check for plagiarism, and more.
Log in to your WordPress admin account and search for SEMrush SEO Writing Assistant in the Plugins section, or follow this link to install it.
Identify and fix broken links.
Whenever people get errors while trying to access non-existent webpages, Google receives a warning sign. Multiple broken links may worsen your search engine rankings, because crawlers may think that your website is poorly maintained or coded.
If a target webpage returns an error, remove the link leading to the error page or replace it with another resource.
The amount of work required to optimize content depends on the site size and the work done to date. But in the next 2 months, you can probably:
- Сheck whether you have well-written Titles and Descriptions;
- Optimize those few pages that are close to the top of the search engine results, but are not yet there;
- Start reducing the size of images and writing alt attributes;
- Identify outdated content and include updating old articles into your content plan for the new year;
- Repair broken links or make sure you don’t have them on your site.
Follow these steps and you’ll have a faster website!