Tag Archives: WordPress

Experience online

My dears,

I hope you liked my last post about Stobi, the archeological site in Macedonia. I still have some other things about my trip to Balkans that I want to share, but today I want to write something different. At the beginning of this week I presented my new website and through comments and direct messages some of you asked me more about my experience with a self-hosted website. I answered quickly to each question, but I think it is good to go a bit more deep into the topic.

As I already explained my tech skills are on a very low level and for that reason I got help from experts, but why I chosen to “update” my blog? First of all with a real domain and now a WordPress one it is easy to be found by my readers. Of course I could do it just using WordPress, but to customize my blog I wanted something different from the limited themes offered by WordPress.

I needed a different solution and for that reason I asked for an alternative. SiteGround is actually the best way on the market, because it is an hosting for WordPress. This means that I can have more features and tools to improve my blog (I am working on it step by step) but using a system that I already know and that was my “mate” for 10 months. It is easier to prepare new pages but also to give a new dress to my blog and to connect my social networks.

When I subscribed to SiteGround I had the chance to find different plans, with various rates in order to arrange the service given to the real needs of the blogger. I am a beginner and my audience is not big, so I don’t need to pay for something that I can’t use. That is the first element that I noticed about the platform, but it is of course not the only one. There is an high level for the security of the blog, to prevent the violations.

The staff is well prepared and it gives answers quickly, with a support in different languages. It is also possible to export the blog from WordPress to SiteGround with a simple click and then everything is ready to work on the new image of the pages. Also, this is important for a blogger, helps to increase the visibility online thanks to the SG CachePress. The provide is a co-manager of the website and so guarantee high performances.

This means to be fast during surfing the web and to be helped in Seo to be found by people during their web searches. To recommend SiteGround it is also WordPress, so this also convinced me about the value of the self-hosting platform. Anyway it is not necessary to use WordPress, even if you have a blog with another provider you can get benefits from SiteGround.

You can use different plugins to improve the blog with other services as YouTube, Google Analytics and many others, but the staff is always ready to give you assistance for any needs, not only related to the usability of the platform, but regarding all the aspects. Of course for the implementation of this new form of my blog I had the help of Self-Host.org, but now I am moving by myself and I can ask to the SiteGround experts when I need some advices. Automatically the update of the plugins installed are made by the platform, so the blogger don’t have to do anything else or to worry about it.

Thanks to SiteGround centers in three continets the quality of the service is always high also during the connection. You can try it and if you are not satisfy you can be reimbursed. This is another guarantee, as there is in WordPress platform, that helps you to see if the service is useful or not and you will not loose the money. In case you already have your own domain you can just move it to SiteGround without anyproblems.

The last thing that I want to “discuss” is related about advertisements. Some of your messages were mentioning this part. Of course I like to grow with my blog, also because it means that people like what I write and share and this makes me happy, but this is for me a passion, increased since the beginning, and not my job. So my goal is write for you sharing my experience and opinion and not to become famous and rich (if this could be really possible for me as beginner).

I will not avoid some ads, this because I can maybe earn some money to cover the costs of the blog, of the domain and so on, but this blog will respect you, you are my goal and you are important and precious for me. I am still learning and trying to to better and better step by step, but always with you, my dear followers and readers, in my mind.

Anasa

Yoast Seo: your next plugin

I want to continue to write about SEO, that is the most important feature to grow your blog. A few months ago I installed a new plugin to my WordPress: Yoast Seo. It is very important to take care of the contents and of the keywords to get more visibility on search engines. To find new followers we need to consider many aspects. Seo it is the basic one, but it includes many rules. Only if you follow all of them you can reach your goal.

That is why it is useful to have a plugin that helps you to check carefully each aspect of your post before to publish it. This is what Yoast Seo does. I was searching for something like that and I started to surf the internet. The answer came quite fast because it looks like Yoast Seo is the best program in its field. Maybe you already know and use it. If not I suggest you install it, as I did.

The benefits of Yoast SEO

The free version that I am using is a bomb. I noticed some improvements to my blog because I got more traffic. Yoast Seo didn’t give me the chance to be at the first places of the search results, but surely it brought me more visibility. It is not the plugin that catches visitors, but with the tips and the tools, it gives the chance to climb the ranking on the search engines. Adjusting the contents to the Seo rules I can easily match with the keywords searched by people.

