Alongside social media, email marketing, and video creation, one of the most successful types of content marketing is blogging. Many businesses and brands are opting into having a built-in blog on their website. But how do you optimize your blog posts for SEO?
Blog posts; if written correctly, can improve your search engine ranking. You will start to rank for selected phrases or keywords used in the post. When you optimize your website and your blog posts, you increase the visibility of your website. Thus making it more visible to people searching the internet for keywords associated with your brand or business.
Here’s how to optimize your blog posts for SEO.
Research a specific list of keywords you want to rank for in the post you are writing. Focus on one or two keywords per blog post to ensure the content is relevant. Avoid incorporating as many keywords as possible as this can actually hurt your SEO. This is due to search engines reading your content and thinking it is “keywords stuffed” or spam. Stuffing a post with keywords can also affect reader experience if the post does not read naturally.
When you have selected your chosen keywords, there are some specific places in which to use them. The four essential places you should incorporate keywords are: title, headers, body, URL and meta description.
Throughout your post, use your chosen keyword within the body and the headers. Writing copy that includes your keywords, but reads naturally is vital to a good reader experience so think ahead about how you’re planning on using the keywords in your post before beginning to write. Your primary focus should be to create content that is interesting and helps your reader by answering a question as opposed to purely trying to write an article that ranks highly on Google.
In order to write posts that are effectively optimised for SEO, we use a plugin called Yoast. This plugin analyses the content you have written and gives you tips on how to improve. For example, it tells you if your sentences are too long, your Flesch score is low, or if your keyword is not visible within the first paragraph of your copy. For those starting out in SEO and needing a helping hand on where to improve, Yoast is an excellent help.
After you have optimised your posts in terms of keywords, there are a few other things to pay attention to.
Meta Descriptions. These small descriptions on search engine results pages allow readers to know what your link is about before they click on it. It allows readers to determine whether your content is applicable to what they’re looking for and acts as a big deciding factor on whether they’ll click through to your site or not. Optimise these descriptions for readability.
Planning ahead regarding your keywords, and drafting posts first allow you to optimize them more effectively as you are able to edit and make revisions to what you have written. With some practice and a little help from the Yoast plugin, you’ll be fully optimized for SEO in no time and hopefully, start ranking higher!
After reading this you should be ready to fully optimize your blog posts for SEO. Go and apply your new found knowledge!