Starting with a Blog is fun, and it’s more fun when you are starting without any other materialistic motive such as money or fame, as in such scenario you Blog only for passion and you don’t care about many essential factors like Blog design, SEO, and many other factors. But if you are like me who is Blogging as a career choice, it will become a serious work for you, and you have to take care of all vital elements of your Blog.
Specially WordPress SEO is one of the most important factors for increasing your blog visibility in Search engines. Here I’m sharing some of the easy to implement search engine optimization technique for a WordPress blog, which you can do it yourself.
DIY SEO guide for WordPress:
Lets start with Sitemap, which is an XML file containing an index of all important link (Posts, Pages, Tags, categories) of your Blog. This sitemap file will help search engine bots to effectively discover your blog content and index them in the search engine. There are many WordPress Sitemap plugins out there, but I prefer using Google XML sitemap which is one of the oldest and reliable one out there. All you need to do is install and activate the plugin and go to plugin settings and generate a sitemap for your blog.
By default, your sitemap link will be http://domain.com/sitemap.xml (Ex. sitemap)
Now, go to Google Webmaster tool and Bing Webmaster tool, submit and verify your site and submit a sitemap. This will help them to crawl and index all internal pages of your Blog.
- Bonus tip: Also add a Sitemap link at the footer of your Blog and also in the Robots.txt of your Blog.
Control Indexing of your WordPress Blog:
One of the most important factors of better search engine ranking is offering the best content in the search index.
With Panda updates, Google penalizes the domain with low-quality content, and if you referred to my guide on what is low-quality content, you would realize your pages like Tags, Categories, Author archive are not useful for search engine index.
For existing WordPress sites SEO, you can refer to my earlier guide on:
- How to Noindex WordPress categories and tags
- How to deindex WordPress Tags, Categories, and Attachments
Permalink in simple word is URL of your blog post. For example domain.com/wordpress-seo-guide.
By default, WordPress Permalink is not searched engine friendly and doesn’t give any additional value in on page optimization of your blog post. As soon as you install WordPress, you should go ahead and set up WordPress permalink.
In the latest version, WordPress offers post name permalink as an option and simply select it to give a search engine friendly URL.
- Read: Which is the best WordPress Permalink for SEO?
Imp: If you are planning to change the permalink of any existing WordPress site, make sure you refer to this guide and take a backup of your Blog database before making any change.
Image Alt tag and Image Sitemap:
I’m not sure how many of you are utilizing images to improve the presentation of your content, but if you are not doing it, you should start adding images in your Blog post. If you are asking Why you should?
- It will make your post presentation better
- It will make your content Pinnable on Pinterest
- It will help you drive more organic traffic via Images search.
- You can submit original images to Flickr and get extra traffic and free Backlinks.
These are some of the advantages which I listed and now lets stick to the main topic and that is: Optimizing your WordPress images for the search engine. Unlike text content, Search engine bots use Alt tag to understand and rank an image.
You can use SEO friendly images plugin to create auto ALT tag for all your images but make sure your images name are meaningful. Use simple naming convention like WordPress-SEO.jpeg instead of DSC001.jpeg.
Also, if your blog has lots of images, you can consider creating a sitemap of WordPress images and submit it to Google Webmaster tools for deep indexing. I have tried this method, and this not only helped me to rank fairly high for some competitive Keywords but also helped me to drive targeted traffic. Also, use Smush.It plugin to reduce your image size.
Use Unique Meta Title and Description:
One of the biggest SEO blunders which I made when I started Blogging is, not using unique Meta Title and Meta description while writing a Blog post.
A good, catchy and Keyword rich Meta title will help your content in getting better ranking and higher CTR. Similarly, a Unique Meta description (in 160 characters) will help searchers to better understand your content, and you can utilize the power of the call to action to get better CTR again.
There are many plugins out there which will help you to achieve this. Starting from all in one SEO, Platinum SEO or one of the best in the market right now: WordPress SEO by Yoast.
I do offer SEO optimization service for WordPress blog, but it’s always a good idea to do it on your own and learn SEO yourself. One of the biggest advantages of using WordPress is easy and quick SEO with the help of SEO plugins, but all you need is proper configuration to make most out of it.
Here are some of the related WordPress SEO article, which will help you to optimize further and learn about SEO of WordPress Blog:
- The Problem with unlimited WordPress SEO plugins
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