Search engine optimization is very important for today’s marketers not only for their websites but also for their blogs. In this way, they can make their blog visible to people who are searching for products/services/topics related to their business via search engines.
Read below how you can optimize your blog posts for the keywords you want, along with some of the top blog SEO best practices.
1. Do your Keyword Research
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Keyword research is crucial for on page optimization. Although, there is a variety of tools which can help you on the research, we recommend that you follow some of the ones listed below:
- Google Adwords Keyword Tool that allows you to find keywords and group ideas related to your topic
- Google Trends where you can find topics that people search by time period or country
- Keywordtool.io in order to find out what your audience is looking for into Google Search Box
- Quora.com helps you also find popular questions/topics, gain long-term traffic and get noticed by major publications
- Buzzsumo.com where you can check which content performs best for any topic or competitor.
2. Include Long Tail Keywords
As visitors tend to search more and more long tail terms, it would be efficient to include long tail keywords. A good practice is to focus on one or two keywords per blog post. Then you can use variations of keywords you want to target. Once you have chosen these keywords, try to include them in specific parts of your blog post. The most important places to add them are the headline, tile tag, headings, URL, meta-description and the first lines of your post.
Tip: Use WordPress SEO Plugins that can help you with the process of optimization such as “All in One SEO pack” and “Yoast SEO”.
3. Make your Title (Headline) attractive
Your blog title is a little summary of your blog post. Firstly, including a keyword in the title is vital. The best practice is to have a short title with “trigger” words that will give value to your target group.
4. Use Title Tag and Meta-Description
The title tag helps search engines discover your content but also capture the reader’s attention. It also needs to be keyword-optimized, with no more than 55 characters, relevant to the content and make users click.
The Meta description is like a summary of your page’s content to search engines and also serves as a preview for the readers of your posts. It needs to be of 160 characters maximum and also be descriptive. In addition, its copy matters a lot for click rates -so, the more engaging, the better.
Tip: Don’t overuse keywords and risk of being penalized for keyword stuffing.
5. Divide your content with Headings
Headings not only improve the text’s readability by dividing it into smaller blocks but also create an hierarchical structure so as to help search engines highlight the most important part of your content. In this way, each heading (<h1> as the most important and <h2>, <h3>, <h4>, <h5>, <h6> to follow) has a different size and it is used as a layer of importance.
6. Use descriptive Urls
Your blog posts’ urls can help both readers and search engines discover your post’s content so they need to be simple, relevant and clear. Moreover, you should make them short and keyword rich.
Tip: Include in your url one or two of your targeted keywords.
7. Optimize your Images
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You should be careful with the naming of your images as users can find your images directly through Google’s Image Search.
The filename serves as the image’s title while the “alt” text is like the description of your image. The alternative text will be displayed to a user’s browser if there is a problem with the actual image and is also used by a screen reader software to describe the image to people with visual impairments. So it should be indicative of your file, concise and clear.
Tip: Compress your images before uploading them so they don’t cause long load times.
8. Help your content be easily read
Just to make sure you won’t forget the body of your copy, use the following tips to increase readability:
- Original content
- Easy-to-read text
- Short sentences
- Use of paragraphs
- Organized structure and use of bullet points.
9. Improve your site’s structure with Categories and Tags
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Categories aim to group your posts with general topics and act as table of contents. The goal is to assist readers finding the right type of content on your blog. Tags, on the other hand, represent the index of your content and describe specific details of your posts. For example, categories can be something like: Music, Food, Travel and if you have written a blog post for food, you can add it in the Food category and also add tags like pizza, chicken, pasta etc.
Tip: A blog post could have no more than two categories and tagging should be limited only to the most relevant topics covered in the blog post – there is no need to tag every post.
10. Update your Content Regularly
Mind to create new content frequently so as to increase your authority and boost your traffic. However, do not sacrifice quality over quantity, because this will harm your performance both for your reader and for the search engines. The more content you produce the more traffic you are likely to get from Search Engines.
11. Make sure your blog is mobile-friendly
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As the majority of search queries are being done on mobile devices, Google displays the mobile-friendly results first. By creating reader-friendly content, you’ll make it easier for your content to rank in SERPs and people can read your content in an easy way.
12. Give readers the chance to Subscribe
Anyone who owns a blog should give viewers the ability to subscribe to their posts via email. This allows your blog followers to have instant notification of your latest posts without having to always check your site for new content. With just an automatic email campaign you can inform your fans once a new blog post is published.
Tip: Set up an RSS Feed.
13. Use Social Media Channels
Promote your blog posts via your social media channels so as to gain even more web exposure. Better use Facebook, Twitter and Google+ to promote them and boost reach. Social Media Buzz serves as a Ranking signal, too.
Also don’t forget to always have social media buttons at the end of every blog post so as to give your readers the chance to share them directly.
14. Get advantage of Google’s Search Console
Google’s Search Console helps you analyze clicks from Google Search and determine which keywords people have typed to find your blog content. Don’t neglect to generate a sitemap of your blog and submit it via the Google Search Console as this will help Google crawl your site.
15. Link internally
Internal links in your blog post show search engines the relevancy of your content. Internal links can improve the user experience, as they help the reader navigate through your blog so as to find more information on relevant posts. This also allows Google to easily crawl your content, as search engines recognize your posts as being informative and relevant.
Tip: Create an anchor text (text you hyperlink to other related pages on your site) Keyword – optimize and highly related to the page you link to.
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16. Link to External Sources
By adding links to external sources that are relevant to your content you can gain authority and credibility and add value to your own post. The sites you link must be trustworthy, relevant and popular.
17. Increase blog ranking with backlinks
Backlinks are an integral part of SEO optimization, as they serve as proof that your content is appreciated by others in a natural way. A backlink from a highly trusted source can increase your traffic and help you appear in SERPs.
Tip: Try to get backlinks only from authoritative sites.
If you follow the above SEO tactics, maintain a good experience for the reader and optimize with keywords, you’ll be gradually rewarded from SERPs and increase your blog’s organic traffic.
Don’t forget to use our tool Blog Analyzer which gathers all the necessary data for your blog while providing insightful data concerning your blog posts (e.g. page analysis, social media statistics, keyword analysis etc.).