Hi and Welcome. When you start your blog, you think well I’m going to write about what I want from my inspiration, and of course, that is very important because your content has to be original and personalized… but then you realize that, especially if you are interested in internet marketing, you also want your content to be ranked in Google or other search engines, and then you begin to study how you can improve your writing and make it more friendly and attractive for the internet (SEO – Search Engine Optimization), so here I want to share The 5 Things I had to Learn to Make a Blog Post SEO Friendly.
1. What is a Keyword and Where to Find Them
A Keyword is a name that is used for words and phrases that people use on Search Engines like Google, Yahoo, Bing, or even Youtube to find information about a product, service o topic in specific, so if you want to make your post SEO friendly you have to pay attention to that.
The Keyword Research is very important because it gives us information about:
- The interest of people on some topic:
- Total Search Volume
- Other popular Keyword ideas that people are searching, that are related to your topic.
- The competition in a niche (how many websites are competing to attract that search volume).
Also, the Keywords that you choose to focus on can impact your traffic growth, search engine rankings, your promotions, the content topics to choose, etc. For example, Google in its “How Search Works” says that:
The most basic signal that information is relevant is when a webpage contains the same keywords as your search query. If those keywords appear on the page, or if they appear in the headings or body of the text, the information is more likely to be relevant.
Then to find relevant and convenient Keywords is very important for the success of your website. Keyword Research before writing your post can give you direction about where to go and where not to go. And I think that the second one is the most important so you can avoid putting your effort into something that has no possibilities to become visible for people in the Search Engines.
Where and How to Find Keyword Ideas
- Begin with a Broad Topic. This is not your final keyword but it is your starting point to find it.
- Example: Snowboarding.
- Go to Places where you can find more specific phrases related to your topic:
- Google: When you type a word or phrase it automatically suggests more keyword ideas, also you can scroll down and look the “Searches Related to” section of the first page of your search, it can contain more good ideas.
- Wikipedia: If your topic is in Wikipedia you can look in the table of contents for more subtopics that can be keyword ideas. Remember look for subtopics from subtopics, those can be very useful keyword ideas.
- Youtube: 80% of the worldwide traffic now is on video platforms like Youtube, so you can get good ideas about what people are looking for from the suggestions in the Youtube search bar.
- Bing: Also look at the suggestions on the search bar to find some new ideas.
- Forums: The popular topics in a forum can give you clues about what people are talking about.
- Question Pages: Websites like Yahoo Answers and Quora can give you extra ideas to make your post more attractive and useful for people.
Keyword Tools to Analyse your Ideas
Once you have a list of your first keywords you can start to analyze them with an appropriate Keyword tool so you can know if they have enough relevance and if they are not to difficult to rank, this is because our website is new and has no authority for the search engines, and we have to start with a less competitive keyword. With that said, let’s see some useful tools we can use to obtain the proper info to choose our finale keyword:
Google Keyword Planner
Since Google is the most reliable source of information about keywords on the internet this is the first place to take a look to find what you need to make a Blog Post SEO Friendly with the most appropriate and convenient keywords:
- You will need a Google Ads account, but don’t worry you don’t have to pay anything, to open an account is free and the use of the Keyword Planner is too.
- Within your account go to Tools –> Keyword Planner.
- You’ll see two main services: “Discover New Keywords” and “Get search volume and forecasts”.
- You can use the “Discover New Keywords” to get more keyword ideas, and the “Get search volume and forecasts”. to start looking for the Search Volume and Competition.
- I usually try to see what keywords have good search volume and low competition.
[Here you have a trustworthy guide to use Google Keyword Planner. ]
One thing that you have to know about Google Keyword Planner is that the information about the competition is related to Pay Per Click Campaigns and not for Search Engine Optimization (SEO), so it can give you ideas but to obtain more accurate information for SEO we need other tools.
