In this post I want to discuss 5 EXACT steps I consider to be an absolute MUST to be completed for each and every new blog to ensure it is properly spidered by search engines and gets good exposure from them as well as traffic!
What this post is NOT – it is not a guide to SEO, content publishing, arguments about ping list, etc. We all have our opinions and this topic can get quite large. So instead I share EXACT steps that work well for me in my business and you can choose to duplicate them or ignore!
Either way it will be fun, so keep on reading!
At this point I make several assumptions, here are the few that will be crucial to this guide and assumptions are based on fact that plugins listed below not only what I recommend and personally use but also provided as part of FREE EXPERT WORDPRESS installer. Get yours or simply install plugins!
- FeedBurner FeedSmith plugin is installed on your blog and you either already have or will signup for the free account.
- Ultimate Plugins Smart Update Pinger plugin is installed on your blog.
- Google XML Sitemaps plugin is installed on your blog.
Step 1: Sitemap
This one is perhaps the most crucial step because using XML Sitemap plugin and Google Webmaster account we can ensure that we have a form of control what content Google finds on our blog and also we have an options to remove unneeded extra through options provided by Google.
1. Admin->Settings->XML Sitemap
Before you build sitemap, go ahead and register for Yahoo API, it is free, simple and once you complete the step – provide API key into a field provided.
Change post priority in Sitemap to 0.8 – I like to give it slightly higher priority because it is main content on my blog.
Step 2: Google Webmaster Tools
I know many will tell you that once you have sitemap file generated and notified all the search engine during the build process they will come and spider and access it. Well, guess what!
I don’t like guessing and since Google responcible fro majority of my Search Engine Traffic I recommend you do following:
Signup for Google Webmaster Tools, if don’t have account already. Add your new blog using form provided:
Once your site is added – you will need to verify it. Navigate to:
Tools -> Manage Site Verification
I prefer to use Meta Tag verification and once Google provides me with code simply paste it into my header.php file. Take a look at source code of this page and you will see Google meta verification tag!
Once verified – navigate to Sitemaps and add a newly created in Step 1 sitemap. If using recommended plugin you will simply have to type in: sitemap.xml in provided field, see image below:
Completing all above ensure that we not only give Google access to information on what is published on our blog but also ensure quick spidering of our content and see any problems or errors from one interface.
Google Webmaster Tools are a MUST fro anyone serious about online business!
Step 3: Setup Your Ping List
I highly recommend using UP Smart Update Pinger plugin to ensure that we ping multiple RSS directories and aggregators ONLY when new content posted. Unfortunately default WordPress still pings all services in your ping list every time you edit post and can lead you to be banned for spamming.
Not a good thing in my books.
I know there is another plugin for same purpose but I prefer UPSUP for reliability and time tested effectiveness! I use it on my own Niche Blogs! My ping list is result of research and testing and while it is lot shorter than what most recommend – it is done on purpose and it work! This is one I current test in my production successfully:
This short list is all I need because I will offload a lot of pinging duties in next step and having too long of a ping list drastically slows down publishing process. Consider this: each time you hit publish or scheduled post publishes itself – it has to do multiple things required by other plugins on your blog and ALSO ping each service on your ping list. If one service times out – none below it will ever get notified!
As I said – short list is by Design and Tested!
Step 4: Setup You FeedBurner Account
In my mind it goes without saying – you simply MUST burn your RSS feed through FeedBurner free service! Simply signup to FeedBurner and Burn your feed! I’m not going into details on this aspect and if you are one of my custoemrs – it is covered in details in appropriate video.
Important hing here – Offload Pinging Services!
Once you burn your feed proceed to Publisize and Enable Ping Shot service!
I enable all the defaults plus add 5 more: Weblogs.Com, TailRank, Syndic8, FeedBlitz, Blogblogs. You can choose others but its up to you!
This step will ensure that each time our new content published and FeedBurner learns about it – they will ping multiple services using their own computing power, not my host!
Step 5: Social Networks
Social networks play a huge role in helping your blog being discovered, spidered and even ranked better by Search Engines. Here are the few I recommend as absolute must have for each blog: Technorati, Blogcatalog, MyBlogLog.
Be sure to tag your blog using popular tags within that network that are also part of your Niche Keywords list! It is very important and also add your RSS feed to ensure you new content is presented within those networks!
If you want to take it further – here is a list of 22 DoFollow Social Media Sites offering profile links.
5 step above will ensure your new blog gets spidered well and rank better within search engines and I can guarantee that majority of bloggers skip them all together os simply don’t know them, so by following this – you get a jump start!
But here are some…
Bonus Steps: Additional Promotion!
Each new blog I bring up I also take several additional steps to ensure better positioning and spidering and even though I have shared those steps previously – many people still don’;t follow them. So, if you are interested – here are guides that I personally use for each new blog promotion:
- Blog Carnivals As Source Of One Way Links
- Article Marketing For Quality Oneway Links
- Blog Commenting For One Way Links
These strategies are simplest free methods you can use RIGHT NOW to promote your blog! And It WORKS!