WordPress Traffic Automation Blueprint – Part 2 (Setup)

This is part 2 of a 5-part series on how to create an automated traffic generation system for your WordPress site. This tutorial explains the processes and methods used in this system.

WordPress Web Traffic Blueprint Part Two - Discover How To Grow Your Web Visitors For Your Business With WordPressIn Part 1 of our WordPress Website Traffic Blueprint article series overview, we explained that the key to creating an automated traffic generation machine is to use an “expertly configured” WordPress website.

As we also explained, an expertly configured WordPress website or blog is not the same thing as a professionally-configured WordPress web site. An ”expertly configured” WordPress web site is a blog that is not only powered by the WordPress CMS, but has also been expertly set up and configured (either by yourself or professionally) to take full advantage of the tremendous power, features and functionality of WordPress and its integration with various sites, specifically in areas like search engine optimization, content syndication and analytics.

With an expertly configured WordPress blog, all you have to do is publish content regularly to automatically start driving traffic!

(With an expertly configured WordPress blog, all you have to do to start driving traffic is publish great content regularly!)

Once your WordPress site has been fully set up and expertly configured, all you need to do to start driving traffic is add content regularly.

As outlined in Part One of this article series, the components of the automated web traffic blueprint are as follows:

  • Setup
  • Configure
  • Automate
  • Optimize

In this article, we discuss the “Setup” phase of the traffic automation process. We will help you understand the best way to get started if you don’t have a website yet, or if you already have an existing site that may or may not have been built using WordPress.

WordPress Traffic Automation System – Setup

If You Haven’t Got A Website

If you don’t have a website yet, then it’s really quite simple … build your site with WordPress!

WordPress is the most powerful, flexible, cost-effective and the easiest to use content management system available. We provide loads of articles, tutorials, and tips about the benefits and advantages of using WordPress to grow your business online.

For example, to learn just how popular WordPress has become as a web content publishing platform, see this article: Statistics About WordPress Usage

After choosing to build your web presence with WordPress, the next step is to choose which WordPress platform you will run your web presence on.

This step is important because there are two types of WordPress platforms you can choose from …

WordPress.org Or WordPress.com?

Hosted Or Self-Hosted WordPress Site?

(WordPress.org vs WordPress.com)

WordPress offers users a “self-hosted” and a “hosted” option.

WordPress.org lets you download the full-featured WordPress software at no cost and host a WordPress site or blog using your own domain name. This is the “self-hosted” WordPress option.

With the “hosted option”, WordPress will host your blog for free at WordPress.com. There are, however, a number of limitations on what you can and can’t do with your blog when WordPress.com hosts it for free.

If you plan to build a professional business presence online and you want to set up the traffic system described here, then choose the “self-hosted” WordPress version. The benefits of choosing the “self-hosted” option (WordPress.org) far outweigh those of hosting a free site at WordPress.com. You can fully customize your web presence and avoid the limitations of the hosted option. Keep in mind that the free hosting limitations can be overcome by upgrading to a paid option, but then why not just start off by hosting a WordPress site on your own domain and avoid the hassles of upgrading later?

If You Already Have An Existing Website

If you already own an existing site, check first if the site has been built using WordPress.

If you need help with this step, check this article: Tell-Tale Signs It’s A WordPress Blog And Free WP-Checking Tools

If your existing web site was built with WordPress, move to the next step, and make sure that your site’s internal settings have been properly configured. We cover this step in more detail in another tutorial.

If your site is not a WP website, then you will need to make some choices.

Take a look at the diagram below. It will help you choose how to set up a WordPress site on your domain …

How to set up a WordPress website on your domain

(Use this simple diagram to decide where to set up a WordPress web site on your domain)

Basically, you have two choices:

  1. Replace your existing website so that your main website is powered by WordPress, or
  2. Keep your existing web site and add a WordPress-driven blog. This blog will then be used to drive traffic to your main web site.

