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How to Install WordPress in 5 Minutes or Less (2019)

Looking for a tutorial showing you how to install WordPress, but keep finding resources that tackle every method except the one you need?

We’ve got your back.

In this post, we break down every conceivable way there is to install WordPress.

You’ll learn how to install WordPress using cPanel, Softaculous, MOJO, Fantastico, and QuickInstall; locally on both Windows and Mac; manually using FTP; and we’ll break down popular hosting providers like GoDaddy, Bluehost, and HostGator.

You’ll also learn how to install WordPress Multisite, how to install WordPress in different languages, and more.

Just click the appropriate link in our Table of Contents to jump to the section you need.


Let’s go.



How to Install WordPress on cPanel (Softaculous, MOJO, Fantastico, and QuickInstall)

So, you decided to start a blog.

Awesome. Now it’s time to roll up your sleeves and get to work installing WordPress.

Thankfully, many of the popular WordPress hosts offer some form of simplified (or even automatic) installation.

If you’re using a “shared” WordPress hosting plan, there’s a good chance your host will use cPanel.

Editor’s Note: cPanel is an online control panel many web hosts use to simplify the whole “how to host a website” thing for users. Go here to learn more about it.

Let’s walk through the cPanel process…

Step #1. Find Out How to Access Your Host’s cPanel

Unfortunately, the way you get to cPanel is not standardized across the web. Different hosts access it differently.

So, before you can do anything, you need to find out how to access your host’s cPanel.

The easiest method is to find the emails your hosting provider sent you when you signed up for your account. Among other valuable bits of information, the URL to your cPanel will be in one of those initial emails.

But if you can’t find the right email, don’t worry.

Just Google the name of your web host and “cPanel login”.

That should do the trick.

Step #2. Get to Know cPanel

The main cPanel dashboard can be a little intimidating.


You don’t have to understand all cPanel has to offer. We’re here to do one thing — learn how to install WordPress.

For that, let’s look for the cPanel installer tools, which are usually located near the bottom of the page.

Your host might be using any of the following installers: Softaculous, Fantastico, QuickInstall, or MOJO Marketplace.

We’re going to focus on Softaculous since it’s the most popular.

But don’t worry if your host uses a different installer.

While the specific interfaces might be a bit different, the idea behind every installer is the same.

Plus, they all ask you for the same set of data and inputs.

Step #3. How to Install WordPress Using Softaculous

To begin, look for the Softaculous section in cPanel.

Softaculous section in cPanel

Click on the WordPress logo. The installer tool will open:

Click on the WordPress logo

Click on the Install Now button to begin the installation process.

Softaculous needs only a handful of details from you. Here are the fields you should pay special attention to:

  • “Choose the version you want to install” — Always go for the most-recent version available.
  • “Choose Protocol” — “https://” is the option preferred by Google.
  • “Choose Domain” — Leave unchanged if you have just one domain assigned to your server; if you have more than one domain, select the desired one for this installation.
  • “In Directory” — Leave empty if you want to install WordPress in the main directory of your domain name (which most people do).
  • “Select Plugin(s)” — Optional (but as a general rule: the fewer plugins, the better).

Here’s what the form looks like:

Softaculous WordPress Form

Click Install to proceed.

When the process finishes, Softaculous will show you a final confirmation screen along with links to your WordPress dashboard.

And that’s it!

You’ve installed WordPress using cPanel.

Note: The WordPress dashboard of your newly-installed site should be available at yoursite.com/wp-admin/.



How to Install WordPress on Localhost (Or, How to Install WordPress Locally)

The instructions for how to install WordPress locally depends on whether you’re using a PC (Windows) or a Mac.

We’ll go over both methods.

First up: Windows.

(If you’re on a Mac, click here to jump ahead.)

How to Install WordPress on Windows

WordPress is a great tool for local web development.

Here’s how you install WordPress locally on Windows:

Step #1. Get XAMPP

XAMPP is a local web server for your computer. It’s an all-in-one package with everything you will need to run software (such as WordPress) locally.

What About WAMP?

You might have heard of a similar tool called WAMP.

Under the hood, WAMP and XAMPP do the same thing. However, in my opinion, WAMP isn’t as reliable as XAMPP.

For this reason and others, we’ll focus on XAMPP in this tutorial.

Download XAMPP

From the XAMPP website, click on the download button for Windows and save the XAMPP package to your desktop.

Launch the XAMPP installer and follow the prompts on the screen.

First, select the individual components you want to have installed. To be safe, you can choose all of them:

Select XAMPP components you want to install

Next, select the installation folder for XAMPP.

