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.

Website Traffic Blueprint Part 3 - How To Turn Your WordPress Website Into A Traffic Generation Machine

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

In Part One of this article series, we provided an overview of the process, and explained why using an expertly configured WordPress website or blog is the key to generating automated traffic …

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

(With an expertly configured WordPress site, all you have to do to automatically drive more traffic is add web content on a regular basis!)

In Part 2, we looked at the setup phase of the automation process. 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 site, and what to do if your existing site was built using WordPress.

How to set up WordPress on your domain

(In Part two we show you how to set up WordPress on your domain)

In this article, we will discuss the configuration stage of the WordPress traffic automation system. You will understand what makes an expertly configured site different than a professionally configured site. You will also learn how much work needs to be done to ensure that when everything is set up and fully configured, you can automatically attract traffic whenever you publish new content to your WordPress site.

WordPress Web Traffic Automation Blueprint – Configuration

The ability to drive more traffic to one’s website is often cited by many website owners as the greatest challenge they face online. Businesses are becoming increasingly more competitive worldwide and are researching every advantage available to increase their competitiveness online.

The ability to generate traffic on demand is a huge advantage. With an expertly configured website, your business has an immediate advantage from the word “go”.

The Configuration Process Is The Difference

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

Here is a simple way to understand the key difference:

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

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

(An expertly configured site gives you a professional web presence and a built-in automated online business marketing system!)

Not only is more labor required to build and integrate an automated online business marketing system into your website, but also a special kind of expertise.

Let’s illustrate this with a little story.

Ludicrous Or Fair? You Decide …

All was going fine in the gizmo-making plant when production suddenly ground to a halt.

As no one could figure out what was wrong, the manager decided to call in an expert to fix the problem.

Promptly after arriving, the expert walked immediately towards the main control box. After staring silently at the board for less than 2 minutes or so, the expert then produced a little hammer from his pocket and made a single tap near the left corner of the control unit.

Immediately, the plant started working as before.

The floor manager was delighted as he thanked the expert, who left as quickly as he had arrived.

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

The manager dialled the expert, demanding to know why they were expected to pay such an exorbitant fee for less than five minutes work and then requested an itemized invoice before hanging up.

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

invoice notice

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

How much money did the gizmo plant stand to lose when production ground to a halt and no one on the business was able to get things up and running again? Did the expert not have the right to ask to be compensated fairly for having spent years developing the knowledge, skills and expertise that allowed him to avert a very serious crisis?

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

How much time and money would you save if you could automate the process of attracting new visitors to your site?

(How much time and money would you save if you could automate the process of driving traffic to your website?)

Although experts often make complicated things look simple, it rarely is that simple or easy.

Knowing how to expertly configure a WordPress site is more than adding some pages with content and configuring some basic settings. It also requires knowing where to tap! In other words, knowing things such as:

  • Which plugins need to be installed for specific things to occur on your site.
  • Which third-party accounts need to be set up to get specific outcomes
  • Which settings need to be configured in order to ensure that things function as you have imagined, etc.

Generating web 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 traffic automation system is not technically challenging, but it’s quite complicated. This is because it’s not just about installing and configuring a plugin, configuring some settings in your admin area or clicking on a button or two … it’s all of this and so much more.

The configuration stage involves the integration of many parts including your web hosting server, your website, and a number of external sites and services …

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

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

If we create a simplified diagram of the configuration process, it would look something like this …

A simplified flowchart of the steps involved in the configuration process

(A simplified diagram showing the steps involved in the configuration phase)

Let’s examine these steps in more detail.

Server Configuration

We’re not talking about the process of configuring your hosting account for site installation purposes. We’re talking about fine-tuning settings and options in your web-hosting account that affect how your website will handle all web traffic …

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

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

Not all web traffic is welcome traffic. Some of the web traffic you may attract will be unwelcome traffic like spam, security threats, bot-hacking attempts, etc.

This area of the configuration process, therefore, is about evaluating your needs, planning for both bad and good traffic and adjusting settings in your server accordingly. This includes things like integrating spam protection and securing server files, to configuring your domain and email forwarding, etc …

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

(Have you configured your hosting control panel settings for handling things like email forwarding, page errors, etc?)

