WordCamp Vancouver 2010 - Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Tips for WordPress


Published on

Presentation Title:
Get Found Easier and Grow Your Business: 5 Tips for Better Search Engine Optimization with WordPress

Presentation Description:
Right out of the box, WordPress makes websites and blogs that are highly optimized for search engines as compared to traditional HTML and content management system (CMS) websites. Learn how, with a little extra time and effort, you can take your WordPress site to the next level of search engine optimization. In this elementary-level presentation, Mark will show you the basics of keyword research and five essential techniques to optimize your WordPress pages and posts for better search engine rankings.

Mark was a speaker at the first WordCamp Seattle (2009) and presents regularly to Seattle business groups on search engine optimization and social media marketing. He is the President of Seattle search engine optimization and online marketing firm McBuzz Communications. Mark offers free WordPress tutorials and support on his blog, Business Blogging 101. Find him on Twitter at @mcbuzz

1 Like
  • Be the first to comment

No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide
  • IntroductionGet Found Easier and Grow Your BusinessThe other name for this presentation is: How to Make More Money with WordPress!Because good SEO means more visibility for your site, and that means more traffic and more people contacting you for your services.
  • What you will learn in the next 30 minutesHOW TO:Choose a good keywordRecord rankingOptimize for that keywordCheck resultsRemember that we are looking at one keyword example. When you optimize IRL, you want to do so with a huge bunch/cluster/flock/herd of keywords.Only step 3 involves WordPress. 1, 2 and 4 are just as important. We need to do these so that step 3 produces the best possible results.
  • If things weren’t as easy as WordPress makes them, you probably would not do them.We love WordPress because we can do things ourselves.No webmaster. No developer.We can build and maintain pages and posts. Connect with clients and prospective clients.Add a widget, customize a sidebar, add images and video. It’s a huge improvement over old-school HTML sites.SEO with WordPress can be just as easy.
  • What do you have a website for?Make New ConnectionsGrow Your BusinessProvide InformationBuild Your BrandExpress YourselfSEO helps you do all of these better!
  • What do you have a website for?Make New ConnectionsGrow Your BusinessProvide InformationBuild Your BrandExpress YourselfSEO helps you do all of these better!
  • What do you have a website for?Make New ConnectionsGrow Your BusinessProvide InformationBuild Your BrandExpress YourselfSEO helps you do all of these better!
  • What do you have a website for?Make New ConnectionsGrow Your BusinessProvide InformationBuild Your BrandExpress YourselfSEO helps you do all of these better!
  • What do you have a website for?Make New ConnectionsGrow Your BusinessProvide InformationBuild Your BrandExpress YourselfSEOhelps you do all of these better!
  • SEO = More BusinessSounds cliché. But it’s not at all.Some of my best clients found me through Google search results, not paid search, natural search.The same can be true for you and your business.Connections via Google are valuable. Long-lasting relationships can result.In other words, it’s worth your time.
  • What is search engine optimization? 
  • SEO is a relationship between four things: a user (someone searching for something), a keyword, a search engine and your website (and other websites).
  • You can even think of SEO as a relationship between three things: In a sense, we are not optimizing for the user, we are optimizing for the keyword!
  • But this is not the best way to think about SEO, because keywords don’t visit your website, people do. This is why the first principle of Google’s corporate philosophy is “Focus on the user, and all else will follow.” (#6 is “You can make money without doing evil.” http://www.google.com/corporate/tenthings.html )
  • You can use SEO to drive tons of traffic to your website, but unless people like what they find there, it’s not going to get you anywhere. Bottom line: think about the user first. How do you do that? Make the content on your website easy to find and easy to understand. That includes site navigation and design because these are what make the information accessible. Plenty of clear, detailed writing goes a long way toward your end goals of more readers, more customers and more sales. It’s hard to overemphasize the importance of good writing.
