WordPress is easily one of the most user friendly and attractive places to host your website; and for only $30 a year you can have full control over every aspect of the look and feel of your site. Additionally, you can purchase a custom theme which will allow you to have a professional and functioning website for a fraction of the cost of hiring a web developer and then paying for hosting, the URL, and maintenance.
The only problem is: once you hand over the back-end control to WordPress, your SEO efforts become a little more challenging. While WordPress does allow – and even encourages – search engines to crawl your blog, the only thing it will be looking at is content, tags and categories. It also offers features which will help your SEO efforts, such as allowing you to select the format for your post URLs. That said, it’s nice to have a little more say in the SEO process, so how can you claw back some of that control and up your page ranking?
There are many WordPress plugins available that can help with your SEO strategy; some aim to do everything automatically, while others leave you with complete control. Here are some of the top 3 I’ve found which are available to download at the moment:
This plugin can automatically create your META tags, and optimises your page titles for search engines. It also claims to be the ‘ONLY plugin to provide SEO Integration for WP e-Commerce sites.’ It’s fully compatible with Google Analytics too. With over 10 million downloads so far and an average rating of just under 4 out of 5 stars, it’s a highly popular plugin.
This plugin offers a little more functionality, and some incredible features. This plugin gives a snippet view of how things will look in search engines results, offers a page analysis, and allows you to choose which pages show in search engines, among many other features. I has a rating of just under 5 out of 5 stars and has been downloaded more than 1.2 million times.
Dubbed as the ultimate all-in-one SEO plugin, this particular one packs an impressive punch. It allows you to take back control of your title and meta tags, has a slug optimiser and allows you to add HTML to your head tag. It’s the slightly more technical of the three options, so it’s perfect for those who like to get into the nitty gritty code and can work their way around HTML. Lagging slightly behind with 600,000 downloads and a 4 star rating, it’s still work a look just for the impressive features.
Happy Easter Everyone!