Search engine optimization of your blog posts is incredibly important. When you optimize your content for the search engine you increase the chance that your post will be shown to people who are looking for keywords you want your post to rank for. Sounds simple, right? But in fact, Google has a quite complicated algorithm which also is updated from time to time. That’s why it becomes tricky to figure out what SEO tactics to use for your blog.
In this post, I’ll cover some of the best practices on how to optimize your blog posts for the keywords you need. Of course, they don’t cover every case possible but will still help you start applying SEO tactics to your blog posts.
Before we go to the list of SEO tips for your blog, I want to mention the tool that will help you a lot with your SEO efforts. If you’re lucky to have a WordPress blog, you should, definitely, get a Yoast SEO plugin that will take away the headache of the optimization of your content. It makes optimization efforts so much easier and increases the chances that your blog posts will rank high! Using Yoast SEO plugin you’ll see the SEO analysis of your blog as well as what you should improve with the detailed explanation of why and how.
Now, let’s go straight to the SEO tips you may want to use to optimize your blog posts.
1. Choose A Keyphrase
You want your blog posts to rank for a particular keyphrase or keyword. So, when people enter this phrase or word in Google search, they see your post. Preferably, they should see it on the first page because, honestly, almost nobody checks further pages.
That said, go to Google Keyword Planner and pick a keyword related to the topic of your blog post. You’ll see the search volume, the number of monthly searches and the level of competition for the keyword. You, probably, will want to optimize your post for a keyword with the high enough search volume but with the average competition.
2. Include Your Keyphrase In The Different Parts Of Your Post
After you picked a keyword or keyphrase, it’s useful to know where exactly in your blog post you should put it. There are four places in your blog post where you should definitely include your keyword to conform to SEO.
The title of your blog post is the first thing a search engine and reader use to evaluate the relevancy of your content to what they’re looking for. Therefore, including a keyword here is crucial.
Your keyword should also appear in the first paragraph of your post. Your introduction is an important paragraph for your readers. They’ll decide whether or not your text is about the topic they would like to read. Because of that, the introduction is very important to Google as well. Google uses your introduction to determine what your text is about that’s why your keyphrase should be there as well.
- Meta description
A good meta description convinces people that your page offers the best result to their query. Therefore, they should see the keywords they entered and are looking for when your page will show up in the search results.
Search engines also look to your URL to figure out what your post is about, and it’s one of the first things it’ll crawl on a page. So, make sure you include your keywords in the URL of the post as well.
3. Pay Attention To The Text Length Of Your Blog Post To Comply With SEO Requirements
Another SEO tactic for your blog post is to make sure your post consists of at least 300 words. Why is it so important for SEO? First of all, posts that contain very little text content are more likely to be considered as not valuable to readers. Therefore, search engines see them as “thin content” pages and don’t rank them well. Moreover, the longer text of your blog post is, the easier it is for search engines to determine what it’s about. Especially if it’s well-optimized for your keywords.
4. Include Internal And Outbound Links To Your Blog Posts
An internal link is a link from one post of your blog to another. When adding internal links, always consider what pages would be best to link to. Think what articles are relevant and most important for your topic and link to them. If you have Yoast SEO plugin, you’ll see the most relevant pages related to the topic of a blog post you’re currently writing. So you can easily pick some you want to link to. The number of links pointing to your pages gives Google information about what pages are most important to you.
Outbound links are links to other websites. You may refer and link to the websites you consulted because they deserve it. You’d like others to do the same for you, right? If we all link to the sources we consider the best, they end up higher in the search results and we all benefit!
5. Add Image Alt Attribute
Images are essential for your blog post as well as for SEO algorithms. If you have images in your post make sure you optimize them. Search engines and assistive technologies like screen readers need context about an image to understand what’s on them. That means you have to add an alt text describing the image.
SEO for your blog posts may be challenging. But remember, your blog posts don’t start ranking immediately. It takes some time to build up search authority. The good news is when you publish your posts frequently and consistently put effort to optimize them for search, you’ll be rewarded in the form of traffic and leads long-term.