Search engine optimization, or SEO, is extremely important for bloggers. When you implement SEO on a blog post, you are making your website more visible to your ideal blog readers, gaining more and more blog traffic over time.
It’s no secret that Google’s algorthims updates can make optimizing your blog posts quite tricky, especially in 2021. It’s becoming increasingly difficult to rank a blog post but definitely not impossible.
Using the steps that I will share with you today, you should easily be able to implement SEO on all of your blog posts so you can start ranking in Google search engines and bring in the blog traffic that you need to make money.
Let’s get started!
Standard Blog Post SEO Guidelines
First of all, I want to cover some standard guidelines when it comes to implementing SEO on your blog posts.
-You want to have at least 1000+ words of HELPFUL content.
The reason why I say HELPFUL content is because Google’s new algorithm is really looking for content that educates your ideal blog readers. They want your ideal blog readers to come to your website and leave with a really good understanding and knowledge on the topic that they came to your website for.
-3 + Images with ALT Text
You want to have as many images as you can because the more you have, the longer a user is going to stay on your website and consume your blog content.
97% of people will bounce off of your website if there are no images that help them to understand the blog post, inspire them, etc.
-Inbound and Outbound Links
You want to be inserting these 2 different types of links. Inbound links are links that go to different pages or blog posts on your own website and outbound links are links that lead to pages or posts on different websites.
-Keywords in your Blog Post Title, Introduction paragraph, and a Good Density Throughout the Post
Keywords are the “search terms” that your ideal readers are using when they look up something in search engines. You want to find the keywords that your ideal reader is using to look up things and insert them throughout your entire blog post.
-Use Yoast SEO Throughout the Blog Post
A lot of new bloggers have this misconception that Yoast SEO will magically help them rank their blog post. While this may help guide them to implement SEO on a blog post, it will not rank your blog post if you don’t correctly pick good keywords and use the strategies that I will show you today. Yes, even if your Yoast SEO light is Green.
-Target ONE keyword.
When you do your keyword research (I’ll show you how in a minute) you want to target ONE keyword/keyphrase.
ONE keyword also means different synonyms of the keyword.
How to Implement SEO on a Blog Post in 2021
Step 1: Keyword Research
To find websites and index content, Google has “robots” that search the internet and categorizes websites and posts. Therefore, it is important to include relevant keywords on your website and in your blog posts to help Google find and direct traffic to your site.
Often, it’s actually better to use a short phrase or search string rather than just a keyword. So, consider what a user would be searching for to find your site.
For example if they are planning a trip to a destination are they likely to type in just the destination name, or more likely they will be searching “how to get to destination” or “things to do in destination”. These longer phrases are called “long-tail keywords” and are much easier to rank for than just the keyword by itself.
Example: Try to rank your post for “How To Get To Michigan” instead of just trying to rank for “Michigan”.
Try to be specific with your keywords and blog post titles as well. For example, calling a blog post “My Favorite Shoes” would be too generic to compete with massive sites.
Instead, really drill down to what your post is about and title it “The Best Nike Air Force 1 Shoes for 2020”. There are also several tools online to help you choose relevant keywords. My preference is to use Uber Suggest and Google Keyword Planner.
HOW TO DO KEYWORD RESEARCH-USING UBBERSUGGEST
You want to find the keywords that have a high search volume and low competition.
Search Volume = The number of people searching for a specific keyword or keyphrase in a search engine per month.
Competition = How many competitors that are also trying to rank for the specific keyword that you are.
Let’s take a look at the image below of keyword examples:
VOL- this means volume.
SD- this means competition.
If you take a look at the keyword ideas for “best morning routine” you will see that it has a volume of 1,900 and a competition of 37.
But the keyphrase idea- “the best morning routine” has a volume of 1,900 and competition of 6.
The second keyphrase idea “the best morning routine” will give you a much better chance of ranking.
You have to optimize your blog posts for SEO using keywords that have a high volume number, but low competition number.
Use Synonyms of That Keyword/Keyphrase
Let’s say that you are trying to rank for this keyphrase: “Youtube Sponsor Button”.
You also want to use different synonyms and variations of that keyword like:
“How to get sponsor button”
“What is youtube sponsor button?”
“What does the youtube sponsor button do?”
“New Youtube sponsor button”
Another example of using different variations of a keyword is for the keyword “blog post” :
“How to write a blog post”
“blog post ideas”
“ideas for a blog post”
“a blog post example”
Now once you have found your keyword and different synonyms and variations of it, you want to put this into a Google Doc so you can refer to it when you write the blog post and implement SEO.
