Examined: Is Joomla Good For Search engine marketing In 2022?

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joomla seo check

Final up to date on February 1, 2022

That is the fifth submit in our collection the place we take a look at the on-page Search engine marketing of the world’s hottest CMS techniques.

We beforehand coated WordPress, Wix, Squarespace, and GoDaddy.

This time we’re turning our consideration to Joomla. Particularly, Joomla 4 which was formally launched in August 2021.

Learn on to find:

  • how nicely arrange for on-page Search engine marketing Joomla is out of the field,
  • how one can configure your Joomla website to rank increased in Google

Let’s get began with a abstract.

In Abstract: Is Joomla good for Search engine marketing?

Joomla is an open-source CMS. You’ve obtained full entry to the underlying code and can even create your personal plugins/extensions to change the system’s core performance.

Joomla 4

So with some coding chops (and the posh of time), we might wager that there’s nothing you’ll be able to’t do to totally optimize your Joomla website.

However with that being mentioned, on this collection, we’re specializing in the out-the-box Search engine marketing performance of the main CMS techniques. Give or take a number of plugins/extensions, we need to hold our fingers (and web site) fairly clear.

Earlier in 2021, we examined Joomla 3. And whereas we appreciated it total, there have been undoubtedly a number of gaps within the CMS’s Search engine marketing performance.

The excellent news?

Joomla 4 (and one tremendous cool Search engine marketing extension) has just about plugged all of them.

Every little thing we like to manage for on-page Search engine marketing can now be configured in Joomla’s admin space. And we had been additionally impressed with Joomla 4’s out-the-box pace — with solely minimal tweaks required to get a formidable rating on Google’s PageSpeed Insights.

Another enhancements?

Whereas not Search engine marketing-related, we felt that Joomla 3’s backend appeared dated and drained. And we imagine this was one of many causes for the decline in Joomla’s recognition and market share through the years.

google trends - joomla vs wordpress

So we’re happy to say that Joomla has utterly revamped the admin space for model 4.

joomla 4 admin

The adjustments are primarily beauty (and we do nonetheless have some grumbles about grouping of choices), however we really feel the slick new look ranges the taking part in area considerably with WordPress and is probably going to assist entice new customers to the platform.

JoomlaShine has a pleasant breakdown of the admin interface enhancements right here.

In abstract, Joomla 4 is a giant step ahead from Joomla 3 and is now a fantastic alternative for Search engine marketing.

joomla 4 seo

How we examined the Search engine marketing capabilities of Joomla

Like WordPress, it’s tough to check Joomla in isolation as a lot of its Search engine marketing efficiency will probably be right down to particular person configurations (i.e. host/server) and decisions (templates/extensions).

However as with our earlier assessments, we tried to maintain extensions/plugins to a minimal, configuration to as near “out the field” as doable, and opted for in style templates.

Right here’s what we did:

  1. We arrange a small take a look at website on a Digital Ocean server with the identical specs because the server internet hosting our earlier WordPress take a look at website
  2. We added demo content material much like our different take a look at websites
  3. We tried out 3 Joomla Search engine marketing extensions (and settled on one)
  4. We examined 2 of the preferred Joomla themes (Helix Final, and Joomla 4’s default Cassiopeia template)
  5. Assessments included guide overview, operating the location via our personal Search engine marketing audit device, and testing utilizing third-party instruments resembling Google’s PageSpeed Insights and GTMetrix.

Which Joomla Search engine marketing extensions did we attempt?

Whereas testing each Joomla 3 and Joomla 4, we bought and road-tested three Search engine marketing extensions:

  1. Joomla sh404sef
  2. Firecoders Route66
  3. 4SEO

So which will we suggest?

4SEO.

It’s as shut as you’ll get to a WordPress Search engine marketing plugin like YOAST for Joomla. You’ll get snippet previews (a function missing in lots of different Joomla Search engine marketing extensions) and full management over all the important thing on-page Search engine marketing fundamentals.

4SEO

Fairly merely, Joomla 4 and 4SEO go collectively like peas and carrots.

Any downsides?

Sort of. Sadly, 4SEO is a premium extension. So that you’ll have to pay for it.

Our desire would have been to make use of a free Search engine marketing extension. However sadly, we had been unable to seek out one which gave us wherever close to the extent of Search engine marketing management we had been in search of.

Notice: In the event you’re nonetheless on Joomla 3 (you need to actually improve!) we’d suggest going for sh404sef.

