Setting up a WordPress site is fairly easy, even if you opted for the more complex WordPress.org option. However, the task of making it a successful and highly trafficked blog or website requires a lot more work, which inevitably leaves room for potential SEO mistakes that can sidetrack your progress.
While its true that you cant account for every single SEO mistake before it happens, there are several common errors that can be detrimental to your search engine rankings, which can ultimately have a negative impact on your sites traffic and growth potential during the early stages.
When you start building a WordPress site, there is always a subtle suspicion that youre doing something really wrong, potentially impacting your development time and go live date. Address those suspicions first so that your site starts strong and is scalable over time. Be sure to avoid these unforgiving errors:
1. Not Optimizing Blog Titles
Search engine optimization is a buzz phrase with a lot of confusing information attached to it. All it really means is that youre looking to write content with keywords that fulfill the following two requirements as much as possible:
- Low competition
- High amount of monthly queries
Using Googles Keyword Planner, find keywords that have a high volume of searches but that have few other sites ranking for the same term. Once you find that keyword, it should fit into the title as naturally as possible and should likewise be used in the body of the text several times.
2. Categorizing Content Incorrectly
Using tags for blog posts (particularlybusiness blog posts) can be a bit tricky because as time progresses and your site evolves, categories and your own ideas can shift and change.
A little preplanning in this area can be helpful as it can save you the trouble of having to go back and re-categorize posts. Make sure that youre using tags and categories in the way that would make the most sense to your readers, and be careful to avoid category rabbit trails.
3. Not Using Google Authorship
Google Authorship is a simple tool that allows you to link all of the online content that youve written to your Google Plus profile (even content that is posted on other sites).
One of the most significant perks is that it posts a picture of you next to anything youve authored that comes up in search results. As a result, this leads to a higher click-through rate and more traffic because people are more likely to trust a link with a photo of a real person next to it.
4. Not Submitting a Sitemap to Google
A sitemap is essentially a diagram of your site that makes it easy for search engines to crawl and index your pages. Whenever you start your WordPress site, submitting a sitemap to Google should be on the top of your priority list.
Sitemaps are submitted viaGoogle Webmaster Tools and can be generating by any of the following websites:
If you do this from the beginning, it only needs to happen once, then Google will easily be able to crawl and index your content. If that happens quickly, then your content is more likely to start showing up in search engine results.
Covering the Basics
What were doing here is just covering the basic SEO mistakes that are typically made when booting up a fresh WordPress site. By taking care of these items and making them a priority, you will then be able to concentrate more on content creation and building up your social media accounts.
Camille McClane is a freelance writer and online entrepreneur living in the Los Angeles area. As a writer for BlogWranglers, she has the opportunity share her knowledge of all things WordPress, and has helped both businesses of all sizes help to transform their blog into a successful site.