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 Three - A Complete Guide To Increasing Your Website Visitors Automatically

Welcome to Part 3 of our WordPress Web Traffic Blueprint article series, where we show you how to create an automated traffic generating machine using WordPress.

In Part One of this series, we explained why using an expertly configured WordPress site is the key to generating automated traffic …

With an expertly configured WordPress website, all you have to do to automatically bring traffic is publish content consistently!

(With an expertly configured WordPress website or blog, all you have to do is add great content consistently to automatically generate more traffic!)

In Part Two, we focused on the setup phase of the traffic automation process. We explained the best way to start if you don’t have a website yet, how to set things up if you already have a site, and what to do if your site has been built using WordPress.

Where to set up a WordPress website or blog on your domain

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

In this section of the series, we will look at the configuration stage of this process. We will show you how to configure a WordPress site to automatically drive visitors whenever you publish fresh content on your site.

WordPress Web Traffic Automation System – Configuration Phase

Being able to drive more traffic to one’s website is often cited by most business owners as one of the greatest challenges they face online. With business getting so much more competitive on a global scale, it’s worth learning about any and every advantage available to increase your own competitiveness online.

Being able to automatically generate traffic on demand is a tremendous advantage over other competitors. For business owners, having an expertly configured website means having an immediate competitive advantage from the very start.

The Configuration Phase Is What Makes All The Difference

There is a significant 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 its fullest advantage.

Here’s one way to explain the difference:

An expertly configured WordPress site gives you a web presence and online business marketing automation!

A professional website 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 and an automated online business marketing process!)

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

Allow me to illustrate this point with an amusing story.

Are Experts Worth The Money They Charge?

All was going just fine in the gizmo assembly workshop when everything ground to a sudden halt.

As no one could figure out what went wrong, the floor manager decided to call in an expert.

Soon afterward, the expert arrived and, without saying a word, immediately walked to the main control box. After staring at the wires and circuitry for less than 3 minutes, the expert then took out a tiny hammer and made a gentle tap near the right edge of the unit.

Immediately, the plant started working once more.

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

A couple of days later, the manager received an invoice for $5,000.

The factory manager called the expert, demanding to know why the expert had charged them such a large amount of money for so little time spent delivering such minimal amount of work. He then requested an itemized invoice before hanging up.

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

Invoice

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

How much money did the factory stand to lose when the machines stopped functioning and no one in the business was able to fix it? Did the expert in our story not have every right to get paid fairly for years spent acquiring the knowledge and expertise that enabled him to avert a crisis?

Similarly, if you could have your website set up so all you ever had to do is publish content to it 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 time and money would you save if you could automate the process of driving traffic to your site?

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

While the solution to many problems may seem quite easy once implemented, it rarely turns out to be that way.

Expertly configuring a WordPress site involves more than installing a website and configuring some of the site settings for the client. It requires knowing where to tap! In other words, knowing things like:

  • Which plugins you need to install to get certain functionalities on your site.
  • Which 3rd-party services need to be set up to achieve specific results
  • Which internal and external settings you need to configure in order to ensure that everything works to plan, etc.

Generating web traffic automatically with WordPress is a process that requires expertise

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

Although this part of the traffic automation system may not seem so technically challenging, it can be quite involved and complicated. This is because it’s not just about installing a piece of software, clicking a button, or configuring some options and settings in your admin area … it’s all of this and much more.

Expertly configuring your website is a complex process that involves your web server, your site, and a number of external sites …

The configuration stage involves more than just configuring some settings in WordPress

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

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

A simplistic diagram of the activities involved in the configuration phase

(A simplistic flowchart of the activities involved in the configuration phase)

Let’s examine these steps.

Your Server – Configuration

We’re not talking about the process of configuring your webhosting account for website installation purposes. What we are talking about, is 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 web hosting account settings need to be checked for handling both good and bad traffic

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

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

This stage of the configuration process, therefore, is about evaluating your needs, planning for good and unwanted traffic and adjusting settings in your server accordingly. This can include looking at things like integrating spam protection and preventing security threats, to configuring your domain and email forwarding, setting up error page redirections, etc …

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

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

Once your web server settings have been checked and configured (if required), the next step of the configuration phase is to set up a number of third-party sites or online services.

External Services

The concept behind adding external sites is that all of your content gets posted to one central location (your site) and from there, it gets syndicated automatically to other components of your web traffic system, or notify traffic-related web properties and services.

External Sites & Services - Configuration

Once you incorporate these external sites into your configuration, content linking back to your site is automatically published on search, social and aggregator accounts. Your site will benefit from increased exposure online, helping your business tap into new audiences and new sources of traffic.

External Sites

Some third-party sites and solutions will need to be set up before configuring your 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 before configuring your site’s settings:

Google Webmasters

Google Webmaster Tools - create a Google-friendly site

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

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

After setting up your account and entering site details, you can use this information to automate web traffic settings in WordPress and other applications.

