I’m going to tell you how to make your WordPress site clean, Google friendly and soar in the search engines with an SEO makeover.
1. Focus on the power of your content with a clean design
It’s easy to get stuck in the thought that your website must have the coolest looking design ever. But think of the times when Google comes to your town. Google is coming for one thing: your content. Google doesn’t care if you look cool so you don’t want good text hiding in unreachable graphics or underneath a bunch of other stuff. I use Thesis for DotResults because of a few key points:
- Dependability. If you love your site, you love what’s in it. Thesis isn’t free but sometimes making an investment is the only way to see a return. Plus the people who make this theme are a savvy-kind-of-smart and know what’s best. They also regularly update and improve the theme. It’s a community feel I can always count on. I love community.
- Organization. This is really important: This theme is no nonsense and no fuss, it’s all about content and easily navigating through it. When people come to your site they will be able to read everything with ease and learn something by the time they leave.
- Humbleness. Since the Thesis theme is very simple, it helps your logo and brand stick out. For example on this site we have added the “Dot Guy” in posts depending on the topic. He’s pretty fun, you may think so too.
Plus, as I recently found out, even people who work at Google use this theme.
2. Cleanliness is next to SEOliness
It is a fact that to make sure people see what you have to offer, you have to make a few waves. You can use some widgets like MyBlogLog or Google Friend Connect to strengthen your community or even get involved with advertising. But no matter the amount of items you add in your sidebars, there is always a way to make them look presentable. Just remember to choose the ones that are most important. To help with your decision you can try more than you’re comfortable with at first just to see what performs best. Learning through experience always works. Keep in mind that in the end, your content needs to remain king, widgets and ads are just there for the ride.
No matter what your blog is about there is one thing for certain: there’s always something to write about. If you do happen to get stuck, read a few forums or other blogs about your niche. Maybe other people are having a problem doing something specific that you happen to be an expert in. Reading can also spark brand new ideas. The best tip I can give you on creating content is to save your ideas as drafts. Even if you aren’t ready to write about a certain topic you’ve just thought of, be sure to save a preliminary title and a few sentences so you can come back to it later.
When you are ready to write your next blog post, here are some things to focus on:
- Figure out your keywords. They need to be placed in your title and throughout your post. A great way to piece together winning words is by using the AdWords Keyword Tool.
- Customize. To be the best in Google rankings you must have a custom title tag and custom meta description for every post. WordPress has many plugins to help you remember to do this and the Thesis theme has this already built in as well.
- 500 words. I have noticed that blog posts with at least 500 words do better in Google. Basically, you need to contribute something meaty, or else why write a post at all?
- Links. You should have at least two links to other websites in your posts. The simple explanation for this is that Google will see that your posts are reaching out and creating community. And that is what the web is about, afterall.
There are a lot more tips that I’ll cover in another post. Until then, this should be a great starting point for your makeover! If you have any questions, please ask in the comments.