The word is out: blogging for SEO is in.
The numbers say it all. Websites that blog receive 55% more visitors than those that don't. Meanwhile, more than half of US consumers have made a purchase based solely on a blog post.
But it's not enough to just crank out killer content. Your blog needs to be optimized for two very specific audiences: your users and search engines.
So to please your audience and the almighty AI, here are five blogger SEO tips to improve your ranking.
1. Format your blog for skimmers
Long blog posts are great for SEO. They allow you to naturally weave keywords into your content and give search engines more information on what your blog is about.
But now that the average attention span is shorter than a goldfish's, your blog "readers" are really more like blog "skimmers." At-a-glance readability is essential.
For the best blog format, try:
breaking up complex sentences into shorter ones
using bulleted lists and subheadings to help users locate key information
limiting paragraphs to three sentences maximum
And make sure your blog presentation and web design are working for you.
2. Find the right keywords
If you want to reach new potential customers online, you need to know what phrases they're searching for. Fortunately, that's not too hard to figure out. Just look at social media.
Find where your target audience is going and note what's trending. But keep in mind, the best keywords are not always the most obvious. That's where long-tail keywords come in.
Long-tail keywords are longer SEO phrases. They relate to the hyper-specific searches people use today, and offer a less competitive opportunity to attract high-quality web traffic. Specifically, people who know what they're looking for and are ready to buy.
But to get high-quality traffic, your site needs to be high quality as well.
3. Link like a pro
Linking is a huge factor not only in SEO rankings but also in establishing your blog as an authority online. One link to a questionable source on your website can seriously hurt your credibility.
Be sure that your external links only go to reputable sources. That includes well-established news outlets, government agencies, and universities to name a few.
Likewise, be sure to internally link to relevant posts on your site. This keeps visitors browsing your site longer and communicates to search engines that your content is related.
4. Up your image game
Don't overlook the importance of optimizing your images.
Before you upload blog photos, ensure the files are named with relevant keywords. Once they're up, edit the "alt tag" of the image using your website builder and fill out all other text fields with keywords.
Because so many websites focus solely on content keywording, image keywords are a great opportunity to boost your ranking over the competition.
5. Keep the content coming
If a site looks outdated, users move on. That's why search engines give higher rankings to sites that are frequently updated with quality posts.
When you're just starting off, one blog post a week is fine. Over time though, you should aim to feature a new post at least twice a week. More is even better.
But consistency is just as important as frequency. A schedule builds an expectation for visitors and grows your readership. People will come again when they know they can expect some great new insights.
So keep 'em coming.
Blogger SEO tips simplified
SEO isn't easy. But you can move your site up the ranks if you format your content in a user-friendly way, employ the right keywords (in your content and images), and consistently write posts with well-sourced links.
Don't forget to check in on your local SEO rankings, too. They're a whole different ballgame--and equally as vital. Do you have any other blogger SEO tips we missed? Let us know in the comments!