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With that, here’s James!
WordPress can often be a confusing platform, especially for beginners. This post outlines seven tips to consider when marketing your website with SEO, and how to grow your online presence as a musician.
1. Download & Install the Yoast SEO Plugin
As a musician with a WordPress site, when it comes to online marketing your immediate go-to for free help has to be the Yoast SEO plugin. The plugin allows you to upload a sitemap, connect to analytics, keep track of on-page factors such as title tags and meta descriptions, and be aware of keyword density.
What is keyword density?
The density of keywords refers to the number of times a focus/primary keyword is mentioned within a page, in relation to the amount of text on the page.
When it comes to organic SEO, your primary concern as a musician is to ensure your focus keyword is in the title of the page, title tag, meta description, and subheadings within the document. Variations of the keyword and the keyword itself must be mentioned throughout any page too, but beware of overuse.
2. Ensure Permalinks (URLs) Are Set to “Custom Structure” & Are Readable
Let’s say someone is searching for a lo-fi hip hop playlist, and you’ve created a blog post or ultimate guide that lists the top 100 playlists. Is your audience more likely to click on “best-lo-fi-hip-hop-playlists” or “post45675’”? The answer is obvious.
Readability also makes it easier for search engines to understand what the post Is about, starting from the URL down. So, how do you make the URLs readable and/or customizable?
Follow these steps for best effect:
- Head to Settings > Permalinks and select “Custom Structure”. Paste the following code into the custom structure field: ‘/%category%/%postname%/’.
- Select the category you wish the post to sit under
- Edit the URL as necessary (sometimes long titles will create very long URLs, which should be edited down).
3. Write Content for the User, Not for Search Engines
When it comes to SEO and marketing your music online, success comes with keyword research and understanding how your users search. There are many paid options, but a great free place to start is Keyword Tool.
Consider the context of the searcher, whether they will be searching on a mobile or desktop, and whether they’ll be using voice search to look for your music or genre.
For example, when writing the overdrive pedal guide, I considered all kinds of users; beginners, experts, informational searches, FAQ’s and more. It may seem like a lot, but whether you’re in a band, emerging artist, or have a music blog, the content you write must be on-point, relevant, unique, and inline with what users expect to see when visiting your site.
4. Add ALT Tags to All Your Images
ALT tags provide search engines with further information about the context of the image on a page. They are also a great way to include extra keywords, so if you’re an emerging artist be sure to include your name and genre within the ALT tag, as well as the post/page name and the word “image” to confirm to search engines you are actually writing an ALT tag (and not just stuffing keywords into the image).
5. Compress Images for Improved Page Load Time
Recently, Google updated the way they view websites when considering rankings. The way a website appears on mobile devices in now more important than ever, with slow sites using heavy images being severely penalised in the rankings. For WordPress I recommend the plugin “WP Smush”, which will decrease the file size of your images without compromising them in quality… Absolute lifesaver!
There is also the “Lazy Load” plugin, which loads images as a user scrolls down the page. The only downside is if your site has a lot of images, and the user has a poor connection, Lazy Load may slow the page down until images are loaded.
6. Link to Your Social Profiles in the Footer
This point may sound obvious but it is often overlooked. Search engines will also take into account your activity on social media, so be sure to link to all of your social profiles in the footer of your page, and share any updates (whether new music or website updates) as they happen.
7. Download the Schema Plugin for Your Events
Schema provides search engines with an easier way to crawl the information on a page. If you are promoting events on your website, you can simply search the WordPress plugins page for “Schema” and download any of the top three plugins (they will all do the trick). Once Schema is added your events will display like the following in search results:
So, there you have it. We hope this post provided some insightful tips into using SEO to promote yourself as an artist with a WordPress website!