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 Attracting More Traffic For Your Business Automatically

Welcome to Part 3 of our Website Traffic Blueprint article series, where we show you how to drive new visitors automatically to your site using the WordPress CMS.

In Part 1 of this series, we provided an overview of the process, and explained why using an expertly configured WordPress website or blog is the key to automating traffic to your site …

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

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

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

Where to set up a WordPress website on your domain

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

In this section of the series, we will discuss the configuration stage of this process. You will learn how a WordPress site should be configured in order to drive web traffic automatically simply by posting web content regularly on your web site.

WordPress Web Traffic Automation Blueprint – Configuration Phase

Finding ways to attract more visitors to one’s website is often cited by most website owners as the greatest challenge they face online. Also, the business landscape is becoming increasingly more competitive worldwide and businesses are researching every advantage they believe will help them increase their competitiveness online.

Being able to automatically generate traffic on demand is a huge advantage over the competition. For WordPress users, an expertly configured website means having an immediate advantage from the word “go”.

The Difference Is In The Way Your Site Is Configured

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

Here is a simple way to understand the key difference:

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

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

(An expertly configured website gives you a web presence with a built-in automated online business marketing tool!)

Not only is extra work required to build and integrate an automated online business marketing system into your website, it also takes a special type of expert knowledge.

Allow me to illustrate this point with an amusing anecdote.

Are Experts Worth The Money They Charge?

Things were moving along in the gizmo-making factory when everything came to a sudden stop.

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

The expert arrived shortly afterwards and, without saying a word, headed out immediately to the control box. After staring silently at the wiring diagrams for no more than 5 minutes, the expert then took out a tiny hammer from his tool belt and made a gentle tap near the top-right edge of the control unit.

Immediately, everything returned once again to normal.

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 factory manager received a request of payment for services for $5,000.

The manager rang back the expert, demanding to know why he had charged them such a ridiculously high 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 intray. Upon opening it, this is what he saw:

invoice notice

The #1 challenge most businesses face online is driving web traffic to their sites.

In the above story, how much money did the gizmo plant stand to lose when the machines stopped working and no one in the factory floor was able to get things up and running again? Did the expert in our story not have the right to demand fair compensation for spending years building up the knowledge and expertise that allowed him to quickly repair a potentially costly problem?

Similarly, if you could have a WordPress web site configured so all you have to do is publish new content and Google, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube 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 website?

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

While experts often make complex situations and problems look simple, it rarely turns out to be that way.

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

  • Which plugins you need to install to add specific functionalities to your site.
  • Which accounts you need to set up to achieve specific outcomes
  • Which options you need to configure to make sure everything will work as you have imagined, etc.

Driving traffic automatically with WordPress is a process that requires expertise

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

This part of the WordPress traffic automation system is not so technically difficult, but it’s quite complicated. The reason why is because it’s not just about installing and configuring a plugin, tweaking some settings in your dashboard area or clicking on a button or two … it’s all this and so much more.

Expertly configuring your website is a complex process that involves your server, your web site, and various third-party sites and services …

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

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

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

A simplified flowchart of the configuration phase

(A simplistic flowchart showing the configuration process)

Let’s take a look at what’s involved.

Your Server – Configuration

We’re not talking about the process of configuring your web-hosting account for site installation purposes (this is normally done during the Setup phase). We’re talking about fine-tuning settings in your server that affect how your website will handle web traffic …

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

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

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

This area of the configuration process, therefore, is all about evaluating your needs, planning for both bad and good traffic and adjusting settings in your server accordingly. This could include things like implementing spam protection and preventing security threats, to configuring your domain and email forwarding, etc …

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

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

After your server settings have been fine-tuned and configured (if required), the next step of the configuration phase is to set up a number of third-party sites and services.

External Sites And Accounts – Configuration

The idea behind choosing external sites is that all content will get posted to a central location (your WordPress site) and from there, it will get automatically distributed to other parts of your web traffic generation system, or notify traffic-related web properties and services.

Configuring External Services

Once you add these external sites to your configuration, content with links pointing back to your website is automatically published on search, social and aggregator sites. Your content and business will benefit from additional exposure online, helping your business tap into new audiences and new sources of traffic.