Note: Avoid installing XAMPP in Program Files. The read/write restrictions of Windows might prevent it from working correctly. Installing in C:\xampp is a safer bet.
Select installation folder for XAMPP

XAMPP will take a minute or two to install.

When it’s finished, you’ll see this confirmation screen:

XAMPP confirmation screen

When you click on Finish, you’ll see the main XAMPP config panel.

In it, click on the two Start buttons next to Apache and MySQL.

Like so:

XAMPP configuration panel

You should see the two labels change to green:

XAMPP configuration panel - 2

When you see green, your local server is working!

Step #2. Create a Blank Database for WordPress

From the control panel of XAMPP, click on the Admin button in the MySQL row:

XAMPP configuration panel - 3

This will launch a tool called PHPMyAdmin, which is an open-source database management tool.

Launch phpmyadmin

Go into Databases (from the top menu).

Go into phpmyadmin database

Enter a name for your new WordPress database (something simple) and click the Create button:

WordPress phpmyadmin database

You should see your new blank database in the sidebar:

New blank WordPress database in phpmyadmin

You can now exit PHPMyAdmin.

Step #3. Download WordPress

Go to WordPress.org and download the most recent version of the software.

Don’t worry. It’s free:

Download most recent WP version


  • Save the file to your desktop or downloads folder. Extract it.
  • Go to the folder where you installed XAMPP (C:\xampp) and find the htdocs subfolder.
  • Create a new subfolder inside htdocs. This is where your site is going to live. For the purpose of this demo, I’ll name the folder mynewsite.
Note: The name of this folder will also become part of the local address of the site. With mynewsite being the folder name, the address of the site is going to be localhost/mynewsite.

Take the contents of the WordPress archive and move them to this new subfolder (“mynewsite” or whatever you named yours).

It should look like this:

Move WordPress archive contents into new htdocs folder

Step #4. Install WordPress Locally on Windows

Open your web browser and navigate to localhost/mynewsite.

What you’ll see is the on-screen WordPress Installation Wizard.

The first step is choosing your language:

Choose your WordPress language

The next screen is an info card to get you up to speed with what’s going to happen. Click on Let’s go! once you’ve read it.

The next step is a crucial one in the installation.

This is where you get to enter the details of your WordPress connection to the database.

Here are my settings based on everything I’ve set in the previous steps so far:

WordPress database connection details

Important parts:

  • Database Name — This is the name you set in PHPMyAdmin when creating the database in Step #2.
  • Username — Set to root.
  • Password — Leave blank.
  • Database Host — Set to localhost.
  • Table Prefix — Leave as is.

The next step is where you get to set the name of your site and the details of your main admin account:

Set WordPress site name and details
Note: With the exception of username, you’ll be able to easily change these later in your WordPress dashboard.

Click on Install WordPress to finalize everything.

And that’s it. You’ve installed WordPress locally on Windows.

How to Install WordPress on Mac

While installing WordPress locally on Mac isn’t the usual “get app from App Store” experience we’re used to, it can still be done with relative ease.

Here’s how to install WordPress on Mac:

Step #1. Get MAMP

MAMP is a local web server that works quite well on Mac.

(It’s also easier to install than some of its alternatives.).

Install WP on MAMP

From the MAMP website, go to the downloads section and choose the option for macOS:

Download MAMP

Save the package to your computer.

Launch the MAMP installer and proceed through the on-screen wizard.

Launch the MAMP installer

When the installation finishes, open MAMP from Mac’s Launchpad.

In the config panel, click on the main Start Servers button.

Click on the main Start Serves button

Congrats! Your local server is working.

Step #2. Create a Blank Database for WordPress

As soon as you start your server in MAMP, you will be taken to the server’s homepage.

Usually, it’s “http://localhost:8888/MAMP/” (without the quotes).

From there, click on PHPMYADMIN under TOOLS:

Click on phpmyadmin under MAMP Tools

As mentioned earlier in the post, PHPMyAdmin is a handy, open-source database management tool.

We use it to create a new database for WordPress.

Create a new database for WP

Go into Databases (from the top menu):

Go into Databases

Enter a name for your new WordPress database (something simple) and click on Create.

Like so:

Enter database name

You should see your new blank database in the sidebar.

Blank database in sidebar

You can now exit PHPMyAdmin.

Step #3. Download WordPress

Go to WordPress.org and download the most recent version of the software.

