Search Engine Optimisation is a must have for discoverability for any website. It’s key to being seen and becoming the number one result for related searches. It’s even more important when it comes to any source of regularly updated information feeds, like a blog.
What makes a blog
A blog is a source of news and information that can be displayed in various ways and creativity in how that information is conveyed can be an incredible tool. It doesn’t matter if imagery is the main medium of communication or a black and white whitepaper approach, the subject and method for displaying content only plays a small part in SEO.
Why blog SEO is overlooked
One of the most common mistakes made when it comes to curating a website for SEO is that often the only focus becomes the static content. This usually happens for one reason; most people aren’t aware that posts are essentially pages to search engines and that in order to find them, they need to be prepared correctly.
Why should you optimise your blog for Search Engines?
When the term SEO is thrown around, it can be easy to forget that it stands for Search Engine Optimisation. Your blog should be optimised so that both your website and your posts can be found easier. It doesn’t matter if you’re an individual who is just writing for a hobby or if you’re a company trying to get more customers in your store. Increasing your visibility in page rankings through direct relation to keywords, as well as increasing your overall ranking thanks to the way internal and external links play a part in SEO is crucial.
How to optimise your blog
The usual stop in any process for SEO is meta. Ensuring titles, descriptions and keywords meet the requirements for rankings, but also have a natural and organic feel about them. There’s a lot that can play a part in getting those higher scores for optimisation, but we’re going to focus on the basics here.
To start with, the most important part to remember when optimising any part of your website for SEO is to be organic. Not in the gardening sense, what we mean is don’t stretch from the focus just to make it sound better.
If you’re unfamiliar with writing articles or posts, you might assume that you start with your title. However it’s often agreed upon that a good title can take a long time to decide on.
You need to consider your target audience, your communication style and what’s worked well for you before, among other things. It’s a process that we believe shouldn’t be rushed and as your write more, the title will become clearer and more concise.
Your post title can be written differently from your meta title, though it’s not usually a good idea to do so. It can confuse your readers, making them think that maybe they’ve clicked on the wrong post or it might reflect poorly on your consistency. So when deciding on your title, it’s imperative to consider how it will be interpreted by search engines as well.
Since we brought it up, let’s us gardening for our example. Let’s say you had written a post about gardening, specifically giving tips on how to plant sunflower seeds for easy irrigation in smaller spaces.
You might choose any number of ways to describe the post in the title, such as:
How to plant Sunflower seeds for easy irrigation in smaller spaces
But it’s a little lengthy and not engaging enough to draw people in. Strive for something that peaks interest, such as:
The easy way to plant sunflower seeds in small spaces
It calls attention, it’s simple and it’s short. Although in this case, we omitted one of the key points of the article, there are other ways to include that information. You can decide which point is more important and include the other(s) in areas like the meta description and the post excerpt.
Meta description is the place where you want to take a step back and put more focus on the information and less on selling your post to your readers. A brief but natural meta description for our example post would look like this:
A beginner’s guide with step by step pictures, teaching the best ways to plant sunflower seeds for easy to manage irrigation in small spaces.
This says exactly what the post is about and gives a little more detail through the mention of imagery. That’s it. It doesn’t try to explain any of the methods, or go over do’s and don’ts. Even if you advertised products you wanted to push to your readers to assist their planting needs during the post, it’s not needed in the description. Focus only on describing what the post is about, enough to tell someone reading it if it contains what they’re looking for or not.
Sometimes keyphrases and keywords are used interchangeably and although they contain some similarities they are not the same.
Keyword is a term most people are familiar with, they are single words that can be used to describe the topic. So in our case; gardening, planting, irrigation, etc.
A keyphrase is an extension of this, where you can be a little more specific, so something like “Planting sunflower seeds” would be a useable example.
Spend some time cherry-picking words and phrases that you feel best suit the topic you’re writing about. Always remember to try and put yourself in your readers’ shoes when curating descriptions, titles and keyphrases for SEO. Just like writing the post itself, every other detail that goes into making it visible to a search engine should be iterated on as well.
A short and simple part of it all, where possible always use images or videos that go with your content. There are countless studies showing how it improves user engagement and as it turns out, search engines like it too.
We’ve given a rather brief breakdown of the more prominent aspects of SEO and how to weave those best practices in with your blog as you go. The parts we’ve covered should be enough to get your SEO score into that green zone, but there’s more nuanced parts to learn to get those top scores. If you have any questions about how to optimise your blog for SEO, let us know by writing to us on social media.