Using Post Categories To Improve WordPress SEO, User Navigation & Content Layout

Learn how to improve SEO, user navigation, and the content layout of your website or blog using post categories …

Using Post Categories To Improve WordPress SEO, User Navigation & Content Layout

WordPress post categories help keep your website and your content organized, boost your search engine rankings, and make it easier for site visitors to find what they are looking for.

WordPress post categories can also be used to improve your content layout.

In this tutorial, we’ll look at ways to improve SEO, user navigation, and the content layout of your website or blog using post categories.

Info

For a detailed step-by-step tutorial on WordPress post categories and how to set up and use categories in your posts, see the tutorial below:

Improve WordPress SEO, User Navigation & Content Layout With Post Categories

Categories are normally assigned to WordPress Posts, not Pages , so we’ll focus on posts in this tutorial (if you are unsure about the difference between posts and pages, see our tutorial on WordPress Posts Vs WordPress Pages).

Tip

If you need to add categories (and tags) to your WordPress pages, you can install a plugin like Post Tags and Categories For Pages.

Planning Your Categories

Even though WordPress is flexible enough to let you add new categories ‘on the fly,’ if you don’t plan your categories (and subcategories) properly, you will find it harder to keep your site organized and manageable as more content gets added to your site.

If you need help planning your website, your content, or your categories, see our website planning tutorials and our guide on keeping your website manageable and organized.

Improving WordPress SEO With Post Categories

The simplest and easiest way to improve WordPress SEO with post categories is to:

  1. Set up permalinks to include categories, and
  2. Install and configure an SEO plugin like Yoast SEO

Include Categories In Your Permalinks

Permalinks are a feature of WordPress that lets you set up search-engine friendly URLS (for more details, see our tutorial on how to set up and use WordPress permalinks).

When configuring your permalinks, all you need to do is make sure that post categories are included in the URLs …

Include categories in your permalinks

(Include categories in your permalinks)

This will automatically display search-engine friendly URLs with your categories (and subcategories) and post title keywords …

Search-engine friendly URLs with categories and subcategories included

(Search-engine friendly URLs with categories and subcategories included)

Use An SEO Plugin

Installing an SEO plugin like Yoast SEO will not only improve the SEO of your content, it also lets you optimize your post categories, category archive pages, etc. …

Optimize your post categories with an SEO plugin

(Optimize your post categories with an SEO plugin)

Adding category descriptions will display on some WordPress themes and can help to boost your content’s SEO …

Category descriptions can help boost your content's SEO

(Category descriptions can help boost your content’s SEO)

Once your permalinks and SEO plugin settings are configured for your post categories, WordPress will then automatically start delivering you the SEO benefits of search engine-friendly URLs and better content indexing.

Improving User Navigation With Post Categories

Post categories can be used to improve user navigation on your WordPress site in different pages and different sections of your site, on site maps, menus, sidebar widgets, archive pages, even different RSS feeds.

Here, for example, are some of the ways you can help users navigate your content using post categories …

Categories Widget

Adding a categories widget to your sidebar lets users find related content assigned to a category …

Add a categories widget to your sidebar

(Add a categories widget to your sidebar)

When users click on a category link on the categories widget, they are taken to a category archive page.

Category Archive Pages

Category archive pages group together all posts assigned to a category …

Category archive page

(Category archive page)

Breadcrumb Navigation Links

Breadcrumb navigation links display on some WordPress themes.  Displaying categories in breadcrumb navigation links not only helps to improve user navigation, but also SEO …

(Display categories in breadcrumb navigation links)

Clicking on the category section of the breadcrumb link will take users to the category archive page.

Info

If you use the Yoast SEO plugin and your WordPress theme does not support breadcrumb navigation links by default, you (or your website developer) will either need to edit your theme’s templates and add a snippet of code to display breadcrumbs, or choose a WordPress theme that supports features like breadcrumb navigation links (e.g. the Avada theme) …

Themes like Avada support breadcrumbs

(Themes like Avada support breadcrumbs)

Improving WordPress Content Layout With Post Categories

Post categories and subcategories can be used to help organize and improve the layout of your content.