Download most recent WP version


  • Save the archive to your Mac and extract it.
  • Go to the default web folder of your server. That’s usually in Applications/MAMP/htdocs. You can check the location of your default web folder by going into MAMP settings and choosing the Web Server tab:

    In MAMP settings, select Web Server tab
  • Create a new subfolder. This is where your site is going to live. For the purpose of this demo, I’ll name my subfolder mynewsite.
Note: The name of this folder will also be part of the local address of the site. With mynewsite being the folder name, the address of the site is going to be localhost:8888/mynewsite.

Take the contents of the WordPress archive and move them to the new folder you created. It should look like this:

Move WP archive contents into new folder

Step #4. Install WordPress Locally on Mac

Open your web browser and go to localhost:8888/mynewsite.

What you’ll see is the on-screen WordPress installation wizard. The first step is choosing your language:

Choose your WordPress language

The next screen is an info card to get you up to speed with what’s going to happen. Click Let’s go! once you’ve read it.

In the next step, you will enter the details of your WordPress connection to the database.

Here are my settings based on everything I’ve set in the previous steps:

WP database connection details

Important parts:

  • Database Name — This is the name you set in PHPMyAdmin when creating the database in Step #2
  • Username — Set to root.
  • Password — Set to root.
  • Database Host — Set to localhost.
  • Table Prefix — Leave as is.

The next step is where you get to set the name of your site and the details of your main admin account:

Set WordPress site name and details
Note: With the exception of username, you’ll be able to easily change these later in your WordPress dashboard.

Click on Install WordPress to finalize everything.

And that’s it. You’ve installed WordPress locally on a Mac


How to Install WordPress via FTP (Or, How to Install WordPress Manually)

Installing WordPress via FTP takes only minutes, but you do need to have a couple of things ready beforehand.

Chiefly, you need to have access to a web server — aka, a web hosting account.

Editor’s Note: Two WordPress hosting options we recommend to our Smart Blogger students are SiteGround (affiliate link) and WP Engine (affiliate link). Both are great options.

Start by going to your host of choice and purchasing one of the available web hosting plans. If you already have a web host, you’re ahead of the game!


Step #1. Download WordPress

Go to WordPress.org and download the latest version of WordPress.

Download most recent WP version

Save the package to your computer and extract its contents.

Step #2. Upload WordPress Files to Your Server

The next step involves connecting to your web server via FTP and uploading your just-downloaded WordPress files.

You’re going to need to use a third-party FTP tool to do that.

FileZilla is a popular one. We’ll use it for the purposes of this demo.

Now, in order to connect to your server, you’ll need your connection details.

This information should have been provided via email when you first signed up for your hosting account. But if you can’t find it, no worries. You can find your FTP information inside your host’s cPanel.

Go to the FTP Accounts section (under FILES):

cPanel FTP accounts

You’ll find your FTP accounts there. Or, alternatively, you can create your FTP account if one doesn’t already exist.

Next to your FTP account, there’s a link labeled Configure FTP Client.

Click on it:

Configure FTP client

This will reveal a new section.

In it, click on the FTP Configuration File button under FileZilla:

Filezilla FTP configuration

You can open that file with FileZilla and set up your connection details immediately.

With that done, the only thing left to do is upload your WordPress files to the server.

Depending on your hosting setup, you might need to upload WordPress to a specific directory.

However, for most users the directory will be called public_html or public_www.

If in doubt, verify with your web host.

Step #3. Create a New Database for WordPress in cPanel

WordPress, just like any other modern CMS, cannot work without a database.

The database is where all your posts, pages, comments, and other site content are kept.

To create a new database, go back to cPanel, scroll down to the DATABASES section, and click on MySQL Database Wizard:

MySQL database wizard

From there, you’ll be guided through the steps to create a new database.

First, pick a name for your database:

Create a database

Next, create a new user account that WordPress will use to access the database.

Create database users
Note: Be sure to jot down the username and the password. You’ll need them in the next step.

Lastly, assign sufficient access rights to the new user account.

It’s best to do that by simply selecting ALL PRIVILEGES, like so:

Add User to database

Your database setup is now complete!

Step #4. Install WordPress Through the Online Installer

This is the last step on your journey to getting WordPress installed via FTP.

Simply fire up your browser and navigate to your site’s URL.

You’ll see the main page of the WordPress installer.

First, choose the language of your site:

Choose your WordPress language

The next step is a crucial one, and it’s where you’ll need to provide your database details.

(Hopefully you jotted those details down earlier!)

