As we continue the Blog Revolution Project, we come to day two of our focus on writing. Today will not really focus on one specific writing project, but an overall vision for your blog.
Most traffic that comes to blogs comes as a result of search engines. The vast majority of searches happen on Google. If we can optimize our Google search result ranking, we can greatly increase the flow of traffic through our site. The more visitors your site gets, the higher in the results you can go.
So how do we optimize our Google search ranking?
Keywords are the key
Everyone who comes to a site through a search engine types in keywords to get to your page. So consider what the keywords that you want people to find you using. Then use those keywords. There are specific ways that we use keywords that can help.
- Post titles
Whenever someone does a search, the title that people will see when your page pops up in the search engine is the title of your page. The formatting of your title should be such that you have the post name at the beginning, followed by the name of your blog. In WordPress, I use the All In One SEO Pack Plugin to format my post titles, though I’m sure I could edit the theme and make that happen as well.
This is something that’s tough to do if you haven’t already done it, but if you don’t have your own domain name yet, this is a great tip. But even if you don’t have a keyword rich domain name, you can put the post titles in your URLs. In WordPress, you do this by editing the Permalink structure. I just simply put /%postname%/ in there. This is huge in getting visitors. So what if I have already built my blog with a different permalink structure? Get Dean’s Permalink Migration Plugin!
- Headings, bold, italics
Anything you put in bold, italics, or h1, h2, h3 tags will be recognized by most search engines as being more important. Put keywords in bold and italics. But be sure not to overdo it, as this can look like you’re cheating (which you probably are) if you do it too much. Here’s a little more over at Working on Your Site. For a thorough treatment of keywords, visit Keyword Research for Bloggers: A Comprehensive Guide.
Search engine optimization (SEO)
Here are 9 Tips to Improve Search Engine Optimization (SEO). There is an entire industry that has sprung up around SEO. Keywords are just the tip of the iceberg. As you spend more time learning, you’ll be amazed at the processes that go into getting on top. Check out 55 Quick SEO Tips Even Your Mother Would Love (I love the title!) for tons of more ideas.
Come up with a list of five keywords you want to bring visitors to your blog.
Using Google Analytics (or whatever stat package you prefer), find the five most popular keywords that bring visitors to your site. Use all of these keywords as much as you can in your blog. Make your writing real, but find a way to get these words in titles, headers, bold, italics, etc. List your top keywords here.
Extra Credit: Run a Google search one those keywords and see where your blog ranks. Try again in a week after editing a few of the older posts and adding some of the formatting.