Struggling with how to fully optimize your blogs for search engines?
Don’t have time to waste when writing your website content?
Not sure where to go for the right information?
Blogging is an essential content marketing effort for most persistent companies today. But with questions about posts, blog content, Google, and more, Where do you go for the right information?
If you want your business blog articles — and any page content on your website — to be found organically online (without putting advertising dollars behind it), then you must learn to use Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Like anything else in business, you can always put dollars behind something to get your brand or blog posts in front of more eyeballs. But is that the right effort, at least at first?
When creating marketing content for your website, always write with the reader in mind. You need to start with the foundation for blogging and write a well-crafted, helpful blog article FIRST that answers all of your customers’ questions on the topic. Once you have the blog article fleshed out, you’ll need to fully optimize your blog content for search engines to “crawl” or read your site and determine if you’ve provided the quality information that your prospects are searching for online. This is called Search Engine Optimization (SEO), and it’s the scientific, proven way that you can provide the right signals in the right places. Through proper SEO practices, search engine platforms can know and understand both the quality and purpose of your blog content.
NOTE: We never suggest keyword stuffing your text or any other black hat-type strategies that would flag your blog content as spam or cause a visitor to bounce from your site. This blog article — and everything else we write for you — will always provide genuine, organic, white-hat strategies for an optimal online presence and content success. But first, let’s answer this blog SEO question…
Why Is SEO Important?
Yes, SEO is still important today. For search engines like Google®, Bing®, and even DuckDuckGo to rank your blog article and get it featured in search engine result pages (SERPs), you need to be search engine friendly — and persistent — in what you post to both your website and blog. Otherwise, it’s less likely that someone will stumble upon your blog article content or website page unless they are already on your website. The good news is that you can use SEO, so that search engines will crawl your blog article, understand what it’s about, and make a copy of it to show searchers. And, more importantly, you can make it an enjoyable and valuable content read for each website visitor too.
It All Starts with Keyword Research
Before you start writing, you’ll need to know what to write about. What are people searching for regarding your business or industry? What do your customers want? Which questions can you answer?
SEO-optimized blog posts utilize one or more related keywords and/or keyword phrases. So, your first step is to perform some keyword research to discover how to best promote and optimize your online content. Keyword research involves a lot more than just typing some search terms into your online search page to see what results you get (although this is a good first step). For this process, we can recommend several content optimizing tools to accomplish the task.
It’s important to note that most of the top SEO optimizing tools require subscriptions, which can get quite pricey. Although, some of these content tools do offer a free version with limited capability. That’s why we highly encourage you to find and utilize a reputable and highly skilled digital marketer (local or anywhere in your country) to assist with the content optimizing process. In fact, a solid digital marketer will be able to use a variety of tools to determine the right keywords and phrases that you can use in your region. Of course, you could access the same content tools—for fees that add up quickly—but still not know the best way to go about managing the keyword research process. So, it’s often better to pay a professional to get the best results while you focus on other higher-level tasks and projects in your business.
Top Blog SEO Tools
At Precise Creative, we have used and can highly recommend the following helpful content tools and software to assist with your keyword research and optimize your blog posts for SEO. (Note: This is meant to be a quick guide and is by no means a comprehensive list. You’ll find many other blog SEO and keyword research software and content tools available through a Google search.)
- SEMrush (SEMrush is a great tool for SEO, blog keywords, content marketing, competitor research, PPC, and social media marketing.)
- Ubersuggest (Use this tool for SEO, blog keywords, blog content ideas, competitor research, backlink data, and PPC plus free version available.)
- Ahrefs (Free SEO tools are available here.)
- Moz (Increase tracking, rankings, and visibility in search results.)
- Answer the Public (Discover what people are asking online.)
- SpyFu (Find out what blog keywords and phrases your competitors are using.)
- Google Search Console (This one of the free and easiest SEO tools; simply type your targeted key phrase into the search bar and see what auto populates.)
- HubSpot (HubSpot is always a great source for everything blog and website related.)
- YouTube (You’ll find lots of valuable videos and tutorials on your site. Plus, an embedded YouTube video from your channel always helps.)
- LinkedIn (LinkedIn is a great social media tool to for business-to-business (B2B) awareness. Be sure to post your content here to drive traffic to your website.)
Focus on your business and take the stress out of content optimization.
Let’s chat about your online marketing needs today!
Determining Your Keywords/Longtail Phrases
First, you’ll want to start with (or provide your digital marketer with) a list of keywords and long tail keywords (3–5 words) that make sense for your business and industry. A key phrase will consist of between two and five words that best describe your topic or focus. You’ll also want to create your own list of local and regional direct and/or indirect competitors (or provide the same list to your marketer) in order to conduct competitor research. The results of a little competitor research in advance will help determine the SEO strategies they may be using — as well as identify any keyword and content gaps that you can take advantage of.
The next step is to flesh out your initial list of search terms and add to it in order to find the final list of SEO terms that will work best for your blog posts and other content. From this work, you should expect to find (or receive) key terms and phrases in these categories:
- High- to medium-volume searches and
- Low- to medium-volume competition.
