Important Change for WordPress Blog Owners

SEO analysts have been making this recommendation for quite awhile, but recent case-studies indicate that it is one of the most important changes you can make to your WordPress blog.

Whether you are a link buyer or a link seller, this one little thing can help protect your rankings, improve your authority, and avoid duplicate content penalties.

Best of all, it is an incredibly easy change to make.

It has to do with archive pages…

By “archive pages”, I am referring to category pages, date archive pages, tag pages, and author pages.

Unless you have customized them significantly, they basically just duplicate the content from your posts, providing little value to your visitors…And we all know what happens if the search engines don’t think your content has value…

There used to be a lot of back and forth about whether or not folks should noindex these pages, but new data indicates that having these pages in the index can actually hurt your site.

In fact, the SEO analysts we spoke with said that if they could force people to make one change to their WordPress blogs, this would be it.

NOTE: If you have archive pages that are actually useful and get real traffic, you may want to check your analytics before making this change. For example, ecommerce sites may want to keep their category pages in the index and news sites might want to index their date archives.

How do you noindex these pages?

Chances are, if you use any SEO plugin on your site, noindexing these pages is one of the options. If you aren’t using an SEO plugin, you really should take a few minutes to install one on your blog.

Two of the most popular are WordPress SEO by Yoast and All In One SEO. Our analysts use both, and either one should get you going in the right direction.

Noindexing pages using ALL In One SEO

Go to the General Settings for All In One SEO.

AIO-1

Scroll down to the Noindex Settings and check the boxes to noindex these pages.

AIO-2

Noindexing pages using WordPress SEO by Yoast

Go to the Titles & Metas section for the plugin.

Yoast-1

Click on the Taxonomies tab and then check the boxes to noindex the category and tag pages

Yoast-2

Then, click on the Other tab and check the boxes to noindex the Author and Date archives.

Yoast-3

 

As always…

If you have any questions about this post or SEO in general, please contact us.