WP database connection details

Here’s a breakdown for each:

  • Database Name — The name of your database (from the previous step).
  • Username — Your chosen username (from the previous step).
  • Password — Your chosen password (from the previous step).
  • Database Host — In most cases, set this to localhost. If your hosting setup requires a different value here, they can provide this info.
  • Table Prefix — You can safely ignore this field and leave as is.

The next step is where you get to set the name of your site and the details of your main admin account:

Set WordPress site name and details
Note: With the exception of username, you’ll be able to easily change these later in your WordPress dashboard.

Click on Install WordPress to finalize everything.

And that’s it! You’ve successfully installed WordPress manually using FTP.


How to Install WordPress Multisite

WordPress Multisite is an interesting feature built into WordPress.

Simply speaking, with WordPress Multisite, you can launch multiple WordPress websites, all working on the same WordPress install.

This is great for businesses and organizations that need multiple websites, but want to keep the cost of managing them low.

WordPress Multisite is also a great choice for universities where it’s very common for individual courses or teachers to have their own sites.

Here’s how to set up and install WordPress Multisite:

Step #1. Install WordPress Locally, via cPanel, or via FTP

To begin your journey with WordPress Multisite, you first need to install WordPress using any of the methods described earlier in this guide.

Go here to install WordPress using Softaculous, MOJO, Fantastico, QuickInstall, or any other installer tool offered by your host’s cPanel.

Go here to install WordPress locally on Windows or here to install WordPress locally on a Mac.

Finally, go here to install WordPress using FTP.

Once you’ve installed WordPress, you’re ready for the next step.

Step #2. Enable WordPress Multisite

Connect to your server via FTP (explained previously in this guide), and download the wp-config.php file from your main WordPress directory.

Open the file in Notepad (or similar software) and add the following line at the bottom:

define (‘WP_ALLOW_MULTISITE’, true);

Save the file and re-upload it to your main WordPress directory via FTP. You’ll want to overwrite the original file.

Step #3. Set up Your WordPress Multisite Network

At this stage, WordPress is ready to let you configure your network of sites. Here’s how:

First, go to your plugins and deactivate all of them.

Deactivate all plugins

Next, go to Tools > Network Setup. This is where you create your network of WordPress sites.

Create network of WP sites

Click on the Install button to begin.

On the next screen, WordPress will give you specific instructions for finalizing the setup.

This will involve editing two files in your WordPress directory (similarly to how we did it a minute ago with wp-config.php).

Example setup:

File edits in WP directory

Step #4. Create your WordPress Multisite Sites

Once you log back into WordPress, you’ll see an updated version of the admin interface with one new section in the top left corner:

Multisites in WP dashboard

This menu is where you can switch between your WordPress sites (and where you can add new sites to the network).

Each website is independent, can feature different content, different user accounts, different themes, different plugins, and so on.

Congrats! You’ve successfully set up WordPress Multisite.

(Feel free to re-activate all your plugins!)


How to Install WordPress in Your Language

Did you know WordPress has been translated into 113 (and counting) languages?

It’s true. You can install WordPress in everything from Afrikaans (South Africa) to 香港中文版 (Simplified Chinese).

In short:

You can install WordPress in your language, no matter what that language might be.

Here’s how to do it:

#1. Download WordPress in Your Language

Go to WordPress.org.

Since WordPress is quite predictive and helpful with international users, based on your location, you’ll see a note encouraging you to download WordPress in your language.

Here’s an example:

Install WP in your language

What the above box says is:

“WordPress is also available in Polish.”

When you click on the language — in this example, “Polski” — you’ll get redirected to a new, localized WordPress website.

Once there, download the WordPress package and save the ZIP file to your desktop and extract its contents.

#2. Install WordPress via FTP

Next, follow the same instructions we discussed earlier in this guide.

Click here to jump to Upload WordPress Files to Your Server.

Bonus Tip: Installing Language Files from the Admin Dashboard

If you’ve already installed WordPress in one language, but you’d like to use a different language, don’t fret.

WordPress makes switching your language a breeze.

In your Dashboard, go to Settings > General > Site Language.

Then simply choose the language you’d like to use.

And that’s it! You’re done.


The following section covers how to install WordPress on 12 popular hosting providers. Click on a link below to jump to your host:

How to Install WordPress on SiteGround

SiteGround (affiliate link) offers a cool wizard tool to get your WordPress installed in minutes. There’s no need to deal with any coding, settings, or uploading things a server.

Here’s a video showing you the process:

But, if you prefer written instructions, here are the steps:

When you log into your SiteGround user panel for the first time, you’ll be greeted by a message asking if you’d like to have a new website set up for you:

Start a Siteground website

Click on the option labeled “Start a new website” and select WordPress as your platform.