Also, you want to know if your keywords have a stable trend:
- If they are “trending topics” but that trend is short-lived maybe you would like to avoid them.
- Also if their trading is decreasing it can be a problem, for example, “spinners”, the spinners had their moment as trending toys but nowadays their popularity is totally down, so it can be a good idea to write about them in a post just to attract the attention at the moment but not to build a whole new website around something like this that can disappear in a few months.
- Also is very important to think about if our keywords are seasonal trends, for example, Halloween costumes are relevant at the end of each year, but the rest of it, there is not relevant search volume for that topic.
- So it can be a good idea to look for stable trending keywords that look smooth over the last 5 years.
- Here you have two main tools to look for trendings:
Keyword Difficulty Tools
And Finally, even if you have a good idea of the possibilities of your keywords, maybe you need something more reliable, and more accurate for your SEO performance. In that sense, maybe you need to know if your keyword is too competitive to rank for.
For the new ones like us, the experts recommend first focus on Long Tail Keywords because usually, they are less competitive. Long Tail Keywords are phrases of at least 4 or more words and are very specific for example “emergency plumber service in New York”, and usually they have a low search volume like 20-100 per month but if you add more and more for your website they could represent a good traffic source to start on.
The only main issue for beginners is that the most efficient Keyword Tools that give you relevant info about SEO competition and rank difficulty are paid. But here you have a tip that you can use to know if it is really difficult to rank and you would like to avoid that kind of keywords:
- Look at the First Page on Google and you will know that the competition is high if:
- There are a lot of ads. You will be invisible in the middle of all those ads, and It will be impossible to beat all those websites that are investing in paid traffic to rank on the first pages.
- Wikipedia is there (maybe is a broad topic and you will need to be more specific).
- A lot of official websites from high authority personalities.
If you want to go further with your keyword research, here there are some with good reputation paid tools that you can look:
2. Writing Structure to Make a Blog Post SEO Friendly
Length of your Blog Post
First of all, you need an idea of how many words of quality content you need for your blog post to be attractive to Search Engines. A few years ago 300 words would be a good starting point, but now Google is ranking better long informative and detailed posts of at least 2000 words.
Main and Secondary Articles
You can use a structure of Main and Secondary Articles to have more variety and to make people stay more on your site:
- Write Main Articles in your blog that are 2000+ words. This will be the stars on your website.
- Build some Secondary Articles with 700-1500 words around your Main Article (maybe you can write more about the subtopics from your Main Article).
Text Body Structure for Main Articles:
- Must include your Main Keyword and be attractive.
- –> Look here for some ideas to make your title more engaging.
- Include an Intro:
- This could be a single paragraph or maybe 2 from around 100-300 words.
- Include your Main Keyword there.
- Include at least 5 subtopics
- These can have around 300-500 words.
- Include your main and related keywords there, it has to be natural, don’t force the writing to include them.
- Write in short paragraphs. People prefer short informative paragraphs of 5-10 sentences each.
- You can include a conclusion of about 100-300 words.
- Extra Tip: You can use the google chrome extension of Grammarly to help you as a grammar checker.
3. The Use of Headings & How to Include a Table of Contents in WordPress
When I began to study about blogging, I started to hear “watch you H1 and H2”, “use H1 and H2 correctly”… but it seems like everybody assumes that all people know what they are. I had to search for the term and understand the importance of it, and it is very simple indeed but also very useful to make your blog post more readable, and SEO friendly.
The mystery revealed… H1 and H2 are the Headings of your blog post, and they indicate the level of relevance of a Title or Subtitle and the order of them, in fact, there are H1, H2, H3, H4, H5, and until H6 in WordPress. The Main Title is always H1 and it is recommended that each post has only one H1 heading.
Besides the Title, and according to the writing structure that we discussed earlier, you can have subtopics that can be H2 and subtopics of these subtopics that can be the H3 headings and so on. Normally H4-H6 are not used, but if you think they are necessary to organize your text then there are available.
