WordPress SEO For Increased Readership
What Is The Point Of WordPress SEO
Having created a few customer sites with WordPress this naturally leads to them asking about how they can get their site to be more popular with new readers. So in order to explain from the bottom up, here are some of the basic principles to move you from unknown to ultra famous*!
So if we look at some of the steps to make things super spanky with regards to SEO on your pages.
Let’s take a moment to consider what it is that we are hoping to achieve with our SEO efforts. We probably want to create a way for users to be able to find content that is relevant to what they are looking for. So if we dissect a search to consider what is going on.
What Is The Purpose Of A Search Engine?
Most of the time a user (for the sake of this example let’s call the user Frank**), will visit a search engine such as Google or Bing with a demand for information burning in their mind. Frank will type in the keywords of his search, in this example case Frank is looking for ‘guilt-free organic vegan brownies’ and has gone to Google to satisfy this demand for information. It is hoped, and these days expected, that the search results will be pretty relevant to the keyword terms, and the key UK search engines do a pretty decent job with this.
So at the time of publication, the top result is for a company called GourmetRaw, a producer of the brownies that satisfy our keywords. At least that is the statement that they have made on their site. Obviously search engines do their best to use supporting information to determine the honesty of the content of the sites they index. If the listing came back with sites that had no relevance to your search, then it can be considered that the search had failed.
What Does One Do For Improved WordPress SEO
From the situation above, it makes sense for website content writers to assist search engines to correctly reference their website content, and there are some key elements to making this happen. As luck would have it, WordPress boffins around the world are looking to help you with a range of free plugins. In this article we are considering All in One SEO Pack
Installing The Plugin
The process for installing any plugin is most easily achieved through the WordPress Administration area, often located at http://<domain-name>/wp-admin URL. The default would be expected to look similar to:
Once logged into this you will see the dashboard of the WordPress site. It should look something like:
From the menu on the left, select Plugins (see the image below for the option with a 1 beside it):
This will take you to the Plugin page, here select to Add New plugin:
Once clicked, enter the name of the plugin in the textfield:
Type ‘All in One SEO Pack’ in the textfield area, and click Search Plugins. The top search result should be All in One SEO Pack from Michael Torbert.
What To Expect Post Install
Having installed the plugin it is recommended to look into the plugin settings, these can be views from Plugins -> All in One SEO Pack -> Options configuration panel or Settings -> All in One SEO. If you have the means to, a donation to the developer of the plugin is a kind and warming gesture, and may win you some good karma points if you believe in that stuff.
In the configuration area it will be seen that a Home Title and a Home Description can be defined, and these will be the search engine information that will be displayed when your site is found for a particular keyword phrase. To clarify how the values in these filed relate to what you will see in the search engine we provide the following example. If we put in the values:
Home Title: Green Website Design, Ethical SEO & CO2 Neutral Hosting
Home Description: Green website design, ethical SEO services & CO2 Neutral hosting are our specialities. We’re an eco-friendly company based in Surrey, UK.
Save these values. When the search engines index this page, they will extract these values and use them to define the page title and a summary of the page content to the user:
With each Page and Post in WordPress it will be seen that there is a new area that allows submission of these values for every entry. It will be often be shown below the main content entry area, labelled All in One SEO Pack, and contains a Title textfield, a Description textfield and a Keywords textfield. An example for this blog entry would be similar to the following image:
For each Page or Post these values must be completed with a Title that states the content of the article in less than 60 characters, and the Description around 150 characters. The keywords field may want to be left for now as it is highly suspected that the search engines put little value on the entries into this field.
The words used in the Title and Description will have an influence on how the site is indexed by the search engine. So, if you have a Page or a Post that relates to camel earmuffs, then you would want to write something related to those words, rather than something obscure and off-topic, that does nothing to help the search engine and little to help your web page.
* Please note that ultra famous is perhaps a massive exaggeration, but it should improve how search engines such as Google find your content, and give potential readers a better idea of your content.
** Frank is not his real name, and is being used to protect Brian’s identity.