How To Optimize Categories For SEO And Increase Your Rankings

optimize your categories for SEO and high rankings

Have you ever thought of optimizing your categories for SEO?

If yes, it’s great but have you really done that? If yes, it’s AWESOME and if no, that’s bad! 🙁

Today, I am going to talk about how you can use categories for SEO. We always do optimize our pages and posts for SEO and try to target the best keywords for meta title and descriptions, use schema plugins to rank it on the top of the SERPs.

But optimizing categories for SEO, seems a bit strange, isn’t it?

Before getting started with how to use your categories for SEO and increase your rankings, just let me share some benefits and examples of categories optimization.

Category optimization works by ranking your categories for, particularly targeted keywords. When you build links to your categories, the link juice also gets passed on to inner posts/pages which ultimately rank them high. So, ignoring category optimization means losing a lot of revenue every month.

Let’s take an example: Just go to Google.com and search for the keyword ‘Best WordPress Plugins’ and then check out below screenshot:

Categories for SEO

Did you notice that URL above? 

It’s a category URL which has been ranked for the keyword ‘Best WordPress Plugins’. A new WordPress user might be looking for some WordPress plugins to install and through this category, he can find his required WordPress plugins and thus, he will purchase through your links.

Therefore, category SEO not only increases your rankings and revenue in short term, but it’s very much essential for your site’s long term health. If you are not optimizing your categories for SEO, you should start now.

Below is the complete process to category optimization.

Category Optimization: Increase Your Rankings With Category SEO

Category SEO is also an essential task in building a strong SILO structure for your blog to let the link juice pass fluently to all your pages. I will cover the concept of SILO structure in my coming posts, so, for now, let’s do not go into that.

Generally, webmasters question that whether they should de-index category pages or not! 

My answer is No! 

They should be optimized properly for SEO. So, let’s begin.

When I started Universal Blogging Tips, I created 5-6 most important categories under which content will be published. For example:

  • Make Money Blogging
  • Blogging Resources
  • Email Marketing
  • Blogging
  • SEO
  • WordPress Themes

Here’s how I optimize my categories for SEO!

I always tend to write a long description for each category. Yes, LONG descriptions with links of inner posts/pages in it.

Have a look at below screenshot: 

You can see those links, right. But why inserted those links in my category description?

Firstly, all links are completely related to that category. So, if the user lands to this category, he can jump to the particular post/page he is looking for. Thus, it increases user engagement and reduces bounce rates.

Secondly, if I build links for this category page, the link juice will be passed on to these posts/pages and they will ultimately rank high.

So, that’s the main motive behind doing category SEO.

How to edit category description?

It’s simple. Just go to your blog’s dashboard. Hover your mouse over Posts > Categories.

Hit the ‘Edit’ button and write a keyword targeted description with links to inner pages in it.

Some important points to keep in mind:

  • Make sure that you don’t spam it through your targeted keywords. Let it go easy and keep the keyword density below 1%. Treat it like a normal WordPress post.
  • A brief and crisp description of maximum 250-300 words is good.
  • Don’t use many keyword rich anchors in your category description as you can see in the above screenshot, I have used mostly non-keyword rich anchors.
  • Don’t build too many links to your category pages. Obviously, nobody will link to your category pages, so you can yourself interlink your category pages and other posts too.

Conclusion

Category SEO has worked for me. But still, I see some bloggers recommending to de-index the category pages. Categories and tags are an essential and valuable feature to increase user engagement on your blog and reduce bounce rate. The above same optimization applies to tags also. You can also optimize your tags the similar way as shown above.

So, what are your views on category SEO? Feel free to leave a comment below! 🙂

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