Archive for the ‘ Wordpress SEO ’ Category

Create robots.txt file for better SEO

SEO - Search Engine Optimization

It has been a half month since ThemeLib.com was created, not a long time, huh ?. Today, I decided to test how is my site in two popular Search Engines : Google and Yahoo.

Here is the result :

All of the results in Google is fine. They indexed my posts, my tags, my keywords, … But there are some problems with my site in Yahoo. Yahoo indexed my wp-login page and download links !!! How did it happen, huh ? If you have knowledge on SEO (Search Engine Optimization), these results are not good, really. After examining ThemeLib.com a few minutes, I realized that I have not created a Robots.txt file yet !!! Oh man, how can I forget it? :shock:

Introduction

The robots.txt file is used to instruct search engine robots about what pages on your website should be crawled and consequently indexed. Most websites have files and folders that are not relevant forsearch engines (like images, download links, admin files, …) therefore creating a robots.txt file can actually improve your website indexation.

How to Create a Robots.txt file

A robots.txt is just a simple text file that can be created with any text editor such as Notepad. If you are using WordPress, a sample robots.txt file would be :

User-agent: *
Disallow: /wp-
Disallow: /feed/
Disallow: /trackback/
Disallow: /download/

“User-agent: *” means that all the search engine (Google, Yahoo, MSN and so on) should use those instructions to crawl your website.

“Disallow: /wp-” will make sure that the search engines will not crawl the WordPress files. This line will exclude all files and foldes starting with “wp-” from the indexation, avoiding duplicated content and admin files. Similar to Disallow: /feed/, Disallow: /trackback/, …

After you created the robots.txt file just upload it to your root directory and DONE!

Further reading

Here are some good links that may useful for you if you want to know more about SEO and Robots.txt

Conclusion

You should always verify your site in Search Engine like Google, Yahoo to see if there are any problems with the indexing. Hope you do not make a mistake like me. If you need professional help, you can hire a SEO company

XABH88M229UZ

Evaluate CMS

How to Evaluate What CMS to Use

Content Management Systems (CMS) have evolved into more than just publishing content, but managing your workflow as well. CMS’s nowadays allow you to easily conceive, edit, index, and publish content, while giving designers and developers more flexibility in customizing their look and functionality. Although there are many that require advanced skills to operate successfully, this article is going to cover a select few that offer a balance between design, code, and end-user usability.

How to Evaluate What CMS to Use

This article will help you make an informed decision on what CMS is right for you.

Evaluating Content Management Systems

Evaluating content management systems can be an overwhelming task, not because it’s rocket science, but simply because there are tons of them to choose from. However, with a structured approach to your evaluation, things can be much easier and less intimidating. Let’s talk about the things you should look at when deciding what CMS to use; here are eight characteristics that a good CMS should have.

1. Intuitiveness: easy to understand and use

Your CMS should have a GUI (Graphical User Interface) that’s easy on the eyes, doesn’t have overly complicated options, and offers simplicity in its administration interface. A good interface means that tasks pertaining to creating and managing your content will be quicker, saving you a lot of time and increasing your productivity.

You should also look at it from an end user’s perspective: if you’re building a content management system for a client who’s not “technology-savvy” and you choose a solution that requires a Ph. D. in computer science, it’s less likely that they’ll be able to use the system (thus, defeating the whole purpose of a CMS, which is to empower its users).

2. Flexibility and Ease of Customization

Flexibility and Ease of Customization

When taking into consideration a content management system, make sure that you’re not obligated to use their design templates. A large quantity of CMS solutions allows you to customize your own design without major restrictions. If your CMS forces you to choose a fixed and unalterable design template, then you’re stripped of creative license and your website will look like everyone else’s.

CMS’s that offer customizations on templates are Expression Engine, WordPress, and Joomla just to name a few; these content management systems boast and promote their ability to be easily modified.

3. Extensibility via Plugins and Modules

Extensibility via Plugins and Modules

A good CMS will allow you incorporate helpful site features into your site by letting you extend the default configuration with plugins.

Plugins/extensions/modules (their terminology varies between different platforms) make a difference in terms of enhancing your site’s ability to provide your site users with useful options for interfacing with your site.

