With more and more blogs appearing on the Internet every day, how can you increase your chances of having your blog appear at the top of the search engine rankings? Without adequate search engine rankings, you won’t get much traffic, and your blog will slide into obscurity.
Here are 10 unique WordPress plugins to help your blog become more search engine friendly.
1. All in one SEO Pack This handy plugin will help you take care of all your meta and title tags. It allows you to easily customize these important attributes without the need to dig into your html code.
2. Google XML Sitemaps This is a great tool that lets all the major search engines know where your pages exist. Sometimes the spiders won’t be able to find every page on your site, so it’s important to have this file so that they know they are there.
3. SEO Friendly Images Perhaps you didn’t know that the “Title” and “Alt” attributes on your images are important to search engines. Not only do these tags let the search engine know what your page is about, but they also increase the likelihood that your page will be found through alternative means, like Google Image Search.
4. WP-Super-Cache This plugin will create static html versions of each of your pages so that they will load faster in your users’ browsers. It also means that the Google spider will be able to access your site faster. Since the spider only spends a certain amount of time on each site, faster page loads mean more of your pages will be indexed. Google has also indicated that all things equal, faster pages will appear ahead of slower pages in the search engine results.
5. Robot Meta This plugin helps you to customize your robots.txt file. This is basically a file that allows you to give specific instructions to the search engine spiders when they visit your site. For example, you can prevent the spiders from indexing your category pages so that you aren’t penalized for duplicate content.
6. SEO Smart Link This is a plugin that will search through your content and automatically create links to other pages within your site. For example, if you have a post about poodle training tips, and you mention poodle training in another post, a link will automatically be created. This helps the search engines understand better what your site and each page is all about.
7. I Love Social Bookmarking This plugin will automatically insert an attractive drop-down menu so that your readers can automatically bookmark your website on any of the most popular social bookmarking sites. This helps the search engines find your content easier, and it can help boost your ranking if more people discover your site and link to it.
8. Nofollow Case by Case The “nofollow” attribute was created by Google in order to fight the growing problem of comment spam. By default, WordPress will automatically nofollow people who leave comments on your blog. Unfortunately, this has the undesirable side effect of discouraging people from commenting because they know they won’t get “credit” for their backlink. This plugin allows you to give credit to people for their comments, while at the same time discouraging spammers by allowing you to nofollow their backlinks on a case-by-case basis.
9. SEO No Duplicate WordPress Plugin If you happen to have duplicate content on your blog for some reason, this plugin allows you to specify which page you’d like Google to index. This allows you to put as much duplicate content on your blog as you wish while at the same time avoiding the dreaded duplicate content penalty.
10. Redirection This plugin lets you easily manage 301 redirects and 404 errors. Mismanaging these can have an adverse effect on your search engine rankings, and Google can even de-index you if you have too many 404 errors. Rather than fiddling with the access files of your website, you can manage these easily with this plugin.
Implement a few of these SEO plugins today, and you should see vastly improved search engine rankings in a short period of time. A few of them require absolutely no maintenance, so there is really no reason not to utilize them.