On the WordPress.com Blog, we recently published a post on Search Engine Optimization for WordPress.com. It has a ton of great information relevant to authors on WordPress.com VIP, so please check it out and feel free to forward it to your colleagues.
Common Myths about SEO
Myth: I need a plugin for SEO.
Fact: WordPress.com has great SEO right out of the box — you don’t have to do anything extra. In fact, WordPress takes care of 80-90 percent of the mechanics of SEO for you, according to Matt Cutts, head of Google’s webspam team. All of our themes are optimized for search engines, which means they are designed to make it easy for the Googlebot (and other search engines) to crawl through them and discover all the content.
Smart ways to increase your SERP rank
Make sure to use short, easy-to-read post slugs that accurately describe what your posts are about. On WordPress.com, the post slug is the last part of your post title, which you can edit to be anything you like. For example, the slug “/buying-sailboats” is better than “/how-to-buy-a-beautiful-inexpensive-sailboat-on-Craigslist” or “/354.”
Read the full post here.
Great piece yesterday in paidcontent.org about how TIME.com is leveraging the WordPress.com VIP SaaS platform to run all their vertical sites. In the post TIME.com cites their internal Omniture numbers, stating that ” ..verticals drove 40 percent of total site visits in 2011.“
It’s great to see Techland, Swampland, Battleland, and other TIME.com verticals that run on WordPress.com VIP highlighted in this article:
“In developing the vertical strategy, we decided to pinpoint areas of reader and advertiser interest, blow them out as mini-publications in their own right,” (Jim) Frederick (the site’s managing editor) said. “The idea was to get writers who can speak to Tech enthusiasts for Techland or personal finance fans at Moneyland, and forge new readerships, while still embracing our core audience and feeling familiar to our Time loyalists, too.””
LightBox, an amazing photography blog that lives on WordPress.com VIP and then connects effortlessly to Twitter, Facebook, and Tumblr, is a great example of WordPress as a digital hub. TIME.com uses the WordPress site to draw in audiences from various services back to the core content.
Nice work TIME.com team !
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Really interesting case study posted by Ryan Hellyer of PixoPoint on how his firm, using CSS and a couple of upgrades, built a full site on WordPress.com for the Red Devils of the New Zealand Ice Hockey League:
Ryan described the initial scope:
Their original site consisted of hard coded .html files as a simple static site. Our initial suggestion of a full-custom designed and coded, hosted WordPress installation was beyond their budget, so we suggested an alternative which has slashed their costs considerably yet allowed them to create their own WordPress powered site with a design which matches their branding and includes all of the functionality they requested, including a contact form, email subscriptions for news posts, no commenting functionality (they didn’t want a traditional blog) and the ability to add photo galleries and videos
Traditionally WordPress.com has only been suggested as a low-budget option for those who can’t afford to upgrade to “proper” hosted setup, however for the Red Devils, we were able to meet all of their requirements without losing anything that they required in their site. We were also able to integrate their teams branding into an existing theme very quickly through some simple CSS upgrades.
[ Read the full case study on PixoPoint.com ]