WordPress Traffic Automation Blueprint – Part 3 (Configuration)

This is part 3 of a 5-part series on how to create an automated traffic generation system for your WordPress site. In this tutorial, you will learn how to configure the essential settings of the WordPress automated traffic system.

Web Traffic Blueprint Part Three - A Complete Guide To Increasing Your Web Visitors Automatically

Welcome to Part Three of our Web Traffic Blueprint article series, where we show you how to automate traffic to your website using the WordPress CMS.

In Part 1 of this article series, we described the process, and explained why using an expertly configured WordPress website is the key to generating automated web traffic …

With an expertly configured WordPress website, all you have to do is publish web content on a consistent basis to generate traffic!

(With an expertly configured WordPress blog, all you have to do is add fresh content consistently to generate web traffic!)

In Part 2, we discussed the setup phase of the blueprint. We explained the best way to start if you don’t have a website yet, how to set everything up if you already have a website, and what to do if your existing website has been built using WordPress.

How to set up WordPress on your domain

(In Part two we show you where to set up a WordPress web site on your domain)

In this section, we will look at the configuration phase of the traffic automation process. We will help you understand what makes an expertly configured site different than a professionally configured site, and how much work needs to be done to ensure that when all is fully configured, you can automatically start driving visitors whenever you post new content to your website.

WordPress Web Traffic Automation Blueprint – Configuration Phase

The ability to attract more visitors to one’s website is often cited by website owners as one of the greatest challenges they face online. Also, the business landscape is becoming so much more competitive on a global scale and businesses are exploring any advantage they believe will help them improve their results online.

Being able to automatically generate traffic on demand can provide you with a tremendous advantage over the competition. For business owners, an expertly configured website means having an immediate competitive advantage from the very start.

Configuration Is The Difference

There is a difference between an expertly configured WordPress site and a site that has been professionally installed and set up by an expert website developer but not necessarily configured to take advantage of everything WordPress can offer you.

Here’s a simple way to describe the differences:

An expertly configured WordPress site gives you a professional web presence and an automated online business marketing process!

A professional site gives you a professional web presence, but an expertly configured site gives you a web presence and an automated online business marketing system.

(An expertly configured website gives you a web presence and an automated online business marketing tool!)

Not only does it take extra work to build and integrate an automated online business marketing process into your website, it also takes a special kind of expert knowledge.

Let me illustrate this point with an amusing anecdote.

Are Experts Worth The Money They Charge?

All was going well in the widget-making manufacturing plant when all of a sudden, things ground to a stop.

No one could figure out what has gone wrong and so the floor manager decided to call in an expert to try and fix the problem.

The expert arrived shortly afterwards and, without uttering a word, headed immediately towards the control box. After staring at the electronic components for no more than 5 minutes or so, the expert then took out a tiny hammer from his tool belt and made a very gentle tap near the right-hand side of the box.

Immediately, the assembly line sprang to life.

The manager was grateful and relieved as he thanked the expert, who left as quickly as he had arrived.

A few days after resolving the incident, the manager received an invoice for $5,000.

The manager dialed the expert, demanding to know why they were charged so much for less than 5 minutes work. He then requested an itemized invoice before hanging up.

The next day, a bill of payment arrived and was placed in the manager’s in-tray. Upon opening it, this is what he saw:

invoice

The #1 challenge most businesses face online is being able to drive web traffic to their sites.

In the story we’ve just described, how much money did the gizmo factory stand to lose when production stopped functioning and no one on the factory floor had the expertise to fix it? Did the expert not have the right to demand fair compensation for years spent building up the knowledge, skills and expertise that enabled him to immediately avert a very serious crisis?

Similarly, if you could have a website configured so all you have to do is publish new content and search engines, social followers from Facebook and Twitter and dozens of other online properties would be instantly notified, how much time and money would you save?

How much better would your business be if you could automate the process of attracting new visitors to your site?

(How much better would your business be if you could automate the process of attracting new visitors to your website?)

While the solution to many problems can seem quite easy in hindsight, it rarely turns out to be that way.

Knowing how to expertly configure a WordPress site requires more than installing a website and configuring a few basic settings. It requires knowing where to tap! In other words, knowing things such as:

  • Which plugins need to be installed to get specific functionalities on your site.
  • Which accounts you need to set up and activate to get specific results
  • Which internal and external settings you need to configure to ensure that processes will run as envisioned, etc.

Driving new traffic automatically with WordPress is a process that requires knowledge and expertise

(Generating traffic automatically with WordPress is a process that requires expertise)

This part of the WordPress traffic automation system is not technically challenging, but it’s quite involved. This is because it’s not just about installing a plugin, clicking a couple of buttons, or tweaking some options and settings in your dashboard area … it’s all this and much more.

