SEO is an acronym for Search Engine Optimisation. It basically means making your website, blog or post easy to read by search engines so it shows up higher on the page when certain keywords are searched. If you want your blog to get more traffic, it’s important you understand SEO and how to change a few things about how you write posts, use images and URLS to drive more search engine traffic to your site. There are tonnes of bloggers out there and with everyone fighting to get to the top, a good understanding of Search Engine Optimisation is a must for getting your blog to the top.
There are many ‘black hat‘ ways to increase your page rank, such as buying links, using fake key words, invisible text, cloaking, etc. Black hat techniques can result in your blog’s rank being reduced, or even eliminated from the search database all together. Let’s stay away from that and talk about some of the honest ways of getting your blog to the top of Google’s search pages! These tips are written with blogger and blogspot accounts in mind, as that is what I use, but may be tailored to other blog services, such as wordpress.
The Basics of SEO for Blogs.
I’ve always known the basics of SEO, when researching about it these are the things I found time and time again:
Great Content. Great content keeps people engaged and coming back, also means your readers are more likely to link back to your blog which help your page rank.
Social Networking. Sharing your own content to social networking sites such as Twitter, Google+ and Facebook can result in more traffic, comments and followers.
Popular Post Widget. Getting a new visitor on your blog is great, but will they read more posts? Or just the one and leave your site? Having a popular or ‘related posts’ widget on your side bar or at the bottom of your post can mean the reader will read more posts by you, reducing the bounce rate of your blog and increasing the chance of them sharing your content.
Guest Blogging. Guest blogging on relevant sites is a great way to build links, and also generate new traffic from the followers of the blog. The higher the page rank of the blog you are guest posting on, the more beneficial it will be for your blog. It is much more valuable to have your link on a few high ranking sites, than lots of lower ranking sites.
Have a Guest Blogger. You can turn guest bloggers around and have guest bloggers on your site – not only does this mean more content, but most bloggers will link the post (your site) on their blog or tweet about their guest post. Just insure the guest post is relevant to your niche and of good quality to keep your readers interested.
Keywords. Having your keywords in subheadings, bold, italics or underlined is much more powerful to engines than plain keywords.
Keyword Repetition. Repeating keywords a few times in the post is a way to get it higher on the search engine, but be careful not to over use them as if it looks unnatural, it can ruin your content and put off your audience.
My Favourite Tips.
I have come across a few other tips lately that have REALLY helped me with my blog SEO. These tips are not as commonly shared – but are very effective. To save you time searching for the best way to make your blog search engine friendly, I’ve compiled the most useful ones for you.
1) Alt text in images.
I went almost a year without putting any alt text in the images on my blog. It is very easy to do and means that search engines can tell what your image is about so it will come up in google image searches.
Click on your image and then click ‘properties’.
Simply enter the description into the box.
My photos come up first and third for ‘perfect tartan dress’ in google image search. Before that they were not on there at all.
2) Optimising your URL.
Optimise your URL so that it contains your key words. If you want to write a post about ‘blogging tips’, for example, you should think about what you would search for if you were looking for blogging tips. ‘Check out these cool tips’ might be a cool title, but it won’t rank as high as ‘blogging tips for beginners’ or ‘blogging tips for fashion blogs’. You can ensure your URL contains these words on blogger by making sure they are in your title – as your URL reflects the title of your post. If you want to retain a different, more vague or quirky title, you can always publish your post as the SEO friend title, then a couple of minutes later edit the posts title. This way your URL will stay the same, but your post title will change.
If you look here, my URL is different from my title.
3) Link your old posts in new posts.
When linking old posts in your new blog posts, the key is to make sure they are relevant to your post, and also use key words as the link. This helps your SEO and also helps reduce your bounce rate as readers are more likely to click on the related old posts. If you can’t think of any old posts to link to, don’t force it. If it doesn’t look natural, leave it without.
Do you have any tips that I haven’t mentioned here? Please share them in the comments!