Basics 101. You put the effort in, optimise a blog and Google rewards you.
Our Step-by-Step approach to optimising a blog begins with a quick overview of our all-important top ten checklists.
So, what’s the best way to build relevant and engaging content (see my beginners guide to Content Writing). Blogging for SEO success takes a certain skillset and knowledge of the right format.
Follow our Blog SEO Checklist:
2. Spelling and grammar
3. Chosen keyword placement and frequency
4. Chosen supporting keywords
5. Chosen internal links
6. Anchor text
7. Chosen external links
8. Page Title and Meta Description
9. Optimise your Images
10. Include your Call to Action
1. Do your research. Keyword research is vital in order to establish the terms relevant to your product, service, brand or person. Thorough keyword research should include your main keywords you wish to rank for and supporting keywords made up of ‘Head’, ‘Body’ and ‘Long-tail’ keywords. Some of these you will rank for naturally, just by having written them into the content and not realising. Great tools to help you build your keywords are SEMrush and Google AdWords Planner.
2. Check the spelling and grammar within your blog. This helps with the user experience and ensures the blog remains engaging and relevant. Remember to check the spelling of easily misspelt words as sometimes they too can draw traffic and are also scored for ranking by the Search Engines. The difference between ‘moulding’ and ‘molding’ can be a world of difference when it comes to ranking and whilst you may deliberately place misspelt words in your content, it shouldn’t be too obvious or too high up the page. The same goes for grammar to ensure the content reads well and has a natural flow to how it would sound if read out. A great tool to aid you here would be Grammarly. It’s free and great at highlighting spelling and grammar.
3. Chosen keyword placement and frequency. Once you have your chosen keyword or keywords, careful use of where you place them within your content should be paramount. The main keyword should always be within the first paragraph in order to be crawled quickly and easily. After that it’s frequency within the length of the article should be conservatively used so not to appear as keyword stuffing and run the risk of being penalised by Google. Additional places to add the keywords should include the Title Tag, Meta Description, within the image Alt Tag and within the content.
4. Chosen supporting keywords. No blog would be complete without lots of supporting keywords and phrases strengthening the content. Some of these will occur naturally during the course of your writing and others will be strategically edited and placed within the content to enhance its visibility with the Search Engines. Remember to do your research and not to overdo it as you will not wish to be penalised for Keyword Stuffing.
5. Chosen internal links. One of the most important elements relevant to your site’s credibility are its internal links. Not just from the navigation menu, tags and categories, but more importantly to relevant content elsewhere on your site. Using a hyperlink over a designated length of text to create an ‘Anchor Text’ will highlight it within your article and allow the reader to jump to another page on your website. Thereby, increasing the time they stay on your site and improve the chances of a conversion, such as buying a product or contacting you.
6. Anchor text. Part of your research should be to identify the most popular forms of anchor used by your competitors within your market sector and utilise these as good starting points to link to both within your site and externally to other reference websites.
7. Chosen external links. Choosing certain websites to link to in order to provide additional referencing to your blog will help you gain more authority. When you mention another blog or article in your blog post, include a link to the information you are referencing. Not only is it good blogging etiquette, but you may also get lucky and receive a link back. Quality links are a valuable commodity for any site looking to rank higher in search engine results pages. This happens by passing something called ‘link juice’ between the sites and helping to rank your site more favourably. After all, we trust well-known sites such as Facebook, YouTube and the BBC News website.
8. Page Title and Meta Description. Any search on the internet will return many search queries called SERPs (Search Engine Results Page). The structure of a SERP includes a Title Tag, a permalink and a Meta Description. Under your content, you will be able to optimise the content with a plugin such as Yoast or All In One SEO (WordPress). Other sites have their equivalent SEO extensions that allow you to edit the Title Tag and Meta Description. Taken your chosen keyword, you must embed it here in both places and alongside content that reads well for the end-user. Thereby it will be referenced within your sitemap, crawled by the Search Engines (Search Console in the case of Google), indexed and submitted ready to be ranked alongside similar webpage content.
how to optimise a blog
9. Optimise your Images. Fill out the ‘Alternative Text’ field with a description containing the chosen keyword to ensure your image has relevant meaning to the blog it is associated with. Remember that the person searching for something on the internet may not always search via ‘All’ on the search query pages, but might also use ‘Shopping’, ‘Videos’ or even ‘Images’ in this case. Don’t forget to resize your image to ensure it loads quickly, reduces the load on the server and is optimised for viewing purposes.
10. Call to Action. At the end of your blog ensure you have a CTA so that the reader has some additional value passed to them This can be in the form of another link to an additional article, a download, contact or query form, like or share to social media or even a subscribe to my blog button in order to receive regular news. This allows your blog followers to have instant notification of your latest posts without having to periodically check your site for new content.
By following these simple steps, you will ensure that when you optimise a blog it will drive more traffic to your website, generate more leads and increase conversion rates. Just what we practice and preach at Want SEO.
Andrew Woolley has been doing SEO for five years and digital marketing for over ten years. Trained and qualified in various disciples he is able to communicate complex elements in simple, practical ways that generate results. Track record in helping hundreds of businesses with their online brand credibility. A regular contributor to several SEO forums and online directories