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WordPress SEO Checklist: 20 Tips to Improve Your Rankings

WordPress is a trendy CMS choice, owing to its intuitiveness, flexibility, scalability, and SEO-friendly features. WordPress powers close to one-third of all websites worldwide. This feature-rich, open-source CMS has a host of SEO plug-ins and guides you towards getting your SEO basics right. But that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t chalk out and meticulously implement your SEO strategies. With increasing competition to attain higher search rankings, you need to adopt cutting-edge SEO strategies as a business owner.

Here are 20 valuable tips to improve your rankings for a WordPress-powered website:-

Opting for the exemplary hosting service

 Any premier SEO company will suggest you be very discerning of your choice of hosting service. Site speed, security, and uptime are crucial ranking factors for search engines. Get sub-standard hosting will negatively impact your SEO performance. So before you proceed to website designing, make sure you choose the right hosting provider.

Choose an SEO-friendly WordPress Theme

Irrespective of whether you pick a free WordPress theme or a premium paid one, always consult an SEO expert about it. Go ahead with it only if it is SEO-friendly. 

Install the right SEO plug-in

One of the biggest reasons for the soaring popularity of WordPress is its highly effective, free SEO plug-ins. Yoast SEO and All in One SEO Pack are the most popular amongst them. Make sure you install the best SEO plug-in to facilitate your site SEO. 

Picking the Right Domain Name

It might seem inconsequential to you on the SEO front, but choosing an apt domain name is very important. Whether you consult the best SEO agency or the best web designing team, they will all recommend that you choose a domain name that is highly relevant for business, niche, and industry. 

Focus on Site Visibility

Go to WordPress Visibility Settings and un-tick the box before ‘Search Engine Visibility’ to make sure that search engines can go ahead and index your website.

SEO-friendly URL

Structuring- If you feel that the default URL structure is not SEO-friendly, go to settings, open permalinks, and customize the URL structuring as per your requirements.

Sitemap Submission

Submitting your sitemap is a crucial step for WordPress SEO. A free plug-in like Yoast SEO helps you do it very quickly. You can go to the webmaster tools in Yoast SEO and do what is necessary.

Keyword Optimization 

There are many free and paid keyword tools available for WordPress-powered websites. Try out different keyword variations. Check out the corresponding search trends, volumes, difficulty, and pick the most appropriate ones.

Use a good Writing Assistant

Using an SEO writing assistant plug-in can streamline your SEO efforts by generating well-optimized and high-quality content. This free WordPress plug-in will save you a lot of time and effort in this regard.

Set Custom URLs for new posts 

Every time you add a new page or post fresh content, setting the permalinks to create a short and precise URL is essential. The by-default lengthy URL might hamper your SEO efforts.

Optimize your Headers

Your H1 and H2 tags should showcase your chosen keywords in a well-optimized manner. Make sure it is a natural fit, and there is no forced stuffing of keywords in your headers.

Pay attention to the Page Title

Free SEO plug-ins like Yoast SEO automatically frame your page title using the header. If you don’t find it suitable, you need to change it manually. 

Don’t skip the Meta Tags

Since the Meta description is not visible to end-users, many website owners end up missing it. But remember, from the search engine point of view, these are important and not to be skipped.

Remove unnecessary plug-ins

If there are any unnecessary plug-ins or scripts in your chosen theme that you don’t plan to use, these might unnecessarily hamper your site’s performance. If there is an option to uninstall, please do so.

Focus on Internal Links

To show topical relevance and accord higher priority to certain pages, you need to have your internal linking right. This will make it straightforward for search engine indexing to rank the right pages for the right set of keywords.

Optimized Images

Using a suitable file name and compressing images are the two basic image-optimization parameters that an absolute must follow.

  • Alt-Tag your Images- For enhanced search functionality, alt-tagging images is significant.
  • Eliminate all Site Speed Barriers- WordPress has free caching plug-ins to help you cache posts, pages and thus improve your site speed. Make sure you install and activate this plug-in.
  • Use the No-Index Tag– If there are certain pages that you don’t want Google to rank, you need to add a no-index tag to them. This will aid your site’s search engine indexing and not display low-value pages.
  • Schema Mark-up– Yet another SEO tactic that contextualizes your content helps both end-users and search engines navigate your site better.


Opting for WordPress certainly gives you an upper hand in the realm of SEO. Furthermore, installing a free SEO plug-in like Yoast SEO is an added advantage for WordPress users. But always remember that an SEO plug-in merely guides you, facilitates, and eases the optimization process.

Ultimately, the onus of brainstorming and implementing SEO strategies to outshine competition lies entirely on you. With the above tips and the proper professional assistance, your WordPress-powered business website can gain a higher ROI.

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