Look for a CMS with a powerful Application Programming Interface (API) in case you need to write your own extensions. Make sure that the CMS you’re considering already has a huge list of plugins. Though you might not need plugins right away, it’s important that this is available to you, later down the road.

4. No Need for Programming Knowledge

If you’re more “design-oriented” than anything else, make sure you select a CMS where you won’t need to have extensive programming abilities to publish and maintain your site.

There is a wide selection of CMS’s that have WYSIWYG editors, letting you edit content without the need for code. Having to edit text through HTML markup can be time consuming and takes you away from other aspects of your managing and building your site.

Complex sites, however, can require a CMS that will let you type in some code, edit files with extensions such as .php, .css, .html, and make changes without that need for a third-party source code editor.

5. Optimized for Performance and Speed

Taking into consideration the speed your pages load on the browser, and how fast your site can make a connection to a server, is vital. Choosing a CMS that is bulky will drive away visitors rather then bring them in. By visiting examples of live sites, you’ll be able to gauge somewhat how fast pages load.

Keep in mind that you can increase the load time of your site by choosing a good host, and adding plugins that cache/compress/minify feeds, CSS, JS and also caches your database objects. A case study on this subject can be found here.

A simple and free tool that you can use to evaluate page response times of your CMS candidates is YSlow. Install it and head on over to demo sites of your CMS’s to see how well it’s front-end performs.

6. Security

Security

Adequate security for your site is very important and must be in place in order to protect your content. There are CMS’s that allow you to install specific plugins and edit files/permissions in order to increase security levels. Make sure you choose a management system that offers modules to protect the integrity of your site. You can also protect your site by selecting a CMS that allows you to easily assign a different username and password to each user. This will let you view and control what each user has access to.

For WordPress, be sure to read about essential security tips and hacks for WordPress.

7. Documentation and Community Support

Nothing’s more frustrating than trying to figure out how to do something, and not have references online that you can take advantage of. One way to ensure that you won’t be running into this problem is by reading through the documentation of your candidate CMS’s. Also, a quick Google search will tell you how popular and well-documented a content management system is.

The availability (or lack thereof) of support from users of the system can be a deal maker or deal breaker. When users are active and proud of being part of the community, you not only have access to individuals that are more familiar with the system, but also, you can be assured that the project will be developed continually. Nothing’s worse than investing your resources and effort on a dead (or soon to be dead) project.

8. Emphasis on Web Standards and Best Practices

Content Management Systems developed under web standards guidelines and best practices will ensure that you won’t get burned later down the road. When applications are designed with best practices in mind, you can be assured ultimate cross-browser compatibility, lean-and-mean code, and ease of maintenance.

Look for content management systems that promote the use of web standards, and those that put it at the forefront of their development and design philosophy.

Some Key Content Management Systems to Consider

Now that you know the key characteristics of a good content management system, let’s take a look at a handful of major CMS’s that excel in most, if not all, of those areas.

ExpressionEngine

ExpressionEngine

ExpressionEngine (EE) is a flexible CMS for any scope of project. Within a few minutes, you’ll understand how to easily begin creating content. EE’s templating system lets you quickly see instant changes live. EE also has a multi-layered caching system to try and minimize the database usage. In addition, EE lets you embed and run PHP directly within its templates, very similar to WordPress.

ExpressionEngine has various features such as allowing you to have multiple sites with just one installation of their software. Just as we spoke in the above section dealing with connections and load times, EE has a unique template caching, query caching and tag caching keep the site running at a pretty quick pace by storing database queries in memory to reduce database connections when generating web pages.

WordPress

WordPress

WordPress is one of the most popular publishing platforms currently available in the market, and it’s known for being an excellent blogging platform. WordPress is free and open source, and it can be downloaded and installed as many times as you want.

WordPress installations are very quick and easy. It only takes a few minutes for your admin panel to be operational. If coding is not your strong suit, then no worries, WordPress offers its users a WYSIWYG editor (called Visual Editor).

Business Catalyst/Goodbary

Business Catalyst/Goodbary

Business Catalyst/Goodbary (owned by Adobe) is a powerful ecommerce CMS for developers. This content publishing platform has an array of useful features such as email marketing and in-depth site analytics. Business Catalyst gives you an easy way for your business to gain an online presence in no time. GB allows you to easily keep track of a customer’s actions, build and manage a customer database of any size, and sell your products and services online. Business Catalyst integrates well with a lot of popular payment systems such as PayPal, Google Checkout and pre-integrated gateways.

