Over the years there have been plenty of theories, fads, short cuts and even downright lies found their way inside the SEO arena and thereafter countless debates and arguments have taken place about whether any or all of them were pure genius or absolute rot.
Meanwhile, some of the less exciting SEO tactics have carried on their merry way, helping website after website get ranked on the search engines, generating traffic, and ultimately profits for the businesses that own those websites.
One of those SEO tactics is content creation with blog posts being the staple diet of the search engines’ spiders when they come crawling a website.
We admit a blog post might not seem like the most exciting ranking factor we could discuss, but then again, to our knowledge, ‘exciting’ has never been listed by Google or any other search engine for that matter, as a way to improve a website’s ranking.
Something that can improve those rankings, are properly optimised blog posts, and that is exactly what we are going to cover here, with seven simple, but effective, ways to do exactly that.
Proper Keyword Research
Before you so much as write the title for your blog post you need to research keyword you are going to target for ranking. The best practice is to optimise for a single keyword phrase rather than multiple keywords as this can become unwieldy trying to balance the optimisations between them all.
You want to consider what searches your target audience is likely to type into Google’s search bar and be particularly mindful of questions, as answering them in a blog post, can help your rankings enormously.
Plan and Prepare
Now that you know which keyword you are optimising your blog post for, you now want to plan and prepare the post. Obviously think about your blog post’s title, how many words you plan the post to be, determine where your H tags are going to be placed within the post, and what internal linking you will implement.
You will also need to consider what, if any, images, or other media you might embed within the post, and if it is to be an image, what anchor text you plan to use. In terms of the content, you may also need to do some additional research with regard to the subject and the information you are going to write.
Write For The Reader, Not The Search Engines
One of the biggest mistakes website owners make when writing content, and in particular blog posts, is they try to write so that it pleases the search engines. As a result, it ends up over optimised with too many keywords, or they produce content that no one is going to enjoy reading.
When writing your blog posts, remember you are doing it for the benefit of visitors to your website. If they like your content, they will likely stay on your website for longer and return, hopefully when they plan to buy something.
Ensure Your Metadata Is 100%
Before you publish the blog posts you need to ensure that all your metadata is in place, and that it is accurate. By accurate we mean that the title tag has the main keyword, your description makes sense, and that your H tags have the appropriate keywords or phrases in them too.
This also a good opportunity to do some other housekeeping like double checking other things such as your anchor text, and that the correct category has been selected.
Implement Your Internal Linking
Once you are happy that your blog post is complete, you then want to go through it, and add the internal links from that post to the other post and pages, as per your planning stage.
Conversely, once the post has been published you now want to go to those other posts you identified whilst planning, and link from them to this new blog post. Ensure that you check each one of the new links is working properly, and where necessary, fix those that do not work.
Use A SEO Plugin
While most of what we have outlined thus far needs to be done manually, they can all be made easier using an SEO plugin, with one of the best, being Yoast’s SEO plugin. The fact it is free makes it even more appealing.
Yoast’s plugin can be used to check the readability of your post, and the optimisation of it. You can then make whatever adjustments or edits that the plugin suggests.
Track Your Blog Post’s Ranking
Optimisation of a blog post is not necessarily a one-time event, as you should track its ranking using tools such as Google’s Search Console. Based on the information and data it provides you can identify where your blog post needs further optimisation and then implement it.
This process should continue until you are satisfied that each and every blog post you write is fully optimised, and thus ranking as highly as it possibly can.