How to Switch a Sentence into a Heading
You just select the sentence and select the type of text you want it to be from the menu in the editor.
Remember that H1 is already set when you put the main title of your post and you don’t have anything special to convert the Title in Heading, it is already.
Also remember not to include more H1 in your content, use from H2 onwards.
I also recommend that before writing in detail you had already identified your headings so when you put your post on WordPress don’t forget to label them accordingly.
How the Headings can Become a Table of Contents and How to Include it.
Your Headings represent the order and hierarchy of your content, so they are also the raw material for a Table of Contents. A Table of Contents is an Index that can help people and search engines to know better what is in your article, also it can help someone find specific information within a very long post.
To include automatically a Table of Contents in my Blog Posts I use the Plugin LuckyWP Table of Contents that gives me the option to insert it in my post from the Editor Menu:
4. Embed Images correctly to make your blog post more SEO Friendly
Images give life to your article, they can add color, meaning, and can be engaging to attract the attention of the reader. But images are also important for SEO, the information around your images can tell the Search Engines what is your article about, and also they can appear on the image searching pages leading to more traffic to your website.
Where to Find Images for your post and how to choose them?
Some called Guru’s will tell you “Hey just put some photos copyright free”, and that can work at the beginning but now image searching is becoming more relevant, and there some important things you have to know to find your image and choose the right one.
- Yes, there are places like pixabay.com and pexels.com that are a nice source of free stock photos that you can use without any problem with the copywriting but:
- Google ranks a little bit better websites with original photos, so try to include some photos taken with your phone or camera, or maybe assembled with an image editing program.
- But not anything has to be hard, you can make a combination between original and free use images to complete your article.
- The images have to be analogous to your topic, so the search engines can understand your article through the pictures on it.
- Illustrations and infographics made by yourself also are very valuable to search engines nowadays.
- Gift images also are very popular, but they are on the grey zone about the copyright theme so some people say you can use them because there is no previous case of copyright with them, and others say is better to avoid them.
5. Indexing Your Blog or Website on Google.
This is something that is rarely mentioned but I think that is very important for beginners. If you can index your post on Google you can accelerate your appearance in the Search Engines, instead of just have hope to be found and stay waiting without doing anything.
How To Index your post on Google
In order to index your whole website and by default your new post on google you will need two things:
1. Go to Settings –> Reading —> Search Engine Visibility and Uncheck the option “Discourage Search Engines from indexing this site”. This is because if you have this option active, then Google could not read your website and as a consequence, it cannot be indexed.
2. You will need an XML site map of your website. I already know two ways to do it:
- With Yoast plugin
- With Google XML Sitemaps which is the one I use. If you choose this option and have Yoast, first disable map generation from Yoast so they can’t interfere with each other.
With these plugins, you will obtain something like yoursite.com/websitemap.xml and that is what you need to tell Google about the content on your website.
With this in hand go to Google and Type “Google Webmasters” which should give you the link to go to the Search Console Login website of Google. You just will need a Gmail account to sign up. When you have accessed do the following:
- Choose the URL prefix option and enter the URL of your site.
- Do the ownership verification through one of the options. For example, paste an HMTL tag code on your website so Google can track it.
- Inside the Search-Console add your site map: Go to index, Sitemaps, and add the URL of your XML site map.
- If you are using Google XML maps plugin just go to settings —> XML site map to find your URL.
- Use the option “inspect any URL” from the top of your Search Console to encourage Google to index a specific URL of your website.
- When you do that you will see a message that says “URL is not in Google” and below an option that says “Request indexing”. Click on that and it is going to take a few minutes to submit your request and now is going to take maybe a few hours to be indexed.
I hope this information can give you what you need to make your blog post SEO friendly, I made it with affection because this is the information that I would have liked to find collected in one place from the beginning of my journey as a blogger.
Thanks for reading, and if you liked please comment, share and smile
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