Expertly configuring your website is a process that involves your web server, your website or blog, and various third-party sites and/or online services …

The configuration phase involves more than just configuring a few WordPress settings

(Expertly configuring your website involves more than just configuring a few settings in WordPress)

If the activities involved in the configuration process were to be flowcharted, it would look like this …

A simplified flowchart showing the configuration process

(A simplistic flowchart showing all the steps involved in the configuration phase)

Let’s examine these areas.

Web Hosting

We’re not talking here about the process of configuring your webhosting account for installation purposes (this should have been done during the Setup phase). We’re talking about configuring settings in your web server specifically for handling all web traffic …

In the configuration stage, your web server settings need to be fine-tuned for handling both good and bad traffic

(In the configuration stage, your web-hosting account settings need to be checked for handling both good and bad traffic)

Not all traffic is beneficial traffic. Some of the web traffic your business may attract will be unwelcome traffic like bot spam, security threats, brute-force bot attacks, etc.

This area of the configuration process, therefore, is about planning for good and bad traffic and adjusting settings in your server accordingly. This includes looking at things like server-level spam protection and preventing security threats, to configuring your domain and email redirections, setting up error page redirections, etc …

Have you configured your control panel settings for handling things like emails, page  error redirections, etc?

(Have you configured your webhosting settings for handling things like emails, page errors, etc?)

After your web server settings have been fine-tuned and configured, the next step is to set up and configure a number of third-party sites.

External Accounts

The basic idea of setting up external sites is that all of your content should be published to a central location (your WordPress site) and from there, be automatically distributed to other parts of your traffic system, or notify traffic-related web properties and applications.

Configuring External Sites

After adding these external services to your traffic system, content with links pointing back to your website is automatically published on your search, social and aggregator accounts. Your content and site will benefit from increased exposure online, helping your business tap into a whole new audience and traffic source.

Integration With External Accounts

Some of these sites will need to have accounts set up before configuring your site to speed up the process and some will need to be done later, during the automation phase.

For example, you will want to set up the following accounts before configuring your site’s settings:

Google Webmasters

Google Search Console - create a Google-friendly site

(Google Search Console)

Google Webmaster Tools lets you inform Google about your site’s pages, submit XML sitemaps for automatic page indexing, and provides you with a range of useful information, tools and diagnostic reports about your website.

After setting up your Google Webmaster Tools account and entering site data, the information can be used to integrate and automate traffic settings in WordPress using plugins like Yoast SEO (see further below) and other applications.

Google Analytics

Google Analytics

(Google Analytics)

Google Analytics lets you improve your site’s results, SEO, user engagement, marketing efforts, sales conversions, and more, by tracking all user behavior, pages visited, keywords searched for, social media referrals, etc.

After setting up your up your account and site details has been entered, you can add your account code to all of your web pages in WordPress via a simple plugin and feed data automatically to various other applications.

Bing Webmaster Tools

Bing Data And Tools

(Bing Webmaster Tools)

Bing Webmaster Tools is similar to Google Webmasters. After setting up your account, this information can be used with traffic-related settings and notifications in WordPress using plugins like Yoast SEO and other applications.

WordPress.com

WordPress.com

(WordPress.com)

As discussed in Part 2, WordPress offers website owners a hosted (WordPress.com) and a self-hosted (WordPress.org) option. We recommended choosing the self-hosted WordPress platform if you are planning to grow a professional online presence.

WordPress.com (the hosted option), however, provides a number of useful features, which various WordPress plugins can access. We recommend setting up an account at WordPress.com, therefore, and we’ll show you how to integrate this into your automated traffic generation system in Part Four of this article series.

Social Media

Syndicate your content automatically to your social media pages and drive new traffic to your site

(Syndicate your content automatically to your social media pages and get new traffic to your site)

You will need your various social media and social bookmarking accounts set up before you can integrate these with your traffic generation system.

Once you have set up and configured everything, you will be able to syndicate your content automatically to your social media pages and attract new visitors to your site.

Make sure you have profiles set up with all the leading social networks – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Pinterest, etc.

Social Media Sites

There are lots of social bookmarking sites you can set up. You don’t need to go crazy, just select the ones that will work well with your system and/or content sharing tools (we will review some of these tools in greater detail during the Automation phase).

There are loads of social sites you can syndicate your content to.

(There are loads of social sites you can syndicate your content to. Image source ShareThis.com)

Additional Platforms, Aggregators, Etc.

There are many online platforms and RSS aggregators that can serve as secondary-level sources of traffic. Some are free or provide free plans, and some offer a range of pricing plans to suit different users.

