You have a new blog where you share your ideas, life and/or advice, and of course you want people who are interested in the topic to find it, start following it, share your ideas and comment on your posts. The problem is, where are the readers? How should people find your blog?
Over 90 % of all Internet users are using search engines, mainly Google, and they are the main sources of traffic. And as you probably already know, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a technique that helps search engines to find and rank your site higher in organic search results.
So, what to take into consideration when writing a blog – in SEO perspective?
Content is King
Yes, this is a cliché, but so true.
There is not really an ideal length of a blog post, and to keep up your readers’ interest and the natural look of the blog (and your own motivation to write), the best is to vary the length from post to post.
Do not copy any content unless you clearly show that it is copied. Be careful with guest bloggers and make sure if you publish an article that some other person has written that it is unique. Copied content can lead to penalization from Google.
Sitewide Keyword Strategy and Keyword Usage
Sitewide keyword strategy helps you to determine the emphasis of your blog. If your blog is about Search Engine Marketing, your common subjects to discuss about are most likely about e.g. Google AdWords, Analytics and PPC. If your blog is about Graphic Design, your focus on content is something very different.
These keywords should be, and most likely they will be, prominent on most pages of your blog.
For each article you should identify 2-3 keywords that you are hoping your article will rank for in Google. Think first what keywords you would use if you were looking for information about the topic from Google. Those are most likely common keywords for other people to use as well.
Try to have as keyword-rich content as possible by repeating these keywords in the article several times. But remember: you are writing the article for humans, not for search engines. So don’t ruin the article by stuffing it with keywords, just for the sake of SEO.
Try to avoid using auto-generated titles, titles should be hand-crafted. This means both post titles and category page titles. An ideal post title is seldom an ideal title tag, and title is one of the most important parts of onsite optimization.
Start the title preferably with the most important keyword of the article, i.e. the keyword you are wishing to rank for. You can use the other keywords as well in the title, just remember that the length of a title shouldn’t be more than 65 characters.
Internal linking is a good way for search engines and also for your readers to understand your subject matter and get access to older content. Internal links are links to old posts, or other pages on your site/blog.
Try to reference from most of your new posts to some old blog post. The better the earlier you do it in your article.
External Link Building
Links coming to the page is one of the important parameters that search engines look when they are evaluating how the page should rank. How can you get links from other websites to your blogpost?
First of all: write great content. If your article is outstanding, it is not difficult get links to it. You can also ask for links by contacting other sites that are related to the topic of your blog/blogpost. And again, it is easier to get those links if you give them a good reason to link, like a great article.
Try to be social and make it easy for people to share your article. Twitter, Facebook, Google+, StumbleUpon, Delicious… Be social.
Videos and Images
When you search something in Google, you may notice that videos are showing very near the top. It is not that surprising, because YouTube, the second largest search engine in the world, is owned by Google.
You can try video blogging every now and then instead of just writing posts. Use the same keywords in the descriptions and the title of your video that you would use in your normal blog post.
Images are good way to make the article more colorful and also to summarize some things, like a flow chart or graph. These images should be optimized as well so that the search engines can “read” the images. Tagged images can drive loads of traffic to your site from places like Google Images.
If you are a WordPress user, make sure that you put in relevant image titles, alternate text and descriptions when you upload an image.
Be Careful with Which Pages Get Indexed
If you have pages in your blog that are literally content-less, e.g. enlarged photo pages, or that are similar to other pages, like printer-friendly pages, make sure that they won’t get indexed.
You can check from Google by using [site:] operator (search in Google for [site:www.yoursite.com]) which pages shouldn’t appear to the search results and then disallow them in your robots.txt -file.
Last but not Least…
Always remember why you are blogging, and what are you blogging about, and who are your readers, or who would you want your readers to be. The best blogs are blogs where you write about your passion, not those that are targeted to search engines. The blogs written with heart are usually those that are attracting readers most and also ranking the best.
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