Joomla Search engine marketing: The nice, the unhealthy, and the ugly

Earlier than reviewing Joomla’s management of on-page Search engine marketing components, let’s run via among the Search engine marketing highlights (and lowlights) of the platform.

Good: Joomla 4 is lightning quick out-the-box

Joomla 3 was fairly quick…

…however Joomla 4 leaves it within the mud.

With out putting in any third-party extensions, our take a look at website (when operating on Cassiopeia) scored 99/100 on PageSpeed Insights cell.

joomla 4 pagespeed

What did we do to optimize the location’s pace?

Not a lot. Actually, all we did was allow Joomla 4’s glorious inbuilt caching. See this information for do it.

Notice: Joomla 4 is tremendous quick out-the-box. However poorly optimized templates, or sub-optimal server configurations might nonetheless gradual it down. So try our web page pace optimization information for a ton of suggestions.

The unhealthy: Search engine marketing parameters configured in separate admin space

That is extra of a touch upon the 4SEO extension, relatively than Joomla itself. And both method, it’s hardly a deal-breaker.

However in a really perfect world, we’d have appreciated to have seen the choices for configuring a person web page’s on-page Search engine marketing stored inside the article admin panel, relatively than in a separate admin space.

Notice: we must always level out that in case you’re modifying pages on the entrance finish this isn’t a problem as 4SEO helps entrance finish modifying. And anyway, we’re in all probability nitpicking…

The ugly: Out-the-box many fundamental Search engine marketing settings are buried

In the event you’re not utilizing an Search engine marketing extension like 4SEO, it’s simple to overlook fundamental Search engine marketing settings because of the method Joomla’s normal management panel is organized.

For instance, on an article, the Search engine marketing title is buried proper on the backside of the choices tab…

browser page title

…whereas the meta description is positioned beneath the publishing tab.

meta description

Wouldn’t it make extra sense to have these in the identical place?

On-Web page Search engine marketing Fundamentals: How does Joomla measure up?

Now let’s flip our consideration to manage of among the basic on-page Search engine marketing components.

Does Joomla cowl all of them?

Just about. We’d have appreciated to have seen higher management of templating for titles and meta descriptions. However aside from that, Joomla 4 with the 4SEO extension put in has you coated.

Right here’s our abstract once more.

joomla 4 seo

Notice: having management of an Search engine marketing rating issue shouldn’t be equal to its optimization. Search engine marketing audit instruments like Seobility provide recommendation on correctly optimize every aspect and discover errors in optimization which can be holding again your website. See our Search engine marketing audit information for extra data on totally optimize your web site.

Search engine marketing Titles and Meta Descriptions

Management in Joomla: sure

A web page’s title continues to be probably the most necessary on-page rating components. And a well-written meta description might help you get extra click-throughs (though Google gained’t all the time use it).

The excellent news is, you’ll be able to set web page titles and descriptions in an out-the-box Joomla 4 set up. However you’ll have to know the place to look.

The Search engine marketing title (which Joomla calls “Browser Web page Title”) is tucked away on the (VERY) backside of the choices panel…

Edit Article > Choices > Browser Web page Title

browser page title

…whereas the meta description setting is bundled beneath the “Publishing” tab.

Edit Article > Publishing > Metadata > Meta Description

meta description

We expect it might make extra sense to maintain these collectively. However no biggie.

In the event you’re utilizing 4SEO, you’ll be able to set a customized web page title and meta description for any web page within the extension’s admin space.

This can overwrite any earlier metas set natively in Joomla for the web page. And also you’ll additionally get a SERP preview for each cell and desktop.

Parts > 4SEO > Choose web page

4seo metadata

Candy.

In relation to templating titles, sadly, there’s no simple technique to do it.

You possibly can select to incorporate your website title in your titles as a prefix or suffix in your website’s international configuration.

System > World Configuration > Search engine marketing

joomla 4 site name

However once more, this will probably be overwritten in case you’ve set a customized title for a web page utilizing 4SEO.

And naturally, if you wish to write some customized code, you’re free to create a customized title (or meta description) format in your template (directions right here).

Be taught extra about Search engine marketing Titles and Meta Descriptions

Web page slug / URL

Management in Joomla: sure

We suggest creating brief, descriptive, 2-3 phrase slugs, together with the first key phrase (or phrase) for every web page. Use hyphens to separate phrases.

Earlier variations of Joomla did assist search engine pleasant URLs. However the course of was slightly fiddly and you’ll in all probability have needed to make use of an extension to handle them.

Fortuitously, Joomla 4 has made the method of enabling (and managing) search engine pleasant URLs far more easy.

