SEO and Umbraco - How to Optimise Umbraco for Top Search Positions
What is Umbraco and what are its benefits for SEO?
If you're in the SEO business, then you've probably heard of Umbraco. Or, if you're a business or organisation that owns an important website, then you may well have considered Umbraco for your project. But one of the key considerations when choosing a content management system is how well it will perform in SEO. Most websites are useless if they don't rank in top positions in Google or other search engines for their most important keywords.
Umbraco is a content management system (CMS) that helps businesses manage their online content. It's simple to use and is particularly good at creating well-structured websites that are easy for non-technical staff to manage. And because it's open source, there are no licensing fees involved, unless you want to upgrade to paid-for additional features.
In addition, Umbraco is highly scalable, meaning it can easily handle large amounts of traffic and content. And because it runs on Microsoft's .NET platform, it integrates seamlessly with other Microsoft products such as SharePoint.
Like many CMSs, Umbraco doesn't have many built-in SEO features. However, because Umbraco is so incredibly customisable, it becomes ideal for SEO. For example, Umbraco makes it easy to create and edit metatags, titles, and other important elements of your website's code. And it so happens that because Umbraco is so lightweight, it tends to run extremely fast. Much faster than other CMSs like WordPress. We're not saying other CMSs can't be made to run really fast as well, it's that Umbraco tends to run very fast without any additional work.
So, if you're looking for a CMS that will help boost your SEO efforts, then Umbraco is definitely worth considering.
What are the main elements of SEO?
Although the search engines don't give their secrets away easily, it's agreed that there are four or five main elements to SEO, so looking at each of these and seeing how Umbraco stacks up would be a good idea.
How popular is Umbraco?
If you discount WordPress which dominates all Content Management Systems, Umbraco is about as popular for building websites as Drupal, Magento, Concrete and Craft.
Some popular websites built with Umbraco include:
How Umbraco fares
Crawlability and indexability
Your website must be readable by Google and other search engines.
Whilst the search engines are very clever, if your website is badly put together (from a technical perspective) or doesn't follow certain best practices, the search engines will have a hard time understanding your content and where to rank you alongside your peers. Or even, worse they may be unable to even crawl your website and index your content at all!
As most Umbraco websites are custom-built from the ground up, it's reasonably easy to ensure that they are easy for search engines to crawl.
✅ Umbraco looks after the internal linking, and if a piece of content changes its URL, Umbraco will make sure all internal links in the website are updated automatically.
👩🏫 Off the shelf Umbraco templates should also be well-optimised for SEO as standard, but you'll need to either question the theme author, or check carefully yourself, to make sure all the bases are covered.
Onsite experience and usability
It's not just the ability for search engines to crawl and understand your site that is taken into account. They will also mark you on how easy your site is to use. For example, how accessible is it for people with low vision or blindness? How easy is it to use on a mobile phone or tablet?
✅ Again, it all depends on your template. If that is well-made then these issues should be taken care of for you.
👩🏫 Test your site using PageSpeed Insights. Remember to add alternative text to images. Run your site through
Offsite linking and authority
Perhaps the most important factor of all is what takes places on the wider web. Inbound links from other websites to your site are often the deciding factor when deciding where to rank your site in the search results. The quantity of inbound links is very important. But more important still is the quality - the authority and respect which the linking websites have is key.
✅ As this important SEO factor takes place off-site, it's not really Umbraco's responsibility to help with this. However, having an attractive, fast-loading website will help other website owners to decide to link to you. So, Umbraco is a good choice in this respect.
Assuming your website can be crawled and indexed by search engines, then the content on your site is the next most important factor. The quality, quantity, originality, and usefulness of your content will all be taken into account. The search engines want to direct their users to the very best content on the web so making yours the very best available is the answer.
✅ Umbraco puts content at the centre of its system. You can build any kind of content from pages to blog posts, products to recipes.
Each type of content can be as unique as you need. So, Umbraco is simply great at helping you organise and publish large amounts of content. The quality of that content is up to you!
How to set up Umbraco for optimal SEO performance
Most Umbraco websites start off as either a pre-built template, or a custom-built template. Either way, you'll need to make sure that key SEO elements are automatically generated by the template. These include:
- SEO page titles (also known as meta titles or just page titles)
- SEO descriptions (also known as meta descriptions or just descriptions)
- Other important data such as the publication date, author, official URL (also known as the "canonical" URL).
Taking it one step further, these automatic elements of your template are good to have:
- Automatic structured data. If your website is a blog, ecommerce store, recipe site, or any other kind of site that tends to specialise in providing data that can be clearly structured, then the ability to create this information automatically with Umbraco is a real SEO boost
- Automatic Open Graph data. This is data about each page in your site, which is easily readable by social networks such as Facebook and Twitter. It includes the page title, an image which illustrates the page (this image is displayed in social media posts when the user pastes the address of the page.
- Automatic sitemap generation. A sitemap is a machine-readable files which contains all the addresses of the pages in your site. It makes it easy for search engines to index and list your site.
How to do you know if your template supports these things? Either ask your developer or the vendor of the theme.
Tips and tricks for optimizing your Umbraco website for better search engine visibility
If you're running a website on the Umbraco platform, there are a few things you can do to ensure that your site is as search engine friendly as possible.
First, make sure that your content is well organized and easy to navigate. This will help search engines index your site more effectively.
Second, take advantage of Umbraco's built-in SEO features. These include the ability to set custom page titles and descriptions, as well as to generate sitemaps.
Third, avoid using outdated technologies like Flash that are not well supported by search engines.
And fourth, ensuring that other websites link to yours is a key part of SEO. So, make sure to promote your site through social media and other online channels, make your site as interesting and attractive as possible so that other website owners are encourages to link to you, and find places online where you can cite your website, such as blogs, forums, and listings sites.
By following these tips, you can help ensure that your Umbraco website has the best possible chance of achieving good search engine visibility.
Case studies of successful SEO campaigns implemented using Umbraco
Anyone who has ever tried to rank a website in Google knows that SEO can be a complex and frustrating endeavour. There are a million different factors that contribute to your website's position in the search results, and it can be difficult to know where to start.
However, there are a few case studies of SEO campaigns that have been implemented using Umbraco, an open-source content management system, that have been successful.
One such campaign was conducted by a digital agency based in Australia. They were able to achieve a drastic increase in traffic to their client's website by making some simple changes to the site's architecture and content.
Another example is from a Denmark-based Umbraco Gold Partner who was able to increase traffic to one of his client's websites by over 300% by streamlining the website's content and improving its on-page optimization. These case studies show that, with the right approach, Umbraco can be a powerful tool for achieving better rankings in Google.
So, there you have it – a little bit about Umbraco and how to set it up for SEO success, as well as some tips and tricks for making the most of this powerful content management system.
But what if you’re not sure where to start? Don’t worry, we’ve got your back! Our experts are ready and waiting to help you get your website optimized for better search engine visibility. Ready to take your business to the next level? Give us a call today!