THE 'WORK SMARTER - NOT HARDER' GUIDE TO EFFECTIVE BLOG POST SEO
THE 'WORK SMARTER - NOT HARDER' GUIDE TO EFFECTIVE BLOG POST SEO
Here at web-aviso we like to be thinking ahead and creatively solving your digital marketing problems. One main problem is that many people are simply too busy (or conversely, lazy) to search engine optimise the blog posts that they have spent their valuable time writing - which ironically defeats the object of it being posted at all! So, we’ve spent numerous hours researching, testing, and refining a solution that enables businesses to easily develop and incorporate SEO into their blog posts with minimal additional work.
The aim is essentially to try to rank highly on Google for every blog post you write, with the least amount of additional SEO effort but importantly, without compromising the content.
Keywords Are The Holy Grail of SEO - but know your DA!
The bottom line to effectively optimising your blog post for search engines is finding/using the right keyword to rank for.
Every good blog post is just one ‘right’ keyword away from making Google’s front page.
Notice that I say ‘keyword’ not ‘keywords’. We suggest only going after one keyword or keyword phrase; anything else is a bonus.
To find the right keyword or keyword phrases to rank for, you first need to understand ‘Domain Authority’ …. Domain authority (or DA) is a signal Google uses to rank the credibility of your website. The higher your DA, the more likely you’ll rank for a keyword. If you have a low DA, there’s no point going after competitive keywords, i.e., the ones with a high search volume.
Enter your website URL in the (free) Domain Authority Checker at SEO Review Tools and you can quickly discover your website domain authority. The DA scores are calculated using a logarithmic scale out of 100. A simple explanation is given on their webpage.
Once you have ascertained
your DA – now is the time to make a list of all the keywords and topics
directly related to your blog and research their competitiveness,
i.e., the higher the search volume the more difficult it will be to rank
your blog for.
NEXT ... go back to SEO Review Tools and select the Keyword Tool to start your research. Generally, we’d suggest targeting keywords that have less than 1,000 monthly searches. Although we don’t have any hard and fast rules about what search volumes you should target for a given website DA. However, if your DA is less than 20, any searches above 5,000 per month is an unrealistic keyword to target. Obviously as you increase your DA, you can test higher volume keywords.
Search Intent – or the ‘why’ of searching
Here’s a quick but invaluable side note to additionally consider in your interpretation or choice of keyword. Every web search has intent. For example, people searching for ‘Liverpool’ may want directions within the city - they might want a map of Liverpool - or they might want football team information, or types of restaurants in Liverpool. So, before you pick a keyword that you want to rank for, make sure you understand the intent behind the keyword. This maybe indicated in the search phrase, but not always as it can be prompted by many factors, e.g., what’s in the news or local events. From a search engine perspective, the intent is seen as either -
- Informational - or looking for information e.g., ‘football scores’. However, not all informational searches are formulated as questions.
- Navigational - or looking for a specific website e.g., ‘web-aviso’. They may not know the URL or simply find it quicker to search by word, brand, or theme etc.
- Transactional – or looking to make a purchase e.g., ‘discount theatre tickets’. They may already know what they want to buy or where to buy from.
- Commercial Investigative – looking for a specific product or service but yet to make a final decision on which solution or option is right for them, e.g., ‘best restaurant Liverpool’. They maybe looking for reviews and comparisons and weighing up their options
So, as you research try to drill down into keywords that are relevant and try and keep search intent in mind too.
Optimising Your Blog Post For Keywords – Pro tips
Now essentially onto the easy part, as you will have already written your blog post – optimising it for search engine ranking. All you’re doing here is taking a few simple steps to make sure Google knows what your content is about, i.e. including your keyword or keyword phrase in specific target areas of the article.
“On average, 5x as many people read the headline as read the body copy. When you’ve written your headline, you’ve spent eighty cents out of your dollar.”
Blog Post Title SEO
Titles make or break your articles even if you rank on the front page of Google - if the title doesn’t engage or meet a searchers intent, no one will click through – however the reality also is that the catchiest titles are often not the best for SEO. So, try to find a happy medium between SEO optimised and click-worthy .
The coschedule headline analysis tool is our best friend here. It’s a free chrome extension that assesses your headlines on a score out of 100. Here’s a challenge - See if you can score 70+ with each headline. Any higher than that is difficult when optimising for your keyword SEO. Also, keep your title below 60 characters for best results.Blog Post URL SEO
This one is super simple - keep the URLs as short as possible with the keyword or phrase included. The shorter they are, the easier they are to remember and reference if you’re recommending your blog post on a podcast, for example.Blog Post Meta-Description SEO
This is where an agency’s experience really comes in – but if you’ve followed the past two tips so far - you’ve got this too. Essentially, again, include the keyword or keyword phrase while trying to entice someone to read the article. Also, make sure you keep your meta description below 160 characters for best results.Optimise Blog Post Heading
Headings are your H1’s H2’s to H6’s that you use to segment your articles. Try to include your keyword or phrase in at least one H1 or H2 heading per article. Don’t destroy your readers’ experience by throwing in random titles that aren’t contextual to your content.Blog Post Paragraphs SEO
Again, where appropriate, ensure the keyword is mentioned a few times throughout my article’s paragraphs. Don’t repeat it so much that it sounds unnatural, search engines don’t like that.Blog Post Links SEO
Last but not least, try to tell Google that your blog post content is relevant and valuable by including internal and external links. For bonus points, link to relevant internal content (your other blog content) to keep readers on your site longer, which tells Google your content is valuable (and a positive ranking factor for your website overall)
Ensure my internal links are to relevant content explaining a concept mentioned in the post or is generally contextual. Don’t cram your article with random links that ruin your readers’ experience.
... and that's the end of the process !
All in all, we spend @30 additional minutes per article to optimise it. We suggest creating a checklist for yourself that you tick off before publishing each article. I know it’s a pain, but 30 minutes is a small investment even for busy and lazy bloggers to potentially generate 1000’s of free visits from Google.
This is not a fool-proof method and honestly, we’ve published many posts that don’t rank – but mistakes are where you learn. Sometimes you’ll need a higher domain authority to get to the front page, but over time as your DA increases and Google trusts your content more this quick investment will pay off.
web-aviso has been providing targeted, organic, local SEO, digital marketing, self-publishing and print design services to SME businesses across UK and internationally since 2004. They are based in Formby, Liverpool. UK
For more details visit https://www.web-aviso.com