I bump into 3 interesting articles on Digg today. After reading these 3 articles, I can conclude that to get your blog fully exposed to the world you need to follow 3 steps:
- Get your blog quickly indexed by the search engines
- Optimize your blog to be crawled by the search engines
- Make sure you have the right plugin to support point 1 and 2
Get Your Blog Quickly Indexed by the Search Engines
- Register your domain name. For cheap domain name, Netfirms always have this cheap $5 .com/.net/.org domain. But Godaddy also offer even cheaper for .info domain which is at $ 0.99 (yes .. 99 cents !!!)
- Put up a home page. Once you got your domain and hosting, you need to install the Blog software. Since I only have experience with WordPress, I can’t recommed you any other blog software. Personally to me, WordPress is good enough. So many people support it by creating plugins/themes. Because of that, I never look at the other way.
- Setup a blog and sign up for FeedBurner. The registration is quick and fast. They even let you select the buttons to connect your feed to many RSS Readers.
- Write a few articles and submit to directories. Adam recommends iSnare and EzineArticles.I think I will submit one of my previous post.
- Get a link from an indexed site. To do this I participate actively on Google Groups and Digg. Any better idea?
Optimizing WordPress Blogs for Search Engines
- Using Permalinks. Permalinks can be setup on your WordPress Admin module. (Option – Permalink).
- Put titles up front in your URLs. I use “/%category%/%postname%/” which should have the same effect
- Tags. You need to install Ultimate Tag Warrior plugin to enable tags in your blog.
- Page Titles. By default, WordPress already set your blog title into “Blog Title – Post Title”. Unless you want to include the tags into the title as mentioned on point 3, you do not need to do anything.
- Choose your Post Titles carefully. I believe that in order to be a good post title, the title should be the general idea of the post. I think capitalizing the first letter of every word in the title should make it more attractive.
- Autolinks. I don’t use Autolinks. I believer Autolinks might increase the chance of killing my webserver.
- Related Post. Use this plugin to add Related Post. Originally, the plugin will use the other posts’ Title as the factor to determine whether they are related. Currently, it has the ability to use keywords for each post. You are very likely need to edit all your previous posts that don’t have keywords.
- Ping Services. WordPress 2.1 (the one used here) has an automatic ping service to be signaled whenever you publish a new page. You might want to add the number of ping services through feedburner.
- Google Sitemaps. First, submit your site to Google here. Then you submit the site to be reviewed here. You will be required to send an original page or add a meta tag on your header. In my opinion, the latter is the easier one. Then you need to create the xml site map file, you can automatically do that using this plugin. Finally, submit your xml sitemap to Google here.
- Categories. Christian‘s idea is that the Categories must be structured such as : “Programming – C# – Threading”.
Legend: : Done : Not (Yet) Done
Hopefully now we have a good understanding on how to get our WordPress blog exposed to the World. The final treat is the list of best plugins for WordPress. Please carefully pick one that really benefits you/suit your needs, without introducing significant increase in the server load.