For example, WPCompendium.org’s WordPress tutorials are organized into the main categories below:

If you click any of the above links, you will see pages displaying a list of tutorials for each category organized in a grid view layout …

List of posts grouped by category

(List of posts grouped by category)

Some sections, like our WordPress Plugin Tutorials, display a list of post sections grouped by subcategories …

List of post sections grouped by subcategory

(List of post sections grouped by subcategory)

Clicking on an item in the ‘WordPress Plugin Tutorials’ page will take you to a page displaying all the tutorials grouped under one of its subcategories, such as:

We use post categories and subcategories to organize, filter, and display content on WP Compendium’s tutorial sections using a premium plugin called Content Views Pro.

The plugin also has a free version, called Content Views.

Content Views

Content Views - Post Grid & List for WordPress

(Content Views – Post Grid & List for WordPress)

Content Views is a free WordPress plugin that lets you organize, filter, sort, and display content from selected posts, pages, or custom post types using different views and layouts (e.g. grid, table, list) and insert these views anywhere on your site using a shortcode …

Use categories to display posts using different layouts

(Use categories to display posts using different layouts)

The plugin is very easy to use and lets you create unlimited custom views and layouts without touching code.

The free version of the plugin provides 3 basic layouts (Grid, Collapsible list, Scrollable list). The comprehensive premium version (Content Views Pro) provides the basic layouts and a whole lot more, including many advanced features  …

Display your content using different views and layouts with the Content Views Pro plugin

(Display your content using different views and layouts with the Content Views Pro plugin)

Although this tutorial focuses mostly on post categories, with Content Views Pro installed, you can create different views using posts, pages, and custom post types and filter these using a combination of different criteria including post categories, tags, publish date, post author, keywords, and custom fields.

You can also sort and organize your content using a wide range of methods, including post or page IDs, published date, modified date, drag & drop, post slug, comment count, menu order, custom fields, and even random sort (content displays in random order every time the page is refreshed) …

Create customized views to display content on your WordPress site

(Create customized views to display content on your WordPress site)

Views are created by selecting different options in the view-building form …

Create different content views by selecting options

(Create different content views by selecting options)

You can live preview your content as you build or edit your views …

Preview as you build

(Preview as you build)

After creating and saving your views, the plugin generates a shortcode which you can use to insert into your posts, pages, widgets, etc. …

Use shortcodes to insert views into your content

(Use shortcodes to insert views into your content)

The Content Views or Content Views PRO plugin gives you complete control over how your content is grouped and displayed to visitors. Views are 100% mobile responsive and the plugin is optimized to help improve SEO.

Tip

You can also use the Content Views plugin to add an attractive site map for your visitors with post thumbnail images and descriptions. To learn more, go here:

For more details about using the plugin, check out the video below, visit the FREE version plugin page here, or check out the Content Views Pro website for a full list of features, comprehensive demo site, plugin pricing and FAQ section, and more.

(Overview of WordPress Content Views)

We hope that you have found the above information useful. Feel free to check out the tutorials on the demo view below …

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Here is a simple, inexpensive, and effective system you can use to store, plan, and organize your content ideas ...
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How To Promote A Non-WordPress Website With WordPress

If you are running a non-WordPress site and looking for ways to drive more traffic and improve your results, this tutorial will show you a simple 5-step plan to promote your site using a WordPress blog …

WordPress is an ideal platform for non-technical users. It provides a powerful, flexible, and fully customizable content management system (CMS) and web platform that lets you build almost any type of website you can imagine for any type of purpose and most of this can be done without requiring knowledge of coding.

WordPress can also be easily configured to automatically drive traffic to your business when you publish new content on your website or blog.

Suppose, however, that your main website was not built using WordPress and you find that, while you can edit your content, add products to your e-commerce store, etc., you have little to no control over areas that will improve your results and require help from external service providers.

For example, let’s suppose that you need to hire techies or digital marketers to get things done like improve your web traffic, lead generation, and sales conversions, make changes to your site’s web design or the layout of your web pages, extend or enhance functionality, or add automation features to your site.

