Efficient SEO for blog posts can help you feature in the prized first page on Google. Here are some ways you can make that happen!
Can you guess how many blogs there are on the internet currently? Take a guess!
Let me give you an idea:
As of October, Tumblr, a microblogging website and social media platform, had more than 165.5 billion posts. And the social network just accounts for less than two percent of social media website visits in the United States. You can now imagine the total number of blogs on the internet!
If you are a blogger, life’s tough! With more and more blogs being created and published each day, you need to do something amazing each time you create a blog post if you want to be at the top of search engine results and increase traffic to your blog.
Getting on that prized first page of Google is any blogger’s dream come true. But how do you get there?
This is where Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, comes in.
SEO for Blog Posts
For Google, ‘relevance’ and ‘intent’ hold the key. When the user searches for an answer on Google, they expect it in the first few pages of the search results. These Google search results are likely to get more clicks and drive more web traffic.
As a blogger, your goal is to provide relevant answers to people’s questions. You want to help solve problems and build trust. But before all of this, you need to make sure that your blog becomes visible on the first page results with a high search engine ranking. After all, a very high-quality blog hiding on Google’s third page is of no value to anyone.
You can boost your chances of ranking by doing effective SEO for blog posts. Here are 9 SEO tips for bloggers:
Do Keyword Research for Every Blog Post
Before starting to write any blog, it is essential that you spend some time doing keyword research. The idea is to have insights about what your target audience is thinking about and the keyword phrases they are using to find that information.
One of the free tools for keyword research is Google’s Keyword Planner. It tells you relevant details about popular local search as well as search queries around the world. It can also inform you how often people search for specific keywords.
It is a good idea to have one primary SEO keyword and a few secondary keywords for a blog post. However, make sure that you are only naturally using your keyword. You do not want to be guilty of keyword stuffing because too much keyword density may throw off your readers. What’s more, Google uses Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI) that helps it identify the content’s context and synonyms related to a particular keyword, so you don’t need to use exact keywords everytime.
Do Not Miss to Score with Long-Tailed Keywords
Long-tailed keywords are highly specific search phrases. They have low competition and low search volume. Let me give you an example:
Say, you sell cars. A relevant keyword would be ‘Cars for Sale’. However, users sometimes do not search that way. They might type ‘Buy Maruti Suzuki Ciaz Facelift’. Now, this is very specific and shows that user has intent to buy a particular car type.
While ranking for a generally good keyword (Cars for Sale) can be very difficult, you cannot miss out on a high intent keyword (Buy Maruti Suzuki Ciaz Facelift). Searchers looking for these kinds of long-tailed keywords are more likely to read your blog and seek more information from you.
Make Your Content Engaging
For visitors to keep coming to Google and not other search engines, it has to ensure that it is providing value to them. This means that it always has to rank the most relevant content – content that solves user’s problem first. It would not be wrong to say that it is in Google’s self-interest to promote good content at the top.
This is why creating engaging, high-quality content has become all the more important. Lower bounce rate of a page helps its search engine rankings. Surely, if fewer people immediately leave or bounce off your page, it tells Google that your page is indeed providing value.
Here are some tips to help make your content more engaging:
- Writer shorter sentences,
- Break longer paragraphs into shorter ones,
- Add images and videos.
Optimize Meta Description
Meta description is the short, additional text that appears below the SERPs. It tells the reader what the link is about and whether it is the content they are looking for.
Not only should your meta description be clear, it should also contain the regular or long-tailed keyword that you are trying to rank on. This particular term will get bolded in the meta description to help users learn if the content matches the intent.
Google displays around 300 characters in the meta description field. Make sure you make the most of this space.
Optimize Images’ Alt Text
As mentioned above, you should make your blog pleasing by adding images in it. Since search engines cannot see the images the way we do, the image’s alt text helps them understand what the image is about.
Your alt text helps enhance the user experience and hence, Google is more likely to favor your blog when it has the alt text. It occurs when the image cannot display and is also very helpful for people who are using screen readers. What’s more, it’s another opportunity for you to slip through a keyword. Just take out a few minutes to add a short description in the image tag in HTML.
Use Fast and Reliable Hosting
Since the speed of your website determines user experience, page speed or page load time is a critical SEO factor. People do care about the speed and therefore, Google does too.
To ensure good website speed, you need a fast and reliable web hosting service. Many people ignore the importance of good web hosting and choose an inexpensive one. This is surely not a good practice.
We’d suggest Cloudways as it is one of the most high performing SEO hosting services out there. Their custom designed hosting stack, called ThunderStack, ensures enhanced website performance. With faster page load times, you can enjoy higher SERP rankings. They also provide 24/7 customer support that gives you peace of mind.
With almost no downtime, your website always remains up and running with Cloudways. Their powerful servers across different locations around the world can help you get into Google’s good books.
Make Blog Mobile-Friendly
More and more people are turning to mobile these days. In 2018, mobile phones generated around 52 percent of all of world’s website traffic. This means that more people are searching from mobile phones than from their PCs. When optimizing for search, it would be naive to ignore mobile.
Not just that, Google also prefers mobile-friendly websites. Use ‘responsive designs’ to ensure that your blog runs on both types of devices with the same URL. Having one URL is also great for SEO purposes as any inbound links will not have to be divided into separate URLs.
Use Guest Blogging
Link building is a very crucial part of SEO. Links are a virtual currency of trust. The more links from high authority websites your blog gets, the better it will be for the SEO.
This is where guest blogging can help. Many bloggers think that just producing high-quality content for their own website is enough. It’s not!
Creating valuable content for other relevant websites not only helps you get links, it also allows you to build relationships with key players in your industry.
Research blog websites in your niche that accept blogs. Take some time to study the kind of content on these websites. After that, pitch your idea and tell them how it would be useful for their readers.
There will be many rejections along the way, but when your blog gets published, it will all be worth it.
Employ Google’s Search Console
Google’s Search Console is a collection of tools and reports to help measure your website’s search traffic and performance.
In the ‘Search Analytics Report’ section, you can analyze clicks from Google search and which keywords people are typing to discover your blog content.
With these and more insights from the report, you can optimize your future blogs more efficiently.
As a blog writer, you want your blog to be read by as many people as possible. If it’s hidden on Google’s 10th page, your efforts might not have been worth it. This is why you need to optimize your blog posts for search.
SEO for blog posts is tough and takes a lot of time. You need to ensure that you are making consistent efforts, even after you have published the blog.
From determining the right keywords to target to choosing the right host, there is a lot that goes into successful search engine optimization. Follow all the above SEO tips and get incredible results over time to increase your blogs market reach.
Hope you liked my SEO tips for bloggers! Let me know your thoughts in the comments’ section below.