Improving SEO on my Joomla Websites
Okay, I admit it I have been a tad lazy when it comes to Search Engine Optimisatio (SEO) and Joomla. I have read books on the subject and lots of online information, even attended a Joomla presentation on SEO at a conference but I still take a not much more than minimilist approach to the subject.
Here is what I have done in the past: When designing the ste I spend time to look at the meta description and keywords appropriate for the site; I do this with the customer or myself depending on the people involved; I put this information into the Joonla! 3 configuration - site meta description and keywords - so they appear on every page the site; I create a site map (using OSMap); I always then register the site with Google webmaster tools and point to the site map. I used to do similar with Bing until they stopped their approach to registering sites for indexing. It usually ends there. I don't follow up on any keyword research and I d on't set any meta data description or keywords for the articles themselves.
Almost all of my sites are small to medium and high first page rankings are not an objective so this approach suffices. The minimalist approach also works where the customer edits the content themselves (most of my sites). Cusotmers either never or rarely attach meta data descriptions ans keywords to the articles. They simply produce the content. The rest we leave to Google.
I am now a changed man with my hand being forced towards best/better practice by Joomla! 4 where the site keywords have been removed from the configuration (the site meta description remains). So how to 'fix' this as I migrate sites from Joomla! 3 to Joomla 4!?
Normally I would conduct a fair bit of research on the Joomla extensions webste and forum. This takes time and can be frustrating sometimes with dead end approaches and tests or evaluations. However, help was at hand from a trusted source. I have long been a user of PWT ACL for manageing permissions (much easier than doing this in raw Joomla!) it is an excellent easy to use tool with a wizard and dashboard. It makes life easier. So when I see they have an SEO tool (PWT SEO) my solution is staring me in the face. There is single site option but a very god value for money unlimited option and I opt for that immediately. it also has a bulk tool for generating initial keywords retrospectively for existing artciels and I can apply that function as I migrate my sites. Easy peasy....
In addition it gives and SEO Score card for the article on the site and in each article adds an SEO tab which gives much more detail and advice to drive up the SEO score.
So now I always edit and review the SEO information on each article as I create it and hopefully this will improve rankings and Lightspeed scores with very little effort on my part. For example, with almost no effort I have scored 95/100 on this page and have tips for increasing that score. I am also gradually introducing customers to it as I migrate their site. It's a brave new world and not before time on my part.