by Manoj Jasra
WordPress is an excellent blog platform which provides complete customization which is both user and search engine friendly. Below are some of the tips, tricks and plug-ins that I use when I setup WordPress blogs.
Custom Meta/Title Tags
There are numerous WordPress Meta Tag plug-ins but I like to use this one offered by G-loaded. This Meta Tag plug-in adds Meta Tags to the Front Page, Single Posts, Static Pages and Archived pages. It is compatible for the following versions: v1.5.2 - v2.3.2. For title tags I use the following code so that the title for the home page uses the blog's description and individual pages get the title of the post gets puts at the start of the title. The title can be updated in a file called header.php.
By default, WordPress truncates content within a feed. I personally feel that offering full content within Feeds is actually more beneficial because it allows users to get a complete concept for a given post. Additionally I have noticed a higher number of subscribers when I switched from a partial feed to a complete feed. Using a plug-in such as CompleteRSS is a great way to offer full feeds.
With CompleteRSS you can say goodbye to invalid RSS and partial entries - your feeds show your entire article no matter what, bringing you the traffic you deserve, and no longer use the very-much abused 'content:encoded tags that cause many feed readers such a headache.
If you're using FeedBurner in WordPress you should probably also use FeedBurner FeedSmith: This plugin will detect all ways to access your feed (e.g. www.yoursite.com/feed/ or www.yoursite.com/wp-rss2.php, etc.), and redirect them to your FeedBurner feed so you can track every possible subscriber. It will forward for your main posts feed, and optionally your main comments feed as well.
Custom Site Search
Site search is usually a feature that's turned on by default but if it's not make sure you add it. Site search allows for users to visit more pages during their stay on your site. WordPress also allows for custom search pages so that you can give visitors a richer experience on your blog. For custom search page options check out http://codex.wordpress.org/Creating_a_Search_Page. Lastly don't forget to track the Site Search with something like Google Analytics. Site Search tracking setup can be found here.
I am not sure what the deal is with HTML in WordPress (or Blogger for that matter) but they constantly mess up. There have been numerous occasions where I tried to copy and paste an HTML table from a different blog into one my blogs and ended up losing the table formatting completely. My suggestion is to find some sort of FCK Editor Plugin to replace the default editor OR to use the "copy from word" option located in the default editor.
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