Contrary to popular opinion, promoting a Drupal is not at all bad. Drupal is the second largest content management system, after WordPress. You can never mention Drupal without evoking thoughts about its counterpart. There is something about Drupal that has not made it to fall out of the market. For starters, it is very powerful. It is a very good content management system when compared to all the other systems that are available in the market. It might not be the most popular one but it still ranks highly among the best. The only thing that discourages people about this platform is that it can be a bit hard to understand.
Please note, Drupal is not hard to use. It is just difficult to understand it especially if you are a beginner in the world of website design and development. The moment that you have gotten a clear comprehension of the workings of Drupal you will realize just how great it is as a content management system. The next thing you will have to worry about is search engine optimization (SEO) for Drupal websites. If you want your site to rank better on Google and other search engines, there are several things that you must do.
Ranking well on Google
It pays to rank among the best websites on Google. This basically means that people are able to find you with more ease on Google search results. It means that your website is receiving plenty of traffic and is ready to handle even more traffic. If your site can be found on page one of a Google keyword search, then you are among the best in your niche. Drupal websites tend to be a bit difficult to optimize when compared to some other platforms but all the same, you should not have a problem optimizing your site.
Here are some tips that you can employ to rank highly on the search engines. Some of these tips are specific to search engine optimization for Drupal websites and others are general SEO tips. So, let's get right into it.
1. Research keywords always
Sure you are the one who owns the website, you are the one who knows most about your product and you are the one who has a clear understanding of your brand's needs but the search engines know the keywords they want. You can choose to compete against the search engines and just choose a keyword as you would want to or you can use the keywords that are most specifically used for products in your niche.
There are so many ways that you can do your research on keywords but the best is to use Google's Keyword Tool which is now known as Keyword Planner. This tool and others which are similar to it help you to figure out the frequently used search terms per month within your area of residence and across the globe. It will also tell you the most competitive keywords. The best thing about this tool is that it will give you keywords that are related to whatever you type in. This is a must-have tool if you want to do good SEO for Drupal and generally any kind of SEO for that matter.
2. Google Webmaster and Google Analytics
These are two tools that you should get hooked up onto your Drupal site as soon as it is up and running. Get both of them linked to your site. These tools will help you to figure out where you are going in terms of SEO. The data that they pull from your site will be a guiding compass in decision making regarding SEO. There are several tools that are out there and they offer similar insight when it comes to this information but if at all you want to know what Google sees regarding your site then these are the best tools for you. There is no denying that Google is the biggest search engine, so it does help a lot to optimize your site for Google.
3. Install all the important Drupal SEO modules
Drupal has a multitude of modules that each site should install. This is of course if at all you want to take advantage of what Drupal is offering already. A thorough research on the key Drupal SEO modules will prove to be extremely good for your site. Take a moment to do this research right from the moment your site is launched online. The modules include the likes of: Alinks, Custom Breadcrumbs, Content Optimizer, Google Analytics (aforementioned), Metatag and several others. Each of them plays a specific role towards the realization of better SEO performance.
4. Do tons of back linking
There has been a lot of talk about the Google Panda and Penguin updates penalizing sites with backlinks. This is not true and you will be amazed at just how big a role backlinks play in websites today. Basically, these updates to the Google algorithms are trying to eliminate the comment spam and the professional profile builders who are out there by penalizing websites that have a large number of these types of links. Backlinking should be done correctly. When you are building those backlinks, make sure that they look as natural as possible. Do it continuously- it should not be a start-and-stop kind of thing. Go for credible links and make sure that your links touch several different parts of your site.
5. Find out what your competition is doing
The best thing that you can do for your website is to keep track of what your competition is doing. What is it that they are up to? This is the best way to make sure that your site performs at its best and you are always ahead of the pack.
Drupal might be hard to use at first but once you get the gist of the matter, you will enjoy your Drupal website. Optimizing a Drupal website for search engines is simple if you have the right tools like Google Analytics and Webmaster, you are doing backlinking and keyword research and you are watching your competition.
Author bio : Vinod Jethwani is the CEO and Founder of Walnut Solutions and he helps web based companies with his SEO strategies to grown their revenue. He started his career in 2007 as a software developer with an Indian based MNC and later in 2011 became an entrepreneur. Follow him on Twitter @VinodJethwani or through his blog.