If you have a Drupal website, good for you! Drupal is the open-source, no-fee web development platform that’s changed much about the way websites work. Highly adaptable, a Drupal content management system may be just the thing you need to grow your online business.
Of course, as with any site, you’ll want your Drupal site to perform at optimum capacity in order to score more traffic. A few module tweaks here and there along with a well-devised SEO plan can work wonders as far as your search ranking is concerned.
What is SEO?
Before we proceed, let’s get up to speed with what SEO is and how it can make or break your Drupal website. SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, comprises a series of techniques that, if done well, will improve the way search engines find and index your site. Best-practice optimization improves speed and usability of any website. To put it simply – the easier your site is to use, the more people will want to use it. By creating meta-tags and titles and optimizing page content, your site becomes stimulating to search engines and, thus, more likely to be ranked higher.
When looking for a product to buy or a service to hire, most people head to Google. With over 2 trillion Google searchesin 2013, it’s safe to say that Google is the BMOC when it comes to search engines. By optimizing your Drupal site, you help increase the chances that you get a top result on Google searches – and getting top spots is key. Most searchers start clicking links at or near the top of the first search results page. In fact, many studies have shown that the top spot gets roughly twice as many clicks as the spot directly below it.
We’re not going to cover basic SEO here, but instead, we’ll give you some Drupal module tips to make sure you’re getting the most from your site.
Top Modules to Optimize Your Drupal Site
The Metatag module allows you to automatically provide structured metadata, aka “meta tags”, about your website. For Drupal SEO, this is your most important building block. In addition, the module provides support for meta tags such as Open Graph Protocol from Facebook and Twitter Cards from Twitter that allow control of how content appears when shared on social networks.
The Pathauto module generates URL/path aliases for your content through configurable patterns. These aliases replace Drupal’s internal node URLs so you can have URL aliases like ‘/blog/seo-my-site-please’ instead of non-user friendly and non-search engine friendly URLs like ‘/node/201’. This structure can increase URL readability and improve signals for keyword relevancy.
Global redirect module
Having a URL alias is awesome for your content, but will bite you when it comes to having duplicate content. What we fixed with the Pathauto module has created a new issue: the content at ‘/blog/seo-my-site-please’ and ‘/node/201’ are the same, but accessible with both URLs. The Global Redirect module remedies this by creating 301 redirects to your alias, therefore removing all duplicated URLs for the same content.