Starting with SEO #5 - Essential SEO Plugins

Posted December 15th, 2008 by Ashwin and filed in Blogging & SEO, SEO
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Wordpress is well known for its plugins, when it comes to extensibility. There are many plugins around, especially to make your blog SEO friendly.

Check out this post, on the 9 SEO plugins that every blog should have. It is a nice collection of some very useful plugins.

Thanks, Darren Rowse for sharing the list with us.

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Starting with SEO #4 - Similar Posts

Posted December 9th, 2008 by Ashwin and filed in Blogging & SEO, SEO
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Over a time, any blogger publishes a good number of posts, that are around a similar topic. Generally, the link between posts are derived using the Post Titles, keywords in content, Categories and Tags.

Including Similar posts in your blog have the following two major advantages:

  • Readers can navigate to and read similar posts, with ease
  • Search engines can better identify the related posts, thus increasing the Internal Pagerank

As usual, Wordpress bloggers can achieve this using the Wordpress Similar Posts plugin. The plugin page has detailed instructions on how to install and get started. However there is a prerequisite of the Post-Plugin library (ZIP), that must be installed. I would better suggest to add the PHP code in the Single Post file, so that each of your post has information on the related posts.

There are quite a few options that can be configured - number of similar posts to show, the matching criteria etc.

In a related note, you can find here an interesting tip related to Similar posts plugin. It suggests a small hack to decouple the Date/Time information from your Similar posts link, so that it makes better sense for the Search engines.

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Starting with SEO #3 - Anchor text and Images

Posted December 6th, 2008 by Ashwin and filed in Blogging & SEO, SEO
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Anchor text

Anchor text is a clickable text on a HTML page, that takes the user to another HTML pages either within the same site or a different site.  This is usually achieved using the HTML tag.

Better the anchor text is, easier it is for the users to navigate and simpler for the Search engine to understand the page that is being linked.

Some good practices for anchor text as per Google SEO Starter guide:

  • Choose descriptive text - Avoid text like “click here”, “this” etc. for Anchor tags
  • Write concise text - don’t use anchor tags for a complete sentence or a paragraph
  • Format links so that they are easy to spot - avoid CSS styles that make links look like normal text
  • Remember these tips while linking for internal pages too - this will help the Search engine to navigate your site better


Bloggers use images a lot in their posts.  Some of these images do serve as hyperlinks, taking the user to other pages.
A HTML developer definitely knows about an attribute named “alt” in the HTML tag.  The primary purpose of this attribute is to display an alternate text, if the image could not be displayed for any reason.  But with reference to SEO, the “alt” text serves some additional purposes:

  • “alt” text serves the same purpose as a Hyperlink text, if the image is an Hyperlink - This helps the Search Engine to understand the target location
  • Optimizing Image file names and the “alt” text makes it easier for Image search projects like Google Image Search

Again, following is an excerpt from Google SEO Starter guide for good practices with images:

  • Use brief, but descriptive filenames and “alt” text
  • Supply “alt” texts, especially when using images as links
  • Store images in a directory of their own - example,
  • Use commonly supported file types - JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMP

Keep watching this space for further tips.

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Wordpress 2.7 is around the corner

Posted December 5th, 2008 by Ashwin and filed in Blogging & SEO
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Wordpress is becoming very popular among the bloggers, especially those who host their own blogs. Official release of Wordpress 2.7, for self-hosted blogs is expected around 10 December 2008.   But the release candidate for Wordpress 2.7 is available to download, for impatient bloggers.

There are several interesting features that make this an exciting release. Some salient features include:

  • Comment Threading and Paging
  • Closing Comments on older posts
  • Reply to comments from Admin console
  • One-click Plugin install
  • Integrated Plugin Browser
  • “Sticky” posts
  • Dashboard Rearrangement
  • Image Tweaks and much more…

You can read the post on Mashable, for an analysis on the new features with Wordpress 2.7

If you are trying out RC1 (zip file) or waiting for the official release, do pass on your feedback after laying hands on it!!