If you want to maximize your ranking and ensure that you are not penalized by Google Panda or Penguin, You must take control of your own business ( ie your blog or site ) You must claim your ownership of each and every element from SEO – link optimization, duplicate contents to its speed.
That may seem unfair for all the beginner , how they can understand what is right and what is wrong, so the simple answer in this case is – Learn
1. Canonicalization for WordPress
Canonicalization means – the most relevant page with highly effective information. But it may seems something weird to my new friends.
Suppose you are accessing your website using these two methods like http://binarynote.com and www.binarynote.com now google has two version of your home page. How, it will decide which is the most relevant pages between these two sets of URLs.
You can say both of them are working, so where is the difference, but there is a huge difference, every time Google crawler think………one of them is original and second is duplicate – thus decrease your rank without being duplicate content anywhere???. Yes this is True!!!!!
So to tell Google that both URLs are directing on a single page – Canonicalization is used.
Before we start lets see what happened to my own blog when I checked it in Google webmaster Tool.
There are a huge list of duplicate meta description and title tags are lying in my webmaster tool
One such problem was this – ?replytocom=xxxxx.
Another issue that I noticed in my blog – was it still contains some of the articles having post IDs and category ID in the database.
As you already aware that Google takes duplicate contents very seriously, so my first priority was how to handle this problem
What is ReplytoCom URLs
Replytocom URLs are auto generated by wordpress system with enabled to comment reply feature. This is basically a query string that gets attached with every original URLs , this replytoCom gets appended with every article/post URL which has some comments.
So your very own url will look like this http://7-easy-ways-to-make-your-wordpress-blog-more-popular.html?replytocom=12545
Basically these URL’s get generated from the posts comments you gets form the site visitors, so as much as comments you have on your posts as much replytocom URL’s get generated.
Some famous bloggers like amit aggarwal had disabled comment on his labnol.org. But that does not mean that you have to disable commenting feature from your Blog.
This is one problem of Canonicalization for wordpress.
General Canonicalization solution in wordpress
This is first and the foremost overlooked settings in all the wordpress blogs. Newcomers does not pay attention on these two settings specially.
These two seems equally easy but make a big difference when you are in the process of installing wordpress for the first time. The first one “Wordpress Address url” tell how you want your URL to be appear on the search engine and the second one is where you actually want to store your all wordpress file.
The second option automatically create a 301 redirection internally and mainly used when you want to install your wordpress in a subfolder.
Suppose you have installed your wordpress files in a subfolder like /blog. Then the site address will looks like this.
in our case we want the URLs like http://binarynote.com so this must be my wordpress address and site address will be than http://binarynote.com/blog.
Google Webmaster Settings
The second most important is how your search engine Google crawl your website. Most of the time newcomers leave this setting, but using this your can also direct how your search engine will see two similar URL.
All in One SEO Pack
This is one of the simplest task, Though I am a big fan of Yoast SEO but this setting is unique in All in one seo pack. Install All in one seo pack and open its setting.
Check whether canonicalization option is checked on not. Canonicalization option automatically can canonical keyword with all the URL attached with your link……. And that you need not to define in your each and every post/page.
Replytocom Problem Solution
Up to this level we have discussed how we can fight against the basic ignorance , but how to deal with replytocom that is not dealt up to this lavel. This simple but most notorious problem can be handled using these three methods
Google webmaster URL settings
The first and the foremost solution again comes from the search engine leader- Google. Using the same Google webmaster tool, you can define how this smart idiot should see your wonderful work.
Under the configuration tab -> select URL Parameter ->reytocom hyperlink ->edit
Note in the above figure we have change not to crawl this type of URLs
Robots.txt file is not automatically generated by your default wordpress installation. All the time you have to generate it. A wonderful robots.txt file is written by …………………………….
If you are not comfortable with robots.txt file than you can also take help of this wonderful tool to generate your very own robots.txt file.
