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Q: WordPress blogs and search engine optimization ( Answered,   3 Comments )
Subject: WordPress blogs and search engine optimization
Category: Computers > Internet
Asked by: videodummy-ga
List Price: $100.00
Posted: 05 Sep 2006 08:18 PDT
Expires: 05 Oct 2006 08:18 PDT
Question ID: 762381
I am getting ready to set up a wordpress blog. I want to make sure we
do everything possible to make it as search-engine-friendly as we can
with every single post we make.

Please give me a ***DETAILED*** list of exactly what we need to do
with each blog post (structure, etc.), which SPECIFIC plugins we
should use, settings to make internally to the WordPress software,
which sites it should "ping" and how to make sure it pings those sites
automatically with every post, and anything else we need to know to
make sure that we're doing it exactly correct from the beginning.

Please! I'm paying extra and need no stone unturned with this answer.

Request for Question Clarification by theta-ga on 05 Sep 2006 11:24 PDT
Hi videodummy-ga,
  I am working on compiling a list of activities you can undertake to
make your blog search engine friendly. However, before i post it as an
answer, I was wondering if it would be possible for you to tell  what
topic the blog will be on. This might enable me to further optimise
the steps you have to undertake.

Clarification of Question by videodummy-ga on 05 Sep 2006 14:01 PDT
This blog will be about real estate investing, but we will do more on
other niche topics.

My desire is not to learn how to operate a real estate investing blog,
but to develop a checklist of things to do specifically with WordPress
to make sure we have the utmost potential for favorable search engine

This would include what plugins to use, what settings to have them on,
structure of the blog posts, specific internal settings on WordPress,

So, I'm interested in specific details on software configuration, etc.

Hope that makes sense.

Request for Question Clarification by easterangel-ga on 21 Sep 2006 19:20 PDT

Seeing that this question hasn't been touched upon the past few days I
will try to look at it.

I am not an SEO expert but I have a suggestion for you in answering
this question. Would you be willing to accept links to articles that
deals with SEO tips on Wordpress blogs? I have seen some articles that
discusses how to make search engine friendly Wordpress blogs.

Will this be ok with you?

Subject: Re: WordPress blogs and search engine optimization
Answered By: theta-ga on 28 Sep 2006 22:50 PDT
Hi videodummy-ga,
   My apologies for the delay in the posting. I have been culling
wordpress optimisation information from the various resources I have
found online. I am posting the rough draft of the answer here. Note
that while it contains refrences to the Wordpress plugins you can use,
I still have to put in the links to the download locations and install
instructions for most of the plugins. Note that the plugins are
indicated in the document in this format: [plugin name].
   Since this has become a bigger document than I had expected, I
wanted you to take a look at this draft writeup and tell me which
areas you want to be clarified with more detailed instructions. I will
then update this doc and post it as the final answer.
   Note that I will be out of town on work for the next two three
days. Therefore, I plan to put up the completed doc, with all the
plugin information as well as whatever clarification you might need,
by Tuesday.
   You can download the draft writeup from:

Hope this helps. Please post a request for clarification detailing
what information you want me to add to the document before I post it
as the final answer.
Once again, my apologies for the delay.


Clarification of Answer by theta-ga on 03 Oct 2006 11:57 PDT
Hi videodummy-ga,
   Have you had the opportunity to look at the draft I posted above?
Are there any areas on which you want more detailed information?
   If not, I will be posting the final write-up later in the day today.

Clarification of Answer by theta-ga on 04 Oct 2006 22:27 PDT
Hi videodummy-ga,
   As mentioned in my previous post, I am now posting the final answer
to the question. The tips listed in the solution have been culled from
the various Wordpress SEO articles on the web. The 'Plugins' section
lists the installation and download links for all the plugins
mentioned in the tips. Although there are numerous plugins available
for WordPress, I have included only those that received recommendation
in multiple SEO articles.
   Also note that Search Engine Optimisation is not an exact science.
These are tips and plugins that have worked for a bunch of people, but
your mileage may vary.
   For your convenience, I have put up a better formatted copy of the
article as MS Word document. You can download this document from:

   The text version of the article is included below:

- Use HTML Header Tags
Search engines weigh headers (h1, h2, h3 ?) higher than other content
(p, li ?), so it is important that you write good page titles and
category names that also contains

keywords matching the content. The best thing is to only have 1-2 h1
tags on each page, e.g. the blog title and newest blog post.
Put posts content?s code as high as you can in <body>, the code block
of your sidebar menu should follow the main content.