The cost of hiring experts and then waiting for things to get done can affect your results. If you plan to run time-sensitive promotions, for example, even a small delay can lead to missed opportunities and loss of revenue.

If you run a website built using a platform other than WordPress and are looking for ways to drive more traffic to your site and improve your results, this tutorial will show you a simple 5-step plan to promote your site and your business using a WordPress blog.

How To Promote A Non-WordPress Website With WordPress

Suppose that your digital presence consists of a non-WordPress website and social media accounts (e.g. a Facebook page, Instagram, etc.).

Can WordPress still help you? How?

A digital presence built without using WordPress

(A digital presence built without using WordPress)

Confirm It’s Not WordPress

Before doing anything, you should confirm that your website has not been built using WordPress.

Millions of websites around the world are powered by WordPress (almost a third of all websites), so chances are that your site may also be powered  by WordPress.

WordPress is an ideal platform for non-technical users.

WordPress provides a powerful, flexible, and fully customizable content management system (CMS) and web platform that lets you build almost any kind of website you want for any purpose and most of this can be done without knowledge of coding using plugins.

WordPress is  also free, quick to install, easy to use and puts you in complete control of your digital presence.

If you don’t know why you should be using WordPress, then we recommend checking out the FREE tutorials in our WordPress Overview section, especially the ones below:

If you’re not sure what platform was used to build your website, see this tutorial:

If your website is not powered by WordPress, you may want to consider rebuilding it with WordPress, especially if you’re a non-techie (to learn why, we recommend you read ‘The Small Business Digital Manager‘).

If you’re absolutely sure that your website is not powered by WordPress, then continue to the next step …

Step 1 – Install WordPress In A Subfolder Of Your Domain

If rebuilding your website with WordPress is not an option, you can install WordPress into a subfolder (i.e. a directory) of your domain.

For example, let’s say that you install WordPress in a directory of your server called “blog” …

Install WordPress in a server directory called 'blog'

(Install WordPress in a server directory called ‘blog’)

If a visitor types in your domain into their web browser (e.g. http://yourdomain.com), they will land on your main website (your non-WordPress site) and if they type in http://yourdomain.com/blog, they will land on your WordPress site …

Add a WordPress site to your domain!

(Add a WordPress site to your domain!)

Useful Tip

You can quickly and easily install WordPress using the FREE detailed step-by-step tutorials in our WordPress Installation module.

Useful Tip

If you host your website with a reliable web hosting provider using cPanel, you can set up multiple WordPress sites to suit a range of different purposes (e.g. a blog, a membership site, an e-commerce store, a private training site for internal use only, even a multisite WordPress installation) …

You can have multiple WordPress installations on your domain

(You can have multiple WordPress installations on your domain!)

Step 2 – Configure WordPress To Grow Your Traffic Automatically

Why use WordPress to promote your non-WordPress website?

While different web platforms allow you to set up a blog, no other platform can be as easily configured to automatically drive traffic to your site like WordPress can.

WordPress integrates with all social media networks through the use of plugins and has built-in SEO features that can instantly notify search engines and dozens of other online directories as soon you publish content, and drive more traffic to your business automatically …

WordPress can be configured to drive traffic to your business automatically!

(WordPress can be configured to drive traffic to your business automatically!)

Useful Tip

You can configure WordPress using the FREE detailed step-by-step tutorials in our WordPress Configuration module and automate your traaffic generation using our FREE WordPress Traffic Automation Blueprint tutorials.

Step 3 – Match The Design Of Your Website And Your WordPress Blog

WordPress web design templates (called Themes) allow you instantly change the entire look and feel of your WordPress installation.

If you install a premium WordPress theme like Avada, for example, for around $60 (the cost of the theme), you can customize and configure the theme’s options to match the design of your main website without touching code and without requiring the services of a web developer or web designer to customize your site …

Match The Design Of Your Website And Your WordPress Blog

(Match the design of your website and your WordPress blog)

You can easily match most web design layouts with a highly configurable theme like Avada, so your visitors won’t even know that they are on different websites when going from your blog to your main site.

