Optimizing your blogs for search engines is a key step in taking your content to the next level: SEO’d blogs will drive more visibility and traffic to your website. What’s more, the steps to optimize your blog content are relatively simple and will help customers find your blog entries more easily in relevant search results.
While it may take some time to get comfortable with, optimizing blogs for SEO is definitely worth the effort to improve your online authority for a given set of topics!
Here are some suggested best-practices to optimize your blog entries, or other web content, for search engine optimization:
Optimize Blog Content With Targeted Keywords
This post isn’t going to dive into detail on selecting keywords to target. But, you should have a strategic approach to the topics and terminology you’ll use to discuss your business’ products and services in each blog post. A few options to accomplish this task include:
- Having a digital marketing partner research and identify appropriate keywords
- Reviewing competitor web content and blogs to determine popular terms and topics
- Using language that you believe prospective customers will use to search for your business online
Once you’ve identified your list of specific keywords you can identify blog topics and content that relate to each keyword. Each post should focus on a single keyword or group of related keywords. If you try to focus on too many keywords in a single blog entry you’ll dilute the topic of the post for both readers and search engines.
Writing Your Blog Post
When you write a blog remember to use common language that is easy to read. Try to limit your use of big words and just write simply for your target audience.
As you use keywords within the content of your blog, make sure to do so regularly, but also sparingly. You want to make your use of keywords seem normal, not excessive or repetitive, which will get in the way of your blog’s readability. Blogs that are overstuffed with keywords will turn off readers and search engines, and may even hurt your rankings in the long run.
As far as length is concerned, try to aim for at least 300-600 words per blog post. While it’s true that lengthier blog content at 1,000+ words may achieve higher search rankings (as such posts provide search engines with more information to properly grasp the topic at hand), it’s not always possible to achieve that magnitude.
Organizing Your Blog Content
As you create each blog you’ll want to consider ways to make your content easier to scan by site visitors and more well-liked by search engines. Luckily, there are a lot of different ways you can accomplish this!
First, start out by using headings. Headings help break your content into smaller pieces, which are more consumable by your readers and help search engines determine the structure of your content. Use the H2 heading style in your content management system to summarize topics within your post (and H3s if you go a level deeper) and to give both readers and search engines a better idea of what your post is all about. Make sure to use your targeted keywords in headings throughout each blog post when relevant.
Additionally, if you are able to use numbered or bulleted lists in each blog you can help segment content in a more meaningful way. Check out ePageCity’s tips on structuring your content to encourage scanning and save you time in the blog creation process.
Using Links in Your Blog Post
Linking to related content from each blog post is a great way to share more detail with readers. Links are:
- Internal – linking to a separate page or post of your own website, or
- External – linking to another website that is relevant to your topic
It’s common to see links use anchor text (the highlighted words that represent the link) such as click here or contact us. But, if you’re looking to optimize your blog posts for SEO value you should select anchor text that includes your targeted keywords and link to content that is directly related to the blog post. Reference the links in this blog post for ideas on how to accomplish this task!
If allowed by your content management system, it’s also recommended to include a title for each of your links. This field provides a helpful tool tip letting readers know the website or topic of content you’re linking them to and helps communicate information about the link effectively with search engines. For Drupal websites this field is called Advisory Title and can be found in the advanced tab of the link menu.
Engage Blog Readers With Interesting Visuals or Other Media
Whether you choose to use video, audio, custom graphics or photos, you want to support the text of your blog with engaging visuals. And, by incorporating a level of entertainment within each blog you can aid in the recall of important arguments outlined in your post and provide inviting sensory enhancements for readers.
Ideally, when you succeed at creating interesting text and visual content, readers are compelled to share your blog with friends, family or colleagues through social channels – where other like-minded readers may also encounter your post! For this reason, make sure each blog is easy to share using various methods, such as a social media icon tray. And, next month, make sure to check back on our blog for more tips on optimizing images for SEO!
Create SEO Page Titles and Meta Descriptions
When you create an SEO title and meta description you can control the display of your blog in search results. And, when you do this the right way, you can also increase the likelihood of someone clicking through to your blog. Accomplish this by properly summarizing your blog content, using relevant keywords and adopting language that resonates with your target audience.
Remember, your meta title should be no more than 55 characters and your description should not exceed 155 characters. If you exceed these character limits your text will be cut off by an ellipsis and may make it difficult for searchers to understand the relevance of your blog post. Check out our effortless guide to creating SEO page titles and descriptions for more tips.
Don’t Forget About Your Blog Title and URL
Last, but not least, before you publish your blog post make sure that the blog title and the friendly URL are optimized. Make sure your blog title is catchy, descriptive of your blog topic and around 6 words or so. If possible, include a targeted keyword! And, remember that even if your blog is perfectly optimized for SEO, if your blog title isn’t catchy, no one may read it.
For Your URL, make sure that each word is separated by a hyphen or underscore – the goal is to make the blog title in your URL easily readable by search engines and people, and properly outline the topic of the blog. If you were able to include a keyword in your blog title, this keyword should also flow through to your URL. Something like www.abcpublisher.com/blog/20-books-to-ease-career-transitions is preferred over www.abcpublisher.com/blog/85456_id40/index.htm.
It’s Important to Optimize Each Blog Post For SEO!
Now that you’ve got some tips to help you create an SEO optimized blog you’ll want to reference these tips each time you write a new post. If time and resources allow, it’s not a bad idea to go back through old blogs and update them according to these recommendations to get the most out of your existing content.
In time, these steps will become easier and faster to accomplish! And, you’ll feel good just knowing that your SEO optimized blog content is helping boost your rankings for relevant keyword targets.