SiteGround will also create a new admin account for you. All you need to do is provide the login details:

Choose your WP login details

That’s all there is to it.

How to Install WordPress on Bluehost

When you sign up for a Bluehost WordPress Hosting plan, the latest version of WordPress is installed automatically for you. All you have to do is configure it.

Here are the steps:

If you’d like to set up additional WordPress sites, it’s easy to do so via the Bluehost dashboard.

Go to My Sites, and then click on Create a Site.

Create site on BlueHost

Enter your site details and proceed through the individual screens.

First, you’ll need to pick a name for your WordPress installation:

Name WordPress installation

You will then enter the domain name and directory, plus any optional plugins you might want:

Choose a domain for your WP installation

Finally, set your admin user login and password.

How to Install WordPress on GoDaddy

GoDaddy uses cPanel for installing WordPress on their hosting plans.

Here’s their official video walking you through the entire (simple) process:

And if you need to add another WordPress site, that’s easy too.

Log into your GoDaddy user panel, go to Managed WordPress > Manage All. Click Add Site.

Add a GoDaddy site

From this point on, GoDaddy will take you by the hand and do most of the work for you. All you’ll need to do is enter a name for your site and your desired login credentials for the admin user.

When the installation finishes, GoDaddy will show you a WordPress Setup Wizard to help you customize your site:

Create GoDaddy WP site

You can click No thanks or Continue.

How to Install WordPress on WP Engine

WP Engine (affiliate link) is one of the original “managed” WordPress hosting platforms. They handle all the technical heavy lifting for you, so you can focus on what’s important for your website’s success.

What this means in practice is WP Engine will install WordPress for you when you create an account. You don’t have to lift a finger.

You access the site from your user panel:

Set up site in WP Engine

If you want to add additional sites to your WP Engine setup, it’s pretty easy. Here’s a video tutorial showing you how:

If you prefer written instructions, here’s WP Engine’s official guide for adding or deleting WordPress installs.

How to Install WordPress on Flywheel

Like WP Engine, Flywheel is a managed WordPress hosting platform. They take care of the technical aspects — including installing WordPress — for you. All you have to do is provide a few pieces of info.

Here’s a video walking you through the process:

If you would like to create additional sites, from your user profile click the Create a New Site button:

Create site at Flywheel

Next, provide all the necessary details such as site name, admin user login, password, and your preferred payment method.

Enter WP site details at Flywheel

Once you’ve completed the form, your site will become visible in your user profile.

That’s all there is to it.

Here’s Flywheel’s official guide for adding new sites if you need more information.

How to Install WordPress on Kinsta

Kinsta is a newcomer to the managed WordPress hosting market. Like WP Engine and Flywheel, Kinsta installs WordPress for you when you create your account.

If you’d like to add additional WordPress sites to your Kinsta plan, follow the steps in this video:

If you prefer written instructions, here’s Kinsta’s official guide for adding WordPress sites.

How to Install WordPress on HostGator

Like many shared WordPress hosts, HostGator gives you access to cPanel. With it, you can easily install WordPress using the steps in the video below:

Can’t play the video? No worries.

HostGator also offers an extensive how-to article for installing WordPress on their platform.

How to Install WordPress on DreamHost

For each of their WordPress hosting plans, DreamHost provides WordPress pre-installed. All the work is done for you.

If you’d like to add additional WordPress sites, here’s a video showing you how it’s done:

Prefer written instructions?

Here is Dreamhost’s how-to article for using their handy 1-Click WordPress Install.

How to Install WordPress on A2Hosting

A2Hosting offers both shared and managed WordPress hosting.

For shared hosting, they offer 1-Click WordPress installation using Softaculous. Here’s a video to walk you through the steps:

If you opt for one of their managed hosting plans, WordPress will come pre-installed with your A2Hosting account.

If you’d like to add more WordPress installs to your account, here’s the official A2Hosting video to show you how:

How to Install WordPress on InMotion Hosting

Like its managed-hosting competitors, InMotion Hosting  provides pre-installed WordPress on your hosting account from the get-go. This means that you don’t need to install WordPress on your own.

If you’d like to install WordPress on an add-on domain, InMotion offers this handy tutorial video:

How to Install WordPress on iPage

Just like other “managed” WordPress hosting companies, iPage provides WordPress pre-installed with your account. (You also get a set of pre-installed WordPress themes and plugins.)

Here’s a helpful video showing you how to configure your iPage WordPress site:

If you need to install some additional WordPress sites on iPage, click here to read their guide.