Tips

If you choose to keep your existing web site and add a WordPress blog, make sure to use the self-hosted version of WordPress, which requires your own domain name and webhosting, but allows you to fully configure your blog’s settings and customize the look and feel of your existing site using a closely-matching theme.

To use WordPress for your main website, install the software in the “root” directory of your domain (e.g. http://mydomainname.com).

If you have an existing website, then you will want to install WordPress in a subfolder of your domain, e.g. www.mydomainname.com/blog (you can name your subfolder anything you want).

If you already have an existing site that you don’t want to delete or replace with a WordPress site, you can choose to set up your WordPress site or blog on an entirely different domain.

This way:

  • mydomainname.com – goes to your existing website
  • myotherdomain.com – goes to your WordPress site

Once you have set up your WordPress site, the next step is to configure it. This step is explained in the next article in the series.

Web Site Traffic Blueprint Part Two - A Complete Guide To Generating More Website Traffic Automatically Using WordPress

This is the end of Section 2

To keep reading about this topic, click here:

Important

This article is part of a comprehensive series of tutorials designed to help small business owners learn how to grow their business online cost-effectively with a WordPress-driven website and proven online marketing methods.

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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.

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

Welcome to Part 3 of our WordPress Website Traffic Blueprint article series, where we show you how to automate traffic to your website using the WordPress CMS.

In Part One of this series, we provided an overview of the process, and explained why using an expertly configured WordPress site is the key to automating traffic to your website …

With an expertly configured WordPress blog, all you have to do to generate more web traffic is publish great content consistently!

(With an expertly configured WordPress website, all you have to do is post web content regularly to attract traffic!)

In Part 2, we discussed critical setup decisions. We explained the best way to get started if you don’t have a web presence yet, how to set things up if you already have a site, and what to do if your site has been built using WordPress.

How to set up a WordPress site on your domain

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

In this article, we will look at the configuration phase of this process. We will show you how to configure a WordPress site so you can start getting new visitors automatically simply by posting new content regularly on your site.

WordPress Traffic Automation System – Configuration Phase

The ability to attract more visitors to one’s website is often cited by most business owners as one of the greatest challenges they face online. Also, the business landscape is becoming so much more competitive worldwide and businesses are looking for any and every opportunity they can to increase their competitiveness online.

The ability to automatically generate traffic on demand is a huge advantage. An expertly configured website gives you a significant advantage from the very beginning.

Configuration Is The Difference

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

Here’s one way to describe the differences:

With a WordPress website that has been expertly configured you get a professional web presence plus an automated online business marketing tool!

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

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

Not only are more steps required to build and integrate an automated online business marketing process into your website, but also a special type of expert knowledge.

To illustrate this here is a story.

Are Experts Worth The Money They Charge?

Everything is running smoothly in the widget plant when all of a sudden, the machines stops.

No one can figure out what’s wrong and so the plant manager decides to call in an expert.

Shortly after arriving, the expert heads out directly to the control box. After staring silently at the schematics for less than 3 minutes, the expert then takes out a little hammer and makes a gentle tap about 1 inch from the right-hand edge of the control unit.

Immediately, everything begins to work once more.

The plant manager is delighted as he thanks the expert, who leaves just as quickly as he had arrived.

A few days later, the factory manager receives a request of payment for services for $5,000.

With great anger, the manager picks up the phone and rings the expert. Why had he charged them such an exorbitant fee for less than five minutes work? He then requests an itemized invoice to be sent and hangs up.

The next day, a bill of payment arrives and is placed on the manager’s desk. Upon opening the envelope, this is what he sees:

bill of payment

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

How much money did the gizmo factory stand to lose when the machines ground to a halt and no one in the factory floor was able to get things up and running again? Did the expert not have the right to demand fair compensation for investing years building up the knowledge and expertise that enabled him to quickly repair a very costly problem?

Similarly, if you could have a blog set up and configured so all you ever had to do is publish content to it and Google, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest and dozens of other web properties would be instantly notified, how much time and money would this save you?

How much better would your business be if you could automate the process of driving traffic to your website?

