Did you know that Google has already made as many as TEN new changes to their search algorithms in the last 4 months alone? It’s becoming harder and harder to create new keyword data to help power your rankings and traffic. Now, it might be a better idea to invest time into the SEO basics, essentially revising your entire platform from the ground up.
Although there will always be new updates and policies, the basics of making sure your content is seen have remain very much the same. For that reason, this article will touch base on the basics of SEO and optimizing your blog posts for search engines. Take a quick peek and see if you are currently employing all possible options to expose your site to the online community.
Use Keywords for Blog Topics
It’s impossible to rank your site for everything, but you can use the best SEO strategies at your disposal to focus on a specific keyword or phrase that is related to your company. Now that people are using search engines by entering full sentences and phrases, you need to be sure your content is returned within those search results. What are some of the things that people would search to bring them to your site? What questions would they search? What problems?
Use those keywords and phrases to create blog topics that your readers can find. Lead them to your site by providing them with content that helps them beyond their initial purchase or service. Because of more complicated searches, Google has changed their algorithms to conform to queries in a question, or full phrase, form. This means that your site is not only functional, but educational, providing your visitors with rich information. This is also good news because it means you can being using your older keyword lists to create new, enriching posts.
Optimize Your Headlines and URL’s
After you’ve completed a blog, you’ll need to make sure that it’s optimized for search engine exposure. Keywords are best at the front of the line, so use them first when creating titles and URL’s for your posts. Keywords are important because they are related to the exact thing your target audience is searching for. Including your keywords at the start is an easy way to get more exposure, just for writing properly.
Experiment with different types of articles, headlines and titles to see which ones generate the most new and loyal traffic for you. Find out which trends are common and use them to your advantage to get more clicks and visits to your site. If you can manage to keep your headlines shorter than 65 characters, they won’t be cut off in the list of search results, meaning your visitors know exactly what you’re sharing with them.
Additionally, making sure your URL’s are properly optimized is also important. URL optimizing is the same as headline optimizing, just with a web address. If you can be creative with your URL structure, this can help bring more traffic to your site an s well. Use keywords in your titles early, and often, to ensure that your site is being returned in the results for your industry.
Links and Anchor Text
When a search engine reviews your blog, they don’t have the time or resources to read every word, so they quickly check a few key areas where your information should be stored. Your headline, sub headers, images and anchor text are just a few places where a search spider may look. When you use a hyper link or an anchor text, you should make sure that they are optimized for your specific keywords, to give them SEO value. Choosing the right text to attach to your hyperlink is important for this very reason. To give yourself the best SEO opportunities with your links, try to use a detailed keyword anchor for the very first mention of a link on your page. Also, be sure your links are taking you to the right places. You can easily refer your traffic and internal links to a page that you are already using for ranking, so that you can increase your overall SEO weight. By doing this you can avoid trying to move your site up the ranking in small, meaningless increments (such as moving from 134 to 129), since most users will click within the top five results. However, if you use the tactic to your advantage (say, moving from spot 10 to spot 5) this can have a great impact!
Are Tags Good for SEO?
The rule when it comes to tags is moderation. If you choose to use them in the appropriate spot, tags can highlight sections of your content. If you use them too frequently, you risk harming your own page.
Keep in mind that just because you add a tag to your page, it doesn’t have any inherent value. The only way that tag gains SEO value, is if it relates to another piece of content, or, a group of posts.
In addition, each tag create a separate page, and if overused, they can cause your page to lose credibility, be cited for ‘duplicate content’ and possible get you penalized. Be smart when using tags for your blog. Don’t use a tag you don’t need to use, and don’t use synonyms for the same post.
The best way to incorporate tags into your posts correctly is to create a list of 15-30 keywords and make it clear to anyone who writes for you that only those specific tags are to be used and no new ones are to be introduced. This will limit the number of synonymous tags and keep you from showing up on the radar. If you already have a blog that is inundated with useless tags, you can update your SEO tactics by cleaning them out and organizing them.
Such a large portion of our online traffic is directed from mobile sites that it would be folly not to address this topic in addition to those above. Google has actually begun to include this factor when choosing which sites to rank above others. If you choose not to optimize for mobile, you run the risk of losing important ranking points, which could cost you rank.
What does this mean? It means that no matter how hard you try to optimize your site, use white hat tactics, reach your target audience and create loyal visitors, if you don’t optimize, at some point you will be ‘lesser’ goods.
The good news is that optimizing for mobile isn’t really that difficult, and it can lead to more traffic and action from your visitors. Mobile users are known to be more action-oriented than those who site behind the computer desk.
If you want to see how your blog looks on different devices, you can do so with Hub Spot Device Labs. This tool will show you what your site looks like on multiple platforms and devices. You can also check your stats and see how long it will take your page to load and how much traffic you can expect.
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