- Use HTML  META Tags
The META keyword and description tags can be inserted on the page to
give search engines a better idea of the content on the page. You can
use the AutoMeta plugin to

automatically generate and insert these tags on your blog.
- Optimize your theme mark-up
Ensure that your theme mark-up (both CSS and HTML) follows the W3C
standard guidelines.
You can use the W3C Validation Service [] to
validate that the HTML in your code is well formed.

- Include Alt tags
Use alt tags for your images, and be sure that they match what the
image shows - this helps Google image search and other image search

- Optimise the page title format
The page title should highlight keywords for your blog and the current
blog post. Since some search engines truncate titles when they pass a
particular length, you need to

put your important keywords up front. Search engines might also count
words which appear earlier in the title as more important.
In most WP themes, you?ll find the page title tag in the Header
Template, and the default version usually looks like this :
       <title><?php bloginfo('name'); ?><?php wp_title(); ?></title>
Ideally you would want to put the current blog post title in the
beginning of your page title, followed by the name of the blog. The
code you need to put into your template

for this to happen is provided below:
       <title><?php if (is_home()) { print "whatever title I want to
have on my blog home page."; } else { wp_title(' '); print " : ";
bloginfo('name'); } ?></title>
This tweak does a couple different things. First, it allows you to use
a more descriptive, keyword-rich title for your blog?s main page. And
second, for the individual post

pages, it will use the title of your post as the page title.
Instead of making these changes manually, you can use the SEO Title
Tag plugin to generate the optimised title.
Make your page titles a link
It?s naturally where users click, and it is a keyword-rich inward link
. Cross link to your own posts and pages in your own content. Do this
by linking your keywords to the

relevant postings. To facilitate this, you can install the  SH-Autolink plugin.

- Register your Domain for a Lengthy Period 
A recent patent by Google indicates that it now looks at the length of
your domain?s registration in ranking it. It does this because many
spam sites have short

registrations and a longer one indicates that you?re building a site
with substance and are in it for the long haul.

- Permalinks
Use a permalink structure and be sure that the post title is in it. In
the WordPress administration go to Options>Permalinks and select a
permalink structure, or make your

A recommended permalink structure is: /%category/%postname%/. It drops
the default inclusion of date information in favor of more descriptive
URLs, with a significant

keyword inside (that is the category name).
Remember: unless you?re familiar with HTTP code status redirects AND
search engines indexing behaviour, DO NOT CHANGE YOUR PERMALINK
STRUCTURE once your website gets

indexed and posts linked.
- Tag your posts
A tag cloud is a direct and very fast way to see what a blog is mainly
about, and find posts focused on a specific subject. Using tags makes
sure to keep a lot of

cross-linking from posts to posts, which eventually will let search
engines dig deeper into your site. The use of tags also helps drive
traffic to your blog from services

like Technorati.
You can use the Ultimate Tag Warrior plugin to generate tags and tag
clouds for your blog.
- Related posts
Adding a ?related posts? link under your articles helps search engines
dig deeper into your site. It also helps your readers find other
content that might interest them.