If you want to improve your blog posts, Yoast Seo is one of the best plugins you need. What it does for you. I want to go deep into the single benefits, but before I want to specify that it is an instrument, so it doesn’t do the job in your place. You need to work hard to prepare the articles. Keep it in your mind because you can get benefits if you unite your activity to the one made by Yoast Seo.

Yoast Seo for bloggers

The free version of Yoast Seo has a lot of features:

a) it gives the keyword optimization for one keyword or for a key phrase;

b) there is a Google preview;

c) Yoast Seo check the readability with the calculation of the Flesch Reading Ease Score;

d) for every single page on the blog I can determine the taxonomy, starting from the choice of the primary category for each post;

e) there is the chance to work on canonical URLs to avoid the duplication of content, that usually confuses Google;

f) as you know WordPress now offers the option to work with the classic editor and with the Gutenberg system. Yoast Seo works with both;

g) even if you are not expert about the blog management and you don’t know what robots.txt, .htaccess files, permalink, and sitemaps are, it checks all the technical stuff. This makes you sure that everything works properly;

h) every 2 weeks Yoast Seo is updated to match with Google’s algorithm, in this way it helps you to get ready to match with the Google’s rules.

Yoast Seo Premium

 Like all this type of services, it offers a Premium version with more tools and a fee. I am considering now to upgrade in order to get more benefits. The cost is 79 Euro per year for one website. It is not too much considering the support received by this program. What does it guarantee more than the free version? Now I am going to answer this question.

a) the keyword optimization includes more keyword and key phrases, plus synonyms and related keywords in all word forms;

b) Yoast Seo Premium gives you the preview of your page  not only on Google but also on Facebook and Twitter;

c) for the internal links adding it gives you some suggestions in relation to the best-related posts;

d) the plugin shows the 5 word or phrases more use on your pages, in order to check if they match with the chosen keywords;

e) Yoast Seo Premium offers a redirect from the old URLs to the new ones avoiding the error 404 Not Found page;

f) you have the chance to export a CSV file to have an overview of the keywords and Seo score

g) in the end they give you 24/7 support and they give you a version without any ads.

Readability and focus keywords

The free version of Yoast Seo is going to check many elements and when you finished writing a post you can see the results. The plugin underlines what is good and what has to be improved or solved. What are the main elements analyzed?

Readability:

a) Flesch Reading Ease

b) Passive voice

c) Consecutive Sentences

d) Subheading distribution

e) Paragraph length

f) Sentence length

g) Transition words

 

Focus keywords:

a) Outbound links

b) Internal links

c) Keyphrase in introduction

d) Keyphrase length

e) Keyphrase density

f) Keyphrase in the meta description

g) Meta description length

h) Previously used keyphrase

i) Keyphrase in subheading

l) Image alt attributes

m) Text length

n) Keyphrase in the title

o) SEO title width

p) Keyphrase in slug

 

 

Conclusions

I am not an expert, but I am strongly convinced to suggest you the use of Yoast Seo by my direct experience. There are the main points in the post, but if you want to go deep, I will be happy to answer your questions. As much as I can with my small competences, I will be glad to give you more details. Feel free to write your doubts and questions in the comments. Also, if you want to add more from your experience and knowledge do it in the comments.

Don’t forget that plugins are very important because they allow you to get a lot of benefits. But Seo is the first step. I tried Yoast Seo and also others, but this one is really the only one, I think, perfect for all bloggers. You want a good result in growing the traffic to your website, therefore you need to focus on Google’s algorithm. This plugin will allow you to set up your post for the search engines. You have to work on content anyway. Then I will share something also about social networks.

SEO: the keyword for the blog

Today I want to start a new series of posts not about travel, but about blogging. My first article will be SEO. An anacronym that every blog should contain. Before to go into the topic I want to explain something else. It is somehow related, don’t worry. Maybe you remember what I wrote as a goal for my the New Year: to add some posts about blogging life. This comes from different messages got from some of you.

The ones who wrote were asking some tips on how to increase visitors and visits number or how to use certain plugins. Well, I am not an expert at all and surely some of you are more aware of the use of WordPress or the internet in general. But since I am learning step by step, after one year of direct experience I can share what I did. Because reading a lot of technical articles I noticed that it is not always so clear. SEO is maybe the reason.

My research on SEO

 It is full of bloggers who explain what to do and how to obtain traffic, but most of them write directly to experts. Some others direct you to services that are not free to get a percentage. We all can easily understand the reasons and we have to admit it: we want to become famous, make money in sharing our experience and so on. I personally like to talk about my travel, but surely I would love to share with all the people. Also, I want to get some money to sustain the costs of the domain and so on. SEO in this is the base.

