Blogging is a great way to generate traffic to your website, develop brand awareness and attract new customers. However, unless your articles are ranking well on search engines such as Google, Yahoo and Bing, your success will be limited.
You need to understand SEO to give your blog posts the best chance of ranking highly on Google. This includes putting the right keywords in the right place, knowing how to use meta data to your advantage and understanding how to create the perfect page title to get noticed on the search engines.
It’s always a good idea to hire a local SEO specialist to look over your website and make sure it’s set up for search engine success.
This article will provide you with tips to improve the search engine rankings of your blog posts.
Keywords are critical to SEO
Keywords are one of the most important things for SEO. Research your keywords using a tool such as Google Search Console or BuzzSumo and then base your blog posts around these keywords. Long-tail keywords are especially effective for boosting your SEO.
Be careful to only use your keywords appropriately – overusing your keywords, or keyword-stuffing, can have a negative impact on your search rankings. Write an article that appeals to your reader, making sure to include your keyword wherever it feels natural.
Make the most of your title
It’s always worth including your primary keyword in the title of your article. Typically speaking, the closer to the start of your title you place your keyword, the higher it will rank on Google.
Your title should always be relevant to your article. Don’t promise your reader that you’ll be teaching them a new skill and then fail to deliver.
Subheadings matter too
A great article is divided into subheadings to make it clear and easy for the audience to digest. To prove to Google that your article delivers on the keyword you’ve chosen, include your keyword in the H2 and H3 titles.
Optimise your content for SEO
Google’s algorithm for ranking content is continuously updating. However, one thing remains consistent: quality, in-depth content will always rank better than sub-par content.
Your content should address your readers’ pain points, providing value and answering their questions. The top-ranking articles on Google tend to exceed 1,000 words in length, but prioritise quality over quantity.
What makes a good URL?
The URL of your blog post is often forgotten as most people don’t realise the importance of a URL for SEO. You can make your article stand out on Google by customising its URL.
The URL should briefly describe the page in an easy to understand format for both search engines and users. Use hyphens to separate words whilst keeping it short and to the point.
Meta descriptions are key for SEO
If you don’t provide Google with a compelling snippet for Google, it will choose a random section of your blog post as a sample for searchers. This is the first sight that your prospective customer will have of your website, so you want to get it right.
The free Yoast plugin for WordPress is a great way to add meta data to your webpages without having to deal with complicated code.
Images count for SEO too
Images are often overlooked when it comes to SEO. However, there are two easy steps which will help you to optimise your images for SEO.
Before you upload an image to your website, change the filename to include a keyword which is relevant to your content. In the alt text, write a brief description which describes the image in relation to the article.
Don’t forget to share your content on your social media pages to increase content engagement. Although it’s not been proven that social signals impact page rankings, there does seem to be supporting evidence from SEO experts that social signals do. Try to find a social media marketer for advice if you are unfamiliar with how to promote your content.
Take home message
There are many things that you can do to optimise your blog posts for SEO and increase the ranking of your articles on search engines such as Google. If you’re new to SEO and need assistance, it’s always a good idea to hire a local SEO specialist to help you along the way.
Interesting related article: “What is SEO?“