Google Analytics

Google Analytics

(Google Analytics)

Google Analytics lets you improve your site’s performance, SEO, marketing campaigns, and more, by tracking all user behaviour, pages visited, keywords searched for, search engine referrers, etc.

Once your Google Analytics account and site details have been set up, you can add traffic tracking code to WordPress using plugins and feed data automatically to other useful applications.

Bing Data And Tools

Drive more traffic with Bing Webmaster Tools

(Bing Data And Tools)

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

WordPress.com

WordPress.com

(WordPress.com)

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

WordPress.com (the hosted option), however, provides some great features, 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 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 get new visitors to your site

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

You will need to have already set up your social media accounts 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 get new visitors to your site.

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

Social Media Sites

There are loads of social sites you can set up. You don’t need to create accounts with all of them, just choose those that will work well with your system and/or content syndication tools (we will review some of these tools in more detail in the Automation phase).

You can syndicate your content to loads of social bookmarking sites.

(There are many social bookmarking sites you can post your content to. Image source ShareThis.com)

Additional Sites, Content Aggregators, Etc.

There are many online technology platforms and RSS aggregators that can act as second-tier traffic generation sources. Some are free or provide free accounts, and some are paid services.

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

RebelMouse

RebelMouse - Publishing platform for distributed content

(RebelMouse)

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

Useful Tip

There are many different sites and platforms that can be incorporated into your traffic system. Please contact us if you would like to explore some of these and discuss a strategy to suit your needs.

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

WordPress Traffic Configuration

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

Let’s go over some key areas.

Global WordPress Settings

Your WordPress admin area contains a Settings menu that allows you to configure your site’s main settings …

WordPress settings menu

(WordPress menu – Settings)

General Settings

Sections like Site Title and Tagline can affect traffic by influencing your site’s SEO, search indexing, etc …

Settings Menu - General Settings

(Settings Menu – General Settings Section)

Writing

The Writing Settings section contains an important and often overlooked traffic notification system …

WordPress Settings - Writing Settings Area

(WordPress Settings – Writing Settings)

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 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

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

Writing Settings - Update Services

(Update Services – A Powerful Traffic Feature)

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!

(Notify dozens of update services automatically with WordPress!)

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

***

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 your content gets seen by visitors 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 text vs a summary of your post, affects how your content displays to users 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 website to get the rest of the content from excerpts, 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 check box is ticked or not.

Generally, you want to encourage search engines to visit your site. Leaving this box unchecked enables your site to ping various update services whenever new posts get published (see Writing Settings above). Unless you have a specific reason why search engines should not visit your site, leave this box unchecked …

Settings Menu - Reading Settings

(Global Settings – Reading Settings)

Discussion

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 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

(Global Settings – Discussion Settings Screen)

Permalinks

Permalinks allow you to create SEO-friendly URLs …

WordPress Settings - Permalinks

(Global Settings – Permalink Settings)

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

Configuring permalinks

(Configuring SEO-friendly URLs)

We have created a detailed tutorial about using permalinks here: Using Permalinks To Improve Your WordPress SEO

Plugins

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

Let’s look at examples of plugin categories and plugins that can help drive more traffic to your site

Blog Defender

Once again, it’s important to configure your WordPress site for dealing with the effects of both good traffic and bad traffic. Regardless of the kind of business you run or plan to run online and how small you think your web presence is, you simply cannot afford to ignore the importance of web security.

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

Security plugins like Blog Defender help to make your website invisible to hackers and bots.

To learn more, go here:

SEO Plugins – Yoast SEO

WordPress SEO plugins help drive traffic by improving the search engine friendliness of your web pages …

WordPress SEO Plugin - Yoast SEO

(WordPress Plugin – Yoast SEO)

A plugin like Yoast SEO can improve your SEO. Once properly configured, this plugin not only makes your site 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+.

WordPress Social Sharing Plugins

Allowing visitors to easily share your content with their own networks can help boost traffic to your site, especially if you publish great content that adds value to readers.

WordPress users can easily add social sharing to their website using WordPress plugins

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

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

Many social sharing plugins allow you to specify which social 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 shares), etc. Some social plugins even allow you to ‘lock’ content or downloads which visitors 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 you drive more traffic to your site.

For example, as well as options and settings for configuring the design and layout of your website, some themes also give you built-in options for improving SEO and site navigation structure for faster indexing, easily add analytics snippets, social sharing buttons, etc …

Many themes come with built-in traffic optimization features

(Many WP themes like Graphene (a highly customizable free theme) allow you to configure settings for better traffic results)

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

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

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

WordPress Traffic System – Additional Configuration Areas

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

This includes:

Legal Web Pages

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

If you engage in any form of commercial activity online (or plan to), it’s important that your site is compliant with legal requirements of government agencies that regulate business practices online.

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

If you need help adding legal pages to WordPress, see this article:

WordPress Post Categories And Tags

WordPress tags and categories help to improve your site’s search optimization, which helps to increase traffic.

