I think you’ll agree with me when I say that Search Engine Optimization is not one of the reasons that you got into blogging.
It’s not the most glamorous part of our job as bloggers, but it is necessary to our success.
For newbies, take a quick look at this SEO for newbies post
I see so many new bloggers that just publish material without any regard to the importance of SEO.
And that’s OK…
Or is it?
Here’s the problem…
You are a blogger and you pour your heart and soul into writing awesome blog posts that the world should adore.
The world has no idea that you are publishing this awesome content.
Unless you are using Search Engine Optimization.
Today I am going to share with you my Top 10 SEO Tips for Bloggers so that you can begin to work your way up the google rankings and readers will be able to find your awesome content!
What is SEO?
SEO stands for search engine optimization and it is the process of implementing your blog posts with the proper factors so that the search engines will see your post as being highly relevant and will include your post on the first page of search results.
I’m sure that you can see the importance of SEO, when it is shown in this light.
Think back to the last time you Googled something looking for information. Did you go past the first page of results?
If you are like most people, you probably didn’t go past the top 5 results.
That is our goal…
Top 5 in the Google results.
And the only way that we are going to get there is by using SEO. So if you’v decided to do SEO , let’s move on
Top 10 SEO Tips For Bloggers
There are many factors that go into how you rank in the search engines, but today we are going to focus on the top 10 SEO tips for bloggers.
SEO Tip #1 – Keyword Research
This is probably the biggest mistake that I see new bloggers making. They don’t adequately focus on keyword research.
Heck, some bloggers don’t do keyword research at all!
And it is probably the most important aspect of blogging.
And here’s why…
If you are blogging about all of your favorite topics, but no one is searching for those topics.
Who’s going to find your blog posts?
I get it. When I started, I was the same way.
I had a lot to say and it felt great to say it and get it published.
That great feeling slowly wore off, as I could hear the wind blowing through my blog six months later because I was the only person there.
But it doesn’t have to be that way and the answer is …
In order to do keyword research, you are going to need a keyword research tool.
There are free tools, like the Google keyword planner, which will show you monthly search volume for a keyword.
That is a start, but the problem is that the keyword planner does not show you how difficult it will be to rank for your keyword.
That is critical information that you have to have if you expect to rank on the first page for your keyword.
My favorite keyword research tool is Long Tail Pro.
Here is a great video tutorial on how to use Long Tail Pro to find profitable keywords.
I realize that many of you want a free option for keyword research, so I am going to give you some tips for going the free route.
Free Keyword Research
Use the Google Keyword Planner to establish the monthly search volume for the main keywords that you want to target.
There is a catch with the Google keyword planner.
While it is a free tool to use, Google is going to make you jump through some hoops to use it.
You are going to have to set up an Adwords account and actually create an ad.
You can then use the free tool to find the keywords that you want to target.
Make sure that you pause your ads, so that they do not run.
Once you have done all that, Google allows you to use the Keyword Planner.
You can simply add your main keyword and get suggestions for related keywords.
In the screenshot below, you will see that I added “SEO Tips for Bloggers”.
You can see that “SEO Tips for Bloggers” has an average monthly search volume of 70 searches, and the Keyword Planner returned 455 related keywords.
Next, I will go through the 455 related keywords and try to find others that I can target with the same blog post.
As I scrolled through the related keywords, I saw this…
“Top 10 SEO Tips”.
As you can see in the screenshot above, “Top 10 SEO Tips” has a monthly search volume of 110 searches.
At this point, my idea is to write a blog post titled “Top 10 SEO Tips for Bloggers”.
That way I can hopefully rank for “Top 10 SEO Tips” and for “SEO Tips for Bloggers”.
However, we still don’t know how competitive these keywords are to rank.
The Google Keyword Planner only gives an estimate of competition for advertisers, which has nothing to do with competition in the search engines.
So, I have another free tool that you can use…
Jaaxy is a premium paid keyword research tool, but they have a free trial that gives you complete access for 30 searches to try it out.
And the best part part is that they don’t require a credit card to try Jaaxy.
So, go to the link above, and you simply put in your email and choose a password.
Good to go!
Now I am going to put my two keywords into Jaaxy and see what it returns.
In the screenshot above, I put my keyword, “SEO Tips for Bloggers” into Jaaxy.
We are looking at the QSR, which stands for “Quoted Search Results” and it is the number of competing websites ranked in Google for this exact keyword.
The lower the number, the easier the keyword is to rank.
We are looking for anything under 300 and we have that here, so lets look at our second keyword.
So you can see in the screenshot above that “Top 10 SEO Tips” has a QSR that is below 300 as well.
I have found my target keywords for this post!
Before I move on to number two of the Top 10 SEO Tips for Bloggers, I’d like to share one more free keyword research method that you can use for getting ideas for related keywords.
It is called the Alphabet Soup Technique.
You can see exactly how to use the Alphabet Soup Technique in this short video.
SEO Tip #2 – Use Your Keyword in the URL
You should use your exact keyword in the URL for your blog post.
In this case the URL for this post should contain /Top 10 SEO Tips for Bloggers.
This tells the search engines right away what your post is about and what they should be looking for on your page.
SEO Tip #3 – Use Your Keyword in the Title
You should use your exact keyword in the title of your post and preferably in the beginning.
Again, this lets the search engines know exactly what your page is about.
If you are using WordPress, most themes allow you to use the Title of your post as the URL by default. In which case the top 2 tips are covered.
SEO Tip #4 – Always Write a Compelling Meta Description
As you begin to climb up through the Google rankings, people are going to see your post along with your meta description.
