Like most non-techie bloggers, I wasn’t so concerned about SEO when I was just starting out a couple of years ago. I didn’t think much about optimizing my blog for search, yet I wanted traffic to come in. Sure enough, I kept on wondering why I’m seeing paltry traffic to my sites. So I got into the program and learned SEO with WordPress. As I have learned, and as many bloggers did before me, optimizing a WordPress blog is simple and easy.
1. Use WordPress as Your Blogging Platform
WordPress is arguably the most powerful blogging platform. This isn’t to say that you should use WordPress exclusively, but there are great benefits that can be had with WordPress. With its thousands of extensions, WordPress is by far the most flexible and most extensible blogging platform. Search engine optimization, the process of making website content relevant for it to be considered and ranked well in the search engines, is also a breeze with WordPress. In fact, I personally think that WordPress is the easiest blogging platform to optimize for search. A well-optimized WordPress post or page should be able to appear in the top pages of the search engines and in turn get more traffic very easily. However, there are tips and guidelines that one must carefully follow to make a WordPress blog rank well in search. So, let’s get right down to the tips on optimizing a WordPress blog.
2. Optimize the Content for SEO
Content is still king, and it’s the very reason the blog exists. For these reasons, content quality deserves the highest level of attention. However, many newbie
bloggers fall into the common mistake of overly-optimizing their content with keywords that make their posts unnatural and difficult to read. It’s very important to properly optimize a post for search if you are to gain profitable visibility, but it’s also crucial that your posts adhere to Google’s quality guidelines. As Google and other search engines move forward to put more emphasis on quality, the focus now is more on creating high quality, useful and relevant posts that appeal to readers more than search engines. So, when writing posts, it’s important to keep the web crawlers (search engine spiders) in mind, but your focus should be more on the users’ benefit.
3. Optimize the Title
How should a post title be written? Should it be written in such a way as to attract the readers’ attention? Or should we only consider the SEO aspects? Write titles for the readers without compromising the SEO aspect of it. Gone are the days when titles are optimized with exact-match keywords so that they are difficult to read and unnatural. Take this example: “Roofing Sacramento Tips for Homeowners” This example title is keyword-optimized for the term “Roofing Sacramento.” It’s clear that the writer intended for the post to rank highly for that keyword, but this makes the title look totally unnatural. As Google moves towards Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI), you can now use related keywords instead of exact-match keywords and Google will still recognize what your post is all about. Remember, post-Penguin, Google penalizes sites that are over-optimized with exact-match keywords. In the post-Penguin world, the example title should be written as “Roofing Tips for Sacramento Homeowners.”
4. Optimize the Keywords
Keywords still play central role in our quest to win the first page race. Without keywords, the search engines won’t be able to figure out exactly what your post is all about. It’s keywords that should be talked about in the title, in the meta tags, in the body and link profiles. So, before composing your next blog post, figure out what keywords you want it to rank well for in the search engines. One of the best tools I can recommend which I have had great success with is Google AdWords Keyword Tool. When targeting certain keywords with your post, here are several best practices to observe:
- Use your keyword in the title (but not unnaturally)
- Keywords should be used within the first paragraph, in the middle, and in the last paragraph
- LSI Keywords should be identified and used throughout the article body
A note on using exact-match keywords: Remember that Google Penguin frowns upon over-optimization. It’s fine to use exact-match keywords, but don’t overdo it. Vary the keywords you are using to avoid getting penalized by Penguin. Some bloggers fall into the trap of over-optimizing their content by doing the following: • Keyword stuffing: Using the keywords in an unnatural way over and over again within the post. This is spam and is heavily penalized by the search engines. • Buying backlinks: Others are tempted to buy backlinks from link farms, hoping to get that much needed boost in ranking. However, even before Penguin, the search engines discouraged webmasters and SEOs from buying links.
5. Optimize the Tags
Meta tags such as description tags are no longer considered to be major search engine rankings, but that doesn’t mean you don’t have to optimize them. The search engines display your meta descriptions on search results as a preview for users for them to determine what your page is about. Properly placing your keywords within the first sentence of the meta descriptions helps users identify the relevance of your content.
6. Optimize Images
The only way for the search engine spiders to determine what your image is about is by including an Alt tag. Alt tag is a string of codes where you place texts to allow the search engine spiders to properly index your post’s images.
