Here’s some essential SEO functionality for a blogging platform for when you’re trying to choose between blogging platforms, or your IT department is building you one. If you get to choose, go with self-hosted WordPress and get a few SEO plugins and you’ll be as good as it gets.
But sometimes you’ll have to have your programmers build you a blog. If you do, here’s what you should tell them you need.
The name of your post should show up in the URL like this: /the-name-of-your-blog-post
You should be able to write custom title and meta description tags for each of your posts.
You should be able to give your images Alt text.
You should be able to categorize your posts, and that category should be reflected in the URL. For example, http://cathyreisenwitz.com/blog/SEO/name-of-blog-post, where SEO is the name of the category.
Your posts should include semantic markup. For example, the title of your post should show up on the page within H1 tags. Nothing else on the page, other than headings, should be in heading tags.
Your blog should have its RSS feed easily accessible. You’ll want to add a link to your RSS feed to the main page of your blog. You’ll also want to add a meta tag to your blog that shows crawlers the URL for the feed so that when people try to add your blog to their Google Reader, for instance, Google Reader can find your feed and add it.
Also, please, for the love of God, provide full feeds.