You may be surprised to realize that over 80% of all blogs just sit there with literally no visitors. There may be nothing wrong with the content, however, just because it is there doesn’t mean people have to show up and read. The problem might be the invitations you extend, and that your blog isn’t the SEO machine that it should be.
So, of the four most effective methods of getting people there; how many do you use? They are:
- Sharing on the social media sites
- Using an email list and distributing the new posts to attract the recipients back
- Purchasing Pay Per View and/or Facebook advertising for organic results
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Employing all of these ideas will get you on track. However, if you would like to focus your efforts on one idea and get it right, get your on-page SEO to a high standard first. This can be accomplished in a few hours and for little or no cost. Doing these steps helps your blog become a SEO machine and high traffic generating site.
The 3 ways to turn your blog into an SEO machine
1. An SEO plugin must be employed
A very good one and my favorite is WordPress SEO by Yoast. It is as simple as 1 – 2 – 3. Install this, however, do not stop here as many bloggers do. This does not accomplish much and the next steps are critical to maximise results.
2. Keyword research is a must
Do not assume you have the best keywords or phrases, check them out. This will take some time but it is well spent. Create a free account with Google Adwords and/or log into yours at this point.
Enter the first keyword into the search box . The Adwords keyword research tool will list many other keywords and phrases for you to accept or reject. The tool will indicate how many people are looking for each word per month and also give you an idea of your competition out there.
Using local nomenclature, such “Hamilton Life coach” instead of simply “life coach” will help attract more local attention to your blog content. For each keyword or phrase you enter, you will get more keywords and phrases to look at and pick through to find the most popular ones.
I prefer to export this list from Google to a spreadsheet and use excel to work on it. I remove extra columns, rank them from most popular (the most monthly views) to the least popular and get down to business.
3. Search optimise the blog post
Choose one keyword that you wish to focus that page on and include it in your post permalink, title, and the first sentence. Make sure you have WordPress adjusted to name the page URL as your posted name (this can be changed in ‘settings> permalinks> post name’). This will automatically place the keyword in your post URL (the permalink). That is essential to your SEO success.
Write an attention getting headline (the same or similar to your post headline in many cases) in the “SEO Title” field at the bottom of that page. Copy the first sentence of your blog into the ”Meta Description” field. (This is a description of what the blog is all about) or craft a new description if you wish. If that first sentence does not have the keyword in it, write a new ‘first sentence’ and enter that as the Meta Description.
Put that great keyword or phrase in the “ Focus Keywords” field and you have done the basics. Note that it is optional to put the keyword in the “Meta Keywords” field.Once you’ve saved a draft click the page analysis tab in Yoast and see how well you’ve done and follow the recommendations for improvement.
By focusing on that one keyword, placing it in the permalink, page description, page title and including it in a few places within the copy, you strongly indicate to search engines what the page is about. This will cause a boost in your SEO ranking.
There are other steps to help ensure your blogging is attracting the right attention, but that will have to wait for the next article! Follow up ideas to this task are, again, the social media, email lists and offering RSS to help the visitors you gain come back again.
By Aaron Enright