  • Here are some preparatory steps. A. Install the All in One SEO Pack plugin. We need this to change important (hidden) elements on our web pages and posts. B. We don’t know if we succeed unless we have something to compare to: a baseline.  This means prepare to measure results. To do that, we need to install Google Analytics. http://www.google.com/analytics/ For this you need a Google account or a Gmail account. You can use a plugin to add the code to your web pages. http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/google-analytics-for-wordpress/ 
  • Coming up with a keyword.You need to combine:What you do, sell, etc. And…What some one would use to search. What someone would type into a search engine.
  • Beware of jargon, corporate-speak (unless you are trying to reach people who search using corporate-speak), hype, unusual or in-house terminology.Compare:Naturally self-packaged yellow fruit snack vs.bananasYou can imagine that these mean the same thing. But no one searches for the former. You want your competition to be on page one for most keywords you target.
  • The first step in search engine optimization is choosing keywords. You want to pick keywords that bring the right kind of visitor to your site. I might bring lots of visitors to mcbuzz.com by putting the keyword “free wordpress tutorials” all over my site, but if my goal is to sell WordPress sites that start at $1800.00, most of those visitors are never going to be good candidates for a sale. So “free wordpress tutorials” will not be a good keyword to optimize for.
  • A better choice: WordPress Websites Seattle
  • John Smith’s co-worker Dave Jones got tired of John hogging all the models while surfing the web looking for free digital stock photography during staff meetings. So he ratted him out. John got downsized. After looking for a job for 6 months, John decided to become a business coach. He built himself a nice WordPress website featuring lots of free digital stock photography.
  • Coming up with a keyword. Let’s try a main-stream example.Business coach. There is a category on Biznik for this designation.There is the Worldwide Association of Business Coaches. Look at their website and you will find (probably) lots of good keywords related to the profession.
  • We can easily think of some related keywords:business coachbusiness coachingexecutive coachlife coachself-actualization coachNote that “executive” is closer than “life” to “business”. Are you more of a life coach or an executive coach?This is important stuff. You are deciding how you will talk about your business and what you do.Think of the “elevator pitch”. You meet someone and they ask what you do. If you say, “self-actualization coach”, you have some explaining to do. If you say “business coach”, chances are your listener will have a better idea of what that’s about. Talk about your business in terms people understand.
  • There are many helpful keyword tools.
  • Here’s output from a free Google keyword tool. You can get a sense of which keywords are searched for most often. Competition here refers to Google AdWords (PPC) advertising: what people are willing to pay to bid on a keyword.
  • Google Suggest – or Google Search Suggest – offers suggestions that complete a keyword as you type. These are recent searches. Another way to see what people search for most often.
  • Google 7 pack are local results –Sponsored links are ads that people pay to have them show up on the results page.business coach vancouverorvancouver business coachNote that these are techinically two different keywords. Google usually treats them as synonyms. It other cases, it does not.There is (usually) less competition for “business coach vancouver” than for “business coach”.
  • Here are the top results for “business coach vancouver” further down the page. I have circled the “HTML page title” in these results. This is what Google always shows at the top of a search result listing, like “Life coach vancouver, life coaches vancouver, business coach”
  • The HTML page title is the part of your website that counts the most for search optimization. It’s the #1 search ranking factorthat you control. (Inbound links are more influential, but you can’t control these.)
  • Here’s page one of results for “richmondbcbusienss coach”. Note that there are very few Sponsored links compared to the results for “business coach vancouver”. Competition is not as fierce for this keyword.
  • None of the top results on this page has “Richmond Business Coach” in the HTML page title. This is great news! Here’s a niche for John Smith.
  • Now that I have settled on a keyword, let’s say I want to use this keyword on my Home page because – more than any other keyword – it captures what I do and it’s something that people would use to search for this.Before I do any optimization, I’m going to check my site’s ranking for that keyword. What position is my site in? Or is it even listed in the first 100 results? Each results page has 10 listings. If I think I’m in the top 30 or 40 listings, I can flip through till I find my site. I’ll count the positions on the page and record mine somewhere so that I can refer to it a few weeks or months from now. If I am #5 on the 3rd page, I’m at position #25. You can also take a screen shot of the page.
  • The RANK CHECKER tool for Firefox.Aaron Wall at SEOBook.com made this. At the moment, I can’t get it to export to a CSV file. Too bad!