Joomla!

Joomla!

Joomla! is an advanced CMS with excellent function and content management. The installation process is pretty quick and easy. Joomla! is a complete CMS allowing you to build simple to advanced sites. Joomla also has super support for access control protocols like LDAP and OpenID, and can interface with popular and open API’s such as Google APIs.

With Joomla!, you’ll have more then 3,500 extensions at your disposal along with the support of an entire community. With a simple extension, you can add almost any needed functionality to your site.

One downside to Joomla! is that their heavy-artillery list of extensions often require you to purchase them. Hopefully, in the future, they will make their plugins free in order to aid users on a tight budget.

Drupal

Drupal

Drupal, a great open source CMS supported by a very active community, lets users publish content through any time with very little restrictions. Once the installation is finalized, you will discover features such as forums, user blogs, OpenID sign-ons, profiles and more. This CMS was written in PHP/MySQL for ease of customization and has one of the highest-regarded API’s in the open source content management system field.

Cushy CMS

Cushy CMS

Cushy CMS is a hosted and free content management system that’s lightweight, though powerful enough to jumpstart your site in a jiffy. With Cushy CMS, you have to add CSS styles to the sections that you will eventually change or edit. This CMS allows you to access and store content while it uploads this same data to server.

Cushy was built for content editors and designers and so it’s very simple and easy to manage. Being a SaaS, you don’t need to install or self-maintain the CMS.

TYPOlight

TYPOlight

TYPOlight is great for site builders that will be maintaining multiple sites and is an ideal solution for web developers. If you’re thinking about creating a simple or advanced site design with great functionality, then TYPOlight CMS can definitely get the job done for you.

RadiantCMS

RadiantCMS

RadiantCMS is a Ruby on Rails app. Radiant has a very active community for core support and updates. If you are a RoR developer, it’s right up your alley. Radiant has concentrated on making things much more user-friendly for end users and web designers. RadiantCMS also contains an innovative custom tagging language (called Radius) that’s easy to pick up.

SilverStripe

SilverStripe

SilverStripe is an open source application written on top of PHP and was designed with emphasis on flexibility. SilverStripe has many configurable options and is geared towards content-heavy websites.

This CMS was completely built on its own PHP framework, called Saphire. SS offers content version control and great SEO support. All users alike are welcome to customize the administration area for their clients or themselves.

The only downside with SS is that the default templates are garbage; however, that’s nothing a little elbow grease wouldn’t fix.

Textpattern CMS

Textpattern CMS

Textpattern CMS is a very popular system for many designers due to its simplicity.

Textpattern strives to provide great content management that produces quick, easy, and desirable web standards-compliant pages. There is no WYSIWYG editor because Textpattern utilizes textile markup for content generation.

The backend is very easy to use and follow. New users will learn the administration section with super speedy ease.

Alfresco

Alfresco

Alfresco is a JSP enterprise content management solution that’s quick and easy to install. Alfresco lets you drop files into folders and convert those files into interactive web documents. This CMS isn’t as easy to become familiar with when compared to others, however, with a little bit of time investment, you’ll definitely get the hang of it. Alfresco could be targeted more towards the intermediate developer, although its pure functionality allows it to become very usable. The administration GUI is very organized, well maintained, and easy to navigate through.

Got tips on how to evaluate the right CMS? Do you have experiences (good or bad) with the content management systems shown here? Talk to us about it in the comments.

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Optimizing WordPress for Search Engines

You have this amazing WordPress site, but for some reason the search engines just don’t show you much love. You post killer content, make it easy for users to share via their social networks, and people are subscribing to your RSS feed, indicating that they’re like what they’re reading. If you’ve tried everything to drive traffic to your website, and search engines still ignore your site, maybe you need to evaluate how search engine friendly your website is.

. Optimizing WordPress for Search Engines

I will go over a few steps you should take to optimize your WordPress installation for search engines. While WordPress has good SEO features out of the box, these tips will help you maximize your search engine results while also making sure your site is the best it can be.

