Installing a WordPress blog is very easy " as easy as its famous five-minute installation. Getting indexed by search engines is another thing.
Here's what I do to get indexed by Google in less than 24 hours " your mileage may vary.
After You Install WordPress
- Set your privacy settings to block search engines. You haven't created any posts or categories. Until you really feel that your WordPress blog is ready to go live, don't change this setting.
- Choose a nice SEO friendly template. Be very careful with free WordPress templates.
- Add categories. Make sure the category names and their URL slugs are in line with your business goals. You need an effective site structure.
- Create at least five interesting articles. Not filler: good stuff.
- Set your permalinks. I like /%postname%.html and recommend using that format. [Ed.: there are some potential pitfalls to that permalink structure, mainly if you expect to have a lot of posts. Lynn Terry has a nice setup although that one may have duplicate content issues]
- Install some basic and useful WordPress plugins:
- All in One SEO
Helps you to optimize the site title, site description, meta tag and meta description. Highly recommended.
- Contact Form 7
You can add a contact form to your contact page, so your visitors can get in touch with you.
- Google XML Sitemaps
To create a dynamically updated sitemap.xml you can use to submit your website to search engines.
- Popular Posts and Post-Plugin Library
Showing popular posts can increase the time your visitors spend at your site.
- Yet Another Related Posts Plugin
Showing related posts also can boost the amount of time spent by visitors at your site.
This is a complete set of analytical tools to track visitors, referrer links, and most importantly, crawler bot stats. You can see if crawler bots come and index your site.
- All in One SEO
- Now alter your privacy settings to remove the block on search engines.
After Going Live
Some of this may seem redundant but we're not leaving anything to chance.
- Submit sitemap xml to Google, Bing and Yahoo.
- Submit Your RSS to Feedburner: Feedburner is owned by Google.
- Submit your RSS to RSS directories. There are many online tools to facilitate this. Just find them on Google. I use an online RSS submission tool.
- Create social accounts: it can help to get indexed.
- Create a Twitter account. Configure your profile. Tweet and Tweet daily. Don't spam.
- Create a professional Facebook fan page to get more connections and attract loyal visitors.
Create an identi.ca account. Google loves identi.ca feeds; identi.ca is easily indexed by Google. Set up an account and configure your profile. Don't forget to include your website link. Make a post and then leave it for now.
- Submit to Rapid Indexer website. These are sites which show information about websites. For example, Alexa is for website ranking.
To submit your website, just visit the URL and try to view your own website. The first time you do this there wont be any result, but as soon as you make the request, they will get your website information and add it to their database. And of course Google will see it later and crawl it, so you will get free backlinks.
Here are some of them:
Note: Replace $domain with your domain, and visit them one by one.
- Blog commenting and finding more friends
This is just an old method but a very efficient one for driving traffic to your site. Find websites that belong to the same niche as your blog, and leave comments on their posts. Do this in a civil way; most people hate spam. Make a useful comment and you will make friends. In return they will visit your blog and do the same thing. Plant a good seed and you will reap a good harvest.
- Ping : ping your site to ping services.
Just do it step by step. Take a break, and then have a look at the results the next day - you will find that you have begun to get indexed! See how many crawlers are coming to your site with StatPress. After you get indexed, keep your site updated, attend to maintenance, optimize, promote and find backlinks from same-niche sites. If you are attracting more and more traffic to your site, then think about how to monetize it.
Good luck and happy blogging!