  • You can do some great comparisons across the three main search engines. (But if you can’t export to CSV, it’s not very useful for tracking.)
  • Now let’s optimize!
  • Now that I have recorded the rank of my page (for example, let’s say it’s the Home page), I can optimize the page. First I will optimize the HTML page title.
  • Here’s the same page title shown in a Firefox browser.
  • Here’s how you create a TITLE for your page or post in WordPress.
  • By defaultWordPress makes the HTML page title the same as the page or post title.
  • If I have a static Home page, called Home, WordPress may make the word “Home” part of your HTML page title for the Home page. Or it may use the blog title, or both. Of course, “Home” is totally useless as a page title, or as a heading on your home page!
  • Fortunately, I can use the All in One SEO Pack plugin to make a custom HTML title for the Home page.Under Settings “All in One SEO”, I find the box for “Home Title”. This is a unique location for the Home page.) Add title and description to all other pages on the site using the individual Pages > Edit (Page Name) or Posts > Edit (Post Name). I put in my keywords. Here’s what I put in:“West Seattle Business Coach | John Smith | Business Coaching, Executive Coaching | West Seattle,”I want people to find me by name, so I add my name. All in One tells me that 60 characters is the recommended length. Take this with a grain of salt. Assume that the first words get the most emphasis, and if you put too many words in here, you water down the effectiveness of the title. Click the “Update Options” button. (This is 95 chars. 71 chars ends at end of “Executive”.) This is 72: west seattle business coach – john smith – business & executive coaching
  • Tip #2Write a snazzy page description that makes people want to read more (include keywords)
  • Where do we see the description? Usually, that’s what Google and the others show underneath the page title in search results. In this case, the page does not have one, so Google takes it from somewhere on the visible page.The description is very valuable because you know where it’s going to appear. You know that people will read it. Write something that will make them want to click, and use your keywords. Google will highlight them for you.
  • In the same location, under Settings > “All in One SEO”, is the box for “Home Description”. Here’s what I put in:“Looking for a West Seattle Business Coach? Create a solid business plan, improve your marketing strategy. Business coach John Smith will help you reach your goals.” This is 162 chars. Google will show up to 160. If you want it all to show, stick to that.I am not a writer, but you can make this text compelling by including your keywords and including benefitsthat customers will get from your product or service. Make it about the user.All in One SEO Pack tells me that 130 characters is the recommended length for a description. Take this with a grain of salt. But, again, assume that the first words get the most emphasis, and if you put too many words in here, you water down the effectiveness of the title. Don’t go over 180 or so. Click the “Update Options” button.
  • All in One SEO Pack. Here’s where you add or change the Title and Description for all posts and other pages (besides the Home page).
  • Tip #3. This one is easy. Customize permalinks.
  • Here’s what permalinks do.This is great stuff. For now, let’s leave it at that. The only time you may not be able to use permalinks is if your site uses Flash navigation or other Flash elements.
  • Under Settings, click on Permalinks.
  • Under Permalinks Settings, select Custom Structure. Enter the following:/%year%/%postname%/Click the Save Changes button.This is great stuff. For now, let’s leave it at that. The only time you may not be able to use permalinks is if your site uses Flash navigation or other Flash elements.
  • Tip #4Use keywords in the visible page
  • Here’s a good way to think about using keywords in your pages and posts. The reader – and search engines – will ask:DoI know what this post is about?Readers will ask:Is this interesting to me?Compare these forum question titles:“How I get the RSS for a specific post type”“New site problem in installation”Which one does a better job of telling you what the problem is?I’m not going to click the latter until I have read all the other titles first.
  • The same applies to Page HeadersThese are what you name your pages and posts.Compare:“I Love It When This Happens”“How Can This Be True?”“A great new tool for Web developers”“The funniest thing happened yesterday”What are the keywords?
  • Use your keywords in Page Headers. Keep your posts and pages focused on what you do. Be specific and catch the right people’s attention. Some personal information is fine, but too much will hurt your SEO.