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

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

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

When considering ways to automate and improve web traffic, you will want to review and make sure that the tags and categories you have set up.

Add A Site Map

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

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

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

Info

An HTML site map and an XML sitemap are not the same things. Although search engines like Google will index your pages just using an XML sitemap (which a plugin like Yoast SEO can provide – see earlier section), allowing visitors to find more pages on your site results in increased traffic.

404 Page Not Found – Don’t Forget This!

When visitors searching online for your website type in the wrong URL or click on links pointing to an incorrect destination on your website, they will normally be greeted with a 404 page …

A WordPress 404 Error Page

(A WordPress 404 Not Found error page)

A 404 Error Page can be turned into a useful source of traffic to your functional web pages …

Configuring your 404 Not Found page allows you to redirect traffic that may otherwise be lost.

(Configuring your 404 Not Found error page allows you to recover web traffic that may otherwise be lost.)

Practical Tip

Although a 404 error page can be set up in your server, there are several plugins for WordPress that allow you to easily configure your 404 page inside your WordPress admin.

WordPress Traffic System: Configuration Stage – Summary

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

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

Traffic System - Configuration Checklist

(WordPress Traffic Blueprint – Configuration Checklist)

Info

The kind of expertise required to perform the configuration process can take some web professionals months 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 explained in the next article in our WordPress Traffic System series.

This is the end of Part 3

To read the rest of this article, click here:

Web Site Traffic Blueprint Part Three - Learn How To Create An Automated Web Traffic-Getting Machine With WordPress

Important

This article is part of an article series aimed at helping you learn how to grow your business online and drive traffic automatically using a WordPress website or blog and proven marketing methods that are easy to implement.

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

***

"I was absolutely amazed at the scope and breadth of these tutorials! The most in-depth training I have ever received on any subject!" - Myke O'Neill, DailyGreenPost.com

***

Recommended Video Courses For WordPress Users

Using Password ManagersUsing Password Managers

Password Managers provide an easy and secure way to keep track of all your passwords. This video course shows you how to use two FREE powerful password management tools.

More info: Using Password Managers

Recommended Video Courses For WordPress Users

How To Use FTPHow To Use FTP

This video course shows you how to use FTP (File Transfer Protocol) to transfer and upload files between your hard drive and your server using a free FTP program called Filezilla.

More info: How To Use FTP

Recommended Video Courses For WordPress Users

How To Use Amazon S3How To Use Amazon S3

Learn how to set up and use Amazon S3 to upload, store, manage, and protect your site’s images, large media files, downloadable files, stream videos and more.

More info: How To Use Amazon S3

Recommended Video Courses For WordPress Users

How To Add A WordPress Site To FacebookHow To Add A WordPress Site To Facebook

Learn how to add your WordPress site to Facebook. Learn how to obtain and set up a free SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) certificate for your WordPress site, how to change your site protocol from "http" to "https" (secure site) and how to set up a Facebook app and import your entire WordPress site into Facebook.

More info: How To Add A WordPress Site To Facebook

Recommended Video Courses For WordPress Users

How To Set Up A Forum On WordPressHow To Set Up A Forum On WordPress

Learn how to set up a forum for your visitors, prospects, customers, members, or affiliates using WordPress.

More info: How To Set Up A Forum On WordPress

Recommended Video Courses For WordPress Users

Using S2 MemberUsing S2 Member

Learn how to set up and configure a WordPress membership site using the S2 Member free WordPress membership plugin.

More info: Using S2 Member

Recommended Video Courses For WordPress Users

Sell Online With PayPalSell Online With PayPal

This video course shows you how to set up PayPal on your website to receive payments online, with additional tips on using PayPal payment tools.

More info: Sell Online With PayPal

Recommended Video Courses For WordPress Users

How To Set Up WordPress On LocalhostHow To Set Up WordPress On Localhost

Learn how to install, set up, and locally host a fully functioning WordPress site on your computer.

More info: How To Set Up WordPress On Localhost

Recommended Video Courses For WordPress Users

How To Use cPanelHow To Use cPanel

cPanel is a powerful and simple-to-use web hosting management software application that gives website owners the ability to quickly and easily manage their servers and websites using a simple and intuitive dashboard.

This video course will teach you how to use the main features of cPanel to manage your web hosting.

More info: How To Use cPanel

Recommended Video Courses For WordPress Users

WordPress SecurityWordPress Security

Learn how to keep your WordPress site or blog secure and protected from malware, hackers and brute-force attacks.

More info: WordPress Security

Author: Martin Aranovitch

Martin Aranovitch is the owner of WPCompendium.org and the author of The WordPress User Manual. WPCompendium.org provides hundreds of FREE tutorials that show you how to use WordPress to grow your business online with no coding skills required! Get our FREE "101+ WordPress Tips, Tricks & Hacks For Non-Techies" e-course with loads of useful WordPress tips!

Originally published as WordPress Traffic Automation Blueprint – Part 3 (Configuration).