How to Optimize Your Blog Content and Get Noticed
Blogs offer huge marketing opportunities for companies of all sizes. Along with attracting prospective customers to a company website through the interest generated by a post, they can also generate leads by encouraging people to subscribe and come back for more content.
Good SEO makes it easier for search engines to analyze your blog content, and helps your target audience find you. Here are three ways to optimize your blog content with the help of SEO.
1. Perform keyword research
One of the most important areas of SEO is keyword research. By picking up on keywords that your target audience may use, you can include them in your blog content to make it more likely that your blog will come up when people search.
There are many tools out there to help with keyword research. Google’s AdWords Keyword Planner is particularly popular due to the fact that Google is the most commonly used search engine, but there are many other useful tools.
Once you’ve figured out what kind of keywords to use in your articles, focus on using them effectively. Use just a couple of keywords per blog post to keep the content focused, then optimize those keywords. You can do this by placing them in strategic locations, like the first 65 characters of your headline, and scattered throughout the text.
Just make sure that you don’t “keyword stuff,” which is when people stuff keywords all over an article, making it difficult to read. This is both irritating and against Google’s policies.
2. Optimize multiple features of the blog
To thoroughly take advantage of keywords, you must target certain areas of the post. Many people overlook these areas, but paying attention to them can translate into higher page rankings and, as a result, higher placement on search results.
URL—One easy place to optimize is the URL. If you keep your URL simple and include a keyword or two, search engines can more easily understand what is in the article.
Length—Search engines tend to rate longer articles higher than shorter ones, so you will need at least 300 words or so per post. However, this is a delicate balance—if an article is too long, users won’t read the whole thing and may avoid your posts in the future. The sweet spot is around 700 words.
Images—When you place an image in an article, make sure to include alternate text (also known as alt text). Alt text gives you an opportunity to describe images for search engines and for people using text-reading software. If you include some keywords in your alt text, search engines will pick up on them and rank your page higher.
3. Use links to reference yourself and others
Search engines also examine how often your articles are linked and how many links they contain. By using internal and external links, you can maximize the potential of this metric.
Internal links, which reference other areas of your website, help search engines index your site and identify primary keywords. If you link by keyword, this increases your page rank because it shows that your website has a lot of related content and makes that related content eligible for a higher page rank. Internal linking also keeps readers on your website rather than navigating away from it.