6 Things You Should Do to Make Google Love Your Blog
Marketing blogs frequently publish lists of tips to help WordPress users attract Google, but those tips are often time-consuming and complicated. These six tweaks take little time and deliver maximum SEO juice for the time spent installing and implementing them.
By default, your WordPress URLs will look like this: http://www.yourblog.com/?p=123.
In the left menu, click on “Settings” and then on “Permalinks”. Tick the radio button next to “Custom Structure” and enter “/%postname%/“ into the text box. Click on “Save”.
Now your blog post URLs will read http://www.yourblog.com/keyword-optimized-title, giving it the maximum SEO boost you can get from your URL.
Redirect non-WWW to WWW Domain
Google treats yourblog.com and www.yourblog.com as two different pages. The end result can be Google results that include hundreds of duplicate pages.
Click on “Settings” and then “General”. Enter http://www.yourblog.com in the “Blog Address” text box and click “Save”.
Now, yourblog.com will automatically redirect to www.yourblog.com, reducing the appearance of duplicate content on your website.
Live Link Your Post Titles
Your chosen WordPress theme probably already makes the title of your post a live link. If it doesn’t, modify the Page and Main Index templates for your theme.
Under “Appearance”, click “Editor”. Open the “Main Index Template” and find the code for the post title. It will probably read something like
(without the \). Replace that with
(Again, leaving out the \’s). Click “Save”.
Do the same thing in the “Page Template”. Now your post titles will be live links, which can add to the on-page SEO value for your blog posts and main index page.
Optimize Page Titles
The default “Title” tag for the home page on WordPress blogs is Blog Name >> Blog Tagline. Take advantage of this by using keywords in your blog name and tagline.
Alternatively, you can use a plugin that allows you to specify custom page titles for every page and post on your blog. Simple SEO adds a box to your “Add Post” and “Add Page” screens so you can add SEO page titles to your posts and pages.
Link to Related Posts
Internal links help your SEO rankings, but finding related posts manually can be time-consuming. A related-posts plugin simplifies the process of finding and linking to related posts, improves your SEO and increase blog readership. YARPP (Yet Another Related Posts Plugin) does a masterful job of finding related posts and gives you a great deal of flexibility in how the links are displayed on your pages.
Use a Complete SEO Plugin
The easiest SEO solution for WordPress is a comprehensive SEO plugin. Skip the single-issue plugins, such as title optimizers and permalink writers, and choose a plugin that provides a fully integrated suite of SEO functions. WordPress SEO by Yoast is one of the most complete SEO solutions for WordPress, and it’s completely free. Yoast’s SEO plugin takes you through a screen-by-screen process to make the most-suggested SEO tweaks to your WordPress setup, including many not covered here.
Optimizing your blog and blog posts for search engines brings more attention to your posts and increases your audience. These simple tweaks take about an hour to set up but the SEO benefits will last for as long as your blog exists.
This article was written by Richard Petersen who is an SEO Consultant at Doublespark which is a SEO agency based in Cambridgeshire. In his spare time is enjoys swimming and DJing and chatting on Twitter.