(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 is often ridiculously simple once it’s been implemented, it rarely turns out to be that way.

Expertly configuring a WordPress site involves more than installing a website and configuring a few settings. It involves knowing where to tap! In other words, knowing things like:

  • Which plugins you need to install for certain things to occur on your site.
  • Which accounts need to be set up and activated to achieve certain results
  • Which options you need to configure to make sure processes will run as envisioned, etc.

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

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

Although this stage of the WordPress traffic automation system may not seem technically difficult, it can be quite involved and time-consuming. It’s not just about installing one or two plugins, clicking a button … it’s all of this and so much more.

Expertly configuring your website involves the integration of different parts including your web server, your website or blog, and various external sites and services …

Expertly configuring your website involves more than just configuring some WordPress settings

(The configuration stage involves more than just configuring a few WordPress settings)

If we try to flowchart the configuration process, it would look something like this …

A simplistic diagram showing the configuration phase

(A simplistic diagram showing the activities involved in the configuration process)

Let’s take a look at these areas in more detail.

Server Configuration

We’re not talking here about the process of configuring your web hosting account for website installation purposes (this should have been done during the Setup phase). What we are talking about, is tweaking settings in your web hosting account specifically for handling web traffic …

During the configuration phase, your server settings need to be checked for handling both good and bad traffic

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

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

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

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

(Have you configured your webhosting settings for handling things like email forwarding, page error redirects, etc?)

After your web server settings have been fine-tuned and configured (if required), the next step is to set up and configure various external sites and services.

Configuring External Web Properties

The basic concept of setting up external sites is that all content will get posted to one central location (your WordPress site) and from there, it will get automatically distributed to other parts of your traffic system, or notify traffic-related web properties and services.

Integration With External Accounts

Once you add these external platforms to your traffic network, content linking back to your site will be automatically added to these platforms, indexed by search engines and shared to other social sites, even to visitors attracted to the platform itself. Your business will benefit from added exposure online, helping you tap into new audiences and new sources of traffic.

Integration With External Web Properties

Some sites and services will need to have accounts set up before configuring your WordPress settings to help speed up the configuration process and some will need to be done later, during the automation phase.

For example, here are just some of the accounts you will need to have set up before configuring your site:

Google Search Console

Google Webmasters

(Google Webmasters)

Google Webmasters lets you inform Google about your site’s pages, submit XML sitemaps for faster page indexing, and provides you with a range of important data, SEO tools and reports about your website.

Once your account with Google Webmasters have been set up, you can use the details with traffic-related settings and notifications in WordPress and other applications.

Google Analytics

Google Analytics

(Google Analytics)

Google Analytics lets you improve your website’s results, SEO, marketing campaigns, and more, by tracking all user behavior, pages visited, keywords searched for, search engine and social media referrers, etc.

After setting up your Once you have set up Google Analytics, you can add traffic monitoring code to all of your pages in WordPress using any of several Google Analytics plugins and feed data instantly to other applications and reporting tools.

Bing Webmaster Tools

Drive more traffic with Bing Webmaster Tools

(Drive more traffic with Bing Webmaster Tools)

Bing Webmaster Tools is similar to Google Search Console. After setting up your account and entering site details with Bing, use the details with traffic settings and notifications in WordPress and other applications.

WordPress.com

WordPress.com

(WordPress.com)

As explained in Part 2, WordPress offers a hosted (WordPress.com) and a self-hosted (WordPress.org) option. We recommended choosing the self-hosted WordPress version if you are planning to build a professional online presence for your business.

WordPress.com (the hosted option), however, provides a number of useful tools, which a number of WordPress plugins can access. We recommend setting up an account with WordPress.com, therefore, and we’ll explain how to integrate this into your traffic system in the next installment of this series.

Social Media And Social Bookmarking

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

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

You will need your various social media and social bookmarking accounts set up in order to 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 sites and social bookmarking accounts and drive new traffic to your site.

You should have pages set up with all of the big social networks – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, YouTube, etc.

