If you’re new to WordPress, or just looking for some tips on great plugins you haven’t yet come across to help with your SEO, this list is for you…
These are handy if you’re new to WordPress and don’t have time to faff, but if you’ve already got plugins in place, use with caution to avoid messing up any existing settings you’ve fine tuned…
This plugin helps manage everything in the ‘head’ of your HTML pages (so meta data, page titles, etc) in one place.
Includes the likes of: Optimised Post and Page Titles; Generates META tags automatically; Helps you avoid duplicate content; Lets you override titles & meta data.
You shouldn’t underestimate the importance of good internal linking for SEO – you can drive traffic within your own site and push link juice around tactically. These plugins make this task easier.
A related posts plugin that works quickly even with thousands of posts and tags: well worth adding to the bottom of your single post template to lower bounce rate by keeping the reader’s attention focused on your site.
A plugin that enhances the built-in “Recent Posts” widget.
Link to other blog posts and pages without specifying the full URL. Uses a UI to ease finding the post or page you want to link to.
Automatically generates links in all your posts. Handy time saver, but I generally prefer to use the plugin above to do it manually.
Manage all your 301 redirects and monitor 404 errors. If you set up 301’s for common 404’s, you can get claw back some of your lost traffic. Also handy if, like me, you use an auto post service and sometimes the auto generated URLs don’t match those created by WordPress.
These are also internal links really, but are important enough to warrant their own heading.
This plugin automatically generates an XML sitemap and submits to search engines on your behalf. Bit of a no-brainer really.
Generates a fully customizable sitemap: useful for visitors and to help search engines index pages they might not otherwise find their way to.
Automatically generate XML sitemap for inclusion to newly formatted Google News. You have to be a Google approved news site for your articles to appear in Google news, which generally involves having a ‘team’ of people posting for your website/blog. Well worth doing to gain additional SERP real estate.
A couple of random SEO related helper plugins.
Increase your long tail search traffic automatically: this is a widget that automatically adds search terms that visitors have used to find a particular page on your site. The theory is that it tweaks the page content to make it more attractive to search engines for effective & relevant search terms.
Widget to display a list of recent search engine queries in a link to the wp search function. Similar idea to the above.
Having a fast site is essential for keeping users happy and with loading speed potentially becoming a contributing factor in search ranking, it’s worth being as quick as you can be. These plugins help speed up page-loads and are particularly handy if you don’t have the best hosting environment.
Speeds up your website by crunching js/css files together & so on. Makes a significant difference.
Caches your pages so the server doesn’t have to generate them on the fly each time they’re accessed by users.
Page Titles and Meta Tags
You need to have unique, well organised page titles & meta descriptions and it’s useful to craft your nofollows & noindexes for minimum link juice loss.
Create a customised title tag for any post, static page & category page. Admin allows for mass editing of title tags. Very handy to optimise all your titles in one place, ensuring uniqueness.
From Mr Yoast, who is wise in the ways of WordPress & SEO, this plugin allows you to add all the appropriate robots meta tags to your pages and feeds, disable unused archives and nofollow unnecessary links.
Improves your blog’s search engine optimisation by “noindexing” pages you choose. Very similar aim to the above.
Removes common words like ‘a’, ‘the’, ‘in’ from post slugs to improve SEO. Also leaves less of a mess than salt.
Encouraging your users to share your content with one another is an excellent way of gaining traffic.
Adds a button which allows you to share post on google buzz (as you can see to the top right of this post).
Provides a Twitter retweet button (as you can see to the top right of this post).
Don’t let the name put you off – this plugin adds a (X)HTML compliant list of social bookmarking icons to each of your posts.
These plugins help you spread the word yourself from within your own blog.
Saves your WordPress blog from getting tagged as ping spammer, by only pinging when you.
A simple plugin to collect subscribers and send out newsletters.
Automatically tweets links to relevant posts from your Twitter account, automatically adding hashtags. This leads to more (relevant) people following you on Twitter, which in turn gives you more people to communicate your own blog posts to.
Publishes your WordPress posts to Twitter, Facebook, and Myspace. Very handy, but I also use an auto post service to allow me to post to more places at once.