Top 6 Things SEOs Wish a WordPress Developer Would Check Before Going Live

Search engine optimizers and developers tend to be at loggerheads when it comes to building a website. The needs of one seem to conflict with the capabilities of the other. In general, SEOs lack knowledge of advanced website technology and devs aren’t aware of how search engines work and Google’s understanding of the site. The result is a chaotic mess that satisfies neither party, much less the client who paid for it!

Despite umpteen meetings, checklists, and SOPs, the dreaded ‘human error’ crops up now and then during the website (or page) development. Web development issues at the beginning of the project end up affecting the SEO or conversion down the line.

Website developers are also under stress to deliver projects on time. Herein lies the crux of the issue. As an SEO firm that has worked with numerous developers both internally and externally, we at DigitalBull GO feel that not all developers like or understand SEO. Some treat it as extra ‘income’ work and some as unneeded ‘extra’ work. 

Similarly, a lot of SEOs do not understand the nuances of HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. It’s easy for SEOs to tell the developer to change an image or create a new page. The developer feels that it is a lot of work and the SEO cannot make the change himself or herself due to a lack of knowledge.

WordPress has bridged the technical gap for SEOs whether traditional developers may like it or not. Now, SEOs strut around using WordPress as their weapon of choice.

Check These 6 Things Before Going Live 

DigitalBull GO Top 6 Things SEOs Wish a WordPress Developer Would Check Before Going Live 2

With our firm comprising SEOs and Website Developers, we thought this list would be beneficial.

Here are the top six things that SEOs wish a WordPress developer would check before going live with a site or page.

  1. Mobile Responsiveness

Since Developers create and change the website on their desktop or laptop, that is the only view they look at. Everything seems to be fine until you browse the website on your smartphone. Then, it looks completely different. With many users surfing the net on their phones or tablets and Google preferring mobile-first indexing, mobile responsiveness is critical. Make sure the site looks good on mobile before going live.

  1. On-Page

On-page elements such as the URL, meta tags (title and description), and headings are critical for ranking the site. Unfortunately, developers miss out on this to quickly get the site up and running. Especially regarding the URL, this may prove detrimental later on. Google may be quick to index the old URL and it takes time to get the Big G to change the URL in its results, hence why it is called a ‘permalink’.

  1. No-Index Meta Tag

The site has gone live, but why aren’t all the pages showing up? Because you forgot to remove the no-index tag. Oops. A small error could cause a big problem. Google has a habit of quickly indexing pages they shouldn’t while disregarding those they should. Be sure to verify the no-index tags for all pages. Otherwise, the pages that you want to get indexed may remain unindexed, and vice-versa.

  1. CRO

The job of SEO is to increase website traffic and get people to enter the website. However, clients are now expecting them to perform conversion rate optimization (CRO). It is not enough to get more visitors. Websites should be built to convert. SEOs need to understand that the site is for the user, not the client or the developer. This is a house you’re renting out in the hope that visitors will pay money to stay there. Double-check the CTA, form, and email validation before making the site live. You may be missing out on valuable leads if you don’t!

  1. Lorem Ipsum

Lorem ipsum content is a default feature in certain themes. There may also be some blog posts in lorem ipsum or with default topics. Lorem ipsum works well eventually. We encourage it as the developers can begin designing the site instead of waiting for the content to arrive. This is a silly mistake that’s easy to fix. Once you receive the content, be sure all the lorem ipsum is replaced. Review the website for lorem ipsum or dummy text before publishing. A simple ‘Ctrl+F’ should do the trick and prevent you from being embarrassed when the client inevitably points it out.

  1. Images Optimized

Don’t neglect the images on your website. Too many images of large filesize will slow down the site and make it take a long time to load. Ensure the images are compressed before adding them to the site. Keep in mind file naming conventions. Alt text can be changed later, but the filename cannot. Review all the images before they are uploaded and name them appropriately. Then, give the images to the developer.

Those were six things that SEO analysts, managers, experts, and executives wish that developers would check before going live with the website.

If you are a developer, try to keep the above in mind before making the website live. For the SEOs reading this, don’t rely on the developer to check the website. It’s up to you to get the best possible output from them to rank the client.

Again to avoid some of these issues, a lot of the technical SEO work at DigitalBull GO is done by the website developers to get them a better understanding of SEO as a cross-functional exercise. Conversely, our SEO analysts perform some website work so they aren’t left totally clueless if something on the site needs to be fixed.

To avoid links from the staging site, we have now mandated that some internal linking will be done only after go-live and not before. Also, speed optimization is taken up after go-live and after a week of allowing the website to ‘settle’

The DigitalBull GO team has a great understanding of SEO and WordPress development. Contact us for websites that rank high and generate leads!