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Hey there dear reader! I am back to share some more blogging tips with you. You’ve read the blog post about boosting traffic to your blog and have gotten tips and resources to help you make money blogging.
Today, it’s all about SEO.
SEO is an acronym for Search Engine Optimization and here’s how Wikipedia defines it:
Search engine optimization is the process of affecting the online visibility of a website or a web page in a web search engine’s unpaid results—often referred to as “natural”, “organic”, or “earned” results.
Simply put it means improving your content so that search engines can pull your site whenever someone does an online search using keywords you use within your blog post or website.
So why is SEO important?
For one thing 70.40% of people do their search on Google. And when you pair that up with the 3.5 billion searches per day, that’s a heck of a lot of peepers waiting to see your content!
Some bloggers still struggle with SEO or feel that it sounds like a difficult task. And I don’t blame them one bit. I mean come on, search engine optimization – that sounds like some serious high level stuff, right?
But the truth is optimizing your site is easy. All it takes is your keyword-specific content and one little plugin.
So how do you optimize WordPress and blog posts? Like I mentioned earlier, all it takes is one little plugin that will walk you through every step to optimize your posts and pages.
The Yoast SEO plugin helps you rank high in Google, Bing and Yahoo. And it takes care of all the SEO technical stuff in the background so you don’t have to be an expert in SEO. Better yet, you won’t have to hire anyone to do it for you!
There is a free version that on top of what I just mentioned, you get:
There is also a premium version that gives you what the free version has plus you get:
Plus, the plugin is updated every 2 weeks to so that it’s always updated for Google’s algorithm.
Here’s how the magic of Yoast works.
After you’ve typed your blog post, scroll down to the Yoast SEO section. You’ll see 2 tabs – readability and keyword.
The plugin will scan your content to make sure you have all the right elements to optimize your content. And if it’s all there you get the green light that tells you the blog post is good to go.
In order to get the ‘green light’ your blog post must have most but preferably all of the following elements:
In the keyword tab, make sure
There isn’t a magic number as to how many words a post should have but Google tends to favor lengthy content.
So, how do you write a thousand-word blog post? I’m sure you’ve heard this before….practice, practice and practice some more. When I started blogging I could barely hit the 300 word mark. But the more I practiced writing the easier it became to write a blog post of 1,000 words or more. And if I can do it you can too!
Moving right along…
And finally that the slug word is free of stop words.
In the readability tab, make sure
Now here’s what I love about this plugin. If you’ll look at the screenshots above, you will notice the eye icons to the right. If you click on those eye icons, it will highlight the part of the content that needs your attention.
In the screenshot below, I ticked the eye icon to check for sentences that have a passive voice. This is what it looks like when it’s highlighted:
And if you click on the links that are in the description like you see above, you’ll get more resources. For example, if the slug contains a stop word, click the link to see a list of stop words and then edit the slug to remove it.
Pretty cool stuff, right?
And if you’re a WordPress user, Yoast has a guide to help increase rankings for WordPress sites. You should definitely check that out!
Now that you know how to optimize WordPress with the Yoast SEO plugin, let’s go over your content, because after all it is THE main source of your site’s optimization.
When SEO made its way around the blogosphere, experts told us the trick was to use specific keywords in the slug, title, subtitles and of course the body of the content.
So, bloggers dove right in and inserted keywords throughout their blog posts. Only, the articles started to sound robotic. Some bloggers referred to this as “writing for Google” which caused some resistance to embrace SEO.
It’s true, we want Google to love our posts and place them at the top of the search results page. But first and foremost we really should be writing for our audience. The key is to not focus on SEO but rather focus on the content.
Here are a couple of things to keep in mind.
You do this by making sure your content answers any questions readers are looking for. And share relatable stories to keep your audience engaged throughout the whole blog post. This in and of itself will boost your word count.
So that is how you optimize WordPress for search engines. If you’re struggling in this area, I hope this blog post answered any questions you have about SEO. And if not, feel free to ask away in the comments below.
Thanks for taking time out to read this post. If you know anyone who is also struggling with SEO, please share this post with them.
Wishing you all the SEO best!
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