He Recommends WordPress
If you want your blog to do better in Google’s search results, Matt Cutts recommends WordPress. According to a presentation Google’s Webspam captain gave at WordCamp San Francisco, Word Press takes care of about 80-90 percent of SEO mechanics.
The presentation, which spans 50 pages, is available at Cutts’ blog in Google Docs or PowerPoint. Other than how WordPress helps automatically, Cutts gave tips about how to get a blog to rank better in Google. The two biggest ones are be relevant and be reputable.
Some of this is voodoo and some of this technical, obviously. The big questions are necessary, equivalent to who am I? Why am I here? Cutts recommends asking yourself: “What do I love?” “What am I really good at doing?” What do I have to say?”
Once you’ve answered those questions and commit to exploring them via bloggery, there are some technical things for gaining relevance, like keyword relevance. Choose words users are likely to type, and include them naturally in blog posts. For example, a blogger can use name variations referring to the same device: usb drive, thumb drive, flash drive, pen drive.” Cutts recommends ALT attributes.
Also consider URL structure. WordPress default URL structure uses question marks and numbers, instead of day and name, month name, etc.. Cutts says these types of URLs improve aesthetics, usability, and forward-compatibility. For URL paths with keywords in them, Cutts says dashes (hyphens) are preferred over underscores to separate words, but no spaces between words is a bad idea (example.com/my-keywords).
Don’t overdo keywords in the text. Make sure they flow naturally. Otherwise, Google could bust you for keyword stuffing.
Other Useful Information
Cutts recommends the following to boost a blogger’s reputation:
Find your niche
Provide a useful service
Do original research or reporting
Give great information
Meet people on Twitter, Facebook, Friendfeed
Google crawls in decreasing order of PageRank, which means if a site has a low PageRank, it will be crawled last, behind sites with higher ranking.
Cutts’ simplified definition of PageRank is “the number and importance of links pointing to a site.”
Cutts also recommends plug-ins he uses for his blog, which include Akismet (a comment spam catcher), Cookies for Comments (another comment spam catcher), Enforce www. Preference (301 redirects to no-www or yes-www preference for link building), Feedburner Feedsmith (for tracking subscribers), and WP Super Cache (for fast caching).