1. Optimize your titles

By default, WordPress usually puts the title of your blog before the actual post title. Since most search engines only display the first 50-64 characters of your <title> tag, you want the actual blog post title to come first.

For example:

Tips for Making WordPress Friendly to Search Engines - YourSiteName.com

is better than:

YourSiteName.com - Tips for Making WordPress Friendly to Search Engines

Always be sure that the title of your post comes before anything else. Two main reasons are:

1. Search engines will like you more if the title of the post comes first. This helps them put more importance to the keywords in the title.

2. A descriptive and optimized title is one of the most important aspects of your page SEO. The title lets the search engine and users know exactly what this page is about before they visit it.

Optimize your titles

Use the All In One SEO plugin to keep the proper title formats over an entire blog without having to edit any template files. The above screenshot shows the settings we currently use on WPSwitch.

2. Use good meta descriptions

Most bloggers who use WordPress never do much on the SEO side for meta descriptions because they believe that the auto generated descriptions that comes standard with WordPress is good enough; but that’s not truly the case if you’re concerned about effective keyword indexing on search engines.

Use good meta descriptions

Your best chance of getting a high ranking on a per-post basis is by manually typing in a good description for every article you write. Again, I would suggest using the All In One SEO plugin as it allows you to do this very easily. By combining a keyword-rich title with a matching description, you are bound to see an increase in search traffic.

Use good meta descriptions

As you can see in the two screenshots above, by optimizing meta descriptions, one of our pages is able ranked highly (withing the first 5-10 results in Google) for a particular search term. Now that you know the importance of a detailed and keyword-rich description, I hope you see some great results.

3. Rewrite your URLs with permalinks

Permalinks are enhancements to your existing URLs that can improve search engine optimization by presenting your post, page, and archive URLs as something like:

http://sixrevisions.com/tools/managing-your-fonts/

rather than

http://sixrevisions.com/?p=423

Changing the default web addresses/URLs that WordPress generates to something more readable is effective to search engine optimization because it is presumed that URLs are taken into consideration when indexing and prioritizing search results. Often, these URLs are called “pretty URLs” because they’re much more readable and gives the users a clue as to what the web page will be about (as in the above comparison of URLs).

Making your permalinks friendlier and readable requires little more than a short trip to your WordPress admin panel. Once you are there, go to Settings > Permalinks and edit the settings as shown in this image below:

Use good meta descriptions

I prefer to include the category in my title and write the URLs like this:

/%category%/%postname%

This would result in a format that looks like:

http://example.com/the-category/the-post-title

if you want it even shorter you can exclude the category and just use the following value for the Custom Structure setting:

/%postname%/

If you are now just setting up a new WordPress site, then you are set to go. If your site has been up for a while, than I suggest using the redirection plugin so that your visitors will not get the 404 page after you rewrite your URLs to pretty URLs.

4. Use breadcrumbs

Using breadcrumbs on a WordPress site is often overlooked but can be a huge benefit for your readers and for SEO. Links with good key words that relate to the post topic and links to internal web pages is one of the ways search engines determine the relevance of a web page to search terms.

Use breadcrumbs

By using breadcrumbs, you make it easier for the readers to navigate and help the search engines to discover the structure of your website. On WPSwitch, we use the Breadcrumbs Plugin written by Joost De Valk. It only takes about five minutes to set up. (Find more helpful WordPress plugins).

5. Generate an XML Sitemap for search engines

An XML Sitemap is a listing of all the pages and posts on your website. This helps the search engine crawlers get a machine-readable structure of your websites. Having a properly structured sitemap has great benefits in the search engines.

Thanks to the massive amount of plugins, generating a sitemap with WordPress is super easy. I suggest using the XML Sitemaps.

Generate an XML Sitemap for search engines

This plugin will generate a special XML sitemap that will assist search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo and Ask.com in more extensively and accurately indexing your posts and pages. The plugin supports various WordPress generated pages as well as custom URLs. Additionally, it notifies all major search engines every time you create a post about the new content by pinging them.

6. Describe your post images meaningfully

Another often-neglected item in WordPress SEO is using proper and keyword-accurate alt and title attributes with images in a post or page. Adding a short description of your image using proper keywords can boost your search engine hits through image searches like the one from Google Images. Since you are using WordPress, adding alt and title attribute values to images is easy.