Social Media

There are loads of social bookmarking sites you can set up accounts with. You don’t need to go crazy, just pick those that will work with your setup and/or content sharing tools (we will review some of these tools in more detail further below and during the Automation phase).

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

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

Additional Platforms, RSS Aggregators, Etc.

There are a number of emerging web platforms and RSS aggregators that can act as secondary-level traffic generation sources. Some are free or provide free plans, and some are more suitable for enterprise-level applications.

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

RebelMouse

RebelMouse - Distribute your content to social networks

(RebelMouse)

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

Useful Tip

There are various technologies and third-party applications you can add to your own traffic system. Please feel free to contact us if you would like to explore some of these further and discuss a strategy to suit your needs.

Once you have configured your web server and set up third-party service accounts, it’s time to configure WordPress.

WordPress Site Configuration

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

Let’s go over some key areas.

Global Settings

By default, all WordPress installations include a Settings menu that allows you to modify your site’s global settings …

WordPress dashboard menu - Settings

(WordPress settings section)

General Settings

Fields like Site Title and Tagline affect traffic by influencing your site’s SEO, search results, etc …

WordPress Settings - General Settings Section

(WordPress Settings – General Settings)

Writing

The Writing Settings area contains one of the most powerful and frequently overlooked traffic notification systems available to website owners …

Settings Menu - Writing Settings Screen

(Settings Menu – Writing Settings)

As stated below the Update Services section title,

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

Unless you or your webmaster have purposely chosen to prevent search engines from indexing your site – see next section, then your site will automatically ping the update services entered into the Update Services text area

With an ‘out of the box’ WordPress installation, only one service is available …

Update Services - A Powerful Traffic Feature

(Update Services)

You can notify dozens of update services automatically – just add a list containing all of the update services you want notified to this section …

WordPress lets you notify dozens of update services automatically!

(You can 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

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

The syndication settings on this page can have an influence traffic. For example, your choice of displaying the full content vs a summary of your post, affects how your content appears in RSS readers and blog post digests, and could play a part in someone’s decision to explore your content further, and whether or not they will visit your blog to view the rest of the content from excerpts, or read the content in full without the need to click through to your site.

The main setting here as far as your traffic system is concerned is whether the Search Engine Visibility checkbox is enabled or not.

Typically, you want to encourage search engines to visit your site. Leaving this box unchecked enables your site to instantly ping various update services whenever a new post is published (see Writing Settings above). Unless you have a specific reason why search engines should not visit your site, do not check this box …

WordPress Settings - Reading Settings

(WordPress Settings – 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 sites 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 Section

(Global Settings – Discussion Settings Screen)

Permalink Settings

Permalinks enable WordPress to display posts with search engine-friendly URLs …

Settings Menu - Permalink Settings

(WordPress Settings – Permalinks Screen)

Here are some of the options for configuring your permalink URLs …

Configuring permalink URLs

(Configuring permalink URLs)

If you need help setting up permalinks, see this tutorial: Using Permalinks To Improve Your WordPress SEO

WordPress – Plugins

WordPress provides users with thousands of plugins that help to add almost every kind of functionality imaginable to your website, including many plugins that improve traffic generation.

Here are some types of plugin categories that affect traffic and plugin examples

WordPress Security Plugins – Blog Defender

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

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

Security plugins like Blog Defender help to make your WordPress site invisible to botnet and hacker attacks.

For more details, go here:

SEO Plugins – Yoast SEO

SEO plugins help drive more traffic by making your web pages easy for search engines like Google to index …

WordPress SEO Plugin - Yoast SEO

(Yoast SEO – WordPress Plugin)

A plugin like Yoast SEO can improve your SEO. Properly configured, the Yoast SEO plugin not only makes your web pages easier for search engines like Google and Bing to index, it also lets you specify how your content will show up in Google’s search results and social media sites Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.

WordPress Social Sharing Plugins

Allowing your visitors to share your content with others online can help drive more traffic to your site, especially if your site provides content that adds real value to readers.

