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Roundup of Standout WordPress SEO Plugins

by: | June 19, 2012

WordPress makes many aspects of managing a website easier, especially for non-tech-savvy site owners. With the right plugins, it can help your SEO efforts be even easier. SEO goes beyond simply putting the right keywords in and optimizing titles and content. These days, SEO is affected by a variety of factors, including page loading speed and your social impact.

This is a list of SEO WordPress Plugins I recommend not only for optimization keywords but also for optimizing other factors that affect your SEO results.

Google Analyticator

Step 1 Tracking your results

Download: http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/google-analyticator/
Plugin Page: http://ronaldheft.com/code/analyticator

First things first, in order to judge your SEO’s performance, you need to be able to track your progress, so set up some sort of website analytics system on your site. Google Analytics is a crowd favorite because it’s powerful and free.

This plugin makes it easy to insert the Google Analytics code into your website without having to delve into the theme code. It also has the added benefit of really useful settings that put it over the top, like filtering out visits from logged in users. Simply install the plugin, locate your tracking code, and put it in. If you’re an experienced SEO tracker, Google Analyticator let’s you change more advanced settings as well.

WordPress SEO by Yoast

Step 2, Optimize your content

Download: http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/wordpress-seo/
Plugin Page: http://yoast.com/wordpress/seo/

Now that you’ve got tracking set up, you need to optimize your site. Plugins like this one let you set title and descriptions and customize keywords for every page on your site. This particular plugin also lets you change settings like internal linking, breadcrumbs, RSS feeds, and permalinks, to name a few. This is one of the most useful plugins for optimizing your blog. 

Google Sitemap Generator

Step 3, Your sitemap

Download: http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/google-sitemap-generator/
Plugin Page: http://www.arnebrachhold.de/projects/wordpress-plugins/google-xml-sitemaps-generator/

Your sitemap is important for SEO because it tells search engines how to crawl your site. There are ways to build sitemaps manually, but with plugins like this, you don’t need to anymore. Besides, every time you make a change, you have to recreate it.

Google Sitemap Generator automatically updates your sitemap every time you add or delete a page or post. It also keeps search engines notified and lets you prioritize and exclude content.

W3 Total Cache

Step 4, Decrease your load speed

Download: http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/w3-total-cache/

How quickly your site loads is an increasingly big factor in your SEO success. Beyond your optimization goals, your site’s performance makes a difference in how likely your visitors are to stay and browse. If a site is annoyingly slow, you’ll lose potential customers. This plugin makes your WordPress site speedy and light by caching and minifying every part of your website it can. (If you don’t know what those words mean, just know it makes your site fast)

If you do nothing else, this is one of the most important plugins you can install on your website for your SEO and your customers.

Smart SEO

Step 5, Score your keywords

Buy $20: http://codecanyon.net/item/smart-seo-wordpress-plugin/224446?ref=WordPressPremium

Being conscious of your keywords while you’re writing is key in creating content that brings in search traffic. Often it’s difficult to know if you’re putting too many keywords in your writing or not enough. You can copy and paste your content into online tools that can tell you, but you’re still playing a trial and error game.

Not anymore with Smart SEO. This plugin scores your content as you write it, giving you a guideline so you don’t over- or under-do it. With Smart SEO, you’ll see a grade on your headers, your content, and your meta data, so you can optimize each post perfectly.

CommentLuv

Step 6, Trackbacks through comments

Free or premium: http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/commentluv/

Backlinks are SEO fuel for your site. Without backlinks, all the optimization and site improvements won’t do you any good. CommentLuv makes getting those links even easier. When visitors leave a comment on your website, it links to their website or blog if they have one. When it does, you get a track back link to your site automatically.

Not only does it increase your backlinks, CommentLuv is an effective way to increase your viewers and the number of people commenting on your articles. The basic version is free, and there are paid versions with more advanced features.

SEO Automatic Links

Step 7, Internal links

Download: http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/seo-automatic-links/

Internal links are another integral part of your SEO arsenal. SEO Automatic Links makes internal linking on your WordPress posts and comments automatic. You can set the posts, pages, or links that particular keywords will link to, and the plugin does the rest. It’s also effective for affiliate links. This plugin takes some of the work out of linking to past articles or pages while you’re creating content.

With the right SEO strategy, your site can be at the top of Google. With the right plugins, your SEO efforts can take even less time with better results. I’ve used and tested several plugins in my time, and these are the ones I recommend. And remember, without good, useful content, all the SEO tricks in the world will mean nothing, so make sure your content is what your readers want, first and foremost.Marketing Zeus

Do you use any of these plugins? Did I miss other good plugins? Are there better versions in your opinion? I want to hear about it in the comments.

Posted in: Affiliate, Analytics, B2C, Engage!, Link Building, Optimization, Social Networks

About the Writer:

Born in England and raised in the U.S., Charles Forster is the marketing director and partner at Vine & Grain, a company that creates management technologies for bars and restaurants. Prior to that position, he ran a graphic design company, Call Me Chaz, in Philadelphia, PA and Orlando, FL. He focused on branding, websites, print, video and marketing for small business clients up and down the east coast. He's a self-prescribed car nut and foodie. He's also the curator for This Is Visceral, a site devoted to poster art.

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