Step 4 – Use Your WordPress Blog To Drive Traffic To Your Website

After installing, configuring, and customizing the design of your WordPress blog to match the look and feel of your main non-WordPress site, the next step is to use your blog to drive traffic to your main website …

Use your WordPress blog to drive traffic to your website

(Use your WordPress blog to drive traffic to your website)

With WordPress, you can easily add many lead generation processes and implement a content marketing strategy using any or all of the methods below:

Publish Articles And Blog Posts

With a WordPress marketing blog, you can easily publish articles and blog posts to promote your business and educate and inform online users about the value and benefits of your products or services, using hyperlinks and calls to action embedded into your content to drive visitors from your blog to your main website.

For more details, see our tutorial on how to create WordPress posts.

Promote Your Blog Content On Social Media

As mentioned earlier in Step 2, WordPress can be configured to instantly post excerpts of your blog content to your social media accounts. These include Facebook, Twitter, GooglePlus, LinkedIn, Instagram, Tumblr, and more.

For more details, see our WordPress Traffic Automation Blueprint tutorial series.

Add Rotating Banner Ads

WordPress lets you easily install rotating banner ad plugins on your blog (and your website) to drive visitors to your online store, special deals, product pages, etc.

For more details, see our tutorial on how to add rotating advertising banners in your WordPress site.

Add Email Capture Forms

You can easily set up opt-in forms on your WordPress blog to collect subscriber email addresses and drive visitors to your main website via newsletters and email marketing campaigns.

For more details, see our tutorial on email marketing with WordPress.

Add Menu Links

WordPress lets you easily add links pointing visitors to your main website in your blog’s header and footer navigation menus, sidebar links, redirect links, etc.

For more details, see our tutorial on how to use WordPress menus.

Use QR Codes

Do you participate in trade or industry events, conferences, trade shows, markets, exhibitions, etc.?

If so, you can use QR codes with your WordPress blog to promote your business at these events.

For more details, see our tutorial on how to promote your business at marketing events using QR codes.

Syndicate Your Content Using RSS Feeds

WordPress automatically publishes your posts to an RSS feed, allowing other websites and blogs to syndicate your content, creating additional exposure online for your business.

For more details, see our Ultimate Guide To WordPress RSS.

Step 5 – Review Your Stats & Improve Your Results

The last step in this set up is to regularly review your stats and look for ways to improve your results …

Review your stats and improve your results

(Review your stats and improve your results)

For example, if your main website is an e-commerce store, you can improve your results in many ways using the methods outlined in Step 4 to promote the following on your WordPress marketing blog:

  • New products
  • Best-selling products
  • Slow moving products
  • Excess stock
  • Clearance items or discontinued inventory
  • Special deals / Limited offers
  • Annual, seasonal, or one-off sales
  • etc.

Useful Tip

If you do any kind of paid advertising (e.g. Google AdWords, Facebook ads, print ads, etc.), review your stats from your ad campaigns and use these to improve your content marketing strategy using your WordPress blog.

By improving your organic results, you can reduce your marketing costs and increase your profit margins.

As you can see,  every area of your WordPress blog can be used with different marketing methods to promote your business and drive more traffic to your main website.

We hope that you have found the above tutorial useful. If you need help installing and configuring a WordPress blog for your business, see our FREE detailed step-by-step WordPress tutorials or visit our WordPress services directory.

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WordPress GDPR Plugins – General Data Protection Regulation Compliance

Learn about WordPress plugins that can help your website comply with General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) requirements for new European Union laws on data protection …

GDPR – General Data Protection Regulation Compliance

WordPress GDPR Plugins - General Data Protection Regulation ComplianceAs well as making sure that your website complies with all laws and regulations governing how businesses operate online (see Is Your Website Legally Compliant?), new European Union laws on data protection require all website and webshop owners wherever they are located to comply with the European privacy regulations known as GDPR from May 25th, 2018 to avoid incurring hefty fines.

What Is The GDPR?

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a regulation in European Union (EU) law on data protection and privacy for all EU individuals. It addresses the export of personal data outside the EU and aims to give control back to citizens and residents over their personal data …

(Source: Wikipedia)

Taking effect from May 25, 2018, the GDPR affects businesses of all sizes that collect, process, or store data of any citizen, resident, or individual within the European Union.