While saving your image, be sure to give a short and simple name with a dash between each keyword. For example, if you have a picture of a California Redwood tree, name it appropriately, such as california-redwood-tree.jpg or california_redwood_tree.jpg instead of something vague and non-descriptive like postimage03.jpg or screenshot20.jpg.

(read about tools for optimizing your images).

Once you place your image in a WordPress post or page, it will automatically use the title given as the proper alt description.

Describe your post images meaningfully

If it does not fill it in automatically, you can type a description in the title input field. By implementing these image attributes, it will also make it easier for people who use a screen reader to browse your site.

In summary: don’t neglect your images, name them properly, and assign meaningful title and alt attributes to them.

7. Link to related posts

One favorable method for helping search engines find content that is relevant to a given web page is adding a “related posts” section that links to other posts that have a connected subject.

By doing so, you also have the primary benefit of showing your readers other posts that they may want to read as well.

Many WordPress plugins will automatically generate a list of related posts for each of your posts. There are way to many too mention here, but you can find a list in the WordPress plugins section at WordPress.org just by searching “related posts“.

WPSwitch currently usees the Yet Another Related Posts Plugin and it works very well. This is our favorite because it gives you a templating system that allows control over how the related posts are displayed.

8. Use good keywords in post headings

Search engines give more weight to keyword items depending on what type of heading that is being used. To get the most juice out of your titles, make sure the post title is an <h1>.

The name of your blog should only be an <h1> on your front page. On single, post, and category pages, it should be no more than an <h3>, some even choose to use other HTML elements such as a <p> element to keep the markup semantic. The title of your site does not need to carry as much weight as the topic you are writing about.

To make sure your site name is only an <h1> on the home page, you can use the code below and modify it to work with your theme in the header.php file. This checks to see if you are on the home page or other pages and decides what heading tag to use. Most people use this link for the logo of the site linking back to the index.

<div id="logo">
<?php if(is_home()) : ?>
<h1>
  <a href="<?php echo get_option('home'); ?>"><?php bloginfo('name'); ?></a>
</h1>
<?php else : ?>
<a href="<?php echo get_option('home'); ?>"><?php bloginfo('name'); ?></a>
<?php endif;  ?>
</div>

When fixing your headings on posts or pages find the code that looks like this:

<h1><a href="<?php the_permalink(); ?>"><?php the_title(); ?></a></h1>

Headings are super easy to edit and are found in the single.php and page.php and various archive pages of your WordPress theme. If your current theme does not use headings in this manner, I suggest you take a few minutes to make this easy change.

9. Avoiding duplicate content with robots.txt

With WordPress showing the same posts on multiple pages like the index, tag pages, archives, author pages, and category pages, it is very easy to have duplicate content. Duplicate content, in the eyes of search engines, is frowned upon. By creating a robots.txt file, you can completely avoid this issue.

If you want to create your own robots.txt file, you can use the following:

User-agent: *
 	Allow: /

Disallow: /wp-content/
 	Disallow: /trackback/
 	Disallow: /wp-admin/
 	Disallow: /archives/
 	Disallow: /*?
 	Disallow: /*.js$
 	Disallow: /*.inc$
 	Disallow: /*.css$
 	Disallow: */trackback/
 	Disallow: /c/
 	Disallow: /author/
 	Disallow: /tag/

User-agent: Mediapartners-Google
 	Allow: /

User-agent: Adsbot-Google
 	Allow: /

User-agent: Googlebot-Image
 	Allow: /

User-agent: Googlebot-Mobile
 	Allow: /

#User-agent: ia_archiver-web.archive.org
 	#Disallow: /

Sitemap: http://wpswitch.com/robots.txt

This is directly from the current Robots.txt we’re using over at WPSwitch. If you use this, be sure to change the Disallow: /c/ to whatever category structure you are using like /category/, for example.

We also disabled indexing of all .js, css, and .inc files that shouldn’t be search-engine crawlable.

A much easier way if you are not code-savvy is to use the Robots Meta plugin. This modifies the default one made by WordPress from your original install.