7. Use the Right WordPress SEO plugins
As mentioned previously, WordPress is one of the most flexible blogging platforms available. With its many SEO plugins, you can simplify your SEO efforts. Some of the most common SEO plugins include: • All-In-One SEO Pack • WP SEO By Yoast • SEO Friendly Images • SEO Smart Links
What Are 2 Surefire Ways to Get Dependable Blogging Help?
Some bloggers ask for free help routinely. I figure the success rate seems low for this approach because few successful bloggers have ample time to answer questions for free. Drilling deeper, few successful bloggers have time to offer in-depth, thorough answers to blogging questions. Perhaps you receive an answer but the answer cannot be in-depth, robust and a rich solution to your question-problem, in virtually all cases.
What about other methods to get blogging help? I identify two surefire ways to get blogging help.
1: Buy it
Invest money in blogging help. Access dependable, proven help instantly in the form of an eBook, course, audio book or coaching. Paying money for help is the quickest way to access a rich solution because you download the course or speak to the coach in relatively rapid fashion; unless the coach seems booked for weeks. Even then; just buy their eBook for an appetizer before the coaching session. Instant help. Dependable help too. Never resist buying help for fear of spending money. Invest in your blogging education to become informed, calm and confident in your blogging journey. Few bloggers buy help. Most ask strangers for help. Do you know if a stranger on Quora knows their blogging stuff? Take no risks. Invest money in dependable blogging help. Money you invest in your blogging education now leads to greater traffic and profits returns during the long haul.
Investing money in blogging help offers you blogging wisdom; you gain the experience of investing money with an expectation the financial investment will pay off in exponential terms over the long haul. Resist urges to devour as much free blogging content as humanly possible. Due diligence cross currents arise clinging to this strategy. One blogger advises doing one thing, another a different school of thought. By week’s end, 345 blogging strategies litter your mind, confusing you into analysis paralysis and due diligence failure. Buy a good course. Buy a good eBook. Work from there.
2: Help Bloggers Generously
Help bloggers generously to get proven help. Works like a charm. Simple; retweet posts, Facebook Share posts and comment genuinely on blogs. Link to bloggers on your blog. Link to bloggers on social media. Be as helpful as possible. Cut the strings. Release expectations. Bloggers appreciative of your service tend to befriend you. Blogging buddies offer fellow blogging buddies oodles of proven, dependable help because we care for our friends. We want our friends to succeed as much as we want to succeed; our friends get special treatment.
I have received invitations into exclusive tribes, guest post invites and a library of helpful blogging strategies from my beloved blogger buddy network. I befriended these awesome folks by helping them freely for a sustained period of time without asking for anything in return. Bonds form. Blogging buddies connected. We helped each other by sharing beneficial strategies, tribes and other concepts to multiply our blogging success.
Put your desires to the side guys; help generously to make this tip work powerfully. Trust in genuine, generous blogger outreach. I often share how I only pitched 2 people during my 6 years running Blogging From Paradise and scored over 13,000 back links. Being helpful seems like an awesome way to get proven help.
Are you an aspiring blogger? Buy my eBook:
Blog Writing Techniques: 5 Tips
Writing intimidates most new bloggers.
Even veterans shudder at the prospect of writing and publishing posts sometimes.
Cut through the fear of writing to become a skilled writer. Following specific tips eases writing anxiety into a calm, confident energy. I write like I breathe. But I had to follow these tips diligently to develop writing skills.
Writing is your chief blogging skill to develop. If you write well you blog well.
Follow these 6 tips.
1: Write in a Word Document Daily
Write 500 words or more in a Word document daily. Hone and own your #1 blogging skill through the #1 way to develop the skill: write your butt off. Practice diligently. Practice patiently. Blogging becomes easier if you practice writing daily because advertisers, readers, clients and customers seek skilled writers who impress. Write 500 words daily. Trash the document to detach from your writing. No one becomes skilled without practicing the skill. Write about your niche. Write fiction. Write whatever but just write.
2: Read Skilled Authors
Read skilled authors. Expose yourself to serious writers. Up your writing game through osmosis. Reading skilled authors gives you shining examples of how to write. I tighten up my writing after reading novels by pros like Lee Child, George R.R. Martin and James Patterson. Icons offer you excellent examples for how to write cleanly, clearly and crisply.
