SEO, otherwise known as Search Engine Optimization, might sound like an alien word, even when it is so commonplace these days, because no one really explains why it is important or how to use it effectively. Since you’re here, you obviously have questions about how to use SEO to upgrade the reach of your blog and get you more visitors. While most SEO practices are basic enough to be something you probably already do, there are some things you should never overlook.
Here are the 5 best SEO practices for blogging:
1. Quality Over Quantity
You may heard a rather overused and trite phrase that likens content to a monarch—but it’s true. In fact, when you are creating blogs, you want a foundation of superior quality content that gives you multiple possibilities for further topics and media (videos, infographics, and so on). When you start developing content, think of the 80/20 rule, where 80% of your blogs are helpful, educational, and tackle your audience’s problems and questions head-on. The remaining 20% is self-promotion and marketing.
Furthermore, you need to keep content as compelling and engaging as possible. Otherwise, you will lose readers. Write content that fits into both the company vision and the buyer persona. Look at situations from the visitor’s point of view so you can connect with them on a deeper level.
2. The Right Keywords
Another reason why you need superior content is because of keywords. As a business, small or large, you pull power from desirable keywords and search phrases. The reason why most people land on your website to begin with is because something they searched for matched the content on your website. Therefore, as you start blogging, you should use keyword tools, like Google Keyword Planner, to help you find trafficked keywords that draw attention.
3. Less Is More
Now, while you probably have thousands of ideas for content and twice as many keywords to make use of, this next practice is critical. You need a clean and easily navigable site. The menu should be at the top of the website. Links should be obvious. Do not go overboard with flashy elements that add little to no value to the content. The faster visitors can find what they are looking for, the better their experience. The page should be well organized with only one h1 heading (which is the page title), followed by one or two h2 headings inside the copy, and if needed some h3 headings. Use numbered and bulleted lists where it makes sense, to make the page easier on the eyes and not just one large block of text.
4. Short and Sweet URLs
Are you starting to see the pattern? High quality means adhering to an appropriate length. This rule applies to URLs too. An attractive URL structure is one that has the brand name (such as the name of your company) or the domain name, concise categories, and if possible, a few keywords. If a URL has multiple keywords because of content or title, you should separate the individual words with hyphens. Also, think about the domain extension. A .com or .org are the most popular throughout the world, but if you have a specific region or business type, you can go for more stylized extensions, such as .ca to help target the right people.
5. Meta-Tags, Always
A meta-tag is a page description that is optional—but that doesn’t mean you can ignore it. Be sure to have title text filled out, inserting keywords where you can, and keep the title a max of 70 characters long. Next, you need meta-description tags, since they help with click-throughs from SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages). Descriptions, after all, are that extra persuasive edge that attracts visitors to the site. Keep descriptions between 150-160 characters long. Make sure you also utilize image Alt tags.
SEO is the best way to improve organic search results for your blog and website. Plus, SEO helps you work in an excellent user experience. Never stop analyzing data and working to adjust the SEO practices you use to the constantly emerging trends. The more you work with SEO, the better your company’s online presence will become!