Google is my online best friend when it comes to searching for information online.
There are other Search Engines , yet almost everyone who has entered the online space has accessed Google for Search and the statistics speak volumes.
In January 2015, Google had an 88.1% worldwide market share.
In 2014 , 2,095,100,000,000 searches were made on Google; just count those zeros.
That’s an average of 5,740,000,000 searches per day.
So it’s obvious that Google isn’t just MY online friend ….a lot of people around the world have connected to the legendary Search Engine. That’s a lot of potential customers!
The secret to getting your business content seen is the application of an SEO strategy that incorporates the creation of consistent content; namely your business website and blog.
What is SEO?
We use Google with familiarity to type in phrases on topics that matter to us at that moment in time. Our intentions are varied yet the common factor between the majority of us is that we very rarely leave the first page of that search. We find what we need near the top of the list.
SEO plays a huge part in that.
SEO: Search Engine Optimisation is a process used by web experts and digital content producers to affect the visibility of a website or page in search engine rankings as a popular choice for those billions of people that search online every day.
Whilst there are different ways of using SEO; the way that utilises the long term value of your online presence is the White Hat SEO methodology. This term defines the strategies and methods used to optimise your business from a human perspective rather than based solely on the SEO itself.
We like this SEO method, Google likes this method and we stay friends for a very long time.
There are so many benefits to utilising SEO techniques online for your business, here are just a few of them.
Increased Traffic to your Website: Those who rank highly in Search Engines generate the most impressions and clicks to the link content there. This means that the higher up you are in SERP s (Search Engine Results Pages) the more users will click through and visit the page and ultimately the rest of your site.
It does not cost the earth: Think about this. Using SEO keyword techniques you are immediately creating a defined target audience who are naturally searching for similar phrases that match your business type. These active inbound searches are potential customers for your products and services and are searching in real time. Strategic use of SEO tactics will get yourself seen and get these users to your site and ultimately your landing pages.
Increased ROI: The big one. SEO gets you seen and in turn drives traffic to your site, traffic that is a defined target audience who are actually searching for your product | service type in real time.
They are on your SITE! They are interested in your business! Now make sure you have strategic Call to Actions (CTA’s) to guide them to a lead generated business close.
Now what’s the ROI on that? Huge!
SEO Tips for Your Blog
We have already detailed how an effective content marketing strategy will add value to your business. Whilst SEO methods should be used strategically throughout your site, we are going to take a look at simple techniques for your blog.
Create Original Content
We love semantic search here at Content Plan. It means that the search focuses on the user intent and its contextual relevance and creating content that adds value is perfect in this regard.
Consistently create fresh, original, rich, thick content. Google loves it, readers love it and engage. The more your content gets seen, the better the engagement and sharing opportunities which get it climbing faster up the Search Engine Results Page. (SERP).
This content creation for your business will only be effective if it is relevant and consistent. As well as a content marketing strategy, your business requires a detailed content marketing planner to make this happen. This will not only help you in your SEO strategy but will add value for readers and generate more leads.
Research Keywords for SEO
Use the Google AdWords: Keyword Planner tool to research keywords and phrases that are being searched for on a regular basis that relate to your topic or business.
High traffic keywords can be great but the competition for them can be extreme so find the balance and test the ones that work for you. Check out and leverage unusual phrases that surprisingly generate high level traffic, these can be leveraged well if used strategically.
Remember: Keywords are highly important for SEO, but what is even more important is that your content is natural, engaging and adds value.
Have your keywords in mind when writing but think about your target audience and what they want to read above all else.
There are plugins available to assist with SEO optimisation with posts. One we use regularly is Yoast.
Include the keyword you have used in your blog post URL as this adds to your SEO. You should have the ability to edit the URL in your content management system however, if you have used SEO effectively you shouldn’t have to edit as the keyword will naturally be included in the title.
Your title tags should be under 55 characters. The reason why is that, how it looks on search pages will have an effect on the impressions it makes. There is nothing worse than only half a title showing when trawling through search and people will be put off.
As I said above, if the content is relevant to the keyword then it should naturally appear in the title.
Format your blog with headings and sub headings, not only does it read better, if keywords are placed naturally in relevant headings, it will add to the SEO value.
Do not overuse the keywords in the body of your blog text. Focus on the value of the content to the reader and if the topic is on point, this will naturally ensure that it is SEO friendly.
Tags are useful to search as well as ensuring that people can easily find the topic of content on your site. Use canonical tags so that search bots can distinguish the tag to the relevant URL and specify the individual search path.
The Meta Description is the content that appears under the title in Search Engine lists. This is going to be the body of text that the reader, when searching, sees first so make sure that it is relevant to the content and appealing enough to attract a click.
Keep the meta description under 140 characters so that it does not cut off mid-way and make for an unsightly read. Again, use keywords naturally here and do not populate the text with just the keywords. It’s not relevant and Search Engines don’t like it.
The title and alt text on images is a great way to enhance SEO opportunities. The alt text is the text that appears when an image does not display for a particular reason. It will explain the content of the image and therefore that text can be picked up by Search. The title tells the image story and if the keywords are naturally relevant, they should be included in this.
Anchor Text is the words and characters that are visible when a hyperlink is displayed. These words are used by Search Engines to establish the subject and relevancy to the content you are linking to. These are actually highly important to SEO and deserve a post to themselves as Search Engines use the link relevancy as an SEO factor. For instance:
- Search Engines will find no relevance in a link that says ‘click here’ as there is no descriptive human text as to what you are linking to.
- Search Engines will become suspicious if the same keywords are used consistently in links. They might think there is an ulterior motive as to why you are doing this.
- Search Engines want to see that the link has relevance to the content and will enhance the subject matter. They will also examine the URL of the site that is linked to for the purpose of the source and its information standing in line with the content substance.
So if I wanted to show my post about blog post images I would use the relevant keywords in the link that are also specific to the content and my intent to guide readers to more information about blog post images.
Using the anchor text well and with integrity to the text will allow Search Engines to understand your content better and in a positive way.
Social Media can greatly assist in your SEO strategy as most search algorithms utilise social indications to determine your contents value for SERP. It isn’t the sole reason for SEO enhancement but it is a part of an interlocking chain that will see your content be shared that will generate links back to your site which adds to the SEO significance.
If your content adds value then it has a great propensity to be shared, so incorporate your content into your social media strategy and get it seen!
These are only a few of the ways in which you can apply SEO strategy to your blog posts.
What other ways can you think of? Let us know!