In the Blog Traffic series this is the third article. If you are using WordPress as blogging platform then this post is must for you. In my last post I gave you short 70 tips to get traffic to your blog, there I mentioned that your blog should be Search Engine Optimized. Elaborating that point, today I am going to explain you how to do SEO of your WordPress Blog. Lets start :
There are many WordPress themes out there but before installing them I recommend you to make some changes to it so as to make it search engine friendly. According to the topics, I’ve divided this tutorial into three parts :
- Changing WordPress settings for better natural traffic
- WordPress template optimization
- SEO plugins for WordPress
I already wrote an article Most Important Settings To Change After Installing New WordPress Blog. It covers all the settings to make, to make your blog SEO friendly and also has additional information.
Before reading WordPress template optimization tips, I recommend you to read my article on 26 Tips To Make Your Blog Design Better (read it first, apply those tips to your blog and then come back here again)
To make your WordPress template search engine optimized the first thing you do is add Breadcrumb to your blog. Breadcrumbs increases readers navigation and also helps search engines like Google, Bing to know the structure of your blog. So, it is important to have breadcrumb. If you are new to PHP, do not worry here is a plugin called Yoast Breadcrumb, install it and it will automatically add breadcrumb above the post title in single.php page.
Optimize Post title
When we click on any post, the page that opens is called single.php page. In this page, do not make your post title clickable i.e remove hyperlinks from post title. We do it because it causes crawling problem to search engines so it is good to remove the hyperlink from it.To do this, open your WordPress dashboard and under Appearance, click on Editor.
Here, open single.php file and search for the following code
<a href=”<?php the_permalink() ?>”><?php the_title(); ?></a>
Now, replace this code with
<a href=”<?php the_permalink() ?>”>
And save your work. That’s it.
Paging is must for every blog, it helps the bots to reach every page of your blog. To add paging to your blog, install a plugin called WP-PageNavi. It will automatically add paging to your blog.
Redefine your sidebar
Sidebar plays a vital role in your blog, so it should have proper widgets, refer to this post of mine where I’ve written about How To Make Most Out Of Your Sidebar!.
I’ve seen many WordPress themes that does not display tags. For better SEO, tags are must, sometimes a post comes at top in search results due to tags also. To add tags to your article open single.php page and paste the following code where you want to display tags.
<?php the_tags(); ?>
Compress CSS code
Google loves fast loading templates, so it is must that your template should load quickly. So, it is recommended to compress your CSS code, by doing so, your template will load at a much faster rate. Compressing code will not affect your design but will help the php files to search for classes and ids more quickly. You can use this plugin called CSS Compress plugin to compress CSS code.
That’s it for template optimization, now lets learn about some SEO plugins
There are two SEO plugins that I know works very well. I am also using it and I recommend you the same :
Must have plugin, to give a separate post title, tags and description to your articles. It automatically optimizes your titles for search engines and also generates meta tags.
Again a must have plugin that automatically updates all images with ALT and TITLE tag so that you can get traffic from Google Images.
Well these were some on-site SEO tips and tricks and for off-site SEO tips subscribe to feeds so that you do not miss any article. It is totally free.
Must Read : 10 SEO Tips for your Blog