Essential WordPress SEO Strategies To Improve Rankings in 2018

Posted on May 4th, 2018 under Guest Writers & Bloggers by Jimmy R

 

(Image Source)

If you want your WordPress website to yield a high ROI, you’d do well to implement SEO strategies that are relevant to the current digital climate.

WordPress and SEO — they’re a match made in heaven. You just need the right strategies that will integrate and optimize them cohesively, which in turn will maximize your results.

The internet, however, is littered with so many tips and suggestions on how to attain higher rankings on Google.

There are just so many of them that analysis paralysis may rear its ugly head.

You end up asking yourself: “Where do I start? Which SEO strategies will work?”

To answer that question, the first order of business is to keep up with the ever-changing SEO landscape.

Sounds like a drag? Don’t worry — we’re about to make your work a lot easier.

In this post, we’ve put together the top WordPress SEO strategies that will positively impact your bottom line in 2018 and beyond.

Let’s begin.

1. Develop Stellar Content

The advice “make great content” may sound run-of-the-mill, but it’s the most important SEO advice there is.

Keep in mind that Google is designed to show users the best and most relevant content possible.

If you publish content that is unfocused, poorly-researched, and riddled with grammatical errors, you can bet that Google won’t push your content into their user’s faces anytime soon.

Speaking of great content, there are a ton of WordPress plugins and tools you can use to ensure that every piece you publish is up to par with Google’s standards.

Yoast SEO, for instance, is an excellent plugin that provides in-depth diagnostics, which consist of two parts: SEO analysis and readability analysis.

The plugin provides actionable SEO and readability advice in real-time, allowing you to make the necessary changes that will positively impact your rankings on specific search queries.

Pro Tip #1: Use Visual Content to Engage Your Audience

You may have written the most definitive guide on, say, how to sell real estate to Millennials. But without incorporating visual content into it, chances are users will lose interest before they even get halfway through your article.

B2B marketers, in particular, definitely know their stuff when it comes to visual content. In a 2016 study, 55 percent of them prioritized creating visual content.

 

[Source: Content Marketing Institute]

Here are some the types of visual content you can use:

  • Infographics
  • Videos
  • High-quality photos with quotes or compelling CTAs
  • Charts and graphs
  • Whiteboard Animations

Among these content types, an infographic is by far the most accessible — thanks to free visual content creation tools like Canva and Piktochart.

And what could be cooler than an infographic? Why, an infographic about infographics, of course.

 

[Source: Ivan Cash]

Besides engaging your audience, visual content also creates more opportunities for backlinks (more on this later). After all, they boost brand awareness and increase the chances of your content to show more prominently not just in search results but also in social media.

2. Develop a Powerful Link Building Campaign

Building a robust backlink profile for your WordPress website is imperative if you increase your brand’s visibility on the web.

To quote Virtual Logistics marketing manager, Jessica Thiele, backlinks (or inbound links) are “extremely important” because “they’re part of the social cues algorithm that Google uses to help determine the relevancy of links it provides in any Google search.”

In order to build a backlink profile that Google deems as “rank worthy,” you need to obtain links from authoritative websites that get a reasonable amount of traffic.

Below are five tips that will help you obtain backlinks from these sources.

Protip #1: Keep Your Content Relevant

Relevancy is important in link building for three reasons:

  • It improves the likelihood of naturally earning backlinks from other relevant sources.
  • It boosts your content’s rank worthiness in the eyes of search engine crawlers.
  • You need relevant content to engage and, hopefully, convert your target audience.

To come up with relevant content ideas you can use in your campaign, you can use content research tools like BuzzSumo and Google Alerts.

Protip #2: Build Good Relationships

The great thing about the internet is that it’s easy to build and maintain relationships with people in the same industry as yours. You can start by contributing interesting and valuable comments in forums, blogs, and social groups related to your niche.

Protip #3: Write Excellent Guest Posts

After you establish a presence and build relationships in online communities, try to identify the most influential people and propose a guest posting arrangement.

How does guest posting work? Well, it’s exactly what it sounds like — posting relevant articles on another brand’s site as a guest.

In addition to leveraging your relationships, you can also perform a quick Google search to find websites that accept guest posts yourself. Simply attach terms like “submit a guest post” on your seed keyword and let Google do the rest of the work.

Protip #4: Find Unlinked Brand Mentions

If you already have plenty of content on your website, chances are a few of your articles have already been cited by other content publishers.

Unfortunately, some bloggers and website owners have a nasty habit of mentioning other brands without actually creating a backlink. As such, you need to reach out to them yourself and request for the link to be added after the fact.

Google Alerts can help you find unlinked brand mentions on the web. You can also use social media listening tools like Hootsuite and SentiOne.

Protip #5: Use the Skyscraper Technique

Find successful content, create something better, and promote your “new” content to the people who linked to or shared the original content — that is the Skyscraper Technique in a nutshell.

Of course, you need a deliberate approach if you want to maximize your results with this strategy. And for this purpose, you can refer to Brian Dean’s link building case study for the nitty-gritty of the Skyscraper Technique.

3. Do Keyword Research

You’re probably thinking, “What? Another blog post about keyword research?”

While Google’s search algorithm has become more sophisticated over the past couple of years, keywords remained as relevant as ever.

That’s why you probably encounter “keyword research” in every WordPress SEO guide there is.

Remember, keywords provide relevancy cues not only to search engines but users as well. You only have to modify your keyword research strategy to make search phrases work to your advantage.

To drive organic traffic to your site, you need to focus on satisfying user intent rather than overstuffing your content with broad, generic keywords.

The good news is, there are a ton of keyword research tools out there that can help you look for bankable keyword opportunities. Ubersuggest is one such tool, and unlike most other keyword tools, it doesn’t require you to pay a fee subscription fee.

The general rule of thumb in keyword research is to target long-tail keywords. These are narrower and low-competition keyword phrases that consist of three or more words.

To generate long-tail keyword variations using Ubersuggest, simply enter your broad keywords in the empty field and then specify the location.

 

You can refine and optimize your keyword list further with the following suggestions:

  • Use Ubersuggest’s “filters” to generate keyword phrases with high commercial intent (enter commercial keywords like “buy now,” “discount,” “hire,” and “compare.”).
  • Ideally, you should target keywords with a competitiveness rating of around 0.4 and below.

Final Words

And there you go, the top WP SEO strategies you need to implement in 2018 and probably the years that will follow.

Bear in mind, however, that you’d be doing yourself and your ROI a big favor by always keeping tabs on the latest developments in the digital marketing space as they arise.

When push comes to shove, the ability to adapt to changes is one key trait that separates the winners from the losers. Remember that and you’ll surely get profitable results in your SEO efforts.

Cheers! Jimmy R

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