Integration With External Sites

Some of these sites and online platforms will need to be set up before configuring your site’s settings to 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 - create a Google-friendly website or blog

(Google Search Console)

Google Webmaster Tools lets you inform Google about your site’s pages, submit XML sitemaps for automatic page indexing, and provides site owners with important data, tools, and diagnostic reports about their website.

Once your account has been with Google have been set up, use your details to integrate and automate web traffic-related settings and notifications in WordPress using plugins like Yoast SEO and other applications.

Google Analytics

Google Analytics

(Google Analytics)

Google Analytics lets you improve your site’s traffic performance, SEO, user engagement, marketing activities, and more, by tracking all user engagement, pages visited, keywords searched for, organic referrers, etc.

Once your Google Analytics account is set up, account information can be easily integrated with WordPress via any of several Google Analytics plugins used with other applications and reporting tools.

Bing Data And Tools

Drive more traffic with Bing Data And Tools

(Bing Webmaster Tools)

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

WordPress.com

WordPress.com

(WordPress.com)

As discussed in Part Two, WordPress provides users with the option of a hosted vs self-hosted website. We recommended choosing the self-hosted WordPress version if you plan to build a professional business presence online.

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 explain how to integrate these features into your traffic system in Part 4 of this series.

Social Media

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

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

You will need to set up your social accounts before you can 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 sites and social bookmarking accounts and bring new visitors to your site.

Set up profiles with all of the main social networks – Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, YouTube, etc.

Social Media

There are loads of social sites you can You can syndicate your content to lots of social sites. You don’t need to go crazy, just select those that will work with your system and/or content syndication tools (we discuss some of these tools in more detail during the Automation phase).

You can syndicate your content to lots of social sites.

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

Additional Services, Content Aggregators, Etc.

There are many new online technology platforms and content aggregators that can serve as second-tier sources of traffic. Some are free or provide free access levels, and some offer a range of pricing plans.

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

RebelMouse

RebelMouse

(RebelMouse)

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

Practical Tip

There are various technologies and third-party applications you can incorporate into your web traffic system. Please contact us if you need assistance exploring some of these, or to discuss a strategy to suit your needs.

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

Configuring Your WordPress Site

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

Let’s go over some of the important points.

Global Settings – WordPress

By default, your WordPress administration area includes a Settings section that allows you to configure your site’s main settings …

WordPress dashboard menu - Settings

(WordPress menu – Settings)

General Settings

Content entered into fields like Site Title and Tagline can influence your site’s SEO, search results, etc …

Global Settings - General Settings Section

(Settings Menu – General Settings Screen)

Writing Settings

The Writing Settings area contains one of the most important and frequently overlooked automated traffic notification systems available to WordPress site owners …

WordPress Settings - Writing Settings Area

(Settings Menu – Writing Settings Section)

As stated in this section,

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

Unless you or your webmaster have intentionally chosen to discourage search engines from indexing your site, then your site will automatically ping the list of services entered into the Update Services field

By default, when WordPress is installed, only one service is available …

Writing Settings - Update Services

(Update Services)

WordPress lets you notify dozens of update services automatically – just add a list containing all of the update services you want notified to this section and WordPress will do the rest …

Notify dozens of update services automatically with WordPress!

(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 in this section can have an influence traffic. For example, your choice to display the full text vs a summary of your post, affects how your content shows up in RSS readers and RSS email campaigns, and could affect someone’s choice to explore your content further, and whether or not they will visit your website 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 main setting here is whether the Search Engine Visibility feature is ticked or not.

Generally, you want search engines to visit your site. Leaving the box unchecked allows WordPress to notify all the update services you have listed whenever new posts get published (see Writing Settings above). Unless there is a specific reason why search engines should not visit your site, do not check this box …

Settings Menu - Reading Settings

(Global Settings – Reading Settings Screen)

Discussion Settings

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 posts, 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

(WordPress Settings – Discussion Settings Section)

Permalink Settings

Your Permalink settings enable WordPress to display posts with search engine-friendly URLs …

Global Settings - Permalink Settings Section

(Global Settings – Permalinks Screen)

The examples below show some of the options for configuring your search-friendly URLS …

Configuring permalink URLs

(Configuring post permalinks)

If you need help setting up permalinks in WordPress, go here: How To Improve Your WordPress SEO With SEO-Friendly URLs

Plugin Settings

The WordPress developer community makes available thousands of plugins that help to add almost every kind of functionality to your website, including many plugins that improve traffic generation.

