How To Write A Blog Post For SEO [ 7 Steps]
Have you ever wondered how to write a blog post for SEO? What makes an article a winner? The single most important thing you can do to get ranked in the search engines is to write relevant, informative content. Communicating and building trust within your niche, with an emphasis on helping, rather than selling, will drive more readers to your site. If you want to be a content marketer than you must create engaging content! Let’s learn how…
1. Choose A Writing Platform
Selecting a writing platform is an important first step. I use this awesome platform, but any platform of your choosing will work. Google Docs is a great option, and it’s free. Check out Grammarly as well. You can also use the editors within your website. WordPress, however, does not have an autosave function, and trust me, you want autosave. This will prevent a lot of late-night headaches. Choose a platform that has this feature!
You’ll also want the capability to add images, videos, affiliate links, bulleted lists, and to publish directly to your website. A grammer and spell checker are indispensable. Once you’ve chosen a writing platform, begin choosing your keywords.
2. Find Great Keywords For SEO
Why are keywords important? Because this is how Google and other search engines find websites that match what people are looking for. Keywords are not only words, but can be phrases as well. These words and phrases that are contained within your blog posts will allow people to find your website via the search engines.
For example, say someone googles “how to write a quality blog post” into their search bar. Hopefully, because I have done my keyword research, this blog post will come up in their search. This will lead them to my website where they can visit the pages on my site, and see what I am offering. They may even sign up for my newsletter, or click on my call-to-action button (see below.) This results in them staying on my site for longer periods of time, which the search engines love.
Be sure and put your keyword or phrase in your title, and also in the first paragraph. A catchy title will increase the chances of someone clicking on your link.
Do you see the importance of keywords? Find a keyword research tool that allows you to see the traffic generated by certain keywords you are considering for your post. I use Jaaxy for my keyword selection. You can read my review here. You want to be informed about which keywords are ranking the search engines.
3. Begin Composing Your Content
You don’t have to be an expert writer to create relevant content. Find your own style of communication, and stick to it. That way you’ll come off as being authentic, which is what readers want. The goal of any post is to provide useful information, and to have your readers learn something new from every post. Determine the purpose behind your post, and outline your content according to this intent. Make your points succinctly and to the point.
I find it helpful to set a timer for 30 minutes. Within this time period, begin jotting down ideas. This is an exercise in brainstorming, and will be your very “rough” draft. This is part of the process. You’ll be adding to your content, and editing it later. Just get your ideas down, which will then spur more ideas, and before you know it, your post will start looking like readable content. But it will definitely look messy at first, and that’s okay!
Look how I’m breaking up this section with an image. It gives your brain a break! I also added an alt tag and a link to the image.
4. Keep Your Paragraphs Short
Make the reader experience more enjoyable by keeping your sentences and paragraphs short. We all have limited attention spans, and are bombarded by way more information than we can absorb – so make it easy for your readers. Long, wordy sentences and paragraphs are overwhelming.
Headings and subheadings break up the content, and add to the overall feel of the article. People tend to scan headings to determine what the article is about so be sure to include them. Bullet points and lists serve the same purpose, and are easy to include. Be sure they are relevant to the content.
Ideally, you’ll want your post to be around 1,000 words – a minimum of 300 words is required for SEO. Initially, this can be daunting, but as you begin composing, you’ll find your flow. Remember that writing is a skill – the more you do it, the more comfortable you become with the process. Overtime, not only will your writing skills improve, but the speed at which you create your posts will improve exponentially. Don’t overthink it – just start writing!
5. Add Images For Interest
Images add visual appeal to any post, and increase the user experience. There are sites online that allow you to use their images for free. Pixabay and Unsplash are two such awesome sites. In addition to images, you can also add graphics, charts, and videos.
Look – I’ve added a video!
Images add to the overall appeal of your content, and may even be the reason someone clicks on your post. They are also important for search engine optimization. Make sure your images are relevant to your content, and appear above the fold – this means your image appears near the top of the page where your viewer can easily see it.
Add an alt tag for each image as search engines crawl for keywords contained within your image files. You can also add a link – Google loves links so this is an added benefit.
Here’s an example:
6. Don’t Forget Internal And External Links
Adding internal and external links will help optimize your content for search engines. Internal links can direct your visitor to other blogs posts you have written. That post will contain links to other posts within your site, and this serves to increase your “bounce rate” – meaning the time a person stays on your site. This leads to further optimization. External links could include Wikipedia, research studies on Google, or a YouTube video. This is easy to do, and you’ll reap the rewards!
7. Add A Call-To-Action
Add a call-to-action (CTA) button. An example of a call-to-action would be “click here for your free giveaway.” If the person clicks on your link, they receive your free giveaway in exchange for their email address. This allows you to build your list for email marketing.
A CTA not only allows email capture, but leads to more engagement and involvement with your audience via their comments. Lastly, add a great summary paragraph to your post which will clarify the points you’ve covered.
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There you have it – following these steps on how to write a quality blog post will not only go a long way in making your content more enjoyable to read, but will also lead to improved rankings.
Don’t strive for perfection with your blog posts. It’s unattainable – do your best and don’t get caught in the trap of paralysis by analysis. I find it helpful to step away from my writing for a while. Go do something totally unrelated. When you return, you’ll view your post with new eyes, and can finish polishing it before you hit publish. Whew! What a great feeling. Mission accomplished!
Are you a content creator? I’d love to hear your experience! Feel free to leave your comments and questions below.