After you set up your blog, my recommendation is to get started on your seo. Once you have a blog full of great posts, it’s going to be hard to go back to each one and seo optimize them. I’m not saying its impossible, I’m just going to say that it’s going to be A LOT of work. Also, if you start changing urls and links you will end up with your existing backlinks ending in 404 errors – and trust me you don’t want that!
SEO or Search Engine Optimization is a broad topic, so this is not all there is to know. Do more research! But this guide is a great one to get you started!
1. First things first, Download a SEO plugin
The most recommended free SEO plugin is Yoast. This will allow you to tinker with your meta data, create XML sitemaps and change titles. Now, once you have installed Yoast, you will be able to add details to your metadata.
While you’re typing your post online, you can scroll to the bottom and type in what word/words you would like to be as your keyword for your post.
2. Think ahead
If you want to implement SEO in your blog posts, you’re going to have to really think about what term or phrase you want your article to focus on. You should choose a broad term, that many people will search for but it still should be narrowed down enough so as to stand a chance to get ranked(noticed by the search engine) for it. For example, SEO is quite a broad term, but SEO basic tips for beginners is a much better one.
Once you’ve chosen this word/many words, you will have to set them as your keyword using your metadata ‘keywords’ option.
3. Write a great title
To write a good title, you should include your keywords right at the beginning. If your title is more than 66 characters, the search engine will most probably crop it. The most important aspects of an optimized page title are:
A unique page title that accurately describes its content
Must be brief but descriptive
It helps the user to understand what the page is about
The home page title can include the name of the website and maybe, some of your services or a description of what your site is about.
Other posts and page titles should accurately describe what the page/post is about and attract your reader/searcher’s attention.
4. Build your links – Backlinks
Backlinks are when other websites have links pointing to your blog. When Google notices that there are many websites linking to yours, it believes that your website is valuable so the website is now ranked higher. The greatest scenario is when GREAT websites link to YOUR GREAT website.
You can create backlinks by:
Commenting on other bloggers’ blog posts
Adding your posts to facebook group promotions
Being featured on others’ websites (Mums, I’m doing a feature series – Find out more here if you would like to work with me)
Adding images to Pinterest which link back to your blog
Adding your blog’s URL to your social media pages
Another way that Google rates your blog as valuable, is if you add links to your posts that link to your own content on your blog. This creates a sort of ‘web’ around your blog, informing google that it is more than just the home page.
Headings such as H1. H2. H3 or as wordpress shows it “heading 1″, “heading 2” etc are important to the structure of your page. Headings aid Google in figuring out the main topics of your post which therefore helps in your ranking. Be sure to use your keywords in some headings – no, not all of them now! Try these guidelines:
Heading 1 (H1) – Titles of your post
Heading 2 (H2) – Main headings of your post
Bold & Italic to attract a user’s attention
Use font that is easy to read
7. Page description
The page description meta tag is also a very importatnt part of SEO. This provides search engines and users with a brief summary of what the page is about. Yoast makes this easy to do.
SEO is all about attention to detail, so be sure to provide a unique description for all posts, pages and products that are featured on your website.
Keep the length between 140 – 150 characters.
A common mistake to avoid is repeating the title in the description
Try not to add too many keywords
Try to make your description something that will jump out at a user and make them want to click your page – similar to advertising your page
8. Content! Content! Content!
When writing your post, make sure that you write ENOUGH. Make sure that the post contains atleast to 300 – 500 words.
9. Post regularly and frequently
Readers will begin to know when to come back for more amazing content once you start posting at regular intervals. Posting regularly and frequently helps to train search engines to come back and check your site more regularly which result in highly ranked pages.
Make use of apps like Canva to create great images for your blog posts. Make sure that while you are doing that, you make sure that you enter alt text for your image as well as a description. The alt text aids in telling the search engine what your image is about. Images help to attract readers to other content that you have on your blog.
11. SEO Optimized Theme
Optimizing your theme helps google find your content and mark you as a trustworthy source.
You need to make sure that your site is mobile responsive – this is for the readers that are using their smartphones (which seems like about 90% of us nowadays!).
Your site needs to be cleanly coded so that google can ‘crawl’ your site and decide whether your site has all the characteristics of a good site.
The faster your site loads, the better the user experience which means the better for Google. Check your website loading time here. Try using cache plugins to speed up the loading process.
Make sure that you do have any broken links on your site and that your navigation works smoothly.
12. Social Media
Social media is huge right now! Once a post is shared via a social network, it immediately gains the attention of of other bloggers and website admins. This results in great backlinks.
Share others’ posts
Comment on other blogs, but not generic comments.
The permalink of a blog post is actually it’s url. For better SEO, we sometimes change this to suit what we think is the seo requirement. Instead of 13 SEO tips for beginners, the seo permalink should be SEO tips for beginners – because really? Whose going to search for EXACTLY 13?
To change your permalink on WordPress, you will find it under your post title in the post editor with an ‘edit’ button. In Blogger, you’ll find the Permalink section to the right of the post area in the post editor (underneath where you type in your labels). On Blogger, you can’t change the permalink after the post is published, so make sure you fill that out before you publish.
DO NOT CHANGE ANY OF YOUR OLD PERMALINKS BECAUSE ANY OF YOUR BACKLINKS THAT YOU DO HAVE WILL BE BROKEN. ONLY CHANGE THE PERMALINKS OF YOUR FUTURE POSTS.
Simone Gobin is a 24 year old, it graduate, wife to Avi and mother to Yash & Ralee Gobin. She spends her days being a mother and a wife. She has decided to start a blog as a creative outlet as well as connect with other parents. Her belief is that there is a lot to learn from other parents out there and she welcomes all advice possible.