Luckily, WordPress is pre-set to have excellent search engine optimization (SEO). This means that when a search engine like Google crawls for web content, your WordPress site has built in tools that make it visible to Google. There is a great deal of information on SEO and WordPress found in the WordPress.org Codex. Each of the sites in the LSA multisite network are recognized by search engines as being their own separate entity – so your search would results are not tied in with the main LSA WordPress website.
From WordPress support:
“Why isn’t my blog in Google?
WordPress.com automatically sends notifications to Google with every post and page update. The search engines can take 4-6 weeks or more to add any new sites.”
The forum also suggests registering your site with Google webmaster tools, however this is not necessary because WordPress is naturally search engine friendly and each site is set up with full access to site specific Google Analytics. With your access to Google Analytics you’ll collect detailed information on the statistics and traffic to your site helping you make data driven decisions. Learn more about the features offered by Google Analytics. From WordPress Support on Webmaster tools:
“Please note that verifying your site in order to use the webmaster tools is not necessary in order for your site to be indexed with Google, Bing, or any other search engine. WordPress.com takes care of indexing your site and of all necessary SEO for you without your having to do anything at all (other than blog)!”
The best way to ensure your site is consistently returned in searches is to post new and relevant content to your site on a regular basis. Someone searching your name and affiliation should easily find your site, however, fresh posts help someone searching about the specifics of your research or field of study, including photos with detailed titles, interesting news about your research, and keywords in articles and titles that are relevant to your site and visitors. It is also important to have your site linked from other trusted sites. Here are some examples:
- Ask CMS services to link your website from your departmental people record.
- Ask your department Web Editor to include your website in relevant News articles or announcements that are posted on your departmental CMS website.
- Comment on other websites and include a link to your site.
- If LSA or UM News Service features a story on you or your research be sure they include a link to your faculty, research, or lab WordPress site.
- Email webmasters at other organizations, publications, research institutions, universities, etc. to include a link to your website in relevant content, maybe about you or your research, on their site.