After fine-tuning your web server settings and configuring these, the next step is to set up and configure a number of third-party sites.

External Web Properties And Accounts – Configuration

The purpose 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 syndicated automatically to other components of your traffic system, or notify traffic-related web properties and applications.

External Accounts

Once you incorporate these external platforms into your network, content linked back to your site will get automatically syndicated to these platforms, indexed by search engines and shared to other social networks, even to visitors attracted to the platform itself. Your business will then be given additional exposure to a new audience and source of traffic.

3rd-Party Sites Configuration

Some of the sites and services will need to have accounts set up before configuring your WordPress site to save time 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:

Google Webmasters

Google Search Console

(Google Search Console – create a Google-friendly site)

Google Search Console lets you notify Google about your site’s pages, submit XML sitemaps for automatic page indexing, and provides you with a range of useful information, SEO tools and reports about your website.

Once your account and site details are set up, this information can be used to automate web traffic settings in WordPress (e.g. using plugins like Yoast SEO – see further below) and other applications.

Google Analytics

Google Analytics

(Google Analytics)

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

After setting up your account and site data, account information can be added to WordPress using a simple plugin used with other applications and reporting tools.

Bing Webmaster Tools

Bing Webmaster Tools

(Bing Webmaster Tools)

Bing Webmaster Tools is similar to Google Search Console. After setting up your account with Bing Webmaster Tools, your account details can be used with web traffic settings in WordPress and other applications.

WordPress.com

WordPress.com

(WordPress.com)

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

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

Social Media

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

(Syndicate your content automatically to your social media sites and social bookmarking accounts and drive new visitors to your site)

You will need to have already set up your various social media accounts in order to configure these as part of your traffic generation system.

After setting up and configuring everything, you will be able to syndicate your content automatically to your social media and social bookmarking accounts and bring new visitors to your site.

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

Social Media And Social Bookmarking Sites

There are lots of social sites you can set up. You don’t need to create accounts with all of them, just select the ones that will work with your setup and/or content syndication tools (we will cover some of these tools in greater detail in the Automation phase).

You can syndicate your content to lots of social sites.

(You can post your content to loads of social bookmarking sites. Image: ShareThis.com)

Additional Solutions, RSS Aggregators, Etc.

There are many emerging technology platforms and content aggregators that can serve as second-tier sources of traffic. Some are free or provide free plans, and some are paid services.

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

RebelMouse

RebelMouse - Publishing platform for distributed content

(RebelMouse – Distribute social content to social networks)

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

Tip

There are various platforms you can incorporate into your web 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 accounts with third-party services, it’s time to configure your site.

Configuring Your WordPress Site

The first step in configuring your WordPress site for traffic is to make sure 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 section that allows you to configure your site’s global settings …

WordPress settings section

(WordPress settings menu)

General Settings

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

WordPress Settings - General Settings

(WordPress Settings – General Settings)

Writing Settings

The Writing Settings section contains a powerful and often overlooked automated traffic notification system …

Global Settings - Writing Settings Area

(WordPress Settings – Writing Settings Area)

As described in the Update Services section,

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

Unless you have specifically 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 box

By default, this section displays only one entry …

Writing Settings - Update Services

(Update Services – A Powerful Traffic Feature Of WordPress)

You can notify dozens of update services automatically with WordPress – just add a list containing all of the update services you want notified to this section and WordPress takes care of the rest …

WordPress lets you notify dozens of update services automatically!

(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 your content gets seen by visitors when they visit your home page and blog pages.

The syndication settings in this section can have an influence traffic. For example, your choice to display the full content vs summaries of your post, affects how your content displays to users in RSS feeds and RSS email campaigns, and could impact someone’s choice to explore your content further, and whether or not they will visit your website or blog to read 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 most important setting here is whether the Search Engine Visibility check box is ticked or not.