How to Install WordPress on Hostinger

Hostinger offers a quick-and-easy auto installer for WordPress.

Here’s their official video showing you how it’s done:

If you prefer written directions, here’s Hostinger’s tutorial for installing WordPress (using various methods).


Frequently Asked Questions

Before we wrap things up, let’s go over a few common, related questions we often hear:

Do I Need to Install WordPress?

Answer: It depends.

If you use a “managed” web host like WP Engine, installing WordPress is taken care of for you. You don’t have to do anything (beyond filling in a few pieces of information).

However, if you’re using a “shared” hosting plan, you’ll need to install WordPress.

The good news is that most web hosts have made the process easy. A few clicks and you’re finished.

Editor’s Note: This is all assuming, of course, you want a WordPress site. WordPress is awesome, but it’s not the only game in town — there are many blogging platforms out there.

Does WordPress Cost Money?

No, the WordPress software is 100% free. Anyone can go to WordPress.org and download it for free at any time.

The typical costs for running a WordPress website come from other factors, such as purchasing a domain name and choosing a hosting provider.

Does WordPress Include Hosting? (Or, Does WordPress Host Your Site?)

If you’re using WordPress.com, the answer is yes.

WordPress.com is a free, hosted version of the WordPress software offered by the company. (You can upgrade to various paid plans if you need more features.)

However, if you’re using the self-hosted version of the software available for free at WordPress.org, the answer is no. You’ll need a hosting provider.

Which Hosting is Best for WordPress?

WordPress.org officially recommends Bluehost, DreamHost, and SiteGround.

At Smart Blogger, we recommend SiteGround (affiliate link) and WP Engine (affiliate link).

Since SiteGround is on both lists, it’s safe to say it’s a solid option.

How to Install WordPress Themes?

Your WordPress installation will come with several free themes (designs), but there are thousands of additional themes — both free and premium — you can add.

Here’s a quick guide for how to install WordPress themes from inside your WordPress dashboard.

How to Install WordPress Plugins?

Though you have to be careful not to go overboard with them, WordPress plugins are one of the software’s best features — they allow you to add all sorts of functionality to your WordPress site that’s not available out of the box.

SiteGround has published a helpful tutorial for how to install WordPress plugins if you would like step-by-step instructions.

How to Install Facebook Pixel on WordPress?

If you’re interested in running Facebook Ads (either now or in the future), you need to install a Facebook Pixel on your WordPress site.

What’s a Facebook Pixel? It’s a piece of tracking code you add to your website that collects data whenever someone visits your site or takes a specific action.

Here’s a video explaining it in more detail (including how to install it):

If you prefer written instructions, here is Facebook’s help article on Facebook Pixel, which includes steps for creating and installing them.


It’s Time to Install WordPress

Installing WordPress can be overwhelming — especially if you’ve never done it before.

Hopefully, this in-depth guide has been able to point you in the right direction. Use it, bookmark it, and feel free to share it with a friend.

And if there’s an installation method we missed, tweet us or let us know about it in the comments. We’ll happily add it.

About the Author: Karol K. (@carlosinho) is a WordPress figure-outer, blogger, and published author of WordPress Complete. His work has been featured all over the web on sites like: Ahrefs.com, Smashing Magazine, Adobe.com, CodeinWP.com, and others.

The post How to Install WordPress in 5 Minutes or Less (2019) appeared first on Smart Blogger.

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It’s tempting to plug into your keyword research tool of choice and select keywords with the highest search volume as your focuses for new content. But if the content you’re creating doesn’t match the search intent for that high-volume keyword, it’s unlikely to perform to your expectations.

The Fix: Google it! All jokes aside, evaluating the first ten search results for your target keywords can help you understand what searchers are trying to find, and what supporting content you should provide to truly be the best answer for that query.

While you’re analyzing those top results, pay attention to key factors that will shape your content creation and promotion strategy:

  1. What type of information is NOT included in top content, but is topically related? This can help you inform how you differentiate your content.
  2. What’s the content demand for that keyword? For example, are mostly top of funnel blog posts ranking, or are you seeing mostly product or service pages?
  3. How many backlinks and referring domains are pointing to the top search results? This can help you understand how competitive the first page of results is, and whether or not ongoing link building should be part of your content promotion strategy.
  4. How long is the top-ranking content for that keyword? This will help you determine ideal content length for your own post.

SEO Mistake #2 - Targeting the Same Keyword with Multiple Pages or Posts

How Same-Topic Targeting Affects Content Marketers: Pressure to create comprehensive content on a topic can actually result in dilution within search.

