Even with well-developed content management systems like WordPress, there can sometimes be a strong learning curve to get your foot in the door if you’re not used to the ins and outs of setting up a new site.

One of the most important areas to consider is how to set up your site to be easily optimized for SEO. While some programs, like Wealthy Affiliate get you completely setup in one click, most ‘one-click setups’ just get the basic site up and require you to implement your own plugins.

In this post I’ll talk briefly about what characteristics to consider and then tell you my favorite plugin to accomplish everything easily.

WordPress SEO Plugin Characteristics

There’s a lot of intricate details that go into SEO optimization, but the good news is that many of those details can be addressed automatically. Here’s a short list of automated processes that will make your SEO life easier:

SEO-friendly urls: These are the urls that read as a collection of words, as in the urls used on this site. Think “example.com/a-simple-url”  vs. “example.com/a%20simple%20url” vs. “example.com/esfhkh3453-e34jefj32ef3232%20jkb34.” Which would you rather read?

Page titles: Don’t confuse your post or article title with the page title. The page title is the name that appears in the top of the browser tab. This can be dynamically changed with any new post.

META tags: META tags are a type of html tag used by search engines to help categorize and index the page. Good META tags make it easier for robots to understand what content is included in your site.

Sitemap: Sitemaps are essential to making sure that the major search engines see every page that’s on your site, and not just a subset of it. These can easily be created, but having them done automatically for you is even easier.

The All In One SEO Plugin

The best WordPress plugin that accomplishes each of those (and a lot more) is the All-In-One SEO plugin.

In addition to the basic necessities listed above, which are the most important and convenient aspects in my mind, there are a number of more advanced options provided, including an API to allow you to extend functionality, eCommerce support, and Nonce Security.

The best part is that All In One SEO is free and comes ready to go right out of the box. The default options are generally your best choice, and can be implemented just by activating the plugin on your WordPress dashboard.

Hope this helps you get through those early setup processes, or even just improve your blog SEO moving forward if you’ve yet to optimize it.