Finding the Sweet Spot
By discovering the SEO key terms and phrases that fall into both of the above categories, you’ll be able to identify your content sweet spot — the best terms to rank for online (at least for now). This sweet spot list is different for every industry, and even for businesses within the same industry. But don’t count the low volume key phrases out; they can still be a good content marketing opportunity. With low-volume searches, your blog posts may be able to quickly and easily rank for these search terms, which will help raise your online clout and domain authority.
Ultimately, you don’t want to waste too much of your time ranking for keywords and phrases that either no one is searching for or that have been commandeered by bigger companies, making it not worth your time or content marketing dollars. An expert digital marketer will also dig into what your competitors are doing to determine where best to position your organization’s brand. The bottom line is that your professional digital marketer will help you find the most sensible way to use your marketing budget.
NOTE: It’s essential to only use any primary SEO key phrase only on one website page. You don’t want to have two or more pages or blog posts on your site competing in search engine rankings for the same term. So, keep an ongoing list of primary key phrases you’ve used on your WordPress website and on which pages they’ve been used. However, you can still use any primary key phrase(s) as a secondary key phrase on any page(s) on your website — and as many times as you’d like.
Optimize Blog Posts for Search Engines: The Nuts and Bolts of SEO
Ready to get featured in online search results? Now that we know what SEO content is and why it’s important, let’s look at the SEO elements that need to be included in each blog article you optimize (and each website page, for that matter).
Helpful articles that incorporate the best SEO use their primary keywords/phrases in the following places, while augmenting with supplementary/secondary keywords and phrases in other places. It’s essential for your website admin to use your blog’s designated primary keyword in the following places on your WordPress website.
Blog Post Title
Use your keyword or phrase as early as possible in your blog post title / headline.
Use your keyword or longtail phrase in the first paragraph, or at least within the first 100 words of your article.
Be sure to use your primary keyword or phrase in at least one subheading.
Make use of your keyword or longtail phrase a few times throughout the text of your article. (Remember not to keyword stuff. You want to use your key phrase so that it feels organically placed for the reader.)
Calls to Action (CTAs)
Use your keyword or phrase in one Call to Action.
NOTE: Refrain from what’s called keyword stuffing—overuse of your keyword or phrase throughout your article. This is bad content marketing. Only use your keyword where it looks, feels, and sounds natural. You don’t want to turn your reader off or make them bounce from your site. But, more importantly, you don’t want search engines to flag your content as spam. Also, avoid anything like “hidden” keywords. Using hidden keywords is a technique where extra keywords are typed onto your website page, then the font color is changed to match the background color; thus, making them invisible to site visitors—but still highly visible to search engine result page bots and crawlers. These tactics will get your website flagged or even banned by search engines.
And a Few Keyword & SEO Technicalities…
Finally, to optimize blog posts and content, you need to give the search engines a little more information. Specifically, you’ll also need to use your primary key phrase in a few ‘technical’ areas. Provide this information to your web developer or admin, or the person on your content marketing team who is posting your articles to your WordPress website, for the highest SEO-optimized and performing blog post.
Your URL is your website address that appears in the search bar. It’s important to also use your key phrase here (with hyphens between individual words).
Your Title Tag is the blue-colored title to your website link that appears in search results. Be sure to use your keyword or phrase here. Your Title Tag should be no more than 70 characters in all, including spaces. Otherwise, your title may get cut off on some screens.
Example: How Your Donation Is Used | Your Company Name Here
The Meta Description is the text that appears underneath your Title Tag in search results. It’s important to use your primary keyword or phrase here too. Your Meta Description should be no more than 160 characters in all, including spaces. Otherwise, your description may get cut off on some screens. Consider the Meta Description your opportunity to entice a reader, like an ad, to click through the search results and read your blog post. It’s a summary of your post to let the visitor know ‘What’s In It For Me?’ (WIIFM) with a promotional twist.
Alt Image Tags
Alt Tags are used with any image that you add to your blog post. When uploading an image to your blog article page, you will have an option to designate an Alt Tag for each photo. For the best optimization, it’s also important to use your keyword or phrase as the Alt Tag for at least one image on the page. You can use secondary key phrases and synonyms of your key phrase for other image Alt Tags. Search engine bots will also crawl these areas of your site to help determine the quality of your blog article.
Where to Use SEO Keywords or Primary Key Phrases in Blog Posts
- Blog Title
- First Paragraph / First 100 Words
- At least one blog Subheading (H1 and H2 Headings)
- In blog text (several places, including relevant variations/synonyms)
- CTAs (Calls to Action)
- Title Tag
- Meta Description
- Alt tags
Thanks for reading this blog article. We hope you’ve found this support and content helpful. These tips will help you stay persistent in your pursuit of online commercial success. Please do reach out if you have any questions.
Need help with SEO or even writing your blog posts?
Call Precise Creative TODAY for your FREE marketing consultation!