How to Improve Google Indexing of a WordPress Website

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You can use the following steps to make sure your WordPress site can be crawled, indexed, and displayed properly to allow for optimal SEO ranking.

Confirm your WordPress site can be indexed

  1. Log into WordPress
  2. Go into the Settings > Reading.
  3. Make sure the setting for Discourage search engines from indexing this site is unchecked.
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Confirm search engines can properly index all pages

  1. Visit the site SEO Site Checkup.
  2. Enter your domain into the Website URL field.
  3. Click Checkup!

Confirm Search Engines properly display your Website Title, which has a specific length limit in pixels.

  1. Visit your website, right-click on your home page, and click View Page Source.
  2. Copy the text between the Title tags (<title>).
  3. Visit the site moz.com.
  4. Paste the text you copied into the Title tag preview tool
  5. Make sure text does not get cut off in the preview. If it gets cut off, you should shorten the title until that’s no longer the case.
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If your title is too long you may need to trim it and if you have room leftover you may want to add keywords to it.

Install a SiteMap Plugin

  1. Log into WordPress
  2. Go to Plugins.
  3. Check to see if there are any site map plugins installed and enabled.
  4. If there are no sitemap plugins installed and activated, click Add New.
  5. Search for “Yoast SEO
  6. Click Install Now.
  7. Click Activate.
  8. Within the WordPress Dashboard, click SEO in the left-hand column.
  9. Click the Features tab.
  10. Enable Advanced Settings.
  11. Look back under SEO in the left-hand column, and click XML Sitemaps.
  12. Confirm the Sitemap function is enabled.
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Add a description for your pages.

  1. Log into WordPress
  2. If you have not already installed the Yoast SEO Plugin, review the steps above.
  3. Edit each page you want to have a description and use the Yoast SEO panel on those pages to add a description.
  4. It is advisable to at least complete this step for your home page.

Confirm images have descriptions.

  1. Visit your website, right-click on your home page, and click View Page Source.
  2. Search for an image tag (<img>).
  3. Within the tag, look for the “alt” attribute and confirm it has a value (e.g. alt=”example keyword”).
  4. The value should be something that describes the image. For example, an image tag for a sunset might have an alt attribute such as: alt=”sunset”.
  5. If there are any images that do not have values in the alt attribute, go to Media in your WordPress Dashboard, click the image to edit, and add the text to the alt field.

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