Tracking the traffic to your blog and optimizing it for Search Engines and Social Media shares is extremely important. These are things that you’re going to want to set up as soon as you can.
In the old days, changes to websites for SEO purposes (like customizing title tags and meta tags) and connecting Google Analytics were a matter of customizing the website’s code by hand.
Today, WordPress users have the benefit of being able to install and use powerful plugins to extend and enhance their blog’s capabilities without the need to code by hand. These plugins offer a simple user interface that is easy to use.
If you are interested in tracking activity on your blog with Google Analytics or optimizing your blog for search engine rankings and social media sharing, there are two essential WordPress plugins you should consider using on your blog:
1. Google Analytics Plugin by Yoast
This plugin ostensibly simplifies the process of installing and monitoring Google Analytics from WordPress.
After creating your Google Analytics account, you simply install the plugin in WordPress and authenticate with your google account as described here. That’s pretty much it!
2. WordPress SEO Plugin by Yoast
This powerful plugin can handle SEO duties as well as Open Graph tags for Social Media Optimization.
Follow installation instructions and then take a look at their very informative Guide to Higher SEO Rankings for WordPress sites for more information on setting it up.
Compared to more stripped-down blogging platforms like Blogger, you’ll find that the functionality in the SEO Plugin is pretty comprehensive – not only can you customize your Title and Meta Description tags, but you can even enable Open Graph Protocol tags to handle social media optimization.
You’ll find a ton of other features in this plug-in that you can configure – and if you’re someone who finds SEO fascinating – I encourage you to explore this plugin and see what it can do!