Here are 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 matter what type of business you run or plan to run online and how small you think your web presence is, website security is something you simply cannot afford to ignore.

WordPress Security Plugins stop bad traffic from harming your web presence(Security Plugins help prevent bad traffic from harming your web presence)

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

For more information, go here:

SEO Plugins – Yoast SEO

SEO plugins help drive more traffic by making your web pages more search engine friendly …

WP Plugin - Yoast SEO

(WordPress SEO plugins help drive traffic by making your website more search engine friendly)

A plugin like Yoast SEO can significantly improve your SEO. Properly configured, this plugin not only makes your site easier for search engines like Google and Bing to find, classify and index, it also gives you control over how your content is presented in Google’s search results and social media pages, e.g. Twitter, Facebook, and Google+.

WordPress Social Sharing Plugins

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

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

(WordPress users can easily add social sharing features to their site with free or inexpensive WordPress plugins)

You can add social sharing features to your site easily using WordPress plugins.

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

WordPress – Traffic Generation Theme Features

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

For example, as well as options and settings for configuring design and layout elements of your website, some themes also include built-in features that let you improve SEO and site navigation structure for faster indexing, add analytics, social sharing buttons, etc …

Many themes include built-in traffic optimization features

(Many themes include built-in traffic optimization features)

With many themes, adding social sharing buttons and features to your website is as easy as clicking a couple of buttons to configure your options and enable the function …

Many WordPress themes have built-in social sharing features

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

Other Areas To Configure For Improved Traffic

Last (but by no means least) in the configuration process, are the areas that need to be set up outside of the global settings.

These include:

Website Compliance Pages

Once again, when preparing your website for an increase in traffic numbers, it’s important to plan not only how to handle bad and good traffic but also for all the things that can go wrong when more and more people begin to visit your website.

If you do any kind of business online (or plan to), it’s important that your site complies with all government regulations.

Does Your Website Or Blog Comply With All Legal Requirements?(Does Your Site Comply With All Legal Requirements?)

For a detailed article about why it’s important to have a compliant website, go here:

Post Categories & Tags

WordPress categories & tags help search engines better organize and index your web pages, which helps you get more traffic.

WordPress categories help to improve your site's SEO, which improves traffic.

(WordPress categories help improve traffic by allowing search engines to better understand and index your web pages.)

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

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

Add A WordPress Site Map

A site map that lists all of your pages and posts is not only a useful navigation tool for users, it can also help external sites discover your site’s content …

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

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

Tip

An HTML site map and an XML sitemap are not the same things. Although Google can index your pages just from an XML sitemap (which a plugin like Yoast SEO can provide – see earlier section), making it easier for visitors to find more pages on your site can result in increased traffic.

Your WordPress 404 Page Not Found

When visitors searching online for your website type in the wrong URL or click on a hyperlink pointing to an incorrect destination on your website, they are greeted with an error page (known as a 404 Not Found page) …

A 404 Not Found Page

(Default WordPress 404 Not Found error page)

A 404 Not Found error page can be configured to redirect confused visitors to your functional web pages …

Configuring your 404 Not Found page allows you to recover web 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 on your server, there are several WordPress plugins that let you easily configure your 404 page inside your WordPress admin.

WordPress Traffic Automation System: Configuration Process – Summary

Once you have your website expertly configured and fully set up, all you then need to do to automatically generate traffic is post fresh content on a regular basis.

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

Traffic Blueprint - Configuration Checklist

(Traffic Blueprint – Configuration Checklist)

Important Info

The expertise required to perform the configuration phase of the traffic automation process can take some web developers months to acquire.

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

This is the end of Part Three

To read the rest of this article, click on the link below:

Web Traffic Blueprint Part Three - A Complete Guide To Growing Your Website Traffic Automatically With WordPress

Useful Info

This tutorial is part of a comprehensive series of articles aimed at helping you learn how to grow your business online and drive traffic organically using a WordPress website and proven web marketing strategies.

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