One of the issues that most people have with WordPress, or any blogging or content manager, is the lack of SEO support. If you don’t know what SEO is, then you may be a little lost. SEO stands for search engine optimization. To put it in laymen terms, it is basically ways to get your website higher results on search engines like Google, Yahoo, MSN, etc. The idea is that the higher your web page is on a website, the more traffic you get, and the more traffic the more revenue. Here are two plugins that are essential for making for sure your WordPress powered site is SEO ready.
1. SEO Title Tags
One of the big components that SEO engineers follow is making for sure your site’s title is the best that it can be. Most SEO engineers will recommend fitting some keywords, and your site’s name into the title. WordPress’s default title format, will place your blog’s title first in your title tag followed by the title of the post. To make the site comply to most SEO suggestions, your blog’s title should come last in your title, and your post title first. This means that you should flip your default WordPress title. SEO Title Tag allows you to change the format, along with some additional options. One of the other features of SEO Title Tag, is it allows you to change what WordPress sees as the title of your post. For your users you can have a catchy title for them, and be able to use a more search friendly title also.
2. Google Sitemap Generator
One of the things that search engine do when they crawl your site is to look for a site map. This allows them to understand how your site’s layout is designed. Sitemaps also allow search engines learn more about your site. Here are some things, Google says sitemaps, can help them with:
- Your site has dynamic content.
- Your site has pages that aren’t easily discovered by Googlebot during the crawl process – for example, pages featuring rich AJAX or Flash.
- Your site is new and has few links to it. (Googlebot crawls the web by following links from one page to another, so if your site isn’t well linked, it may be hard for us to discover it.)
- Your site has a large archive of content pages that are not well linked to each other, or are not linked at all.
As you can see, from Google’s statement, sitemaps will allow their bots to find information that you may have missed yourself. Google Sitemap Generator plug in will make it even easier for your to create your sitemap. When you first add the plugin to your site, you have to manually create the file by going into the plugin settings and clicking “Rebuild Sitemap” to create the XML file. Once you have done that the script will update every time you create or edit. Along with updating your site map, this plugin will automatically notify Google, MSN, and Ask for you.
Adding these plugins to your WordPress install won’t get your site to any search engine’s first page of results, but it is a start in the right direction.