I had a conversation with a potential client this week about her SEO blog post efforts. She had hired someone to write articles for her blog, but she wasn’t getting the results she expected. I took a quick look at her articles and quickly discovered the problem. The articles were not tweaked for the search engines, or SEO (search engine optimization). Instead of using a primary keyword by which this business owner wanted to be found, the articles were being distributed with cute, kitschy titles that work well in an ezine but don’t work well at all when the article is being distributed online.
How much traffic are you losing because your blog posts aren’t ready for Internet prime time? I became acutely aware of this after purchasing a WordPress plugin, RankMath, which grades me on the SEO potential of each article I post in my blog. Trust me, my grades were pretty low! However, due to what I’ve learned by using this plugin, I’ve greatly improved my blog site traffic.
It all begins with picking a primary keyword. It’s really tough to optimize a 600-800 word article for more than one keyword. So, pick one by which you want to be found. A “long tail” keyword is better for your results, as these are the ones that have a fair amount of monthly searches (over 1000) but don’t have as much competition as the more heavily searched keywords. And, despite the SEO goals you want to achieve, don’t forget you’re still writing for humans, not just the search engines. This means that your article needs to be easily read and understood by your target market.
1. Keyword in the title. The first 4 words of an article title are the most important for enhancing your blog post's SEO. I always include my keyword in the title of my article. Can you guess what this article's keyword is?
2. Keyword in the description. Create a short, 150-character summary of what the article is about. For best results, be sure that your primary keyword is contained in this summary. This may also be referred to as a snippet.
3. Keyword in content. As a rule, your primary keyword should appear in both the first sentence and the last sentence. Sprinkle it in naturally 2-3 times in your content, as well.
4. Header tags for your keyword. This tweak is for your blog post on your blog. Look through your blog post and see where you have inserted your primary keyword. Go to your formatting screen and create an H1, H2, or H3 header formatting (will bold an entire sentence in larger font sizes). Try to do this naturally, as though you are creating subheadings for your article. Again, keep in mind that humans will be reading your article, and the formatting should enhance their experience rather than detract from it.
5. Keyword in your image. Adding an image to your article on your site makes it a pleasant read for your visitors. You can also use the alt image tag feature to add in your keyword for another SEO punch to your post. I always use the title of my article for both the title and the alternate text for the image. After all, my article title already contains my primary keyword, right?
Bonus tip: Keyword in your resource box. When you submit your article as a guest on other people’s blogs, create an HTML version of your author bio box, or resource box, that includes your primary keyword in your bio, and be sure to link a page of your site to that keyword. I would suggest you link to a product related to the keyword, or a page on your site related to the keyword to help you build one-way backlinks to your site, which the search engines love.
Take a look at your SEO blog post tweaks and determine if you can improve your traffic with these tweaks. Once you get in the habit of formatting and submitting your article in this fashion, you’ll begin to see the benefits of your SEO efforts!
Need some help with your SEO efforts? Let me know if I can help with a Brainstorming with Donna session. Brainstorming about marketing is one of my favorite activities. If you have an idea but don’t know what comes next or have several ideas and are not sure which deserves your attention or are just feeling stuck, let’s talk. After you pay and sign up for a time on my calendar, I’ll ask you for some more info via an online form.
I help seasoned small business owners create marketing ideas and strategies that raise their visibility, broaden their reach, and grow their revenues.
As a business owner with 24 years of experience, I am the cure for you if you have run out of marketing creativity. I have a unique ability to sense or see the underlying scheme of things, whether it's like a blueprint to build something or an x-ray that shows hidden connections, and connect the dots at a deeper level. I make it really Easy. Enjoyable. Effective. Just like your marketing will be.