  • Next: Use SubheadingsUse the WordPress editing menu as shown. Give subheadings a “Heading 2” or 3 or 4 designation. This emphasizes the keywords that you put in them.
  • Use keywords in body text. The keyword “search engine optimization” appears 14 times on this top-ranking web page for a Google search on “search engine optimization seattle”. (It’s a Seattle-based company.)
  • More Ways to Optimize the Body Copy:Hire a writerAdd images and put keywords in descrips.YouTubeSlideSharePDFsItalicize keywordsMaking content sticky means it appeals to readers, not just search engines. This brings more links, tweets, bookmarks and shares. The more people use and share your content, the more likely it is to be seen by search engines as valuable.Hiring a writer. Well-written content rules. It’s the “diversity” of content and of the written word (with many variations on words, phrases and themes) that ranks better in search than mechanical writing and keyword stuffing.
  • Note inbound link tools like http://siteexplorer.search.yahoo.com/ let you see what sites link to you. Site without “nofollow” are great to leave comments on.LinksLinks from other sitesis the Number One Search Ranking Factor(and #2, #3, #5) - seomoz.orgThese are External LinksYou control: Internal LinksUse keywords in anchor text in your internal links!Use tools to see who links to you and your competitors. This will give you ideas about ways to get more links. Remember stickiness – aka “link bait”.
  • Now that you have optimized for your keyword(s). Check your page ranking again.Did it improve?YES?Make check payable to McBuzz CommunicationsNO?Not my fault
  • Thank you!Mark McLarenMcBuzz Communications LLC(206) 962-9119markmc@mcbuzz.comwww.mcbuzz.com@mcbuzz
  • If you site is on page 10 of search results, it may take a while to find it. Here’s a shortcut. I can click on the Search settings button in the upper right of the search page.
  • Google shows me a page of Preferences. I can scroll down to find the “Number of Results” setting, and change it from 10 to 100. I scroll down further and click on the “Save Preferences” button. Now that I have 100 results on a page, I use my keyboard “CTRL + F” keys (or the Edit > Find menu) and search for my website’s domain name. If I’m in the first 100 results, the browser will show that result. This gives me an idea of where I am in the first 100. I can set the Results preference back to 10 and go find my site. If I’m not in the first 100, I can just record that. No need to look further.
  • Here’s a quick note about Google Web History. Find the Web History button next to Search settings.
  • Here you will see customizationsbased on your search history are either enabled or disabled.This page says, “Customization based on signed-out search activity is disabled.”(I can choose to “Enable customizations based on search activity” if I want to.)“Sign in or create a Google account to get more personalized search results and manage your signed-in Web History.” If either of these is enabled, Google will customize your search results. This means you may see different results than other people who are searching for thesame keywords. This is important if you are trying to figure out your website’s ranking. If you visit your own site, or click through on search results that Google shows you, Google will start showing those results up higher in the ranks. You may get a skewed picture of how you are doing in search results.
