If you’re taking the time to create dynamic content for your brand, like a blog or news page, then you really owe it to yourself to incorporate these important SEO (Search Engine Optimization) tips and tricks into your publishing routine! Not sure what blog SEO is, or how to implement it? Keep reading! You might be surprised what a big impact these blogging SEO techniques can make!
You deserve praise for even writing a blog to begin with, because so many brands don’t bother; but without SEO, your content won’t be able to reach its fullest potential! For a blog or article, that untapped potential means reaching the readers who are most likely to become customers, rather than just a few of your family and friends. Wouldn’t you want to do everything you can to reach your potential readers and customers? Why not spend just a few minutes to do something that can make a huge impact?
A note from Emmie: I can’t make you do anything, of course, just like your dentist can’t force you to get a filling for the cavity in your tooth. As an SEO expert with more than a decade of professional Content Marketing experience, all I can do is share my professional opinion; or if you want, I can do it for you! Creating a blog and optimizing it for SEO is well worth your time, and has the potential to generate more business and attract an engaged online audience, so why not just do it?
If you’re a list lover like me, then grab a piece of paper, or just copy and paste these 3 steps. It’s a very short list, but each part is so valuable. Don’t try to skip steps, or do things out of order, because it won’t be effective! Keep this little blog SEO list handy for the next time you publish, and keep reading to learn the importance of each step!
- Pack a punch with keywords and a great title.
- Optimize with meta data.
- Use the debugging tool
SEO is pretty darn important, even if it sometimes seems complicated or intimidating. It’s the online equivalent of putting on sunscreen; you know you really should do it, and if you don’t then you are knowingly taking a risk. What many business owners don’t know is that they are already doing blog SEO, but probably not correctly. SEO for dynamic content like blog posts and articles begins with the words used in the blog post, and even the title you choose!
#1 | Keywords and Title
Google has the challenging job of showing your blog to readers who are searching for related concepts. Keywords in your title and within your blog copy tell Google what your content is about, so it can be shown to more readers. For that reason, it’s very important to choose your keywords wisely, and make sure they’re incorporated in both your content and your title.
How to do it
Let’s say you’re writing a blog about your favorite books of 2019. At first, you might think to make the title “My favorite books of 2019”, and understandably so. Unfortunately, this title leaves a lot to be desired in terms of SEO. First, it’s too personal. People aren’t searching online for the phrase “my favorite books”, they’re probably searching for “best books”, so swap out those terms. Next, take a moment to think about your brand and your target customer. For the sake of this example, let’s pretend your target customer is a female business owner. Instead of making it about you, let’s make the title about them, so it attracts more readers in that demographic! Let’s make the new title “The Best Books of 2019 for Female Business Owners.” Suddenly, you have a title that targets a keyword (or keyphrase) that your customers might actually search for, paired with a qualifying statement that tells them that the blog is written just for them! Now that is a good title!
The Fine Print
In order to tell Google that this blog really is about the best books of 2019, you need to make sure that exact phrase appears in the body of your blog. Ideally, you want it to appear once in the first paragraph, and one more time somewhere else in the blog. To help Google’s robots understand the broader theme of your blog, add in some variations and supporting ideas that coincide with your title, you might consider adding “best books this year”, “books for female entrepreneurs” and “books worth reading”, but make sure they are spaced out throughout the blog and incorporated in ways that make sense. The idea is to reassure Google (and your readers) about the blog’s topic, not to pack in as many keywords as you can.
#2 | Writing your Meta Data
Don’t freak out. This one sounds technical and intense, but it’s not that bad, I promise! Meta data is like a summary of your blog that Google can cross-reference when it’s deciding who to show your blog to. Since Google works on an algorithm, and an algorithm is basically just a set of rules, you need to know the rules and follow them when you write your meta data.
How to do it
Since you have already written a title for your blog, you can probably use that as your meta title too! Your meta title needs to be 70 characters or fewer, so if your blog title is longer, then you’ll need to rephrase or shorten it for the meta title. Just make sure it still contains your keyword/keyphrase, which in our example was “best books of 2019”.
Meta title) The Best Books of 2019 for Female Business Owners
Writing your meta description is as simple is describing the content of your blog in 140 characters or fewer. No matter how you choose to describe it, make sure you’re once again incorporating the same exact keyword you targeted in your blog title and meta title. When the word or phrase appears in all 3 places (title, description, and blog content), Google can be sure that the blog centers around that specific topic.
Meta Description) Ready to discover the best books of 2019 for female business owners like you? Don’t miss these great reads!
The Fine Print
Thankfully, writing meta data for a blog is simpler than writing it for the pages of your website. For that, you might want to enlist a professional, but for your blog, you can probably do it yourself. After writing your meta title and description, you must implement them into the designated fields at the bottom of your blog draft. If you’re working on WordPress, you should install Yoast by SEO, a plugin that makes this step very simple. For those not using WordPress, a quick google search will tell you where to implement your meta data once you have written it.
#3 | Use the Debugging Tool
This super easy tool is really just the cherry on top of the hard work you have done to optimize your blog for SEO. When you post new content from your blog page on social media outlets, you want it to look just right so readers are more likely to share it. The debugger tool grabs the most recent updates you have made to your blog, including the meta data you wrote, the featured image you chose, and your latest edits.
How to do it
Once you have finished editing your blog and hit the publish button, just visit your website, navigate to your new blog post, check to make sure it looks good, then grab the URL and plug it into the debugger tool. The tool will provide a preview of how your blog post will look when you share it on social media, so you can go make any necessary changes before you share. This helpful tool is free, super accurate, and a simple way to catch errors before posting content on social media. After all, you want your clever content to go viral, not your mistakes!
If you’re serious about blogging for business or even just for fun, you should add these 3 easy steps to your content creation and publishing routine. A blog post that’s optimized for SEO has a better chance of being seen by those who will appreciate and share it, so these simple habits are well worth the effort!
One last note from Emmie: If you’re still not confident in your writing, but know that your brand could benefit from a blog, then it might be time to hire a copywriter. I know that it’s hard to imagine asking someone to write about the intricacies of your industry, but business owners do it every day, and benefit significantly from the investment. I’ve written for brands in every industry, from medical fields to real estate, fine dining to animal care, and beyond. I work with my clients to develop a brand voice that reflects industry expertise, then optimize for SEO. If you do choose to consider working with a copywriter, I hope you’ll contact me so I can tell you more!