A DIY Guide for WordPress Blog SEO

WordPress SEO Do It Yourself
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 factor 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:

WordPress Sitemap:

Lets start with Sitemap, which is a 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 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 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 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 factor of better search engine ranking is offering the best content in search index. With Panda updates, Google penalizes the domain with low quality content and if you would refer 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. A quick and easy way is to add noindex tag to these pages. You can use Meta robots or WordPress SEO by yoast plugin to do it quickly.

For existing WordPress sites SEO, you can refer to my earlier guide on:

WordPress Permalink:

Permalink in simple word is URL of your blog post. For example: domain.com/wordpress-seo-guide.

By default, WordPress Permalink is not search 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.

Imp: If you are planning to change 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 utilising 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?

These are some of the advantages which I listed and now lets stick to main topic and that is: Optimizing your WordPress images for search engine. Unlike text content, Search engine bots uses 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 have 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 blunder 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 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 of your own and learn SEO yourself. One of the biggest advantage 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 further optimize and learn about SEO of WordPress Blog:

Here is my 38 minute WordPress SEO Presentation at WordCamp 2014: (Watch it to learn everything about SEO of WordPress Blog)

This is one simple DIY SEO guide for WordPress Blogger and if you have any additional questions, feel free to ask me via comments. If you enjoyed this article, do share it on Facebook and Google plus.

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Article By
Harsh Agrawal is a blog scientist and a passionate blogger. He is blogging since 2008 & writes about Blogging, SEO, Make money online & tech. His blog, ShoutMeLoud receives 1 million Pageviews/month and have over 700K subscribers.


COMMENTs ( 15 )

  1. Rahul Malik says

    I’ve been struggling with WordPress SEO from a very long time, thanks for your guide. I will be implementing all the points mentioned her. Can you tell more on how to write unique meta descriptions, because it is sometimes difficult to think a unique one every time writing a new blog post?

  2. says

    Thanks for the Great tips harsha…

    Especially I like the content for image SEO. I didn’t follow the proper naming convetion for the images yet. I’m trying to follow now, let see the result.

  3. says

    Great tips eespecially the one about to properly naming image file means . Thing is the other day I stumbled upon a site of a photographer but all the images were named improperly. It’s a huge issue for him and it took me a while to actually make my point and prove that to him.

  4. Neha Mehra says

    Been using Yoast from quite long and it is one of the most productive plugin ever.Love reading your blog Harsh.Cheers

  5. jasneet says

    Yeah its an informative article,but sir if In the permalink date nd month is also showing?
    then wt to do sir?

  6. says

    Yoast is a very good SEO plugin, but the best SEO is still to write quality content. Content that people wanna share with their friends and family.

  7. Deepali Sharma says

    thanks for a complete seo guide… i have now shifted to Yoast SEO plugin as you suggested. hope to see some good results…

  8. Mokshis says

    A very detailed and informative post on SEO. Thanks for sharing it with everyone.
    The pick of the lot for me was Smush it plugin. Earlier i used to open each image in Photoshop and had to save it as web optimized.
    I am yet to use the plugin but i am sure it will save some valuable time for sure.

  9. david says

    Thanks Harsh, after reading this post I discovered that one of my sitemaps had not been submitted in google webmaster tools.

    Thanks for sharing this info. good tip on the footer link too.

  10. Igor P. says

    Unique and compelling content (like this one :) ) is also a great addition to this list. What’s unique about WordPress is that you have practically unlimited possibilities using plugins, for SEO or other aspects of your blog. It’s interesting to find out how many % of additional functionality of all the blogs using WordPress, are supported by plugins. Regards!

  11. Vipin Pandey says

    I am using Sitemap for my blog and will give link in footer. I am not using Flicker to drive traffic. I am going to use it. I am happy to know that I am using most of DIY SEO tips after reading this post.

    Thanks Harsh