For example, here is a content aggregator site that allows you to add a feed from your website …

RebelMouse

RebelMouse

(RebelMouse)

RebelMouse is a news aggregator for your social profiles and RSS feeds. Your content displays in a Pinterest-like format and visitors can follow your account.

Useful Tip

There are various technologies and third-party applications that can be incorporated into your own traffic blueprint. Please feel free to contact us if you need assistance exploring this area further, or to discuss a strategy to suit your needs.

After you have configured your server settings and set up external service accounts, it’s time to configure your WordPress site.

WordPress – Configuring Your Website For Traffic

The first step in configuring your WordPress site for traffic is to ensure that your global settings have been set up correctly.

Let’s go over some key areas.

Global Settings – WordPress

By default, WordPress includes a Settings menu that allows you to modify your site’s main settings …

WordPress settings menu

(WordPress settings section)

General Settings

Fields like Site Title and Tagline can affect your site’s SEO, search indexing, etc …

Settings Menu - General Settings

(Settings Menu – General Settings)

Writing

The Writing Settings section contains a powerful and often overlooked built-in traffic notification system …

Global Settings - Writing Settings

(WordPress Settings – Writing Settings Screen)

As stated below the Update Services section title,

When you publish a new post, WordPress automatically notifies the following site update services …

Unless you have specifically configured your settings to prevent search engines from indexing your site, then your site will automatically notify the services entered into the Update Services text area

By default, when WordPress is installed, this section lists only one entry …

Update Services

(Update Services – A Powerful Traffic Feature)

You can notify dozens of update services automatically with WordPress …

Notify dozens of update services automatically!

(WordPress lets you notify dozens of update services automatically!)

Useful Info

Download A Comprehensive List Of Ping Services For Your WordPress Site!

Click the link below to download a comprehensive list of reliable and authoritative ping services for your WordPress site or blog:

Download A List Of Ping Services For Your WordPress Site

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Note: If you need help setting up the list of ping services on your site, we recommend using a professional web services provider. You can find professional WordPress service providers in our WordPress Services Directory.

Reading Settings

This section affects how visitors will see your content when they visit your home page and blog pages.

The syndication settings in this section can have an influence traffic. For example, choosing to display the full content vs a summary of your post, affects how your content displays in RSS readers and blog post digests, and could impact someone’s choice to explore your site further, and whether or not they will visit your website or blog to view the rest of the content from a partial feed, or read the content in full without the need to click through to your site.

As far as traffic is concerned, however, the main setting here is whether the Search Engine Visibility feature is enabled or not.

Normally, you want search engines to visit your site. Leaving the box unchecked enables WordPress to automatically notify your update services list whenever a new post is published (see Writing Settings above). Unless there is a specific reason to discourage search engines from visiting your site, leave this box unchecked …

Global Settings - Reading Settings

(Settings Menu – Reading Settings)

Discussion

Although discussion settings are mostly concerned with how users engage with content on your site, you have the option to allow notifications to blogs linked to from your content, and to allow link notifications from other blogs (pingbacks and trackbacks). This can work for you, but it can also drive bad traffic in the form of SPAM comments …

Global Settings - Discussion Settings

(Settings Menu – Discussion Settings)

Permalink Settings

Permalinks allow you to create SEO-friendly URLs …

WordPress Settings - Permalink Settings

(Settings Menu – Permalink Settings)

The examples below show some of the options for configuring your site’s post permalinks …

Configuring permalink URLs

(Configuring permalinks)

To learn more about setting up permalinks in WordPress, go here: Setting Up WordPress Permalinks

Configuring WordPress Traffic Generation Plugins

WordPress provides users with plugins that help to add almost every type of functionality imaginable to your site, including plugins with features that help to improve traffic generation.

Let’s look at some types of plugin categories that affect traffic and plugin examples

Blog Defender Security Plugin

Once again, it’s important to configure your site for handling both good traffic and bad traffic. No site is safe from a cyber-attack.

Security Plugins stop bad traffic from harming your web presence(Security Plugins stop bad traffic from causing your website harm)

Security plugins like Blog Defender help to make your blog invisible to botnets and hackers.

Go here to learn more:

SEO Plugins – Yoast SEO

WordPress SEO plugins help drive more traffic by improving your website’s SEO …

Yoast SEO - WP Plugins For SEO

(WordPress SEO plugins help drive more traffic by improving the search engine friendliness of your website)

A plugin like Yoast SEO (previously called WordPress SEO by Yoast) can significantly improve your SEO. When properly configured, the Yoast SEO plugin not only makes your site easier for search engines like Google to find, crawl and index, it also gives you control over how your content is displayed to Google’s search results and social media pages, e.g. Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.