You can add social sharing features to your website easily with free or inexpensive plugins

(WordPress users can easily add social sharing buttons to their site with WordPress plugins)

WordPress users can easily add social sharing buttons to their website using free or inexpensive plugins.

Most social share plugins let you select which sites your content can be shared to, embed social buttons into your content, set up custom post messages, display/hide share counters (e.g. number of shares), etc. Some social share plugins even allow you to protect content or downloads which visitors can unlock by sharing your page.

Configuring WordPress Theme Settings For Traffic Generation

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

For example, in addition to options and settings for configuring the design and layout of your site, many themes also give you built-in features that let you improve search optimization and site navigation structure for faster indexing, easily add analytics, social sharing buttons, etc …

Many WordPress themes allow you to configure settings and options for improved traffic results

(Many WordPress themes come with built-in traffic optimization features)

With a number of themes, adding social sharing buttons and features to your pages is as easy as clicking a couple of buttons to enable the function …

Many WordPress themes provide built-in social sharing features that can be easily enabled on with the click of a button

(Many WordPress themes include built-in social sharing features that can be easily turned on with the click of a button)

Additional Configuration Aspects For WordPress Traffic

Last but not least in the configuration process, are the things that need to be set up outside of the global settings.

This includes:

Compliance Web Pages

Once again, when preparing your site for a growth in traffic, it’s important to plan not only for both bad and good traffic but also for all the situations that can seriously affect your business when more and more people find and begin to visit your website.

If you are making money online (or plan to), you need to ensure that your site is found to comply with regulatory agencies.

Does Your Site Comply With The Law?(Does Your Site Comply With All Legal Requirements?)

We have written a detailed article about the importance of having a legally compliant website here:

Categories And Post Tags

Post categories & post tags help improve traffic by allowing search engines to better classify and index your pages.

Post categories help search engines better organize and index your pages, which helps you get more traffic.

(Post categories help to improve your site’s search optimization, which helps to increase traffic.)

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

In the configuration phase, you will want to review and make sure that the post tags and post categories you have set up.

Add A Site Map

A site map that lists all of your pages and posts to visitors is not only a useful navigation tool, it can also help external tools find your web content …

(Site Map - great for visitors and beneficial for traffic too!)

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

Important Info

Note: An HTML site map and an XML sitemap are not the same thing. HTML site maps are web pages that link to all other content on your site and provide users with a logical map of how your content is organized, whereas XML sitemaps are code that only search engines can read. Although search engines like Google will index your site just using 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 Error Page – Don’t Forget To Configure It!

When visitors searching for your site type in the wrong web address or click on an invalid hyperlink, they will typically be presented with an error page (known as a 404 Not Found page) …

Default WordPress 404 Not Found Page

(A 404 Not Found page)

A 404 Error Page can redirect confused visitors to your functional web pages …

Configuring your 404 Error Page allows you to redirect traffic that may otherwise be lost.

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

Tip

Although a 404 page can be set up in your server, there are WordPress plugins that let you easily configure your 404 page from your WordPress admin area.

WordPress Traffic Automation Blueprint: Configuration Process – Summary

Once your website or blog has been expertly configured and fully set up, all you then have to do is add fresh content consistently to automatically drive web traffic organically.

The process of expertly configuring your WordPress site, however, can be quite involved and requires the configuration and integration of various elements and external web properties …

WP Traffic System - Configuration Checklist

(Traffic Blueprint – Configuration Checklist)

Useful Information

The kind of expertise involved in expertly configuring a WordPress site can take many website developers a long time to learn.

Once you have expertly configured your WordPress site, the next step is to automate the process. This step is explained in the next article in the series.

This is the end of Part Three

To continue reading this article, click here:

Web Site Traffic Blueprint Part 3 - A Complete Guide To Driving More Web Visitors Automatically

Important

This article is part of an tutorial series designed to help small business owners learn how to grow their business using a WordPress-powered website and proven online marketing methods.

Subscribe To Our Site And Get Notified When New WordPress Tutorials Get Published!

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