Use the [Related Posts] plugin and make list up a list of five related
posts below your content for great deep linking and possible
- Landing sites
When visitors is referred to your site from a search engine, they are
definitely looking for something specific - often they just roughly
check the page they land on and

then closes the window if what they are looking for isn?t there. Help
them by showing them posts related to their search on your blog. The
Landing Sites plugin will do this

for you.
- Categories 
 Organizing content into categories helps both visitors and search
engines to easily understand what your articles are about, and to
search them. Open a category for each

topic, and be descriptive in its name choose. Then, be strict when
it?s time to categorize your posts. Don?t forget to place a link to
the filing categories, for each post,

in your template!
You can make use of the King Categories Widget to organize your categories.
- Make your site more discoverable
Make it easy for users to bookmark or link to your site on online
bookmarks sites or forums like Reddit and Digg. A favourable listing
in any of these can drive a lot of

traffic to your website. You can use the Sociable plugin to do this.
This plugin has an interface to add links to all your blog posts to
allow readers to bookmark them with

their favourite bookmarking sites. Site owners have full control over
how many and which icons are displayed.
Translator:  This is a very useful plugin if you are trying to drive
traffic from foreign language search engines. This plugin dynamically
translates your English blog

pages and posts into eight languages.

- Choose the right post title
From your reader?s perspective, a descriptive and compelling title
helps them decide if your post is worth reading or not. From an SEO
perspective, think about the keywords

or phrases people might type into a search box to find your post 2
months from now, and use those words or phrases in your post title.
For maximum benefit, try to avoid

titles that are cute, clever or cryptic. 
Choose your keywords carefully per posting, and get those words in your Post Title.
- Write quality content 
Write quality content, it is the most important. Write quality content
that people want to read. Stick to a few topics, and write mainly
about those. Quality content might

bring you to and as well.
- Content
If the subject is really wide, write a post for each sub-topic, and
exhaust it in the article.
Start your post with one or two sentences that summarizes what the
article is about.
Repeat key-words and key-phrases of interest inside your post, and
emphasize them with a bolder font weight.
Once you?ve finished, read again your text, and make it shorter.
Summarize, and don?t go off-topic.
Don?t forget to check text for errors: avoid misspelling, typos, and
grammar mistakes!
Try to post new content regularly.

- Link well
Linked resources should help your post communication, deepening the
subject. To do it well, simply follow these rules:
If you cite a resource, link it. If you think that a resource can be
useful to your readers, link it, too. But don?t place random or
useless links.
Place links naturally into text, don?t put them in a meaningless list
at the end of your post.: a link should be a phrase that fits good
into the flowing of text.
Give descriptive names to link anchors: don?t call a link "click here".
Give more descriptive titles to your links.
Use regular links: no JavaScript, no server-side click counters, no
cloaked nor shorted URLs.
These rules applies both to internal links (links that point to a page
of the same domain they?re on) and external links (a link pointing to
another resource on the web).

- Open your post to comments 
Open comments, encourage visitors to comment your posts: place an
evident Comment link, ask questions in your articles; in other words:
set up some space for your visitors

in which they can express themselves. Reply to your visitor?s comments.
You can use the Akismet plugin to fight comment spam.
- Track back other?s posts
If your post deals with something discussed on another blog?s post, or
if you take a post just as reference to write your own, then link it
and use the Trackback function

to send a ping to the post you refer to. This will put a link to your
post in the post you referred to. This helps make your post more
discoverable and will drive users and

search engines to your site.

- Google sitemaps 
Google has a feature for webmasters, called Sitemaps. This helps
Google index your site, and lets you weigh what content on your site,
you find most important. You can use

the Google Sitemaps Generator do generate a sitemap for your blog.
- Pinging aggregators 
Set up your WordPress to ping a list of aggregators automatically in
Options>Writing.  You can set up this feature in Options >> Writing.
For a comprehensive list, take a

look at [].
Ari Paparo has compiled a list of blog directories[ ] that you can submit your blog to.
Use the Smart Update Pinger plugin to intelligently ping websites and
prevent ping spam.
- Get backlinks 
Write to your friends, to other bloggers, and trade links with them. 
 When writing an article, be sure to link back to your sources (if
these are blogs, in most cases, a trackback link to your blog will be
shown on their site). Be sure to

link to your blog in forum signatures, mail signatures etc. as well.
If you write a quality post on a topic that you know will interest
another blogger that it might be worth shooting them a short and
polite email letting them know of your

post. Don?t be offended if they don?t link up, but you might just find
that they do and that in addition to the direct traffic that the link
generates that it helps build

your own page rank in the search engines.

