One of the main reasons you want to use a Content Management System or CMS system for your business is that you get the native SEO benefits that come from having multiple files that index in Google SERP which allows you to individually target keywords for each and every page/post for a product or service you may offer. But even the native WordPress doesn’t have the best SEO optimization built in and here are 7 must have SEO tools for WordPress to help make sure your CMS system is getting the best standing in the search engine results pages.
Note, some of these tools are actually things you have to do, there is only so much in-house SEO you can do which is optimization of your posts and pages and website itself, the back linking, social media strategies around SEO cannot be automated and done just with some plugins or configurations on your website so SEO itself is a multi-part approach.
Tools #1 and #2 WordPress SEO Plugins to Consider
WordPress SEO by Yoast
This plugin for WordPress is free and is the most comprehensive SEO plugin that you can find for free, it lets you set custom TITLE, Description tags for your homepage, categories and allows you to configure your sitemap which is the file that Google indexes to know what posts/pages are on your site quickly. You can optimize what goes into your SiteMap, build automatic Title and Description phrases as well as the plugin has the feature to analyze your written article and show you what you can do to optimize it further.
Leveraging the WordPress SEO by Yoast tool will also watermark your RSS feed to help discourage content scraping and teaches you to write for SEO because the more you leverage the review/scanning feature the better you will become at writing for optimizing SEO in the future.
This is a paid WordPress plugin that has some features that WordPress SEO by Yoast does not, these features include the ability to not only list more than 1 targeted keyword, but also it helps optimize by suggesting similarities, near matches and helps you ensure that your content is scanned. You can configure the plugin to not allow a post to publish if it is under a certain SEO optimized percentage as well as the plugin can re-write your slugs or URI’s for your posts so that they are better SEO optimized. SEOPressor has other features worth considering as well but it doesn’t include built in sitemap functionality and you will need to use Google XML Sitemaps or WordPress SEO by Yoast to add sitemap if you use this plugin. SEOPressor will also optimize your images by adding appropriate ALT and Title tags to them which many people inherently don’t remember to do when adding images to posts and pages.
Note: You can combine this plugin with the WordPress SEO by Yoast and leverage the best features from both, but don’t allow your posts to have duplicate TITLE and Description tags.
Tools #3, #4 & #5 Publishing Content to Social Media
Social Media Auto Publish
Social Media Auto Publish is a WordPress plugin that hooks into your Facebook and Twitter accounts and automatically shares your content to these sites when you publish your content. This helps automate the social media shares which in turn creates links on these social media sites back to your content which is then indexed and helps with SEO a little bit. This plugin for WordPress allows you to filter content by category so you only auto share what you want to auto share.
This is a tool where you configure your site’s RSS feed and which social networks to auto share your RSS feed to, this builds social media backlinks as well as raises awareness and increases your audience for the content you publish on your site. The great thing about Dlvr.it is that you can control time of day for publishing as well as connect LinkedIn, Facebook Pages, Facebook Groups, LinkedIn Groups and much more including Tumblr. The free plan allows you to build 5 social media connections and feeds which can help get your content up and shared in no time.
One of the most powerful social media management tools that also allows you to syndicate your WordPress content to a Google Plus Fanpage in addition to Facebook (profile, pages and groups), LinkedIn (profile and groups), Twitter and so much more. Hootsuite allows you to centralize and manage all of your conversations and engagement for your content and helps spread the content across multiple social media channels which all helps with the backlinking and raising authority, especially in the case of getting Google +1’s by engaging on the Google Plus social network.
Tools #6 & #7 Commenting and Guest Posting
Still one of the most common ways to increase awareness for your business and site is to go out on similar niche sites and leave valuable comments, add feedback and start engagement. Do this on sites ranging from very popular ones, to smaller niche ones. Building those backlinks even on nofollow and external commenting blogs helps as even nofollow links have some consideration for the SERP, but really DoFollow backlinks are very important. Make sure that you are adding value to the articles you comment on or are engaging, conversing the author or other commenters to help increase awareness and attention not just get a backlink.
There are a few tools to help find sites to comment on, these include Google Blogsearch and a site called DropMyLink which lets you filter by DoFollow blogs specifically as well.
When you share your knowledge in guest articles related to your business niche and field you are not only helping grow your audience but you are leaving link trails back to your own site or business which help increase the SERP standing over time. Remember to write for many authoritative blogs as a guest author and make sure you include only the highest and relevant content. Do not promote and post on blogs unrelated to your own website niche as you could become penalized for non-related content linking and make sure you link only on authoritative sites as poor sites can also hurt your SEO as well. Use Compete.com to scan a site to determine if you think it is authoritative enough to be worth guest posting on, and gauge based not only on the homepage pagerank of the site, but also it’s Alexa rating and the level of engagement, guest posts on sites that get lots of comments, not ones where you see all the last 10 articles have 2 comments or less as well.
Remember when guest posting to include a unique author bio on every site, duplicate content is not ideal and make sure you don’t use the same keywords and link back to your site, it is better to use generic terms now or simply list the URL in some cases as Google keeps adapting its SEO algorithms so keep it varied up, don’t leave 20 articles with “housing market” as your link keyword if you do services around the housing market for example.
By Evgenia. Evgenia works for Datadial.net – SEO and Web design agency in West London.