Now you have to add this simple code in this robots.txt file
Disallow : *?replytocom
and upload in your web server’s root directory
A very Comman Mistake here is – whenever user apply changes in Google webmaster Tool, then it takes 2 to three weeks to remove all such duplicate url. So he add the above line in robots.txt file. Thus disallowing Google to index their links. – This action further prevents Google not to de-index these duplicate replytocomm URLs
Robots.txt method is suggested only for the newly installed blog or the blogs whose such links had not been indexed by the google
Replycom redirector Plugin
I am not a big fan of plugin, plugins was basically developed to enhance the core of wordpress plugin, they are wonderful tools to enrich the wordpress ecology, but at the same time they also increase the page loading time of your site.
If the previous two solution does not attract you and you do not find yourself comfortable with managing your Google webmaster tool or robots.txt, only then try this wordpress plugin to combat ?replytocom problem using replytocom redirector wordpress plugin.
Though the plugin had not been updated for more than 2 Years, but still useful.
2. Yoast SEO
May be your website had been hit by Google Panda due to Yoast SEO settings ?
As I have written on the previous page, I am a big fan of Yoast SEO, besides that a little research can save your whole website to be penalized by GOOGLE Panda.
Does it sound weird…..
I am 100% firm, if you were not conscious about yoast SEO setting .
But before that allow me to explain what is Panda update in a nutshell in my words
- This is a domain level penalty – so any thin content or duplicate content can lead a domain level penalty for your whole website
- Thin contents means here – short articles, Duplicate values, Duplicate meta description, Duplicate title tags, duplicate paragraph etc. etc.
I am not going to discuss here –“ how to combat Google panda”. Harsh aggarwal of shoutmelod , had already written a wonderful article on that.
Check out this simple query in Google search before you read the next paragraph
Did you notice any thing special on the result page ? No …….wait a minute. Click on the last page of the result.
Is it ok for you? Did you see anything weird ?
Google crawled all that pagination pages, tages, /wp-admin and /wp-content folders also.
Since wordpress power more than 10 million web pages and all of them are having the same wp-admin and wp-content pages . Does that not also mean you are publishing duplicate contents on your website?
So the Penalty was inevitable, Am I right ?
Solution for Thin contents and Duplicate Title Tag and Meta Description
Solution is more simple than you are expecting. Here , I am going to list out the solution for each type of error(s) – not exactly error…a proper word must be redundancy.
Duplicate Title Tag
– This is not basically a problem of Yoast SEO plugin, but it is a problem of poorly designed wordpress theme or free theme. This always advised – always use premium themes like genesis or thesis framework or use premium free themes .
Force rewrite title tag. This setting will automatically erase any title tag generated by your wordpress theme. Thus will produce only a single title for your whole article.
: If you are generating your website’s sitemap through Yoast- SEO then , do not include tags, post,categories.
Tags were basically used to categorize the post information according to their usefulness, and used by black hat seo to increase the CTR, now useless, and increase redundancy.
3. w3Total Cache
The time taken by your site to load is inversely related to the time spend by the user on your website.
This plugins is better known for its performance enhancement features. As per the claims on the official website, it can reduce webpage loading time upto 10 times.
Do you know? It can also ruin your whole wordpress website…. If you are on a shared hosting and unfortunately selected one such feature……….designed to enhance the speed!!!!!!!!!!!! Sound weird but it is true.
Solution of misconfigured w3Total Cache Plugin:
After three weeks long research and experiment, I was able to pinpoint the exact problem… The problem was not the web server or plugin.
It was minify setting ? So the solution of the whole problem was under the minify setting .
Never ever try to save your cached information on the shared hosting server as it leads latency and overall website loading time, since for every query your web server try to update the disk cache and then try to reload the same data from the disk….Thus increase overall http requests and increase the page load time exponent.
[ YOututbe Video for w3total cache plugin tutorial ]
In my case the time taken before was 4 sec and after this simple ( Now I can say ) configuration error, was approximately 12 second( more than 300%).
Pagination of your wordpress website can also give you a complete headache. It is one page rank reducing factor of your website.
Every paginated page contains only the excerpt of the posts thus – Short paragraphs – means – thin contents- Google Panda Penalty. So choose your wordpress theme very carefully.
[ You tube Video on Google Pagination Problem ]
While generating sitemap, category should be included or not is a long debated term. What is right or or wrong? I have left for you. How do you found this article useful, do not hesitate to share with us.