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How To Create A WordPress Website

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seo

Search Engines are applications that read your website, attempt to understand the content, and index keywords and phrases to include in search terms. They are called Bots, Spiders or Crawlers.

 

Reputable Bots such as Bingbot, Googlebot, Yahoo Slurp, MSNbot and others will index text and images from websites and will adhere to certain rules that you can apply and crawl pages without overwhelming your bandwidth. Other Bots can be for nefarious reasons and you should take security measures to deny these malicious applications from your website.

 

Applying various SEO techniques to make your web pages search engine friendly and relevant is essential as this will create quality search engine result pages (SERP) for potential visitors and avoid "bounced" visits because web page content is not the subject matter the visitor requires.

 


Keywords

Search engines such as Google, Bing and Yahoo will index your website words and phrases. Including words and phrases that are most frequently searched on the Internet in your website enhances the chances of your site being included in any search results. Keywords must be very relevant to your content to get the right type of traffic. Getting the wrong type of traffic will simply mean you will be getting large amounts of "bounced" traffic, meaning people just very quickly click away from your site as it is not the content they want to find.

 

Most importantly are the three or four word phrases that are Long Tail Keywords which is how most people search on the Internet. Examples would be   "create a website"   and    "build my own website".

 

An easy and accurate method of finding search terms would be to use the Google Keyword Planner.

 

keywordskeyword planner

 

Enter a product or service, the landing web page where the product resides on your website, and select your websites product category; you can open each category menu item and drill down until you reach a specific category.

 

Click on the Get Ideas button and the keyword listing will eventually display along with the number of monthly searches that occur in Google. Other important keywords would be such phrases that are unique to you such as your store locations, contact phone numbers and service areas. Images on your website that have important keywords will not be indexed because Bots cannot see what the image contains.

 

Include these Long Tail Keywords in your website content in a way that makes for a good user experience. Do not "stuff" them into pages, but do create quality content. Bot algorithms that index and check websites are very sophisticated and smart. Google may also manually rate your website content using a human.

 

 Sign up for Google Adwords at  https://adwords.google.com/ko/KeywordPlanner/Home  to use this tool.

 


Images

If the digital pictures on your website are an integral part of the content and you want them to be included in search engine results then there are a few methods to make images search engine friendly (SEF). Bots cannot determine the actual content of the image so they need your help. If you do not want images indexed then tell the bot not to include them in searches by having a "disallow" statement in the robots.txt  file of your website.

 

Name the image appropriately.  e.g.   african-male-elephant.jpg   .Separate words with hyphens and keep the description short to two to four words in keeping with long tail keywords. Do not use spaces or special characters, only letters and possibly numbers if logical. Images from digital cameras and mobile phones tend to have meaningless names like IMG_20170105_000567.jpg

 

When inserting an image into a page, include an Alternate Text  which is a property of the image. This is usually acheived by clicking on the image and selecting the insert/edit image button on the editor you are using to create articles. A a pop-up window would display with all the image attributes and properties.  The HTML code generated in the web page would look something like; <img alt="Large African Male Elephant" src="/images/african-male-elephant.jpg" />

 


Bot Directives

Create a  robots.txt  file and save it in the root directory of your website;   http://www.mywebsite.com/robots.txt    This is the standard method of telling Bots how you want your website indexed and the location and name of your sitemap file that lists all your pages that you want indexed. The  Disallow  directives will prevent a Bot from indexing irrelevant content that could be shown in search results and make your site have weird SERP. It also helps reduce the bandwidth usage on your site because the Bot is not wasting time crawling areas of your website that do not need indexing.

 

A typical list of robot directives is shown below. The   User-Agent:*    asterisk indicates the directives apply to all Bots. Any bad bot will probably ignore everything completely because they cannot be forced to adhere to your directives.

 

Below is a typical example for a website that uses Joomla for the CMS. You will need to create your own specific robots.txt to reflect what is appropriate for the system you are using. Be aware that you should check with Google Webmaster Tools which will warn if any Disallow directives are blocking content rendering. For example, if you Disallow the "Templates" directory (folder) then Google cannot render the pages correctly because templates have the scripts that create the website structure.

