Disclaimer: I’m no expert but have learnt a few handy things about SEO I thought you might find handy. I use WordPress so all tips in this post on how to do something will be WordPress-based.
SEO – you probably hear it so much but are you really aware of a) how important it is, and b) what to do to create SEO-friendly content?
To put it plainly, SEO or Search Engine Optimisation means optimising your blog to be picked up by search engines. It’s important as it helps make your blog more visible for people searching for what you may be writing about.
So if someone’s searching Google for, say, ‘Best restaurants in south London’, and you’ve written a post on this, SEO helps bring your blog up in Google’s rankings. All you need to do is let Google’s lil spider things that crawl your site know this is what the post is about.
So, let’s talk about some of things us bloggers can do to make our content more SEO-friendly.
Choose a keyword relevant to your article and try to include it in your title (it’s better towards the beginning of your title if possible) and headings.
These are two of the most important things Google considers for its rankings. When choosing your keyword, try and think about what people might be searching in order to find posts like yours.
Try to include the keyword multiple times in your post too, although don’t just shove it in anywhere – not only will this make your content really difficult to read, but Google picks up on these ‘tricks’ and actually puts blogs that do this down in its rankings (moral: don’t try outsmarting Google, k?).
And if you can’t fit it into your title/headings without it sounding weird and forced, then leave it out.
As well as making your post easy to read and follow, inserting headings also helps Google figure out the main points of a longer post.
As I mentioned before, Google scans your content, so it’s best to make it as easy as possible, while also making your content easier to digest for your readers.
Creating headings in WordPress is easy. Just highlight the text, and use the dropdown menu to choose which heading you want. I’d always go for ‘heading 1’ and then ‘heading 2’ for any sub-headings.
Alternatively, if you fancy learning a lil bit of HTML, click on the ‘text’ viewer, and insert your heading between two heading tags like so: <h1>your heading</h1>. Make sure you do this from the text viewer though.
Making sure your content is readable is hugely important for SEO. If you use WordPress, you may be familiar with the term ‘Flesch reading ease score’ which tells you how difficult your text is to read.
If it’s too difficult, not only will it scare your readers off, but it will also make it really difficult for search engines to try and figure out what your post is about.
Easy to read content should try to include sentences no longer than 20 words (although I fail at this all the time), as well as words with no more than two syllables. If you use an SEO plugin such as Yoast, you’ll get a readability score between 0-100.
You should aim for a score of 70 or higher. Alternatively, you can use other websites to check how readable your post is.
Although content readability isn’t something that is directly taken into consideration by Google, having readable content will decrease bounce rate and increase your reader’s time on your page, letting Google know people are enjoying your content, and thus getting yourself higher in those rankings.
4.Length of post
Making your post as short as possible used to be the rule for good SEO. But as Google’s algorithms are changing, so are the things we need to be doing for good SEO. It’s now recommended that you keep your post between 300 and 700 words.
Of course, some posts you write are going to be longer than this, so don’t stick to this as a hard rule – just a guideline. After all, longer texts have more chance of telling Google what they’re about (plus most of my posts are like 800 words plus lol).
However, try and avoid writing loads of posts that are less than 300 words – these will have too few words to come up in Google’s rankings.
5.Include internal links
Internal links (linking to other posts on your site) are really important for SEO, but often get overlooked. As well as letting your readers know what else they may find interesting, it’s also a great way of telling Google that a particular page is important.
It also helps Google trawl your website and index pages more efficiently. I try to link to at least one other of my blog posts in each post.
That’s it for this post, as I’ve already written way more than I planned anyway. Remember, even though SEO is important, at the end of the day you are still writing for your readers so don’t forget to write content that’s engaging and helpful to them.
Let me know if you already do any of this things to boost your SEO.