Today, I’m delivering a presentation at Wordcamp Montreal called Optimizing WordPress for Search and Social. The goal of this presentation is to explore how you can optimize WordPress blogs for both Search and Social Media.
After this session, audience members should (1) have a firm grasp on the fundamentals of onsite SEO, (2) understand the advantages of Facebook Connect, and (3) know what themes and plugins can help them implement these SEO and social features. Below is the slideshow, as well as all the link to the various WordPress themes and plugins that I will discuss.
SEO Themes & Plugins for WordPress
Thesis Theme — I personally use this theme to power my personal blog. Although it is not free, it offers many user-friendly SEO and web design options, and might be the best $87 I’ve ever spent online.
Genesis Theme — I haven’t yet tried out this theme, but it’s used by Chris Brogan. Not only do I trust Chris, but he used to use Thesis, too, so if Genesis is good enough for Chris, it’s probably good enough for me, too. It also goes for only $60.
All in One SEO Pack — If you don’t want to spend a few bucks on a comprehensive SEO theme for WordPress, this plugin will get you 3/4 of the way there. I haven’t used it in a while, so I can’t remember everything that it does and doesn’t do, but it will help you craft optimized page title and meta descriptions.
MembersWing Plugin — This plugin will help you implement First-Click-Free so that Google can index your restricted content. I haven’t tested it, but there’s a free and a paid version, so you should be able to test it out before forking over any dough.
Facebook Connect Plugins for WordPress
And here are some plugins that you might want to try to integrate Facebook Connect with WordPress.
- Simple Facebook Connect — I’ve actually tested this one. It offers pretty much everything you could want out of Facebook Connect, but doesn’t always play well with every theme.
- Faux Facebook Connect — allows Facebook users to comment on a WordPress blog.
- Gigya Socializer — helps increase your site registration and engagement by using a number of social ID APIs, including Facebook Connect, MySpaceID, Twitter and OpenID.
There are a bunch more, but they haven’t been tested with WordPress above 2.9. However, you might also want to check out this list of 12 Facebook Plugins for Bloggers.
I also “live blogged” two of the other great sessions from Wordcamp Montreal. Of course, I couldn’t type quite fast enough to catch everything that was said, but you can still get a pretty good sense of the main take-aways.
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