Finding the right CMS for your business can be a daunting task. If you want to get the best CMS possible, you'll be looking at the obvious factors, such as speed, website security, customization, and UI. But what about your control over search engine optimization? Is the CMS you're looking at SEO friendly?
Let's check out some of the main questions you should ask when deciding whether a CMS is built with SEO in mind.
Does your CMS give you control over your site's HTML?
Search engines have an easier time sifting through standards-based, semantic HTML when looking for keywords, meta tags, and context. Some CMS providers force you to learn a proprietary system language. Others create pages in Flash or with visual page-creation tools. But all of these can be difficult or unreadable to search engines. If you don't have control over the HTML used in your sites, then you lose a potentially great advantage by not being able to provide search engines with meta tags, streamlined and recognizable code, or easy-to-see links.
Does your CMS give you control over page URLs?
An important factor that can often be overlooked is whether your CMS allows you to have control over the URLs generated for the pages you create. Creating a relevant, keyword-rich URL is one of the best things you can do for SEO. If your CMS generates dynamic or numeric page addresses, however, then making an SEO-friendly website can be a lot more difficult. Although there are methods for improving the performance of non-HTML URLs, there is little to be done about the loss of important keywords. The best approach is to make sure that whatever CMS you are using lets you create SEO-friendly, keyword-rich URLs.
Does your CMS use fast, reliable storage?
Another SEO ranking factor to consider is site speed. A higher loading time can result in lower SEO rankings. It's important for SEO purposes that your CMS uses quality, reliable hosting. Hosting often becomes an issue with free or low-cost services. High quality hosting and services are available, but cost can be prohibitive for a single user. One of the best ways to get high quality hosting at an affordable price is to use a CMS that offers hosting through software as a service (SaaS). With this method, your CMS pays for high-quality hosting by dividing the cost over a large number of subscribers.
Other things to think about:
There are a lot of other factors that you could look at as well. For example:
- Does your CMS provide an easy way to set up 301 redirects?
- Where does your CMS store CSS and scripts relative to its other resources?
- Does your CMS support the use of XML and user-friendly sitemaps?
- Does your CMS support the use of robots.txt?
- Does your CMS give you page-level control over your META description and keyword fields?
Although this post can be a great guide in considering any CMS, we naturally like to point out that LightCMS was designed with all of these SEO factors in mind and therefore is a great option to consider as an SEO-friendly CMS. In fact, our company runs a successful SEO business using our CMS system for our own clients with great results. Take a look at our features, compare it with others, and we believe you'll agree.
Are there well-documented factors for SEO that we haven't mentioned here? Feel free to let us know in the comments!
Posted on Thu, June 10, 2010
by Vince Conn filed under