GDPR compliance requires all businesses and website owners who collect any information or personal data from EU individuals (including mobile apps) to have certain things in place, including documentation (e.g. privacy notice) on the website informing visitors that their information is being collected, the type of data being collected, why it’s being collected, and how long the information is being held for.

The GDPR also requires business to take additional steps to ensure any personal data it collects is protected. This includes:

  • Setting up internal plans and policies for data collection, data storage, and data access and being prepared for potential breaches of data.
  • Providing details to users before collecting data, including full disclosure of personal information purposes and time limits.
  • Making sure that consent forms are unchecked by default and have an easy confirmation process.
  • Listing contact information of your data privacy administrator clearly on your website.
  • Providing users the ability to send inquiries regarding their information and view, edit, or delete their personal information.
  • Having a process in place for easy data deletion and for handling data deletion requests in a timely manner.
  • Having a process in place to allow people to transfer or download their information (e.g. a CSV file).

Lack of compliance with GDPR rules can lead to significant fines.

For additional information about adding legal pages to your website, see the post below:

WordPress GDPR Plugins

With new data protection laws and privacy regulations having come into effect recently,  we thought it would be useful to let you know about some WordPress plugins that can assist you with GDPR compliance.

Warning

We are not lawyers and cannot give you legal advice about how GDPR will affect your website or your business. The plugins described below will not make your website GDPR compliant, they are only tools to assist in the process. Please seek advice from competent legal experts about GDPR compliance for your business.

WP GDPR

WP GDPR

(WP GDPR)

Plugin Description

WP GDPR is a free WordPress plugin that automates the administration process of handling user requests for information about their data.

The plugin creates a page where users can request access to their personal data stored on your website and provides you with an overview of these requests in the WordPress backend.

In the backend, you can also see which plugins collect personal data and require an ‘ask for approval’ checkbox.

When users ask to view their personal data, they receive an email with a unique URL that allows them to view, update and download all comments they have posted on your site,  and request for removal of any or all comments.

Thre plugin developers also offer premium add-ons for integration with plugins that collect user data and allow users to  view, update, and download their personal data or ask for its removal.

Plugin Installation

WP GDPR installs like any WordPress plugin (need help installing plugins? See this tutorial).

To install the plugin, go to the ‘Add Plugins’ screen (Plugins > Add Plugins), and type in ‘GDPR’ in the keyword search field. Locate the WP GDPR plugin and click on ‘Install Now’ …

Install WP GDPR

(Install WP GDPR)

After the plugin has been installed, click on ‘Activate’ ….

Activate WP GDPR

(Activate WP GDPR)

After the plugin has been installed and activated, you will see a new WP GDPR menu item on your main menu …

WP GDPR menu added

(WP GDPR menu added)

We’ll go through this menu in a moment. The plugin also creates a page where users can request access to their personal data.

To view this page, go to your Pages screen, find the plugin page and click on ‘View’ …

The plugin creates a new 'GDPR request personal data' page

(The plugin creates a new ‘GDPR request personal data’ page)

You can point users to this page and they will be able to enter their email, tick a consent checkbox and submit a request for information about any personal data stored on your website …

'GDPR request personal data' page

(‘GDPR request personal data’ page)

The plugin also places a GDPR consent notice and checkbox below every post comments field …

GDPR consent notice and checkbox

(GDPR consent notice and checkbox)

Plugin Usage

When users want to access information about their data, they visit the GDPR request page and submit a request …

Users submit a request for personal data(Users submit a request for personal data)

The plugin then sends the user an email with a link where they can view what personal data has been stored on your site …

GDPR request email confirmation notice

(GDPR request email confirmation notice)

In your WordPress backend, you can see a list of data requests by clicking on the WP GDPR > List of data requests menu …

WP GDPR menu - List of data requests

(WP GDPR menu – List of data requests)

This brings up a list of all users that requested information with a status of their request …

List of user requests

(List of user requests)

The user receives an email with a link they can click on to check their personal data …

