Why is blogging such a great tool for web site promotion, and why is a hosted WordPress blog such a an excellent choice?
Blogging is a great SEO method because a blog that has frequent posts, will attract the attention of Google, and will be visited on a regular basis. How often should a blog be updated ? That depends on what you want to accomplish from your blog.
The basic answer is, as often as possible. You cannot post too much on a blog. If you only post a few times a year or once a month, your blog will not be indexed by Google very often, and it will take a very long time to gain good search engine position. If you post once a week, that is better, but once a day, if possible, is ideal for serious web site promotion.
It is not just the frequency of posts to your blog that will gain search engine position. All posts should contain high quality relevant information. The information should be consistent with the title of the blog, and all of the keywords and descriptive information.
Why is WordPress so good for web site promotion ? Simply put, WordPress is the most complete software that comes SEO ready upon the initial installation. No other software has more built-in SEO than WordPress. Not only that, but you have a great deal of ongoing SEO development from WordPress, and from SEO experts working on SEO plugins. This will insure that WordPress will remain one of the premier SEO platforms in the future.
WordPress SEO is actually quite a sophisticated area of search engine optimization, but I will not be covering any advanced techniques in this post, I will keep it as simple as possible, and stick to the basics. Although WordPress comes with many pre-built site SEO features, it is not perfect, and it does need some assistance. The way that you enhance WordPress is through plugins.
Step 1 – Host your WordPress Blog. Let’s start with the most basic question, where should I host my WordPress blog ? This is the easiest one of all to answer. If you are using WordPress for personal reasons, it is perfectly fine to set-up a free WordPress blog. If you want to have control over your blog, and take advantage of as many options as possible, you will need to get your own domain name and a hosting service.
This is unquestionably the best way to start web site promotion for your business. From every conceivable point of view, if you have a hosted WordPress blog, it will be to your advantage.
Step 2 – Check title and tag lines. Let’s assume you have your WordPress blog installed. What should you do next ? The very first thing that you should do for SEO after you install your WordPress blog is, check the title and tag line of your blog.
Under Settings / General from your dashboard, check the title of your blog. Check to make sure the title of your blog is your main keyword according to your own keyword research. It should have been installed during the setup. Your primary keyword for your site is a good choice for the title of your blog.
Next check your tag line. It should not be the name of your company, unless the name of your company is a famous brand name. If you really feel you have to brand the site with your company name, put this information into the meta description. Tag lines should be additional keywords. In the beginning, just provide a description, you can always optimize the tag lines later.
The foundation for web site promotion is good keyword research. SEO without good keyword research is really putting the cart before the horse.
Next, make sure that your site has tag lines. Note: this is not part of the WordPress installation, and is often overlooked. For larger companies it is often recommended to use a catchy phrase, like an ad slogan, but if you do not have a recognized brand for your company, you can just provide a natural description using your keywords.
Step 3 – Enable the Akismet plugin. This plugin is already preinstalled on all new WordPress installations. You just need to apply for a WordPress API key from the WordPress site.
Step 4 – Install All in One SEO Pack plugin. This is one of the most popular plugins for SEO. By default, WordPress does not create SEO friendly URLS for your posts. This is taken care of by this plugin automatically. From the options configuration panel you can control a number of additional SEO options. There are 20 different options here. All you have to do is click on the name of the option listed on the left, and a complete help describes each option and what it does.
At this point, your blog is about 90 percent SEO optimized. There are just a few additional plugins that need to be installed.
Step 5 – Install Google XML Sitemaps plugin. This plugin creates a rather sophisticated routine for the Google robots to follow when they crawl your site.
Step 6 – Install Robots meta plugin. This is an important file that tells Google robots what not to look at on your site. There are some areas that are just do not need to be crawled.
Step 7 – Install SEO friendly images plugin. This is an often overlooked area, but even if you have tons of images on your site, they will all be given alt and title attributes.
There are many more sophisticated plugins and advanced options that you could add to this list, but this will give you all the essentials you need to make your WordPress Blog SEO friendly and increase your chance of a successful web site promtion using good site SEO strategy.
Above all, remember that although these on-site configurations are important, on-page configuration is not nearly as important as off-page factors. Site SEO is just the beginning of web site promotion.