Summary

I covered just a few easy ways to create WordPress sites that search engines will love. I know this seems like a lot of busy work, but if you sit down for a few hours, the return of your time investment will be worth your time. If you feel overwhelmed by the many things listed here, you don’t have to do them all at once. Take a few minutes out of every day and do them one at a time. By the end of the week, you will have an SEO optimized blog that you and the search engines will be proud of showing in their search results.

Source : http://sixrevisions.com/wordpress/optimizing-wordpress-for-search-engines/

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WordPress SEO – 10 Top Tips for Rank your WordPress Site

Although WordPress structured in a way that is generally quite good for search engines there are several things you can do to make it even better.

10 Top Tips to Rank your WordPress Site:

Follow the instructions below to greatly improve our search engine ranking for your wordpress blog.

1. Permalinks in WordPress:

Changing your permalink structure is probaly the one most important modification to your site.  Permalinks are  the URL (the web address of your page) is created when you write a new post or page. Your defualt permalink in wordpress will look something like this  http://somethinglikethis.com/?p=N, the the words used in your URL can have a big impact on how it is ranked you need to learn how to change it into something more keyword specific.

How to change the permalink structure in WordPress

In  Settings open the  Permalinks panel, you can choose one of the “common” structures or enter your own in the “Custom structure” field using the structure tags.

If you just want your post name after your domane name  like this www.somethinglikethis.co.uk/title-of-your-post/
choose custom and fill the box with /%postname%/

permalink settings

permalink settings in wordpress

It is important to note that if your site is already indexed and does not use a permalink structure you will need to 301 redirect all your links properly so that any existing links to your pages on the web do not come up 404 not found. there are wordpress plugins that will help you with this: Permalinks Migration Plugin and Permalink Redirect WordPress.

2.Choosing your own Permalink Text

Google doesn’t really like urls that are too long, your title may have words like ‘and’ in it or may simply have too many words in it to be a keyword rich url. To make your permalink search engine friendly and keyword rich click on the “Edit” button (under the title) and change it to whatever you like.

edit-permalink
editing the permalink in wordpress

3. Optimize Your Browser Titles

Just to clarify here now we are talking about the title in your browser (the meta title) and not the blog title. It is what will appear as your title when found by the search engines on the search results page. and also the meta title is what appears just above the window that your web page loads into. Search engines tend to put more emphasis on the first words of a post’s title. If you install the All In One SEO Pack –  you can specify the meta title tag without changing the title of the blog post.

4. Create Keyword-Rich Descriptions

The description is often what will appear below your post title in the search engine results. It can determine weather or not someone chooses to click on your page so grab their attention and include your keywords. the All in one SEO pack mentioned above gives you complete control of your descriptions.

5. Add Images To Your Posts

Not only do images make your posts look more appealing and will prompt more people to read them but they can also help with your SEO. You can attach  keywords to the “alt” and “title” attributes of each image. You images will then stand a good chance of being picked up in image searches. Also name your actual image with good keywords before you place it on the page.

6. Link Optimization

Not only can you use images to add keywords to your page you can also add keywords to your links.

7. Turn Your Comments On

Don’t forget to turn your comments on!  Every new comment will add  new content  being added to your site. Search engines love sites that are regularly updated. Also people expect to be able to interact with your site so give them the opportunity.

timestamp your post

8. Update your blog regularly

If you don’t have the time to blog on a regular basis it is a good idea to write a number of posts in one go and then timestamp them so that they will be released at well spaced intervals (daily is best but three times a week is still OK and better than posting three article a week on the same day).

To timestamp a post – in the “Publish” click on edit after Publish immediately” and date and time options will appear. Select a date and WordPress will automatically publish your post on the date and time you’ve specified. Great for when you are planning a holiday!

9. Using Social Media in your WordPress Site

Add social media buttons to your posts. You need to make it as easy as possible for your readers to share your content.  This will create backlinks to your site as well as generating traffic, both essential for good ranking. Sociable is a great plugin for adding social media buttons to your site, you can choose the social media sites you want to add and sociable will  automatically add the icons for you.

10. Regularly Check your Site

Regularly check to see if your site is working properly, that there are no broken links to your pages. Sign up for a google analytics account if you have not already done so and also set up a webmaster tools account.

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