What exactly is Search Engine Optimization SEO?
The term Search Engine Optimization SEO refers to all the on-page and off-page techniques and precautions that will help your site rank higher in search engines like Google.
The process and purpose of the Search Engine Optimization SEO activity is to guess and understand as well as possible the different algorithms used by search engines to rank web sites, and rely on the acquired knowledge to help a web site rank higher.
Search Engine Optimization SEO vs. Search Engine Friendly
Search Engine Optimization SEO is not to be confused with the Search Engine Friendly (SE Friendly) term. Search Engine Friendly refers to having a site structure that will help search engines to crawl easier the entire site.
With WordPress, It’s very easy to make your WordPress blog Search Engine Friendly by just enabling the Permalinks option in WordPress. However, do not confuse again. Having a Search Engine Friendly blog doesn’t mean that your blog will rank well in search engines. There’re lots of other things to pay attention if you want to rank higher.
Finally, Search Engine Friendly can be seen as a small subset of Search Engine Optimization SEO.
Search Engine Optimization SEO with AdFlex
Improving Search Engine Optimization SEO score is made easy when using the AdFlex SEO WordPress theme.
AdFlex WordPress theme provides you with several built-in on-page Search Engine Optimization SEO features and options that will definitively help your blog and web site rank higher.
I’ll present you a list of different settings that you’ll have to go through and set accordingly to get the best on-page Search Engine Optimization SEO score.
Please note that this is a very first draft.
1. Go to WP Admin \ Options \ Permalinks
2. Select “Custom, specify below”
3. In the “Custom structure:” field, you’ll need to specify one of the URL structure choices listed below.
Best URL structure choice
Each choice has its advantages and inconvenient, and the best choice will depend on the kind of web site you have (broad blog content or niche web site), limited set of articles or lots of blog posts, etc.
When choosing the URL structure, it’s recommended that you go for an URL structure of maximum one folder level depth. Having more than one level folder will give more potential issues of having a side effect at the level of the PR score due to the PR dilution and distribution effects.
URL Structure list
You’ll find below a list of URL structures commented with their benefits and inconvenient.
It’s certainly the choice that gives you the most on-page Search Engine Optimization SEO score when you have a limited set of posts. It’ll permit each of your post to get the most PR score assigned and directly taken from the overall web site PR score.
The disadvantage is that you may get less keyword relevancy if you don’t choose a right post title, post slug and haven’t put enough emphases on the targeted keyword. So it’s very important that you always ensure that your post title, post slug and post content emphases well the targeted keyword to help search engine to see the keyword relevancy. This is even more important for AdSense publisher web sites to get the best relevancy for the AdSense ads.
It has the benefit to have a well sorted categorization of the articles. It permits you to insist on a keyword by putting the keyword as category like /keyword-name/ and therefore better help search engine to better capture your targeted keyword, which is important for AdSense web sites for the relevancy of the ads.
The negative point is that when you have several articles that are grouped within a specific category, you’ll end up with a situation where the initially PR score assigned to the URL part /%category%/ is divided between the numbers of articles located in that specific category folder. With such case, you’ll get less PR score allocated for each of the article of that category due to the PR distribution of the same input PR score between lots of different articles and post items.
/articles/%postname%.php or /content/%postname%.php
It permits an article to be categorized in multiple categories without any risks to affecting the URL structure.
The negative point is that if you have too many articles, you’ll end up with less PR score allocated the URL part /articles/ due to the PR distribution effect.
Don’t forget to specify a keyword in the post title and in the post slug to help search engine to see the keyword relevancy, which is very important for AdSense web sites for the relevancy of the ads.
It’s not a good choice because you’ll have the same disadvantages than /%category%/%postname%.php, then on top of that you introduce another folder level, which will dilute even more the PR score that was assigned naturally to the URL part /%category%/.
If you like the categorization of the articles, /%category%/%postname%.php is a better choice in term of on-page Search Engine Optimization SEO but it has still some side effects as mentioned earlier.
/articles/%postname%/ or /content/%postname%/
It’s not a good choice because you’ll have the same disadvantages than /articles/%postname%.php or /content/%postname%.php, then on top of that you introduce another folder level, which will dilute even more the PR score that was assigned naturally to the URL part /articles/.
