Optimise your WordPress blog or site for search with a couple of plugins and the web tools provided by Google, Yahoo and LiveSearch. The All in One SEO Pack plugin for WordPress will let you manipulate the specific SEO content of your blog like page title, meta data and description. Defaults can be set in the admin area of the plugin on your dashboard and specific settings can be tweaked as you create or edit a post.
The other important plugin is the Google XML Sitemap Generator, which creates a nice sitemap for you. After installing this plugin you need to create the sitemap.xml and sitemap.xml.gz files in the root folder of your blog and change their permissions CHMOD 666. The easiest is to right-click on the files in your FTP client and change permissions under properties, 666 stands for Read and Write permission for Owner / Group / Others. For more information see the README.txt included with the plugin.
After installation go to the Admin area of the plugin on your Dashboard (Settings>>XML-Sitemap) and if the sitemap has not been generated yet click on the link Generate sitemap.
Search Engine Webmaster tools. (there are links to them on the XML-Sitemap admin)
- Google webmaster tools – add your site and sitemap url, Google requires that you add a verification to your site either by adding some code to your home page or by uploading a html file to your root folder.
- Yahoo Explorer – add you site url and upload a verification file to your root folder.
- LiveSearch Webmaster Center – add you site url and upload a verification file to your root folder.
- Google Analytics – create a profile for your site, doesn’t influence ranking but is a great stats provider.
- Google adsense, Scribefire QuickAds and TextLink – You can use these to place pay-per-click ads on your site (also does not influence rankings)
Constantly check these webmaster tools for stats on your site as they will tell you the errors you need to fix to make sure your site gets good search rankings with them. By doing all this you have covered the basics and have a site that could rank well with search engines. There’s although a lot more to Search Optimization, a good source of information is the book SEO Search Engine Optimization with PHP