If blogging is one of the ways you promote your business, make sure you’re SEO blogging. Writing a blog for SEO isn’t like writing an ordinary blog, it needs to appeal to both search engines and your readers. You may have heard that blogging is necessary, but unless you know how to write for search engine optimization, your blog is invisible to Google.
You may have content, but because you’re not writing for SEO, you will struggle to catch the attention of your readers (because they won’t find it through a Google search). Here at Design & Promote, a Chicago SEO company, we advocate using SEO blogging techniques to clients. And in this post, we want to share how you can improve your own SEO blogging strategy.
The Basics Of SEO Blogging
Your goal is to get a first page Google ranking, and the closer you are to the top of the page, the better. A good example of a company who improved their SEO ranking is Victory Rehab, a chiropractic group in Naperville, IL. If you search for “Naperville chiropractor,” you’ll find them listed second in Google and third among organic search results. If you look at the search results, you will notice that their description includes: “Naperville,” “chiropractic,” and “chiropractor” in bold – two of the words you entered into the search box. And notice that their blog uses the same “formula” in their meta description. See the graphic below for an example of a meta description.
Keywords are essential to ranking. Some SEO experts today suggest that you should research “high traffic” keywords to determine what words or phrases generate the most traffic from the search engines to your site. Not so fast! Businesses that want local traffic should include a geographic term, such as a town or state.
SEO Blogging Mistakes
In the past, some website developers and bloggers loaded their copy with keywords; this made their copy sound artificial and awkward. Google algorithms are now focused on a site’s readability and downgraded site listings that sounded “spammy” from too many keywords. More SEO blogging mistakes to avoid:
- Blogging just to blog.
- Guessing at keywords (which can actually hurt you in the end). Check out our guide on How to Pick the Right Keywords to Attract More Customers.
- “Keyword stuffing” blog posts.
- Writing when you feel like it and going months without blog posts.
- Image names like this: “blue-window-1384.jpg”.
- Thinking that you’ve run out of topics (there is always a topic, listen to the questions your customers are asking).
Using keywords is to optimize your copy. How to do this:
• Place keywords in your title, post name in the permalink, first sentence, and a couple times throughout the copy.
• Use one or more keywords in the subheadings and in the meta description.
• Name images in your post with keywords, which will also help your ranking.
Google Analytics can help you optimize your web pages and blogs. Also, take a look at the most popular Google pages in a particular search and study how they’ve used SEO to improve their raking. Try to emulate those techniques in your own pages and blogs.
Basic Blogging Tips For Optimizing Your Blog For Better Google Page Placement
What should you do if your page or blog appears on the first page of a Google search, but it’s at the bottom of the page? This means you have already gotten Google’s attention, but you need to optimize a little more. There are a few ways to place your blog higher on a Google search page:
• Link the post to other content on your website. Websites seldom offer an encyclopedic knowledge of a topic. If you only briefly explain a topic in a blog, linking readers to a page that has more information boosts your SEO.
• Share the post to social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and more. You can post directly or use a service such as Hootsuite.
• Build your backlinks so that other posts and websites link back to you. Creating reviews on sites like Yelp!, listings.local.yahoo.com, Hubpages, Google Places, and LinkedIn will help create backlinks to your site.
• Increase the length of the post. It’s important to know each site’s requirements and the word count and experiment with writing longer posts that are between 1,000-1500 words.
Remember to have a goal for each blog post. Two simple questions to ask yourself before blogging:
• What do you want to say?
• How can you tie it to a business goal and keyword?
If you’re all dried up for content, pay attention to the questions your clients ask and answer them in a blog post. You’ve heard it in school, don’t be afraid to ask a question because chances are someone else has a similar question. You can then later refer clients with similar questions to a blog post! For more insights on the value of SEO blogs and optimizing your blog with keyword research and placement, contact Design & Promote today.