As far as search engine optimisation capabilities go, as much as WordPress is not a platform that has them built in, it is truly second to none when it comes to its capabilities. As a stock platform however, it does not offer much in the way of search engine optimisation abilities, but that’s not to say that it can not be optimised with the use of plugins, or via way of the modification of some basic settings.
That said, as a rule of thumb, I will generally set up one blog with optimum settings, then make a copy so I can simply migrate WordPress blogs that I want to use to a new domain, on an “as I need it” basis. This is more of a power tip however, but one that comes in extremely handy, especially if you are developing a large portfolio.
Lets start with a few basics. Plugins are essential, and there are many that you can choose from. The most basic of all plugins will be an SEO meta data plugin, much along the lines of All In One SEO, or Yoast SEO. Both plugins are free, and will allow you to use custom meta titles, and descriptions with all of your content. As this is the data that the search engines display when a user searches for key terms, this is absolutely vital.
Next, you will more than likely want to make sure that you have a plugin that will generate an XML sitemap for you, so that you can submit it to Google Webmaster Tools. This just makes sure that Google can always be aware of what is happening with your website, and can index it accordingly.
This next tip is not entirely related to a plugin, but more related to functionality which is actually located within WordPress. I’m talking about Permalinks. You see, by default, the link structure within WordPress is not great at all. It is not keyword rich, and offers no benefit at all in the search engines when it comes to competing for the attention of those people who may be searching for your content. The key here is to select a permalink structure that will use your post title, as this will give you the opportunity to embed your keywords in your URL’s, making them much more optimised for search.
Now, I could speak about the many ways and other pluginsthat will help you optimise your blog for the search engines, but there is just too much to cover in one simple post. At the end of the day, here’s what I recommend that you do. Search in the WordPress directory for the pluginsthat you need (simply search for the functionality that you need), and test the pluginsthat you find. Once you have found the right configuration, make sure that you make a copy of the blog so that you can simply clone and migrate WordPress blogs on new domains when you need to. This is especially a powerful skill to have if you own a large number of blogs, and are ever expanding.