Step 2: Insert the Focus Keyword in Yoast SEO
WordPress makes it easy to implement SEO using the plugin called Yoast SEO.
If you are a WordPress user, head to the “plugins” section and select “add new”.
Then search “Yoast SEO” in the search box.
Press “Install Now” then press “Activate”.
Now we can go back to our blog post and scroll all the way to the bottom of the page and Yoast SEO will now be there.
Under the “SEO” tab, you will have a place to insert the “Focus Keyword.”
Insert the keyword that you want to rank for (not a synonym of it).
Step 3: Implement SEO Blog Post Title
In Yoast SEO you will also see under the “SEO” tab that you have a place to insert the SEO blog post title.
You want to make sure to put the keyword to the far left of the title as possible but you also want to ensure that you aren’t over-optimizing as well.
An example of a good blog post SEO title if my keyword is “Blog Post” :
“How to Write a Blog Post that is Optimized for SEO | Ultimate Guide |”
Another example if my keyword is “Youtube subscriber button” :
“How to Get the Youtube Subscriber Button | Full Guide |”
If you noticed, I used “Ultimate Guide” and “Full Guide” at the end for it to be more enticing for a blog reader to click to read the blog post.
Also, always make sure that Yoast SEO gives you the green for everything you do.
Step 3: Meta Description
A meta description is basically a brief overview of what your blog post is going to be about.
An example of a good meta description if my keyword is “Blog Posts” :
“Blogging helps boost SEO quality by positioning your website as a relevant answer to your customers’ questions. Blog posts that specifically use…”
You see, you want to at least make sure that your focus keyword is inside of the meta description just once.
Step 4: Implement SEO in the Blog Post Title and Permalink
At the very top of your WordPress editing page, you will see that there is a spot to put the blog post title.
A blog post title needs to be enticing but it most importantly needs to have the focus keyword to the far left of the title as possible.
Let’s look at some examples:
If my keyword is “Youtube Sponsor Button” then this could be my blog post title:
“Youtube Sponsor Button | Complete Guide”
If my keyword is “Pinterest Marketing” then this could be my blog post title:
“Pinterest Marketing Mistakes You Might Be Making”.
Now let’s talk about the permalink structure.
To the right of your WordPress editor, you will see a bunch of different Settings.
If you scroll down, you will see the setting called “Permalink.”
The permalink structure will be the title that you used for your SEO title that we did in step 3.
We want to change this because it is too long.
Instead, we only want to put our focus keyword within the permalink.
If my keyword is “blog post” then the permalink should be blog-post.
If my keyword is “Yoast SEO” then the permalink should be “yoast-seo”.
Always make sure that your Permalinks are different for each one of your blog posts written.
Step 5: Write the Blog Post Introduction
The Introduction is the firt couple lines of your blog post.
Your first few lines hold a TON of power!
Most of the time people will read the first couple lines of a blog post and will make a decision to keep reading or find another post to go and read.
This is why the Introduction needs to draw them in and make them WANT to read more!
You want to be able to stop someone’s scroll and read your blog post.
To start your blog post Introduction, you want to connect the content with your reader by asking them a question like:
“Have you ever wondered XYZ?”
“Are you struggling with XYZ?’
Or you can tell them a little story snippet of yourself and how you wet through it and overcame it. This should only be done in a short little sentence. Storytelling is the quickest way for people to connect with you and be interested in what you have to say.
You should also be italicizing and bolding some words that trigger emotion.
After you hook the blog reader with a question or anecdote, you want to deliver the promise sentence.
The “promise sentence” is a sentence that tells them exactly what you are going to be talking about within your blog post.
NOTE: You want the reader to see that there is something in it for them. You don’t ever want to write a post for self-serving. That is called journaling, not blogging.
An example of a promise sentence:
“These email list tips will allow you to create an amazing freebie that your ideal audience actually wants and it will help you grow your list to large numbers.”
This sentence promises the blog reader that there is something in it for them if they read this blog post.
Another example of a promise sentence:
“The following steps will ensure that you are headed in the right direction to building a profitable blogging business.”
When it comes to implementing SEO in your introduction, you want to put the keyword in the very first sentence of the blog post (preferably to the far left as possible.)
You also want to make the introduction length at least 100 words for best results.
Remember to always break up the text into 1-3 sentences so a reader can easily scroll through the post withoit being overwhelmed by big paragraphs. Blogging is not written like an essay. It needs to be scrollable.
Step 6: Heading Structure
Google reads your blog posts in a specific way.
First, Google reads your blog post title which is an H1 heading. Then it reads the H2 headings, then the H3 headings, then the blog post paragraph and then it goes on to read H4, H5, etc.