What I understood is that the first step to increasing the traffic is taken care of SEO. But sometimes the tags and the keywords become more important than the content. This is wrong because you can get visibility, but readers will not understand anything. That is why I decided to add some posts about blogging just sharing what I do. In a simple way without pretending to be a teacher, because I am not. You will find my blogging posts in the category “Blog News”.

What is SEO

SEO means Search Engine Optimization. So it includes all the features that help a website to reach the first places in the results proposed by the search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo, Safari and so on. Of course, it is not so easy, but the first step is to pay attention to the structure of the post. You need to find a keyword and insert it a certain number of times into the text. Because the search engine checks their presence to see if it is really related to the topic of the title.

In easy words SEO, it makes your post to match with the researches of the people on the internet. So you can appear in the results for certain words. There are a lot of competitors, but if you apply specific rules, changing periodically, you will have more chances to be visible. There are different tools that you can use, but first of all, you should apply a few simple steps.

The strategy

  1. The first action you have to do for SEO is to choose a good name. It optimizes the opportunities to be found easily. How to do it? You have to answer these questions: a) What is the main theme of the blog?  b) What describes your proposal? c) Can I use an essential SEO keyword in the blog’s title or name?  d) Who is my target group?            You can use your name or a word or two that easily reminds to the theme. Get inspired by other blogs active in your field.
  2. Each post has to be written for a specific target group. Pay attention to the language and to the topic, because each category of people needs something specific. But this is not the end, so continue to read.

 Domain and posts

  1. Get a domain with the name you want (according to the point number 1). You will have only your name (without .wordpress, .blogspot…) and this will make results reporting easy. When you create the URL of a post make it as short as possible because search engines prefer short URLs. This because it is easier for the match with the keywords. The date is not necessary for the URL.
  2. If you don’t have much time to create new posts, just optimize the ones you already wrote. How? a) add internal links to relevant or related posts inside your website; b) add images with Alt text, you need to write it when you upload the picture. I suggest you save images with a title that includes the main keyword before to upload them in your blog. Do the same with videos; c) use external links to relevant websites in relation to your content; d) review the title, the tags and meta descriptions to be sure to include keywords for SEO.

Keywords and social media

  1. Adjust the keywords to match the high-priority SEO phrases. They will help you to get a better ranking on search engines. Because they are the main way to indicate the topic. After that, you will be ready to share them again.
  2. Don’t forget to share on social media your posts and the links to read them on your blog. This is part of the SEO, but also the easiest way to direct traffic to your site.

SEO and HTML

In addition to the previous stages, you have to take care of the structure. Therefore pay attention to this tip. Your blog has an Editor in Appearance tool. There are HTML codes for the pages. Don’t forget to include a structured data markup to provide information about a page. You should prepare a schema markup. Therefore follow this example with the details of your website:

<script type=”application/ld+json”>
{ “@context”: “http://schema.org”,
“@type”: “BlogPosting”,
“headline”: “Insert Blog Title Here“,
“image”: “Insert Blog Image URL Here“,
“editor”: “Insert Editor/Author Name Here“,
“genre”: “Theme/Blog Category Here“,
“wordcount”: “Insert Blog Post Word Count Here“,
“publisher”:
{
“@type”: “Organization”,
“name”: “Insert Company Name Here“,
“logo”: “Insert Company Logo Image URL Here
},
“url”: “Insert Blog Post URL Here“,
“datePublished”: “YYYY-MM-DD“,
“dateCreated”: “YYYY-MM-DD“,
“dateModified”: “YYYY-MM-DD“,
“description”: “Insert short description of blog post. Try to keep it around 150-156 characters“,
“articleBody”: “Insert entire blog post here“,
“author”: {
“@type”: “Person”,
“name”: “Insert Author Name
}
}

</script>

 Next SEO tips

In conclusion, I must precise again that this is only the beginning. These steps are important and they are the basic things to do, but there are some other hints that I want to give you, so stay tuned. In the next post, I will write about a great plugin that I have recently started to use. It guides you step by step in SEO writing. It analyzes your content giving you hints on how to improve it. That tool gave me the chance to get more visits and followers. Then you will find also my travel posts with tips about various destinations. Because my blog is always about travel and luxury.