- Avoid this
Avoid hidden text or hidden links.
Don?t employ cloaking or sneaky redirects.
Don?t send automated queries to Google.
Don?t load pages with irrelevant words.
Don?t create pages that install viruses, trojans, or other badware.
Don?t create multiple pages, sub domains, or domains with
substantially duplicate content.
Avoid ?doorway? pages created just for search engines, or other
?cookie cutter? approaches such as affiliate programs with little or
no original content.
Tricks intended to improve search engine rankings.

This section contains download and installation links for all the
plug-ins mentioned in the above article.

1. Ultimate Tag Warrior
One of the most popular plugins for wordpress, it allows you to add
tags, tag clouds, META tags to you blog.
Installation & Usage Instructions:
Creating Tag Clouds:

2. AutoMeta
This plug-in will automatically generate and include HTML Meta Tags
and Technorati Tags based on the full text of your post. Basically, it
provides functionality that is

less flexible and comprehensive than the Ultimate Tag Warrior plugin
mentioned above. You can use this plugin if you have trouble
configuring UTW, otherwise give it a pass.

The link provided above contains download, installation and
customization instructions.

3. SEO Title Tag
Allows you to easily optimise the page and post titles on your blog.
The above link contains both the download and the installation

4. Landing Sites
This plugin will enable you to direct your blog visitors to the
relevant posts whenever they visit your blog through a search engine.
The link contains both the download

and the installation instructions.

5. Kings Categories Widget
This widget easily allows you to create and customize category lists for your blog.

6. Sociable
Easily allows your readers to bookmark your blog post on any of the
popular social bookmarking websites. The install instructions are
included with the download package.

7. Angsuman?s Translator Plugin Pro
Price: $30
This plugin automatically translates your bog pages into eight
different languages and links the translated content to you blog.
Useful if you want to drive traffic to your

blog from foreign language search engines.

8. SH-Autolink
Automatically  turns predefined words into links. You can use this to
automatically add links to your old posts from any new posts.

9. Akismet
This is an antispam plugin that ships by default with Wordpress 2.0
and above. It has to be activated by entering your API
key. For more information, see:

10. Google Sitemaps Generator
his plugin generates a Google Sitemaps compliant sitemap of your
WordPress blog, which hekps Google index your site faster.

11. Smart Update Pinger
Smart Update Pinger replaces the built-in update ping functionality.
Instead of always pinging when saving a post, the plugin only pings
when the post has not previously

been published. Prevents ping spam.

The tips and plugin recommendations listed above were collected from
the articles listed below.

- Blog promotion tools

- Graywolf?s SEO Blog: SEO Plugins for Wordpress
[ ]

- WordPress Plugins needed to Optimize your Blog for Search Engines

- How to Optimize your Blog?s Search Engine Ranking

- My First Week With WordPress: 10 Plugins That I Can?t Live Without 
[ ]

- 10 SEO Tips for WordPress
[  ]

- WordPress and SEO Tips and Techniques
[ ]

- WordPress and SEO
[ ]

- Optimize Wordpress for Search Engines
[ ]

- Search Engine Optimization for Blogs - The Complete ProBlogger Guide to SEO

- Ultimate WordPress SEO Tips
[ ]

- Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Tips for Wordpress 2.0

- Wordpress SEO: First Steps
[ ]

- SEO Your Wordpress Blog
[ ]


Hope this helps.
If you need any clarifications, just ask!


Google Search Terms Used:

wordpress blog seo
wordpress seo plugin
Subject: Re: WordPress blogs and search engine optimization
From: theta-ga on 05 Sep 2006 21:47 PDT
Hi videodummy-ga,
   Thanks for the clarification. I am updating the checklist, and will
post the answer here in a day or two.

Subject: Re: WordPress blogs and search engine optimization
From: videodummy-ga on 07 Sep 2006 09:53 PDT
Sounds good... thanks :-)
Subject: Re: WordPress blogs and search engine optimization
From: videodummy-ga on 12 Sep 2006 05:49 PDT
I take it you're not going to respond?

How do I get one of the researchers to respond now?

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