  • WordCamp Vancouver 2010 - Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Tips for WordPress

    1. 1. Get Found Easier andGrow Your Business: 5 Tips for Better Search Engine Optimization with WordPress<br />Mark McLarenMcBuzz Communications LLC(206) 962-9119markmc@mcbuzz.comwww.mcbuzz.com@mcbuzz<br />
    2. 2. What You Will Learn<br />HOW TO:<br />Choose a good keyword<br />Record ranking<br />Use 5 tips/techniques (where to put the keyword)<br />Check results<br />
    3. 3. WordPress = Easy<br />i<br />
    4. 4. Why do you have a website or blog?<br /><ul><li>Make New Connections</li></li></ul><li>Why do you have a website or blog?<br /><ul><li>Make New Connections
    5. 5. Grow Your Business</li></li></ul><li>Why do you have a website or blog?<br /><ul><li>Make New Connections
    6. 6. Grow Your Business
    7. 7. Provide Information</li></li></ul><li>Why do you have a website or blog?<br /><ul><li>Make New Connections
    8. 8. Grow Your Business
    9. 9. Provide Information
    10. 10. Build Your Brand</li></li></ul><li>Why do you have a website or blog?<br /><ul><li>Make New Connections
    11. 11. Grow Your Business
    12. 12. Provide Information
    13. 13. Build Your Brand
    14. 14. Express Yourself</li></li></ul><li>SEO = More<br />(Business, Readers, Fame…)<br />
    15. 15. <br />Top Five<br />What the%&@#!is Search Engine Optimization?!!<br />And how can I use it to CRUSH my competition?<br />
    16. 16. SEO is about relationships<br />John Smith is searching forfree digital stock photography<br />with his team of young models.<br />
    17. 17. Or is SEO about keywords?<br />free digital stock photography<br />
    18. 18. Users should come first<br />“Wow, this website sucks!”<br />
    19. 19. Everyone will be happier<br />“This site is much better. Let’s buy something!”<br />
    20. 20. Prepare for Success<br />Install the All in One SEO Pack plugin<br />Install Google Analytics (optional)<br />
    21. 21. Choose a Good Keyword<br />COMBINE:<br />What you do, sell, blog about, etc.+<br />What someone will use to search<br />
    22. 22. naturally self-packaged yellow fruit snack<br />
    23. 23. How not to choose keywords<br />Hey everyone! Look! There are Free WordPress Tutorialson mcbuzz.com!!!<br />Free Wordpress Tutorials<br />
    24. 24. Choose keywords based on your goals<br />WordPress Websites Seattle(starting at $1,800)<br />
    25. 25. Grr. I hate you, John!You will pay dearly for this!<br />
    26. 26. keyword: business coach<br />
    27. 27. business coach<br />business coaching<br />executive coach<br />life coach<br />self-actualization coach<br />
    28. 28.
    29. 29.
    30. 30. business coach<br />
    31. 31. business coach vancouver<br />
    32. 32.
    33. 33. HTML page title<br />
    34. 34. west seattle business coach<br />
    35. 35. Top results for “richmondbc business coach”<br />
    36. 36. STEP 1: Record your ranking<br />1st<br />2nd<br />3rd<br />4th<br />5th<br />
    37. 37. Search Ranking Monitor<br />RANK CHECKER for Firefoxhttp://tools.seobook.com/firefox/rank-checker/<br />
    38. 38.
    39. 39. NowLet’s OptimizeUsing the 5 Tips!<br />
    40. 40. Tip #1Use keywords in HTML page title<br />
    41. 41. HTML page title<br />
    42. 42. WordPress page or post title<br />
    43. 43. By default: HTML page title = WP page/post title<br />
    44. 44. You can change the HTML page title(with the All in One SEO Pack plugin)<br />
    45. 45. Use keywords in the HTML page title<br />
    46. 46. Tip #2Write a page description that makes people want to read more (include keywords)<br />
    47. 47. The Page Description<br />
    48. 48. Add the description for the Home page(All in One SEO Pack Plugin)<br />
    49. 49. title and description on other pages & posts(Using the All in One SEO Pack plugin)<br />
    50. 50. Tip #3Customize permalinks<br />
    51. 51. http://mcbuzz.info/?page_id=32<br />http://mcbuzz.info/web-development/<br />
    52. 52. Permalinks (under Settings)<br />
    53. 53. Use: Custom Structure /%year%/%postname%/<br />
    54. 54. Tip #4Use keywords in the visible page<br />
    55. 55. Be specific. Use keywords. <br />Do I know what this post is about?Is it interesting to me?<br />“How I get the RSS for a specific post type”<br />>><br />“New site problem in installation”<br />>><br />
    56. 56. Page/Post Headers (titles)<br />
    57. 57. Use Keywords!<br />
    58. 58. Use keywords in subheadings<br />
    59. 59. Use keywords in body text<br /><ul><li>“keyword density” ?
    60. 60. Add images. Put keywords in descriptions.
