Are you having trouble getting your Joomla website ranked on Google? If so you’ve come to the right place.
This article is going to give a top level overview of some of the most important things you can do to your Joomla website in 2019 to help it rank in Google.
But before we get stuck in I must start off by saying that it’s not going to be easy.
Because unfortunately in 2019 Joomla still has some pretty serious SEO flaws and definitely doesn’t compare WordPress on the SEO front out of the box, which is why the majority of new business websites are being built in WordPress
And although there’s probably someone out there that’s going to say “Technically Dan… Joomla has the ability to do everything WordPress can do” – the reality is that it’s going to take way more time and be much harder to achieve for most people.
With that being said, I have been able to produce some serious SEO results with websites built on Joomla. Because as the old adage goes “Content is king” and “where there’s a will there’s a way”.
So let’s get stuck in and tackle the number one most important thing I see on Joomla websites that aren’t ranking in Google…
Ensure Your Website Can Be Indexed By Google
This one step could be a complete game changer for you if you are getting zero traffic from Google. Because it is by far the most common reason I see Joomla websites not appearing in the search engines at all.
To put it simply, there is a setting in Joomla that can literally tell the search engines not to list your website.
This is known as the “robots” setting.
The robots setting on your website must be set to “Index, Follow” if you want to rank on Google.
To do this go to System > Global Configuration and scroll down to where you see the Robots select box.
Click on the Robots select box and ensure you have “Index, Follow” selected.
Lastly, scroll back up and click the save button.
Ensure You Have Unique Meta Descriptions
Another common problem a lot of Joomla websites have is they will have a global meta description set for a large amount of their pages.
The whole point of your meta description should be to get people to click on your page from Google – so you 100% want to be writing unique and compelling meta descriptions for all pages.
I would even go as far as saying you are better off leaving the meta description filed blank than having a duplicate.
So if there is any generic meta description set when you go to System > Global Configuration, you want to get rid of it ASAP.
After you get rid of the duplicate meta description issue on your Joomla website, you will want to go into each menu item individually and enter in a manual meta description that better suits the pages and gets a higher CTR (click through rate).
Turn On Search Engine Friendly URLs & URL Rewriting
This is another big issue when it comes to Joomla websites performing in the search engines.
We know for a fact that the URL of your website page massively impacts it’s position in Google.
And by default, Joomla doesn’t give us much to work with on that front.
The URLs aren’t going to be what you expect them to be and they won’t do to well in Google.
To fix this, go to System > Global Configuration and make sure that both the “Search Engine Friendly URLs” and “Use URL Rewriting settings are set to “true”.
And voila – you will now have clean URLs that are set by your menu item alias.
Submit Your Joomla Site To The Google Search Console
When you submit your Joomla website to Google’s Search Console you gain the ability to get pages indexed faster and gain vital data to help you iron out any technical SEO issues that are preventing you from getting the Google traffic you deserve.
If you are unsure how to submit your website to the Google Search Console, Hubspot have created a great tutorial on how to do so here.
Install A Sitemap, Then Submit It To Google’s Search Console
When you create a sitemap and submit it to the search engines, you are literally telling them where your pages are. Which makes it easier for them to find them and in turn index them.
The 2 go to plugins for Joomla sitemaps are: OSMap and JSitemap – I usually prefer to use OSMap, but there are some websites that struggle to work with OSMap and when that problem arises, JSitemap is usually the solution.
When you have your sitemap created, don’t forget to go back into Google’s Search Console and submit your sitemap.
Remove Meta Keywords
This setting won’t necessarily improve your website’s SEO, but it is definitely worth doing.
A lot of Joomla developers still include the meta keywords tag in their websites code. And although their intentions are good, the results can be disastrous.
Because the meta keywords tag hasn’t been used by Google for over a decade, and all putting it there actually does for you in 2019 is give your competitors a way to see what keywords you are targeting in Google.
As you can image, there are some things that you want to keep to your self, and highly profitable keywords that you are making money from is one of them.
To do this, go into System > Global Configuration and make sure that there is nothing inside the “Site Meta Keywords” input field.
Are You Struggling With Joomla SEO?
Does your Joomla website struggle to gain any traction in the search engines? Are you looking for a SEO Company in Colchester or anywhere else in the UK to help you achieve SEO success? If you want real results give our team a call today: 01206 864441.