WordPress Customization, Optimization & SEO

For those of you who visit regularly, you may have noticed some recent cosmetic changes to this blog. These are just preliminary and will most likely be tweaked several times before I complete the new images and CSS file. The truth is, most of the redesign has been going on “behind the scenes”.

A few years ago I was doing SEO fulltime and had quite a few regular clients I worked with. I recently began developing a new website for Google SEO as I will shortly begin offering the service again. I figured that if I was going to be offering search engine optimization services again, I had better make sure that my blog is optimized to the best of its ability. The truth is- it was not.

I relate it to someone who washes dishes for a living. The last thing you want to do is come home and do your own dishes! It’s the same thing with me- I love the work and do it well, but my websites usually come last in the grand scheme of things.

Some quick fixes I have implemented thus far have been adding an updated XHTML sitemap and compressing most of my images to about 50-60% of their original file size. I have also taken all of the CSS files from all the WordPress plugin’s that I currently use and smooshed it all into my theme’s CSS file, which means that when a user tries to view one of my pages, only one large CSS file needs to be loaded rather than 4-5 smaller files.

I did the same thing with all my Javascript files. I took all of the Javascript that I was using and put it all into one large .js file so that your browser only needs to look for one Javascript file.

I also cut out a lot of trash from the default WordPress header and I removed the Full Feed RSS and Mobile Version buttons from the top of each page. The reason I did this is because when scanning the content of my blog, the search engine robots work from the top of the page to the bottom. By cutting out this unnecessary code from my headers, the search engine bots and visitors get to the actual content of the page a lot faster. Besides, promoting my rss feed isn’t really at the top of my priority list.

Lastly, I went through a lot of my theme files and cleaned up a lot of code. I still have some validating to do (who doesn’t?), but so far I have cut down my average page load time by about 25-30%- not bad for 2 day’s worth of work!

I’m Available!

Wordpress Customization & OptimizationIn the meantime, I wanted to announce that beginning today, I will be available to handle any WordPress work that you may need completed. This would include everything from theme or plugin customization, custom theme design, graphic work, bug fixes, alignment issues, optimization, etc.

Let me quickly clarify what I mean by “optimization”. The default WordPress code combined with your theme’s code and all of the code from your plugins put together often slow your blog down quite a bit. Sometimes they can also cause “bugs” such as IE errors when trying to load a page.

When I optimize your site, I go through all your code (like I did as described above) and do whatever it takes to get it loading as fast as possible and to make your blog as search engine friendly as possible. It’s not good to have CSS or Javascript code in the head of each of your pages- most sites have this. Mine doesn’t (at least it;s cut back as much as possible). All you have to do is right click your mouse and click “view source” to see how jumbled up some of your code might be.

When optimizing a site, I also compress the images you have to cut down on their size so they load faster, and I also have a few other tricks up my sleeve that will make your visitors (and search engine robots) visits much faster, cleaner and more enjoyable.

If you’re interested in a customized one-of-a-kind theme for your WordPress blog designed specifically for you, I can do that too!

So, enough rambling. If you need any WordPress work done, just let me know by posting a comment or shooting me an email.

One thought on “WordPress Customization, Optimization & SEO

  1. Hey, that’s a great idea! I have a web template that I want to build my site on, then fine tune it for the search engines.

    Please email me using the email address I used on this comment to discuss this further.

    Thanks!

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