The conventional wisdom that more is better doesn’t apply universally — especially when it comes to SEO-driven content. Creating multiple pieces of content that target the exact same keyword is a surefire way to stand in your own way of success. There’s enough competition out there for B2B marketers without having to compete with your own content.

For example, a B2B technology company that wants to rank for B2B software consulting should optimize their service page for that term based on what is currently being served in search results. But, if they also create a series of blogs or resources that are targeting that specific term, search engine bots will be confused about which page is the best answer for that query. This could result in none of the content appearing in the top 10 results, in favor of competing sites with a more clear ‘answer’ to that query.

The Fix: Determine which of your pages or posts is the best answer for that particular query by analyzing ranking and analytics data. Which post or page sees the greatest amount of engaged organic traffic for your target keyword, and most closely matches the associated search intent?

Once you’ve determined your target page, it’s time to evaluate the remaining content targeting that keyword. Look for opportunities to:

  1. Remove or prune low-value or outdated content. Is there a blog post full of stats from 2009 that’s hindering your priority page’s chances of ranking? It might be time to consider removing that post and implementing the proper redirects.
  2. Optimize existing content for related, but different, keyword targets. For example, if you have a priority post for Chocolate Chip Cookies, and another post that more closely relates to ‘Crunchy Chocolate Chip Cookies’, consider optimizing that post for the latter and implementing internal links back to your priority cookies post.
  3. Combine closely related content. For example, if you have several blog posts around your targeted keyword(s), consider combining those posts into a longer, more robust piece of content.

SEO Mistake #3 - Ignoring Internal Link Structure

How Internal Linking Affects Content Marketers: Links are like electricity on the web, lighting up content for people and search engines alike.

Content is discovered by links. Your site’s internal linking structure tells bots (and users) which pages are most important, and which pages are most relevant to specific keywords. If you link to several pages from the same anchor text, for example, there will be some confusion about which page is truly ‘about’ that topic. Other times, you could have pages or posts on your site that are orphaned, with no internal links directing users or bots their way. This can confuse your site users, search engine bots, and even your own team. Confusion is not a ranking factor!

The Fix: Make sure you develop and continue to update your site’s keyword map. It can be as simple as a spreadsheet that lists your page’s URL and associated target keyword(s). This keyword map will help you determine what anchor text should be used to link to your target pages.

Next, conduct a site audit to determine:

  1. If there are orphaned pages that need internal links
  2. If you are linking to multiple pages with the same keyword-rich anchor text
  3. Where there are opportunities to create additional supporting content
  4. Where you might have opportunities to reduce and prune existing supporting content

Next, you’re going to want to crawl your site to find any orphaned pages. Then, map those into your overall keyword strategy and implement internal links.

SEO Mistake #4 - Ignoring Data from Other Digital Tactics

How Marketing Data Affects Content Marketers: Inspiration often drives ideation for many content marketers, but data drives optimization for ideal content performance. Marketing performance data can provide both.

Any data you can collect about how your audience engages with your content has the potential to be an SEO gold mine. For example, analyzing the keywords from your paid search campaigns can give you insight into which keywords are your best converters, and what content best suits searchers for those terms. Social posts that get the greatest amount of engagement can tell you which topics your audience is most interested in. Ignoring data from your other marketing and sales channels means missing out on an opportunity to better engage your prospects.

The Fix: Meet with different teams or departments to find out what kind of content performs best on their channels. Look at the data each platform or channel provides and compare that with your site analytics data for a full picture. And, be sure to share your channel performance data with the rest of your marketing team. The more information available related to content and marketing performance, the better equipped you are to optimize.

SEO Mistake #5 - Giving Up

How Persistence Affects Content Marketers: Content performance in search is a long game and persistence is essential for success.

SEO is a marathon, not a sprint. Sometimes a lack of results can feel demoralizing, but giving up is simply not an option. You wouldn’t stop building your house just because the nearest lumber yard ran out of wood, right? You’d find another lumber yard and keep plugging along.

The Fix: Take a step back. Re-evaluate the search landscape, your competitor’s organic presence, and your site’s overall health. Being able to remove yourself from the frustration can help you find opportunities you may have missed and additional whitespace to tackle.

Next, seek out advice from other SEOs. Ask questions on social media, in specific groups or forums, or send a question to your favorite SEO blog. If budget permits, enlist the help of a consultant or SEO agency that can help you break through your roadblocks.

Finally, we have two big SEO bummers that are tougher to fix, but absolutely necessary to address.

