If you want to achieve your blogging goals, you must have traffic flowing to your site. In addition to promoting your site, you need to focus on SEO to make this happen.
SEO is a deep and comprehensive topic that can’t be completely covered in one post. However, there are things that you can do, as a new blogger, to give you easy SEO wins from the beginning.
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You don’t have to be a tech expert or seasoned blogger to implement these tips. They’re designed to be simple to implement, using tools that are easy to access. This guide focuses on three different areas for SEO. Those are your blog’s. . .
First Things First
Before you get started on any SEO updates, be sure that you’ve added Google Analytics to your blog. I’ve created an easy-to-follow tutorial for you here.
Once you’ve completed this step, it’s time to move on to your easy SEO wins!
Start scoring easy SEO wins with your website itself. This includes your site speed, plugins and site structure.
Site speed, or the time it takes your site to load, is critical to your SEO. The longer it takes your site to load, the higher the chance you’ll lose visitors. Known as “bounce rate”, this happens when visitors leave your site after only viewing one page. You don’t want a high bounce rate.
Help your visitors stay longer by achieve a site speed of 2 seconds or less. To check your site speed, use a site like Pingdom. Pingdom is free to use, and gives you a detailed analysis of your site’s load time and how to improve it.
Start by installing and activating the Yoast SEO WordPress plugin. The Yoast SEO plugin is available in paid and free versions. The paid version offers more features, but the free version has been totally adequate for my blog so far.
ShortPixel Image Optimizer is a great plugin to compress images on your site, which helps with site speed. You get 100 free credits per month with the free version. If you need to add credits, prices start as low as $4.99 for 5,000 credits. I’ve been using the free version, and it’s served me well with the free credits each month.
Start your blog off on the right foot by giving your site structure a little love. One easy way to do this is by creating silos for your content.
Create content silos by targeting 3 to 5 areas that you’ll write content about. The Learning Chick silos are: productivity, blogging, personal finance, side hustles and entrepreneurship. Create a content page for each of your silos.
Only write content within your silo topics and only link to posts within the same silo. Here’s an example. If blogging is one of your silos and you write a post about blogging that week, the links in your “Related Posts” section (at the end of your post) should only lead to other posts within the blogging silo.
Blog Post Wins
There are things that you can do to each blog post to optimize it for SEO. This is called on-page SEO, and applies to your posts and pages within your site. Within each blog post, there are some easy SEO wins that you can implement.
Strive to write posts that are at least 1,000 words. Search engines like Google prefer longer form content, with a caveat.
Be sure that your posts are quality, not just meeting the 1,000 words goal. A quality post that’s just shy of this benchmark is better a “fluff” post that meets or exceeds it.
When writing your posts, you’ll find header tags in the drop down menu on the top left corner of the page.
Header 1 tags should be used for your post title. Use Header 2 and Header 3 tags to distinguish the different sections within your post. To be clear, header tags alone won’t dramatically boost your SEO, but they work to make your post content more SEO-friendly.
Share on Social Media
If you don’t have your blog’s social media channels set up yet, now’s the time. Focus on the big platforms like Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube. Pick one to focus on. When you’ve built up a solid presence, add the next one. Lather, rinse, repeat until you have strong showing on each one.
Pinterest is, in my opinion, the best platform for new bloggers to start with. Even if you’re not ready to post on all of those platforms, it’s a good idea to secure your accounts for your blog so that they’re ready when you’re ready.
As part of your overall content strategy, keep these tips in mind.
Making sure that you are using the right keywords is critical to your SEO. There are lots of keyword research tools out there, many of them are free.
Google Keyword Planner is a great one to start with. It can give you keyword suggestions, and tells you if the keyword you’re using has a lot of competition. It has other helpful features, too, and it’s free to use. Check it out here: Google Keyword Planner
To understand user intent, think about your own internet searches. When you type in a word or phrase into the search bar, you’re looking for something specific. That’s basically how user intent, or search intent, works.
Before you write your post, do a search to see what existing pages rank for your keyword. This should help you understand how to position your post so that it can compete.
Mastering user or search intent takes time and patience. One of my favorite sites about this and other SEO topics is Backlinko. If you want to take a deep dive into user intent, check out the article in the link.
Yoast SEO Plugin
As I mentioned earlier in the post, the Yoast SEO plugin is a must-have for your site. You can use the plugin to analyze your posts and pages, and make sure that they get the “green light” for both SEO and readability.
The plugin is designed to walk you through what each page and post needs to optimize it for SEO. Downloading and using this free plugin will assist your SEO efforts.
Level Up Your SEO!
When you’re ready to take your blog’s SEO to the next level, check out the Stupid Simple SEO course. I’ve personally purchased this course, and recommend it for bloggers who are ready to level up their SEO game.
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