One of the many benefits of WordPress is that you have a plethora of templates to choose from. With these templates, you can set up your website much more easily, and incorporate the features and look you wish. But there’s a catch. Sometimes it’s hard to pick just one template, especially when you’re also taking SEO into consideration.
To help you out, here are some guidelines to keep in mind:
1. Premium or Free WordPress Template. If you’re starting a blog as a hobby, then any free WordPress template will suffice for your needs. Many of the most stunning and most useful WordPress templates are free, and you can easily find one that’s suitable for your niche and needs.
But there’s one major difference between premium and paid templates: support. With a premium template, you can expect a development team that addresses security issues seriously and that makes sure that your template is updated for any changes in WordPress. You can’t expect these with a free template.
2. Make room for web content. It’s important that you find the most suitable template for your needs, but that doesn’t mean you need to limit yourself. The most obvious example here is the stereotypical template for photographers. They may offer a great way to display photo portfolios, but just having lots of images doesn’t bode well for SEO. You’ll need a section for articles so that the website has a chance of ranking highly in the search results.
3. Test the loading time. Features which may look good or offer additional functions are essentially useless if they take too long to load. Numerous studies have confirmed this, which is why using elements like homepage sliders have disastrous consequences. These things were a trend back in 2013, but it was later revealed that they didn’t work for conversions, usability, or SEO.
Your web pages should load quickly. If not, then you lose out on SEO (Google takes loading time into consideration) and the people who visit your website will just click out and leave.
4. Make sure your website is responsive. Responsive design is a trend which will probably never go out of favor, simply because it is so important. A responsive design can look good on monitors, larger smart TVs, and on smaller mobile screens.
As a website owner, you can’t afford to neglect mobile internet users, because there are simply too many of them. And Google itself has declared back in 2013 that websites which are not friendly for mobile users will go down in the rankings. Often times, choosing the right template automatically takes care of SEO, since the right template makes sure that your web visitors will have a positive user experience on your website. Nonetheless, you need to check. A good template can tempt people to stay longer on your website, but SEO makes sure you get plenty of visitors to your site in the first place.