 

Sitemap: http://www.mywebsite.com/sitemap.xml
User-agent: *
Disallow: /administrator/
Disallow: /cli/
Disallow: /components/
Disallow: /includes/
Disallow: /installation/
Disallow: /language/
Disallow: /libraries/
Disallow: /logs/
Disallow: /tmp/
Disallow: /*format=feed*

 


Site Map

Bots are smart and will search for menus and other clues on your website and use this information to crawl other pages, but creating a site map will help the Bot locate all pages.

 

The sitemap file is usually called   sitemap.xml   and is a very specific type of structure as shown below. There are Add-Ons for a CMS that can automatically create a sitemap, but they can have very mixed results.

 

The example below is colored only to provide clarity of the structure. You can copy and paste this example, create a plain text file called  sitemap.xml  and then upload it into your root directory (folder) of your website once you have modified the contents to your requirements.

 


Website Pages

This example lists two web pages to be indexed. There is the main website page address and a second website page address that is a "documents" page. Each web address is between a <loc>  and  </loc>   location tag. Change the full URL to your website page.

Modified Date
Between the <lastmod>  and </lastmod>  tags is the last modified date of the website page. It is in International date format  yyyy-mm-dd  This is an optional tag and should be updated when the website page content is modified.

Change Frequency
When a web bot reads the sitemap it can be informed of how often the website page is updated from the <changefreq> </changefreq>  tags. For example, if a blog was constantly used by visitors, then the page frequency could be set to "hourly" or "daily". Other values are; alwaysweeklymonthlyyearly and never. This is an optional tag.

Priority of Pages

Each webpage can be given a priority between 0.1 to 1.0 and indicates to the Web Bot which pages have a greater or lesser importance for indexing. The default priority of a page is 0.5 and it is an optional tag.


<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>

<urlset xmlns="http://www.sitemaps.org/schemas/sitemap/0.9">
   <url>
      <loc>http://www.mywebsite.com/</loc>
      <lastmod>2016-05-01</lastmod>
      <changefreq>monthly</changefreq>  
      <priority>1.0</priority>
   </url>
   <url>
      <loc>http://www.mywebsite.com/documents</loc>
      <lastmod>2016-05-08</lastmod>
      <changefreq>monthly</changefreq>  
      <priority>0.9</priority>
   </url>

    <!-- copy and paste more <url> </url>  here for each web page to be indexed -->

</urlset>


Copy and paste everything between the  <url>  and  </url>  tags to create more page indexes and modify the tag attributes for your website.

 


SEF URL's

Search Engine Friendly Uniform Resource Locators (AKA "Web Address") are a very important part of optimization. Bots and humans prefer an easily readable web address instead of complicated mixed characters.

 

You can turn on SEF URL and Rewrite from an option that should be included in your CMS or add the directive into the  .htaccess   file of your website (Linux type web server file)

 SEO settings in Joomla

In Joomla! you can turn SEF and URL rewriting on within the Global configuration -> Site Settings.

 

Most Web Host providers turn on the Web server RewriteEngine functionality as available but you may need to contact them if it is not working.

 

The  .htaccess  file in the root directory of your website will have certain lines written that turn the Web server SEF and RewriteEngine on, but you may need to modify the RewriteBase to reflect where your Joomla installation directory (folder) is located.

 

Warning: create a copy of the  .htaccess  file before modifying, else any incorrect setting or error in the script will cause the Web Server to stop with a (usually) 500 error. The root directory of your website is the content that visitors see when your domain name is displayed in a Web browser.  e.g.     http://mywebsite.com 

RewriteEngine On        -Ensure this line is up the top of the .htaccess file.

# RewriteBase /         -Remove the “#” hash symbol at the beginning of the line and if you have installed your joomla site in a sub-directory (ie: http://www.mywebsite.com/joomla ), insert the sub-folder name after the forward slash symbol  “/”.  If Joomla! is installed in the root folder, you can leave the "#" symbol in place which makes the entire line a comment and not a command.  Or, use a forward slash  "/"  symbol to indicate the Joomla! is based in the root directory.

RewriteBase /joomla     -Example if Joomla! installation is in a directory (folder) off the root directory.

 

Never turn off your SEF once it is applied because your web pages will not be found as they will have a completely different Url.

 


404 Page

An error page will be displayed by the Web Server to the visitor if a page cannot be found. This is a   404  Page Not Found  and usually looks very ugly and possibly scary to a visitor. Making a nice friendly and attractive 404 page would be preferable and entice your visitor to stay on your website.

 

Your CMS will usually have a section to create a personalized 404 error page.

 404

 

 


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