User request email

(User request email)

Clicking on the button takes the user to a page on your site where they can view data stored on your site (e.g. comments) and either send your site administrator  a delete request for any or all of the data, or download it to a CSV file …

Users can view what data is stored on your website

(Users can view what data is stored on your website)

You can view delete requests by going to the WP GDPR menu and selecting ‘List of delete requests’ …

WP GDPR menu - List of delete requests

(WP GDPR menu – List of delete requests)

This brings up a list of all delete requests. The site administrator can then delete personal data or make personal data anonymous …

List of delete requests

(List of delete requests)

To view a list of all plugins that collect personal user data, click on ‘List of plugins’ …

WP GDPR menu - List of plugins

(WP GDPR menu – List of plugins)

This brings up a list of all plugins that store user data …

List of plugins

(List of plugins)

To configure the plugin’s settings, click on ‘Settings’ …

WP GDPR menu - Settings

(WP GDPR menu – Settings)

This lets you edit the wording of comment forms and the personal data request page, hide comments, send notifications and requests to your DPO’s (Data Protection Officer) email address, etc. …

WP GDPR plugin settings

(WP GDPR plugin settings)

Useful Tip

Remember to update your Privacy Policy page and add a link to the page in your GDPR form’s privacy policy text …

Add a link to your Privacy Policy page

(Add a link to your Privacy Policy page)

Also, remember to add your GDPR page to your Legal Pages section (you can create a custom menu to do this) …

Add your GDPR page to your Legal Pages section

(Add your GDPR page to your Legal Pages section)

If you need help using the plugin, see the ‘Help’ section of the WP GDPR menu …

WP GDPR menu - Help

(WP GDPR menu – Help)

As you can see, this a useful plugin for automating and assisting the process of receiving and sending notifications about user data requests.

For more details, visit the plugin website: WP GDPR

Here are other WordPress GDPR plugins you can look at using …

WP GDPR Compliance

WP GDPR Compliance

(WP GDPR Compliance)

WP GDPR Compliance is another free WordPress GDPR compliance plugin you can install that will assist website owners and online shops to comply with European provacy regulations.

Once installed, the plugin provides integrations with other plugins that collect personal data of your site users …

WP GDPR Compliance - Integrations screen

(WP GDPR Compliance – Integrations screen)

The plugin also provides a Checklist to help you assess what private data you collect on your website with useful tips on how to comply with GDPR requirements, and a Settings tab …

WP GDPR Compliance - Checklist

(WP GDPR Compliance – Checklist)

For more details, visit the plugin website here: WP GDPR Compliance

WP GDPR Fix

WP GDPR Fix

(WP GDPR Fix)

WP GDPR Fix is a premium WordPress GDPR plugin that helps you comply with 7 key GDPR requirements:

  1. Cookie Consent – Automatically inform your users about cookie use and get their consent.
  2. T & C Acceptance – Generate a T & C automatically and force acceptance by users.
  3. Privacy Policy – Generate a privacy policy automatically & force acceptance by users.
  4. Right To Be Forgotten – Collect right to be forgotten requests and automatically notify website owners / admin.
  5. Data Access – Collect data access requests and automatically inform admin.
  6. Data Breach Notification – Send data breach notifications to all users as required by law.
  7. Data Rectification – Collect data rectification requests and update owners and administrator.

WP GDPR Fix is 100% compliant with all GDPR requirements and works with all WordPress sites including blogs, ecommerce stores, etc.

For more details, watch the video below of visit the plugin website here: WP GDPR Fix

(WP GDPR Fix)

For more information about adding legal pages to your website or plugins you can use to add legal forms to your site, see the tutorial below:

Useful Information

Don’t assume that GDPR laws and regulations don’t apply to you if you live outside the European Union. To learn more about the GDPR and how it can affect your business, see the resources below. Once again, we strongly recommend that you seek competent legal advice from experts on this matter.

We hope you have found the above information on GDPR compliance and WordPress GDPR plugins useful.

GDPR Information & Resources

WordPress GDPR Plugins - General Data Protection Regulation Compliance

(Image: Pixabay)

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