5 SEO Best Practices for Joomla

Optimize your Joomla website for search rankings and attract more traffic with SEO-friendly features like custom URLs, title tag and meta description creators, and a 404 error detector.
Last Updated November 1, 2023

Unless you want to build your website from scratch, you can benefit from using a content management system (CMS). You may have heard of some of the better-known CMS options already — WordPress and Squarespace, for example.

One of the less well-known options is Joomla. Despite not being as popular as a tool like WordPress, it’s been around almost as long, and it has plenty to offer. So, if WordPress and Squarespace aren’t what you’re looking for, Joomla could be a great option.

The question, though, is how Joomla affects your search engine optimization (SEO). After all, building your website will be a waste of time if you have no way to get that site in front of your audience. So, how can you optimize Joomla for SEO?

That’s what we’ll talk about on this page. We’ll cover:

Keep reading to find out more!

Is Joomla SEO-friendly?

The short answer is yes. However, it’s a bit more complicated than that.

Historically, Joomla hasn’t been great for SEO. But in recent years, it’s improved a lot, making it a perfectly acceptable CMS for SEO purposes. Even so, you’ll only be able to drive successful SEO in Joomla if you follow the right steps. If not, it won’t be automatically optimized for search rankings.

Also, Joomla’s layout is different from those of other CMS options like WordPress. So if you’re familiar with different CMS tools, you’ll have to readjust to get the best SEO results from Joomla.

Who is Joomla good for?

Joomla is an advanced, robust CMS that’s ideal for medium- to large-sized businesses. That’s not to say that smaller businesses can’t use it — it’s a solid option for companies of all shapes and sizes. Nothing about it limits its benefits to a particular type of business.

Joomla also offers various ecommerce functionalities, making it a good option if you want to set up an online store to sell your products. However, if ecommerce is your absolute top priority, a more directly ecommerce-purposed CMS like Shopify could be better.

Joomla features that promote SEO

We’ve mentioned that Joomla has the potential to be great for SEO. So, where does that potential stem from? What are the best features in Joomla for SEO?

Some of the SEO-friendly features in Joomla include:

  • Title tag and meta description creators
  • Custom URLs for integrating keywords
  • 404 error detector
  • And more!

By harnessing these features, you can help shape up your site to attract more traffic and rank higher in search results.

5 SEO best practices for Joomla

There are a few different tactics you can use to improve your SEO in Joomla, including:

  1. Set up SEO-friendly URLs
  2. Use Joomla SEO extensions
  3. Compress your files
  4. Make sure search engines can access your images
  5. Make your site accessible

Keep reading to learn more about each one!

1. Set up SEO-friendly URLs

One of the first SEO tactics you’ll want to implement on your Joomla site is creating SEO-friendly URLs. Your URLs should be descriptive and easy to read, with a target keyword included if possible.

Consider the difference between these two URLs:



You’re more likely to click on the second URL, right? It’s much clearer about what you can expect on the page and immediately shows its relevancy to your search. 

To make your URLs SEO-friendly in Joomla, you’ll want to complete a few steps:

  1. Under Global Configuration, enable Search Engine Friendly URLs.
  2. In the same section, enable the option to Use URL Rewriting.
  3. In your site’s root folder, rewrite the .htaccess.txt file to .htaccess.

2. Use Joomla SEO extensions

Setting your site up for organic success requires a lot of work. That’s why one of our top SEO best practices for Joomla is to use the SEO extensions available for your Joomla site. 

Extensions can help you handle all aspects of SEO, such as:

  • Implementing structured data
  • Managing title tags and meta descriptions
  • Improving your site’s accessibility
  • And more

Browse the available Joomla extensions, but check reviews to determine whether the extension is reliable and works as intended.

Joomla! Extensions Directory

3. Compress your files

Page speed is a critical ranking factor and also impacts user experience. The larger the files on your site, the longer they’ll take to load. That’s why compressing your files is a vital way to improve your Joomla SEO. For websites, the most common compression method is GZIP page compression.

You can use GZIP page compression for your Joomla site with a simple toggle button. Under Global Configuration, navigate to the Server tab and enable GZIP Page Compression.

4. Make sure search engines can access your images

Often, images provide relevant content that improves your page in the eyes of search engines. As a result, you’ll want to ensure search engines can access them. 

To check this setting in Joomla, go to your robots.txt file. Look for an /images/ script and remove it if needed. 

And while we’re on the topic of images for SEO, you should also include image alt text. Alt text improves your site’s accessibility by describing your image for users who might not be able to see it.

5. Make your site accessible

Speaking of accessibility, you’ll want to prioritize it sitewide — not just for your images. On a broad scale, that means you should make your website easy to navigate, which you can do using a navigation bar at the top of the page.

More specifically, though, you should make your site accessible to those with visual impairments. Some ways you can do that are:

  • Making the text on your site accessible to screen readers
  • Using good color contrast across your site
  • Avoiding stuffing your image alt text with keywords

By making your site more accessible, not only will you attract more traffic, but you’ll also rank higher in Google, since it favors accessible sites.

Learn more about SEO best practices on SEO.com

Now that you know some of tips and tricks for improving your SEO in Joomla, you can get to work putting them into action. But optimizing your Joomla SEO will require more than just the basic steps on this list. To learn more about SEO, you can check out some other helpful content here on SEO.com!

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