The more compelling your meta description is, the more potential readers are going to click on it to read your post.
That is what is known as “Click through rate” and it is a factor in how Google ranks your post.
In other words, if your post is getting a lot of impressions in Google search and very few people are clicking through, that tells Google that your post is not as relevant as others for that search term.
Here are a few tips for writing a quality meta description.
- Use your keyword in the meta description.
- Write your description with an active voice.
- Use a call to action.
- Use exclamation points.
- Make sure to accurately describe your post.
- Keep your description between 150 and 160 words.
SEO Tip #5 – Post Engaging Content
One of the factors that the search engines use to determine rank is how long a reader stays engaged with your post.
So you should be making every effort to post engaging content that will keep your reader focused.
Here’s how you can do that…
Make Your Post Easy to Read
- Use short paragraphs of no more than 3 or 4 sentences.
- Use black lettering on a white background.
- Use of headings to showcase parts of your post and make your points easy to find.
- Use Bullets and Numbered lists.
- Use Bold and Italics to draw the eye to important points.
SEO Tip #6 – Post Media Rich Content
Use High Quality Images and Videos
Google loves media rich posts and so do readers, so why not make the most of this fact and use lots of images and embed YouTube videos in your posts.
You can use stock images, but it is better if you take your own.
As you can see in this post, I have also used screenshots to illustrate my examples.
Make sure to complete the Title and Alt tags for your images and use your keyword in at least one Alt tag.
Try to embed at least one video from YouTube in each post.
Find a video related to your post that is between 3 and 20 minutes long.
Most readers will watch the video on your site, thereby increasing the time that they spend there, while you impress Google.
Use a high quality infographic in each of your posts.
It is perfectly acceptable to use these infographics in your post as long as you use the embed code and give attribution to the owner along with a link to their site.
A high quality infographic can do wonders for reader engagement.
SEO Tip #7 – Make Your Posts Long
Google loves long form content and so should you.
You should try to create engaging posts that are at least 2000 words and more.
Here are some interesting statistics from marketing expert Brandon Gaille .
- The Average Word Count of the Top Ranked Results on Google is 2416.
- A 2000 word post gets shared 63% more than a post that is less than 1000 words.
- Long Form Posts Improve the Rankings of Your Short Form Posts – Google values domains that consistently write long form posts more than those that do not. If you write at least one 2000+ word post every month, then all of your other shorter posts will also get a boost in their Google rankings.
SEO Tip #8 – Link to Authority Sites
This is one of the often overlooked SEO tips for bloggers.
Google loves it when you link to other authority sites.
The biggest site that most bloggers use, and as a result is now overused, is wikipedia.
There are many others that can have a positive effect on SEO.
I try to find studies that I can link to from .edu sites.
Also many of the news sites are seen as top authorities.
It is also beneficial to link to authority sites in your own niche as I did above with Brandon Gaille’s site.
SEO Tip #9 – Use Internal Linking
Google also loves internal linking, which is linking from one post to another on your site and it is definitely a factor in SEO as evidenced by my friend Russ Lobo.
You should strive to have at least 2 links in each post to other related posts on your blog.
SEO Tip #10 – Build Backlinks
In my Experience, this is the most important of the Top 10 SEO Tips for Bloggers.
Google loves high quality backlinks, and according to moz.com, backlinks are the most influential factors in the Google Algorithm.
Here are my top 2 methods for generating high quality backlinks.
1. Guest Posting
Guest posting is a great way to generate backlinks to your blog and also a great way to generate traffic and introduce yourself to readers in your niche.
Here are some things to consider:
- Always go the extra mile to create high value content that readers will enjoy and engage with.
- Target authority blogs in your niche.
- Your goal when publishing a guest post should not be getting a link, but rather creating epic content for your host that will get you invited back for another guest post.
- Make it as easy as possible for your host to publish your content. Offer to format it for them in WordPress and provide high quality images and videos to accompany the post.
Follow these tips and you may find yourself a guest posting machine.
Which is a good thing…
You should be spending 20% of your time creating content for your blog and 80% of your time promoting it!
Guest posting is one of the best ways to promote your content!
Infographics are rapidly climbing in popularity and have become a major source of backlinks for me.
You can try and create infographics yourself, but one of the main criteria for getting a lot of backlinks is that they are very high quality.
So I recommend having them created, which is what I do.
Once you have your infographic, it is time to submit it to the many infographic submission sites out there today.
Here are a few of my favorite free infographic submission sites…
There are many others that you can find with a Google search.
Always provide a unique description of at least 300 words to accompany your submission. All of these sites are looking for unique content and will not publish your infographic if it comes with copied or duplicate content.
You should also post your infographics on Pinterest, visual.ly and Reddit.
Make sure that you use the word infographic in your title, because anyone looking for an infographic to share on their blog will usually use the word infographic in their search.
One more way that you can use your infographic to build backlinks is to reach out to influencers in your niche and offer them your infographic with a high quality 500+ word article to go with it.
This is similar to a guest post and if it is a high quality infographic, you can see some success with this method.
As bloggers, we all just want to write and share and help others, but that will never happen if others can’t find our blogs.
SEO is one of the necessary evils of blogging that have a tremendous effect on the reach and influence of your work.
Put the Top 10 SEO Tips for bloggers to work today and begin to expand your reach and influence in the blogosphere!
What better way to end this awesome post than with an infographic!
I will tell you that I will be creating a Top 10 SEO Tips for Bloggers infographic, because this is the best that I could find!