Bonus SEO Mistake: Migrating Your Site with No SEO Plan

How Migrating Without a Plan Affects Content Marketers: A bad migration can effectively undo your hard work, reducing content visibility and creating more user friction.

If you listen closely, you can hear the sound of SEOs cringing around the globe. A botched site migration can wreak havoc on your organic positioning and torpedo your results. It can take months, even years to recuperate organic visibility to pre-migration levels.

The Fix: Always, always consult your in-house SEO team or SEO agency when you’re considering a website migration. Before you move forward, it’s imperative you have a plan for technical, on-page, and off-page factors.

If you’ve already migrated your site and have experienced a loss of organic traffic and rankings, start with a site audit. Check for the basics, like whether or not your site is being indexed, first. Then start to evaluate technical factors like broken links, crawl errors, and duplicate content.

When in doubt, don’t hesitate to reach out for help. Recovering from a site migration is a challenge for even the best of SEOs, and sometimes those big challenges call for a little teamwork.

Bonus SEO Mistake: Not Optimizing for Mobile

How Not Optimizing for Mobile Affects Content Marketers: Even the greatest content can’t stand up to a bad mobile experience. Users will bounce, reducing engagement and sending negative signals to search engines.

Mobile accounts for about half of web traffic worldwide. Knowing this, in March 2018 Google started migrating sites to mobile-first indexing. Providing a seamless mobile experience is no longer optional, especially when you’re living in the wild world of search.

Sites that didn’t properly prepare for this can and will likely see some declines in organic search traffic and rankings as a result. And, as more sites follow mobile best practices, more users will notice and become frustrated by poor mobile experiences. This leads to declines in other pivotal ranking factors like on-page engagement. In short, if not properly addressed, a poor mobile experience can wreak havoc on your search visibility.

The Fix: The first thing to do is to conduct a mobile audit on your site. Understanding your site’s mobile performance is step one toward making improvements. Look for things like:

  1. Mobile site speed. A couple great tools for this are Google Page Speed Insights and Pingdom. These tools can tell you where to look for issues like slow-loading code, images that aren’t optimized, and other technical issues.
  2. Mobile experience. Visit your site on your phone. Ask someone who doesn’t use your site regularly to do the same. Record your experience, take notes on where you get stuck and why. Click on everything. Turn your phone into horizontal mode. Try to think of every single way a user could browse your site. And, don’t forget to try a site search on mobile.
  3. Look at mobile analytics. This will tell you key metrics like mobile bounce rate, mobile time on page and pages per session.

These steps will help you build a hypothesis to test against. Is your mobile bounce rate crazy high? Does your site take a long time to load? Is your time on page way out of line with desktop traffic? Then, use A/B testing to root out the discrepancy. Use these same metrics to test if the fix is working. Then, repeat with another element.

So, What Does This All Mean for You?

Ultimately, following SEO best practices as a content marketer can reduce performance-related headaches and set you up for long-term success.

For example, when Innovatech Labs decided it was time to make major changes to their website, they worked with our team at TopRank Marketing to implement a safe website transition strategy, minimizing their risk of reduced content visibility on Google. This assessment involved avoiding many of the big risks mentioned above, including linking, use of data and keyword research which allowed us to act quickly post-migration to combat organic traffic declines. The result? Double- and triple-digit increases in organic traffic (and increased conversions, too!).

A best-answer content strategy focused on creating content with the most relevance to their audience was the ticket to better marketing performance for a martech SaaS company. Working with the team at TopRank Marketing, long-tail and hyper-relevant keywords were researched for a comprehensive content strategy to help the brand content become the best answer for those queries. The “best answer” approach and topics were applied across organic and paid efforts. As a result, the volume of both paid and organic MQLs increased, leading to better content performance and spontaneous proclamations of love from the client’s sales team.

Fixing these big SEO mistakes aren’t only for short-term wins. Our longtime partner Antea Group USA has achieved amazing triple-digit growth over three years by avoiding these big mistakes and implementing an ongoing commitment to SEO-driven, best answer content.

As I mentioned earlier, even the most experienced content marketers can make these common SEO mistakes. But, with the right SEO strategy driven by diligent execution and monitoring of results, you can get back on track. The key is to be intentional about your site’s architecture, as well as the content you create, and to never, ever give up.

Still feeling stuck? Or maybe your team doesn’t have the resources to take on this battle alone? Check out our SEO services, tweet us your thoughts @toprank, or drop me a line in the comments. We are here to help!

The post 5 SEO Mistakes Killing Your Content Performance and a Fix for Each appeared first on Online Marketing Blog - TopRank®.

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