According to a study conducted in 2012, 1 out of 6 sites are powered by WordPress. This platform is preferred by most web owners due to its high level of stability and innovative features.
However, a standard WordPress installation does not ensure excellent SEO or deliver a remarkable user experience. A few pointers mentioned below will help you extract the best out of WordPress and optimize your website while delivering an excellent user experience.
You must make sure to change the default Permalinks settings of WordPress since these are set to make all your pages run through URL parameters, which is actually opposed by Google.
A better option is to modify the setting to Post Name (/%postname%/). You can also change the setting to (/%category%/%postname%/), but if your content for categories is not optimized then this could cause problems.
Another pointer is to eliminate a few WordPress Defaults such as Sample Page and Hello World. These defaults are helpful when your website is still being developed, but you should get rid of and even delete them once your website goes live.
You should also eliminate or at least modify the Uncategorized category. You can also create a new category that can be set as default and one that you perceive will turn the most accepted category. You must remember that all your posts must be under relevant categories.
It will take quite a while for any new page or post that you make into a URL to be indexed by major search engines. However, WordPress offers a solution to hasten this process by adding update services from the General Settings section. There are many update services available from WordPress.org, but these 3 should be included in your list. These are…
You can use WordPress either as a blogging platform or a static page as per your needs. While the default setting is set to display posts, you can change the settings in case you wish to transform it into a static page. You only need to go into settings after making a blank blog post page and select whether you wish to use it as a blog post or static page in the Front Page Displays section. You should also Un-Tick the box that displays Discourage search engines from Indexing this Site.
In addition, you can also change and customize settings that relate to thumbnails on your website. WordPress allows you to upload images that retain their proportions even when resized and you can use this feature to avoid fixed dimensions. If you have already uploaded your thumbnails then a plugin like Viper007Bond can automatically update all your previous thumbnail settings.
Finally, you must track and analyze your WordPress site at all times, and free tools such as Google Analytics should be your first choice. You must create a new profile in Analytics and can use a plugin such as Google Analytics for WordPress offered by Joost De Valk. You will not need to copy/paste your profile while making it very easy for you to link your profile with WordPress.
Google Analytics offers a host of tracking and reporting features that will help you monitor your website, your visitors, and search engines. These reports can then be analyzed to locate problems and tweak your SEO campaign.
The above pointers will pay rich dividends as you will be able to optimize your WordPress website as well as deliver an impressive user experience at the same time.