Social Plugins

Allowing your visitors to share your content online can help to increase traffic to your site, especially if you publish content that adds value to readers.

You can add social sharing buttons to your site easily using free or inexpensive plugins

(You can add social sharing features to your website easily using WordPress plugins)

There are many social sharing plugins to choose from.

Many social sharing plugins allow you to choose which social sites your content can be shared to, embed social buttons into your content, set up custom notifications, display/hide share counters (e.g. number of likes), etc. Some social share plugins even allow you to set up protected content areas on your pages which visitors can unlock by linking or tweeting your page.

Configuring Settings – WordPress Themes

As well as configuring various plugins, many WordPress themes also include features that can help grow your site’s traffic.

For example, as well as options and settings for configuring the layout and design of your site, many themes also give you built-in features that let you improve search optimization and site linking structure for better indexing, add tracking, social sharing buttons, etc …

Many themes come with built-in traffic optimization features

(Many WordPress themes like Graphene (a free theme) can be configured for improved traffic results)

With many WordPress themes, adding social sharing buttons to your site is as easy as selecting the option to enable this functions …

Many WordPress themes include built-in social sharing features

(Many WordPress themes provide users with built-in social sharing features)

Configuring Other WordPress Features

Last but not least in the WordPress traffic blueprint configuration process, are the things that need to be configured outside of the global settings.

This includes the following:

Website Legal Pages

Once again, when preparing your website for a growth in traffic numbers, it’s important to plan not only how to handle good and unwanted traffic but also for all the situations that can seriously affect your business when more and more people start finding and visiting your website.

If you do any type of business online, you need to ensure that your website is found to comply with government regulations.

Is Your Site Compliant?(Does Your Website Comply With The Law?)

We have created a detailed article about why it’s important to have a compliant website here:

Post Categories & Tags

WordPress post tags & post categories help search engines classify and index your website, which helps to increase traffic.

Post categories help improve traffic by allowing search engines to better index your pages.

(Post categories help search engines index your pages, which improves traffic.)

As we recommend in this article, it’s best to discuss and set up your site’s tags and categories earlier on, during the Website Planning Phases.

When configuring your site to automate and improve web traffic, you will want to review and make sure that the post tags and post categories you have set up.

Add A WordPress Site Map

A site map that displays all of your pages and posts to visitors is not only a useful navigation tool for users, it can also help external applications discover your online content …

(A site map is not just great for visitors, but for web traffic too!)

(Site Map – great for site visitors and beneficial for web traffic too!)

Useful Information

Note: An HTML site map and an XML sitemap are two different things. An HTML site map is a web page that links to all other content on your site, whereas an XML sitemap is code that only search engines can understand. Although Google can index your site just from an XML sitemap (which a plugin like Yoast SEO will create for you – see earlier section), allowing visitors to find more pages on your site can result in increased traffic.

404 Page Not Found – A Source Of Lost Traffic Opportunities!

When online users type in the wrong web address or click on an invalid hyperlink, they will normally be presented with a 404 Not Found error page …

Default WordPress 404 Error Page

(A 404 Page)

Configuring your 404 page allows you to recover traffic that may otherwise be lost. …

Configuring your 404 page allows you to redirect web traffic that may otherwise be lost.

(Configuring your 404 page allows you to recover web traffic that may otherwise be lost.)

Useful Tip

Although a 404 page can be set up on your web server, there are several WordPress plugins that let you easily configure your 404 page from your WordPress dashboard.

WordPress Traffic Automation Blueprint: Configuration Phase – Summary

Once your website has been fully set up and expertly configured, all you then have to do is add content on a consistent basis to begin attracting more traffic.

The process of expertly configuring a WordPress site, however, is quite involved and requires the configuration and integration of different elements and external web properties …

Traffic Blueprint - Configuration Phase Checklist

(WordPress Traffic System – Configuration Phase Checklist)

Important

The knowledge and expertise involved in expertly configuring a WordPress site typically takes many website developers months to acquire.

Once you have configured your WordPress site, the next step is to automate the process. This step is addressed in the next article in our WordPress Traffic System series.

This is the end of Section Three

To read more, click on the link below:

Website Traffic Blueprint Part 3 - Discover How To Create A Web Traffic Generation Machine With WordPress

Info

This tutorial is part of a comprehensive series of tutorials aimed at helping you learn how to grow your business online cost-effectively and drive traffic automatically using a WordPress-powered website or blog and proven online marketing methods.

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"I have used the tutorials to teach all of my clients and it has probably never been so easy for everyone to learn WordPress ... Now I don't need to buy all these very expensive video courses that often don't deliver what they promise." - Stefan Wendt, Internet Marketing Success Group

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