Note for blog URI located in a subfolder
The URL structure option is a bit difference when you have a blog located at subfolder part of the Web root URL. As it’s recommended to have an URL structure of maximum one folder level depth, you have installed a blog in a subfolder like /blog/, you’ll have better on-page Search Engine Optimization SEO results if you opt for the following options:
This option is better than /%postname%/ in term of Search Engine Optimization SEO score and to avoid extra potential PR dilution issues.
Don’t forget to specify a keyword in the post title and in the post slug, which is even very important for AdSense web sites for the Ad relevancy.
Note for Niche content
If you have Niche web site, the above recommendations may look different than the ones from people who rely on the SILO and LSI way that talks about several folder level depth.
The aim of the several folder level structures of SILO and LSI is to help search engines understand what niche category and content you cover. It has the advantage to put more emphasis at the keyword relevancy level choice. However, it has a drastic PR dilution issue due to the depth folder structure that may hurt in some cases.
4. In the “Category base” field, add:
5. Click on “Update Permalink Structure”
6. Add the file .htaccess with the generated code in the server folder that corresponds to the Blog Address URL
More info in the comments given in post URL: http://www.askvk.com/adflex/home-link-on-sidebar-does-not-point-to-homepage-url.php
Content of robots.txt file
7. Add a file robots.txt file to prevent crappy items like wp-admin, wp-login etc to appear in your SERPs. See WordPress Duplicate Content Prevention with robots.txt for more info.
8. Go to WP Admin \ Presentation \ Ad Flex Options
9. Enable the “Force Blogs URL” in Ad Flex Options
10. Enable the “META Description” in Ad Flex Options
11. Chose “Summary” for “Post Content Display” option in Ad Flex Options
12. Choose “Search engines must only index the homepage, posts and pages” for the “Search Engines Duplicate Content Prevention Mode” option in Ad Flex Options. I’ll tell later on about this specific choice.
13. Add a short description (max 150 chars) in the field META Description for Homepage that will be displayed as snippet for your homepage in search engine results. Pay attention to do it well the first time as some search engines don’t update or are very slow to update the META Description for the homepage after it has been set once.
14. Disable “Top Bar Text Visibility”
15. Disable “Bottom Bar Text Visibility”
16. Disable “Link Unit Bar Text Visibility”
17. Disable “Top Separator Bar Text Visibility”
18. Disable “Top Separator Bar Text Visibility”
19. Disable Post Edit Visibility”
20. Disable “META Section Visibility”
21. Disable “Bottom Separator Bar Text Visibility”
Give access to Search Engines:
22. Go to WP Admin \ Presentation \ Ad Flex Options, and chose “Permit search engines to access the site” for “Search Engines Access Permission”
23. Go to WP Admin \ Options \ Privacy, and choose “I would like my blog to be visible to everyone, including search engines” for “Blog visibility”
- Here are some extra notes that I’ll document with more details later on.
- You may add manually a META Keyword to each post but please note that modern search engines don’t consider really consider that META Description tag due to abuse in the past.
- You can also help search engines to find your web pages by using the Google Sitemap, but please note that it won’t help your rank better. It’s a false assumption and it’s mainly a confusion or misinterpretation by lots of people. The Google Sitemap is to help SE finds easier your page when your web site structure is badly done, which is not the case when you use WordPress + AdFlex. Then you have potential PR dilution when you use Google Sitemap.I’ll explain more about the PR dilution effect in a separated post.
- Adding Visual Site Map may ease your user experience if you have a web site with lots of content.
- Adding a “About”, “Contact”, “Terms” and “Privacy” pages may give some extra quality score for your web site, little extra on-page Search Engine Optimization SEO score and more important it may increase the trust level of your visitors. Please note that if you don’t take some precautions, you’ll lose some precious PR points assigned to those secondary pages that you don’t want to rank for. I’ll explain (when time permits) one of the best way to get the best of both world in a separated post.
Other on-page Search Engine Optimization SEO
Of course, there are other little on-page Search Engine Optimization SEO items but the main ones were already listed above. So if you are able to implement all the above items, you’ll get a very high white hat on-page Search Engine Optimization SEO score.
You’ve now a better understanding of the difference between Search Engine Optimization SEO and Search Engine Friendly. You have also learned how to effectively use AdFlex to get more chances to rank higher thanks to the most efficient on-page Search Engine Optimization SEO items and techniques.