When writing blog posts, it’s easy to forget about search engine optimisation (SEO), and although this can take extra time when creating the content, it’s worth considering at the start. High ranking blog posts can help your website gain organic visibility and generate more traffic, so how do you make your blog posts SEO friendly?
Before starting your blog post, it’s a good idea to plan which keywords you want to include so you can fit them in naturally as you write. Consider which keywords and phrases your target audience would use to find the content related to your subject matter.
When adding your keywords, the following positions will have more impact for both search engines and visitors;
- The title of the blog
- The meta title and description
- The first sentence of the blog
- The final paragraph
- Anchor text (text linking to other parts of your website)
Make sure you avoid ‘keyword stuffing’ as the blog won’t read well and you may be penalised by Google.
Content is King
The content of your post is without doubt the most influential factor of SEO as search engines only want to display the most relevant and interesting content. By creating good quality content, your blog post is more likely to achieve engagement, which in turn impacts on search engine rankings. You should always consider the topics and the angles that will interest your target audience.
When writing, try to avoid using overly complicated terminology, always think about a tone that is appropriate for your target audience.
Engage your audience by providing content that is:
A blog post that is all text will not achieve the desired user experience, by using headings for each section, the blog becomes more readable and allows viewers to scan and find the information they want. These headings signal to search engines that the web page is well formatted, but search engines are only able to recognise headings if you use heading tags. These have a hierarchy of H1 to H6, the most important being the H1 tag which is used for the blog title. It is worth keeping in mind that all headings must be unique and not duplicated through the article or elsewhere on the site.
Page titles and meta descriptions are used to provide information about the content of your blog to both visitors and search engines. Metadata helps search engines determine the relevancy of your website/blog post to the search terms used. Metadata also helps to encourage searchers to select your listing over others displayed. By creating effective metadata, it can help increase relevant organic traffic to your blog, which in turn can increase rankings.
Add Quality Links
You can add value to your blog article is by including links that benefit the reader. Generally, with SEO, you should keep the amount of links to a minimum and only include them if they’re relevant to the context of the blog.
These might be links to external websites, or internal links on your own website. In a blog post, internal links can be used to take the reader to a page that gives you more information on a product or service that relates to your content. You may also want to link to a previous blog post if it relates to the topic and adds additional information. This can help increase engagement and the overall user experience, which is another positive signal for search engines.
Optimise Your Images
More and more people are discovering content by searching via the ‘Images’ feed on search engines such as Google. To make the images within your blog post SEO friendly, you need to let search engines know what is featured in your images by adding alt tags that describe the image.
You should also consider optimising your images for search engines by compressing the file size. If image sizes are too big, it slows down the page and the overall site load time, this can then impact on search rankings.
Don’t have time to read the full blog? Here is a quick summary…
- Plan the best keywords to use in your blog before you start writing
- As always content is king so make sure your content is engaging with your target audience
- Include heading tags using the correct formatting
- Use metadata that describe exactly what the audience will find when they visit your blog
- Add links, but only if they are relevant and benefit the blog post
- Optimise your images to help increase the page load speed
- Add an Alt Tag to each image to describe to search engines what is featured