This is why we need to implement SEO in each of our headings and have a good heading structure throughout all of our blog posts.
Because Google reads your blog post in that specific way, we never want to use an H3 heading before using an H2. We will also never use an H4 before the H3 heading and so on.
Your blog post title will always be an H1 heading so we don’t need to worry about that.
This means that after we write the introduction, our first heading needs to be an H2.
Some of your headings need to have the keyword within them. Yoast SEO will guide you on this. It will tell you if you need more or less keywords in your headings.
Below the heading, you want to write 100-200 words beneath it with synonyms of the keyword throughout. You should not be keyword stuffing. Your blog post needs to flow well with the keywords and still make sense to the reader or your post will not rank for SEO.
Step 7: Implement SEO With Images and ALT Text
Like I said in the SEO guidelines paragraph of this blog post, you want to have as many images that you can that will help the reader understand the post or inspire them.
This is because readers will read your blog posts and stay on your website for a lot longer if you have images inserted.
Google likes when a reader stays on your website for a long time because Google thinks that the person is getting what they came for.
You will more likely rank for a blog post when a reader stays on it for a long time.
Images helps with this immensely.
Before you upload an image…
- Make sure the image is relevant, helpful, or inspiring.
- Change the image name. If the image name is file_044 then you want to change this to your keyword.
When you upload an image to WordPress, you will see on the far right that there is some settings. You want to add ALT Text which is a description of the image.
ALT text is used to describe an image to the visually impaired.
If the image you uploaded is of a girl in a yellow coat, pink rain-boots, a blue umbrella and she is standing in a rain puddle then that is what your ALT text should be.
Then you want to put the Title and description of the image. If anyone shares the image to Pinterest or social media, this is what will show. So write this as if you are writing a Pinterest title and description.
Step 8: Insert Inbound and Outbound Links
There are 2 types of links that yu need to insert to ensure that you are implementing SEO in the correct way.
- Inbound Links: These links are links that go to YOUR other blog posts and website pages.
For example: If I write a blog post about email list and I mention something within the blog post about SEO, then I can link to that other blog post as a reference.
Because I mentioned email lists here I will do something like this:
Insert inbound links in your blog posts wherever you think is relevant.
2. Outbound links: These links are links that lead OFF your website.
These links could link to someone else’s blog posts or website. Or they could be affiliate links that you insert as well. I suggest that you use both.
Step 9: Conclusion Paragraph
The conclusion paragraph should always stand out. You can make it stand out by putting seperator lines above and below the conclusion paragraph and also make the text bold.
You want to restate the promise sentence in a new way and also insert a call to action (or CTA for short).
A CTA is basically a sentence where you tell them what to do next. after they read your blog post.
Examples of call to actions:
-Sign up to the brand new freebie here.
-Comment below if you found this post helpful.
-Look below to see other helpful blog posts for bloggers.
-Follow me on IG
There are a lot of call to actions that you can use. It’s just whatever action YOU want them to do.
At the end of every blog post I also always put a…
-Freebie image and tell them to sign up
-Links to other blog posts that they can read next
-And a shareable Pinterest pin image
You can see an example of how I end a blog post by scrolling to the end of this post.
Make sure to also implement SEO in your conclusion paragraph by putting a keyword there as well.
Step 10: Set the Featured Image + Category + Tags
The very last thing that you need to do to implement SEO on a blog post is to set your featured image, select the category of the post and put a couple tags.
Setting the featured image is easy.
First, rename the image that you want to set as the featured image, then upload it into the media library of WordPress. Insert the Alt Text, Title, and Description.
Then head to the post that the featured image is for. Go to the right of the post where you see the settings and scroll down to featured image.
Upload the featured image there.
Then go to the categories and select what category the post falls under.
For example: this one will fall under blogging but if I wrote a blog post about how to start a Youtube channel then that will fall under my business category.
Choosing categories are up to you. I suggest you pick 5 categories that you want to talk about regularly on your blog. Don’t overthink them.
Last but not least, you want to choose some tags over in the “Add a new tag” section of your WordPress settings to the right of your WordPress post editior.
For each blog post, you want to get creative and put different tags for each one.
I always come up with just 1-3 tags.
The main goal of your blog post is to 1. Educate and Inspire and 2. Get them to sign up to your email list.
SEO definitely takes some practice and a lot of time to get blog traffic to your blog, so be patient with it.
Follow the steps that I stated in this blog post and you should be on your way to writing good blog posts that will rank in Google Search engines.
Did you have any lightbulb moments? To learn more about SEO, follow my Instagram. I will be regularly talking about all things blogging there!
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