Your first step is to allow “Search Engine Pleasant URLs” and “Use URL Rewriting” within the Search engine marketing panel of worldwide config.

System > World Configuration > Search engine marketing

search engine friendly urls

As soon as enabled, you’ll have to rename htaccess.txt (present in your website’s root listing) to .htaccess in case you haven’t achieved so already.

htaccess

After which you should utilize the “Alias” area to set a search engine pleasant slug for a person article.

Be taught extra about URL slugs/permalinks

Canonical URLs

Management in Joomla: sure

On smaller websites, you in all probability gained’t want to fret about this.

However you probably have a collection of comparable pages in your website — i.e. focusing on the identical key phrases, or with very small variations in content material — there could also be instances while you’ll need to set a canonical (grasp) URL.

This helps to keep away from duplicate content material points.

You possibly can set a customized canonical URL for any web page within the 4SEO admin space.

Parts > 4SEO > Choose web page > Canonical URL

canonical url

Index management (robots meta tag)

Management in Joomla: sure

The robots meta tag instructs Google to both index (1), or to not index (2) a web page:

  • <meta title=”robots” content material=”index, observe”> – index this web page please Google
  • <meta title=”robots” content material=”noindex, observe”> – ignore this web page please Google (however observe the hyperlinks on it)

You don’t really want the primary one as (assuming your web page meets their high quality requirements) indexing is Google’s default motion. But it surely doesn’t do any hurt to have it in place.

Joomla 4 permits you to set this within the “Publishing” tab of an article’s edit display.

Edit Article > Publishing > Metadata > Robots

Or alternatively, you’ll be able to management the robots meta tag in 4SEO.

noindex page

Be taught extra about index management

Heading Tags (h1, h2, h3 and so on)

Management in Joomla: sure

Heading tags (h1, h2, h3, and so on) assist Google perceive the construction and subject(s) of your web page.

They need to be correctly nested.

For instance, an h1 tag would usually be the principle subject (stage 1), an h2 might be a subtopic (stage 2), and an h3 might be a sub-sub subject (stage 3), and so on:

<h1>Pets</h1> (subject of the web page)

<h2>Goldfish</h2> (subtopic)

<h3>Caring on your goldfish</h3> (subtopic of goldfish)

<h4>Clear your fish’s tank often</h4> (subtopic of caring on your goldfish)

<h2>Cats</h2> (subtopic)

<h3>Caring on your cat</h3> (subtopic of cats)

Joomla helps a full vary of heading tags from H1-H6.

joomla 4 headings

Because it ought to!

Be taught extra about heading tags

Structured knowledge (aka schema)

Management in Joomla: sure

Structured knowledge (often known as schema) might help Google perceive:

  • the kind of content material on a web page (i.e. recipe, overview, product, article),
  • the entity behind the web site (i.e. group),
  • and may also be used to point out further search options (wealthy snippets)

In the event you’re not acquainted with structured knowledge and its impression on Search engine marketing, we suggest studying our wealthy snippets information.

You’ve obtained a number of choices for together with customized schema in your Joomla web site and pages.

First up, there are a number of specialised extensions, resembling this one from tassos.gr (free and paid variations obtainable).

However it’s also possible to handle schema with 4SEO.

Within the instance beneath, we’re going to make use of 4SEO so as to add FAQ schema to a web page. We’ll begin by including a brand new rule and giving it a reputation (for our use).

Parts > 4SEO > Structured Knowledge > New Rule > Title & Ordering

faq schema name

Subsequent, we’ll choose which situations will set off the rule.

On this case, we’re selecting a selected URL (yoga-classes). However you could possibly additionally select to point out the schema on all pages, particular classes, and even on particular dates.

Parts > 4SEO > Structured Knowledge > New Rule > When to run

joomla 4 schema

And eventually, we will select which kind of schema to show (i.e. FAQ web page, occasion, recipe, and so on), and the way it will likely be constructed (CSS selectors, shortcodes, or customized values).

Parts > 4SEO > Structured Knowledge > New Rule > What to do

joomla 4 structured data

It’s fairly intuitive and covers many of the widespread varieties of schema markup you would possibly need to use in your website.

The total course of is documented right here.

Be taught extra about structured knowledge and wealthy snippets

Picture Search engine marketing

Management in Joomla: sure

The three most necessary components of picture Search engine marketing are:

  • Alt textual content (description of the picture for display readers and engines like google)
  • File measurement (smaller = sooner = higher)
  • File title (we suggest utilizing descriptive file names)

Joomla 4’s normal WYSIWYG editor helps alt textual content…

joomla 4 alt text

…and so they gained’t mess along with your filenames. So so long as you utilize a descriptive filename when saving earlier than importing to Joomla, that’s what you’ll get.