Typically, you want to encourage search engines to visit your site. Leaving this box unchecked enables WordPress to automatically notify all the update services you have listed when new posts are published (see Writing Settings above). Unless you have a specific reason why search engines should not visit your site, do not check this box …

Global Settings - Reading Settings Section

(WordPress Settings – Reading Settings Section)

Discussion Settings

Although the settings in this section 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 articles, 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 …

WordPress Settings - Discussion Settings

(WordPress Settings – Discussion Settings)

Permalink Settings

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

WordPress Settings - Permalinks

(WordPress Settings – Permalink Settings)

Here are some of the ways your permalinks can be configured …

Configuring search-friendly URLS

(Configuring SEO-friendly URLs)

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

Configuring Settings – WP Plugins

The WordPress developer community makes available thousands of plugins that can add almost every kind of functionality to your site, including plugins that add traffic generation capabilities.

Let’s look at examples of plugin categories and plugins that can help improve traffic generation

Blog Defender Security Plugin

Once again, it’s important to configure your website for dealing with both good traffic and bad traffic. Regardless of the type of business you run or plan to run online and how small you think your web presence is, securing your website is something you cannot ignore.

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

Security plugins like Blog Defender help to make your website invisible to bot and hacker attacks.

More information:

SEO Plugins – Yoast SEO

WordPress SEO plugins help drive more traffic by improving improving the way search engines like Google and Bing find, classify and index your web pages …

WP SEO Plugin - Yoast SEO

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

Use a plugin like Yoast SEO to improve your site’s search engine optimization. Properly configured, the Yoast SEO plugin not only makes your website easier for search engines like Google to find, classify and index, it also lets you specify how your content will show up in Google’s search results and social media pages, e.g. Twitter, Facebook, and Google+.

Social Sharing Plugins

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

WordPress users can easily add social sharing buttons to their website with WordPress plugins

(You can add social sharing buttons to your site easily using WordPress plugins)

You can add social sharing buttons to your website easily using WordPress plugins.

Most social plugins allow you to select which sites visitors can share your content to, embed social buttons into your content, set up custom post messages, display/hide share counters (e.g. number of followers), etc. Some social plugins even allow you to set up protected content areas on your site which users can unlock by linking or tweeting your page.

Themes

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

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

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

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

With many themes, adding social sharing features to your pages is as easy as clicking a few buttons to configure your options and enable the feature …

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

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

WordPress Traffic Configuration – Additional Sections

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

These include the following:

Compliance Pages

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

If you are making money online (or are planning to), you need to make sure that your website complies with regulatory agencies.

Is Your Site Legally Compliant?(Is Your Website Compliant?)

If you need help understanding how to quickly add legal pages to your website or blog, see this article:

Post Categories And Post Tags

Tags & post categories help search engines index your web pages, which helps you get more traffic.

Post categories help search engines index your website, which improves traffic.

(Post categories help search engines index your website, which helps to increase traffic.)

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

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

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 tools find more of your web content …

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

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

Idea

An HTML site map and an XML sitemap are two different things. Although Google will index your pages just using an XML sitemap (which plugins like Yoast SEO will create for you – see earlier section), allowing visitors to find more pages on your site results in increased traffic.

Your 404 Error Page

When visitors type in the wrong web address or click on a hyperlink pointing to a page on your website that no longer exists, they are presented with a 404 Not Found error page …

A 404 Not Found Page

(A WordPress 404 Error Page)

A 404 page can be configured to funnel traffic to your functional web pages …

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

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

Useful Tip

Although a 404 Not Found page can be set up on your web server, there are plugins for WordPress that allow you to easily configure your 404 page inside your WordPress dashboard.

WordPress Traffic Blueprint: Configuration Phase – Summary

Once your site has been fully set up and expertly configured, all you then have to do is add content on a consistent basis to start generating more traffic organically.

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

WP Traffic System - Configuration Checklist

(Traffic System – Configuration Phase Checklist)

Info

The kind of expertise required to perform this process can take some web developers a long time to learn.

Once you have expertly configured your WordPress site, the next step is to automate the aspects of the process that can be automated. This step is addressed in the next article in the series.

This is the end of Part Three

To continue reading this article, click on the link below:

Website Traffic Blueprint Part Three - A Complete Guide To Generating More Traffic For Your Business Automatically With WordPress

Important

This article is part of an tutorial series designed to help you learn how to grow your business online and drive traffic automatically using a WordPress-driven website and proven online marketing strategies.

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"This is an awesome training series. I have a pretty good understanding of WordPress already, but this is helping me to move somewhere from intermediate to advanced user!" - Kim Lednum

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