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WordPress SEO Master Checklist

WordPress SEO can be a pain to get right. You can start by setting things up only to come back later and find you missed something. It really becomes a challenge when you are starting a new site and things are easier to miss. Here’s a master checklist of what you need to get SEO right.

A. Website Factors

  1. Make sure your site uses HTTPS.
  2. Make sure your page loads faster than 3 seconds on a 3G connection. Test at Think with Google.

B. WordPress SEO One Time Setup

  1. Install and configure SEO plugin (Yoast).
  2. Install and configure Google Analytics (Monster Insights).
  3. Install and configure breadcrumbs (Breadcrumb NavXT).
  4. Connect to webmaster tools.
  5. Validate Schema.
  6. Set up social media accounts.
  7. Ensure meta descriptions are not auto-generated from the first para of the post content. Set up WordPress excerpts and use handy Yoast template variables.
  8. Make sure archive title and archive description are populated and or match name and description set for tag / category / term.
  9. Validate title and meta description on the following views:
    1. Front page
    2. Blog page
    3. Single page
    4. Single post
    5. Attachment page (if applicable)
    6. 404 page
    7. Archive pages
  10. Setup featured images for open-graph.
  11. Validate open-graph info for above views on FB debugging tool.
  12. Ensure good permalink structure (SILO IA).
  13. Remove category base from urls (the /category/ slug helps no one in the world).
  14. Check for any warnings in SEO plugin.
  15. Make sure the site is responsive.
  16. Fetch your site as google-bot.

C. On-Going On-Page SEO

  1. Associate a primary keyword to every page in the following views:
    • Front page
    • Blog page
    • Single page
    • Single post
    • Attachment page (if applicable)
    • 404 page
    • Archive pages
  2. Review if primary keyword is in title, meta-description, headings, bold, italic, anchor text etc.
  3. Remove stop-words from page slugs: shorter the better.
  4. Include at least one image with alt and title tags.
  5. Create a custom excerpt in WordPress that Yoast can use for meta description.
  6. Aim for a focus keyword density of at least 0.5%.
  7. Include at least one outbound link to a high-authority, trustworthy domain.
  8. Include at least one relevant internal link.
  9. Include the focus keyword in the first paragraph of your page copy.
  10. Include the focus keyword in a subheading.
  11. Include the focus keyword in the url / post-slug.
  12. Include synonyms.
  13. Ideally write at least 2000 words.
  14. Verify Yoast is happy with the post content.

D. On-Going Off-Page SEO

  1. Get backlinks [top sites where you can get backlinks].
  2. Focus on getting backlinks from many different domains rather than from the same domain.

As you can see WordPress SEO depends on way too many things. And if you miss on anything critical, it can be a pain later to go back and fix all the past content, URLs etc. Bookmark this WordPress SEO checklist and don’t forget to let us know if we missed anything.

Credits:

  • https://backlinko.com/search-engine-ranking
  • https://www.417marketing.com/how-to-rank-without-backlinks/
in Marketing with Social-Proof

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