#1 Have a Good Title
Come up with a good title for your article, using a keyword or two that you want to rank for. For example, if your article is about calculating rent costs as a landlord, think about what the most commonly searched phrase would be regarding your topic.
Something like “how much to charge for rent” is likely what users will search for. Therefore, titling your article to include a few of the keywords from the search will boost your rankings in the SERP (search engine results pages). Here you can see an article titled How Much Should I Charge for Rent ranking second likely because the keywords in their title matches user search intent.
#2 Reiterate Keywords
Using the same wording might seem redundant to you when you start writing blog posts. Is using the same keywords throughout the article necessary? Yes! Keyword placement should always be natural and should always reflect what users are searching for. Once you understand what your readers are searching for, place keywords in the following areas:
Demonstrated in the article below, titled How to Write a Small Business Employee Handbook, the keywords “small business employee handbook” are naturally scattered and vary throughout the title, headings, body, and URL structure. The keywords are also used in the anchor text to link to other internal or external resources about the topic, signaling to the SERP that it is a good resource and relevant to its intended users.
#3 Optimize for the Featured Snippet
The featured snippet is the section of text that Google features as a quick answer to users’ burning questions. Optimizing your blog post to be chosen as the featured snippet will help boost your ratings in the SERP and ultimately get you more click throughs to your site.
You can optimize for the featured snippet by writing a 40-60 word count block of text near the top of your article that answers the question users are searching for. Your answer should be concise and actionable, and use many of the same keywords in the answer that users are asking in the question. For example, you can see how mattress company Layla Sleep is the featured snippet for the search “how do you wash a weighted blanket” as they give a quick answer using many of the same keywords as the initial question.
#4 Post Frequently
Scheduling posts at a minimum of once a week will signal to the SERP to come back and check your site more regularly, and over time this will cause your pages to rank higher. There is no magic number of posts per week you need to hit to rank on the SERP, however fresh content being posted frequently attracts more users. The more traffic coming to your site the more likely your posts are to get shared and searched for, boosting your SEO rankings.
One of the most overlooked ways to optimize your blog for search engines is to speed up the site. First and foremost, having a site that takes more than 2 seconds to load will cause users to become frustrated. The faster your site loads, the more engaged users will be.
Additionally, Google announced that page speed now impacts your SERP ranking, saying “A search result for a resource having a short load time relative to resources having longer load times can be promoted in a presentation order, and search results for the resources having longer load times can be demoted.”
There are a few things that lower your site speed:
#6 Link Build
Link building is a great and fairly easy way to build relationships with other publications as well as gaining authority in the eyes of Google and growing your rank. There are two ways linking works.
When writing an article on your blog, link out to other articles or sites that support your topic using anchor text. Anchor text is essentially the words in which you embed the text with the hyperlink, instead of saying “click here: http://www.digitalmediaghost.com/” and using the URL.
Reaching out to collaborate with other sites by asking for a quote or asking to use an image for your article can create relationships with other bloggers and provide additional resources for your readers. Linking to their site or page can boost their authority and hopefully create a lasting partnership for you.
Reaching out to sites to ask if they will link to you can help your site get seen by more users and help boost your search engine ratings. You can leverage your existing blog posts as a resource for related topics, give a quote to a publication and ask them to link back to your site, or you can write a guest post on another site and link back to your blog either within the body of the article or the author bio.
Building links is one of the most important ways you can optimize your site. Link building has many different benefits and can grow both your audience as well as your network of online colleagues.
#7 Utilize Social Media
Creating a cohesive content marketing strategy for your blog should include utilizing social media to help spread the word about your site. Having either personal or business social accounts linked to your blog can help increase engagement and drive more traffic to your site. Asking friends on social media to share your post can get your post seen by more and more users across different social sites and ultimately lead more people to find your site.
While it’s unclear how sharing posts on social media plays into Google’s SERP rankings, there has been talk that Google will start to take shares on social media into consideration when calculating site authority. Therefore, it can’t hurt posting each new article across your social platforms and engaging as many users as possible.
Using these tips when starting your new blog can help boost your SEO ratings. Boosting your ratings in the SERP will ultimately take time however if you follow these 6 simple steps and keep optimizing your site you will see continuous improvements in your ratings.
Samantha Rupp holds a BS in Business Administration and is a contributing editor for 365BusinessTips.com. She lives in San Diego, California and enjoys traveling, spending time on the beach, and reading up on business industry trends.