    61. 61. Use captions (text)
    62. 62. Use bullet points
    63. 63. Use numbered lists
    64. 64. Italicize keywords</li></li></ul><li>Tip #4 continued: Make content “sticky”, useful, a resource<br />Hire (or partner with) a writer<br />Add interviews, guest bloggers, Top 10 lists, summaries, reviews<br />YouTube – rich descriptions!<br />SlideShare<br />PDFs<br />
    65. 65. Tip #5: Links<br />The Number One Search Ranking Factor(and #2, #3, #5) according to seomoz.org<br />External Links<br />Internal Links <br />Use keywords in link text<br />Use inbound link tools<br />
    66. 66. Okay, I Optimized: Now What?<br />Wait a few weeks<br />Check your page rank again<br />Did it improve?<br />Yes? Make check payable to McBuzz Communications<br />No? Back to the drawring board!<br />
    67. 67. Thank you!<br />Get Found Easier and Grow Your Business: 5 Tips for Better Search Engine Optimization with WordPress<br />Mark McLarenMcBuzz Communications LLC(206) 962-9119markmc@mcbuzz.comwww.mcbuzz.com@mcbuzz<br />
    68. 68. SEO Plugins, Tools and Resources<br />Plugins<br />All in One SEO Pack<br />http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/all-in-one-seo-pack/<br />Google Analytics for WordPresshttp://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/google-analytics-for-wordpress/<br />Enhanced WordPress Contact Form (includes useful visitor info)<br />http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/enhanced-wordpress-contactform/<br />Yet Another Related Posts plugin<br />http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/yet-another-related-posts-plugin/<br />Subscribe to Comments (by Mark Jaquith)<br />http://txfx.net/wordpress-plugins/subscribe-to-comments/<br />
    69. 69. SEO Plugins, Tools and Resources<br />Keyword Research Tools<br /> Google AdWords Keyword Toolhttps://adwords.google.com/select/KeywordToolExternalGoogle Search-Based Keyword Tool<br />http://www.google.com/sktool/<br /> Amazing Free Tool Set from Microsoft – Integrates with Excelhttp://advertising.microsoft.com/learning-center/downloads/microsoft-advertising-intelligence<br />WordTracker – Free tool from the maker of the best for-a-fee keyword research tool<br />http://freekeywords.wordtracker.com/<br /> Good List of Free Keyword Tools from Seattle Company Portent Interactivehttp://www.portentinteractive.com/blog/22-free-keyword-tools-to-gener.htm<br />
    70. 70. SEO Plugins, Tools and Resources<br />Inbound Link Tools<br />http://siteexplorer.search.yahoo.com/ This is an awesome free tool.<br />http://www.google.com/ Do a search for link:www.yourdomain.com Note that Google’s “link:” search shows fewer results than other tools.<br />http://www.backlinkwatch.com/ Another good link checking tool.<br />http://www.webconfs.com/anchor-text-analysis.phpBacklinks and other tools.<br />http://www.linkdiagnosis.com/ Yet another good link checking tool.<br />See if all of your pages are indexed by Google. (If not, they won’t appear in search results.)http://www.google.com/ Do a search for site:www.yourdomain.com<br />
    71. 71. SEO Plugins, Tools and Resources<br />Search Engine Optimization Resources<br />http://www.google.com/analytics/ If you really want to improve SEO, you need to keep track of the traffic on your website, how people find you, what pages they read most, what pages they read least, and which keywords work best for you. For this you need Google Analytics. Use the Google Analytics plugin mentioned earlier.<br />http://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/ Great free tools and information<br />http://www.bing.com/webmaster/ More great free tools and info <br />http://www.seomoz.org/ Seattle company. Best online SEO resource. <br />http://www.seobook.com/ Free tools and resources. Also offers membership.<br />http://tools.seobook.com/firefox/rank-checker/ Search rank checking tool.<br />http://www.digitalpoint.com/tools/keywords/ Another good (free) rank checking tool.<br />http://www.mcbuzz.com/WordPress and SEO questions answered free on the blog.<br />http://www.yourseoplan.com/book/seo-resources/ From the authors of an excellent book on Search Engine Optimization.<br />
    72. 72. Changing Google Search Settings<br />
    73. 73. Changing the Number of Results Displayed on Google<br />
    74. 74. Google Web History<br />
    75. 75. Google Web History<br />