As regards to optimizing picture file sizes, you’ll must deal with that differently.

Your choices are to both:

a) make sure that your photos are compressed earlier than importing, or

b) set up an extension to compress your photos for you

In the event you go for possibility b, then the Picture Recycle extension ought to do the trick.

image recycle extension

Notice: Joomla 4 consists of lazy loading for photos out-the-box, which is unquestionably going to assist with preliminary web page load instances. However we’d nonetheless suggest compressing and optimizing your photos.

Be taught extra about picture Search engine marketing

HTTPS

Do Joomla websites run over HTTPS? sure

HTTPS has been a confirmed Google rating sign since 2014.

And in 2022 there’s actually no excuse for any website to nonetheless be operating over HTTP. However any Search engine marketing advantages, it’s unsecure.

Ensuring your Joomla website runs over HTTPS is your (or your hosts) duty.

Be taught extra about HTTPS

Robots.txt file

Management in Joomla: sure

A robots.txt file lets you cease search engine bots from accessing sure areas of your website.

For instance, you may need a piece with user-generated content material that you simply don’t need crawled or listed by Google.

Since Joomla is self-hosted, you should utilize FTP to immediately edit your robots.txt file.

Or, in case you’re operating 4SEO it’s also possible to edit the file within the admin space.

Parts > 4SEO > Search engine marketing Instruments > Robots.txt

joomla 4 robots

Be taught extra about Robots.txt

XML Sitemaps

Generated by Joomla: sure

An XML sitemap helps Google discover (and index) all of the pages in your website.

And the excellent news is, 4SEO will robotically create a sitemap on your Joomla website.

Parts > 4SEO > Sitemaps

4seo sitemaps

Even higher? You possibly can exclude particular pages from the sitemap with the press of a button.

Parts > 4SEO > Pages > Sitemap checkbox

exclude page from sitemap

Be taught extra about XML Sitemaps

Are Joomla websites mobile-friendly?

One phrase reply: sure

When designing your Joomla website there’s a very good probability you’ll be specializing in the way it seems to be on desktop.

However cell site visitors overtook desktop site visitors in 2017. And Google now prioritizes the cell model of your website for crawling and indexing.

Most Joomla templates are mobile-friendly. And if yours shouldn’t be…

…then it’s time to discover a new one!

If Google does discover any points with the cell model of your web site, they’ll let you recognize in Search Console.

mobile issues - google search console

So hold an eye fixed out.

In conclusion: when mixed with the premium 4SEO extension, Joomla is a superb alternative for Search engine marketing

Joomla has been round for a very long time and has a comparatively massive group.

So it’s no actual shock that there will probably be an answer (be that with an extension or some code tinkering) for many technical Search engine marketing duties that you simply need to full.

Once we beforehand reviewed Joomla 3, we had been crucial of the drained admin interface and gaps in Search engine marketing performance. And we felt that every one issues thought-about, WordPress was in all probability a better option for Search engine marketing, and usually as a CMS.

However Joomla 4, when mixed with the premium 4SEO extension has (in the principle) stuffed the Search engine marketing gaps, and the slick new admin interface goes to make it far more interesting to new customers.

On prime of that, it’s tremendous quick.

Fairly frankly, after spending the previous couple of years in a slumber — permitting the competitors to march forward — Joomla looks like a undertaking that’s alive once more.

And with the best data and a strong Search engine marketing technique, there’s no purpose your Joomla website can’t rank extremely in Google.

So in case you’re operating a Joomla website, right here’s what we suggest:

  • run a full Search engine marketing audit (you’ll be able to observe this Search engine marketing audit information),
  • allocate time to fixing points and optimizing your website (the place doable),
  • deal with creating high-quality content material that helps your customers and totally solutions their search queries,
  • construct your website’s authority by incomes prime quality backlinks (try our advisable hyperlink constructing techniques)

Within the different elements of this collection, we reviewed the on-page Search engine marketing of Wix, Squarespace, GoDaddy and WordPress. And we’ve in contrast the Search engine marketing execs and cons of every CMS in a roundup submit, the place we additionally revealed the very best CMS for Search engine marketing in 2022.

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David McSweeney

David is our chief editor for knowledgeable Search engine marketing content material at Seobility. Unsurprisingly he loves Search engine marketing and writing. He combines 20+ years of expertise in Search engine marketing with the fervour for educating you guys optimize your web sites the best method.



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