Forums were the lifeline of tech support for a long time. Not only technology, it covered almost every single topic people searched for on Google. From general gossip to space technology, forums played their role in providing answers to those who wanted it badly.
Forums were the place where friends gather, talk about anything and everything that interests them. Forums were the classic example of peer to peer support. Unlike blogs, which were mostly a one man show, forums generated content through user interaction and support. Due to the community participation, forums were able to generate large amounts of reliable content which also ranked well on Google.
Why is Forum SEO important?
After the pandemic, people are more into online platforms and solutions. This trend has caused a huge rise in online solutions and providers. According to Forbes, the total number of active websites in the world (as of February 2023) is more than 200 million. So even if you are competing with 1% of them, it is a tough job for sure.
According to Statista, there are 5.18 billion internet users in the world and Google enjoys the lion share with 3.5 billion users per day. Which means taming Google is a simple way to earn well through a website.
That is where Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) plays a crucial role. It is the art of getting your web pages rank well on Google search results. Like every other website, forum software also adheres to various SEO guidelines from Google.
Let us have a quick look at how a well-built forum software can help with your SEO and thereby providing free organic traffic and good results on Google Adsense and other revenue generating platforms.
Important Factors Affecting Forum SEO
According to Statista there are 16.8 billion mobile devices all over the world. These are visitors you do not want to miss. Plus, Google has long switched to mobile first indexing. So, it is important that your software is mobile ready in ways described by Google.
There are many factors that affect the mobile friendliness of a forum. Make sure that your forum software is offering a responsive theme by default. Other metrics like page loading speed, visual elements compatibility, human friendly layout, colour scheme etc helps a lot in securing a good position in Google Search Engine Results Page (SERP).
Remember, in the end, good SEO means more traffic and better revenue.
Light weight Software
A heavy forum software is an SEO nightmare. The more the time forum takes to load the higher the chance of an increased bounce rate. Mainly because people do not like to wait and will move on if your forum is taking a lifetime to deliver the page. Even with a powerful server in the backend, your forum software plays a very crucial role in how fast the web page loads.
Choose a professional vendor
Optimised code, well designed page structure, support for lightweight image formats, minified assets etc can make or kill a forum.
It is important to plan and execute this strategy from the start. Hence relying on a lightweight forum software built by a professional team can help you do well in Google SERP.
Google and SEO experts are very local about how content is displayed on a web page. It needs to be human ready and at the same time give enough for the Google bot to index your website the right way.
The proper use of meta tags is still relevant. A good forum software will provide you an option to add it through the Admin Control Panel. There are other vital SEO metrics like the use of heading tags, open graph data, schema markup that can ensure a good ranking with Google and other search engines.
Social Media Ready
Social bookmarking is an important factor in SEO. Make sure that your content is widely liked and shared on various social media platforms. It not only brings more traffic, new users and better revenue but also helps Google assess the authority of your website in a particular niche.
According to Statista, there are 4.8 billion social media users worldwide. Let us make sure that our content does well on social media as well. To begin with, check whether your forum software offers methods to share easily on social media. Share buttons for Facebook, WhatsApp, Reddit, X, LinkedIn etc make the process easier and give you more exposure.
Check if your forum software makes it easier to add images for sharing on social media. A good image can highly influence the reach of a shared post in most social media platforms. The proper use of open graph tags can be very useful.
Active Development Cycle
Google is very active in updating its indexing policy. From core updates to occasional feature updates, they ensure that the best content is provided to the end user.
Make sure that your forum software is following an active development cycle. Because if they are not, there is a good chance that it will cause a negative impact on your SEO. Old practices soon become outdated in SEO and to keep up with Google guidelines, your forum software should be able to add those changes in time.
There are numerous ways in which a forum software can help you SEO apart from what we have discussed above. Built-in sitemap, robot.txt support, SEO friendly URLs, the ability to move to a latest version with ease etc also can help you a lot when it comes to ranking in Google (and other search engines).
A good forum software always listens to the market needs, Google’s new guidelines and provides the best possible solution to its customers.
Remember, Google holds the key to do well on the internet. If you do not have time to listen to them 24x7, make sure that you choose a forum software built by a team of developers who do.