Note; skilled writing bloggers do the trick too. Read top bloggers to adopt their ways. Write in your voice but mimic certain elements employed by skilled bloggers to up your writing game too. Read for 30 minutes or more daily. Skilled writers seem to be voracious readers. Read frequently. Practice writing. Write well.
3: Write Short Sentences
Craft short, punchy sentences to make an impact through your writing. Write crisply. Short, concise sentences grab your reader’s attention span. Imagine following a type writer. Eyes follow words until the “ping” sound; eyes travel to the next line. Short, clear sentences allow posts to flow with grace and purpose. Writing short sentences also respects your reader’s time as long, bloated sentences waste folk’s time. Why say it in 45 words if you can say it in 10?
4: Use Frequent Paragraphs
Apply paragraphs liberally to your blog posts. Paragraphs break up your posts in sufficient fashion. Run on sentences confuse readers. Boring readers never seems to be a smart idea. But using frequent paragraphs helps readers latch on to your work because you move their eyes North-South in effective fashion. Format your blog post in page turner fashion. Use frequent paragraphs to write effectively.
5: Alternate Formatting to Promote Flow
Observe one of my recent blog posts:
Notice how I use:
- H2 tags
- bold text
- bullet point lists
to promote flow through the blog post. Skilled bloggers write with contrast in mind. Readers enjoy following alternative text formats because just reading plain text words leads to snoozing; not a good thing. Change formatting routinely through your blog posts. Use headers, bullet point lists, bold text and italics text to draw readers to your posts. Think flow. How do you let posts flow freely? Changing formatting provides necessary change ups to keep your readers on their cyber toes.
Blogging is writing-focused. Never forget this simple, powerful blogging truth. Skilled writers make a seismic impact online. Everybody else fades into the shadows. No blogger needs to be incredibly skilled – like a Blogging Hemingway – to make a successful impact. Writing in your one a kind voice does the trick nicely. Toss in key tips for blog post formatting and you will write skilled enough to succeed online.
5 Biggest Blogging Mistakes That Even Experts Make
Are you not getting the desired results for your blog?
Well, don’t worry too much. The best bloggers, after all, have made lots of mistakes along the way — and sometimes, they’re still making them!
Then again, just because they’ve made mistakes doesn’t mean you need to make them as well. What you can do at this point is beware of what these mistakes are.
So in this article, let’s look at the five biggest blogging mistakes that even experts make. This way, you can learn from other people’s mistakes. And hopefully, you can do better.
Striving for Perfection
In blogging, you’ll find yourself continually rewriting and updating old posts. It’s mostly because new information has resurfaced. And sometimes, it’s also because you stumbled upon errors in your posts.
Either way, that’s okay. It’s understandable to be scared of making a mistake. But you know what? It’s not the end of the world.
Wanting matters to go flawlessly during the first go is good. It means you want to start on the right foot.
But you have to give it up. And focus on getting something out there.
Just be active. Take it from 70% of bloggers who make over $50,000 a year.
Remember, it’s better to get something done even if it’s rough on the edges. Just understand and accept that the need for perfection can slow you down. And it may also prevent you from moving forward at all.
Choosing Profit over Passion
Focus on a blog topic you feel strongly about. And don’t just do it for the money.
That way, you can keep the discussions coming. At the same time, you can still hold on to that sparkle in you.
Let’s set things straight, though:
Getting compensated for your writing is excellent. But if you’re playing for the long haul, it’s a different story.
Once you realize you’re writing about a topic that bores you, earning money won’t matter. And over time, you won’t have the heart to continue blogging.
So write about something you’re passionate about. Don’t fret about the money. If you focus on your passion, the money will come rolling in as you go.
Suffering from “Shiny Object Syndrome”
Do you turn to the allure of another project instead of completing the one you’re currently working on? Then it looks like you’re suffering from the Shiny Object Syndrome (SOS).
It’s a disease of distraction. And it’s out to get those with high motivation such as entrepreneurs and those with similar mindsets.
If you have SOS, you tend to crave new things. And while craving for the latest developments is good for business, it can work against this goal.
You know how a small child chases after a shiny object? And you know how he immediately loses interest in it the moment he catches it? Then he would drop it like a hot potato and begin chasing after a new shiny object.
Well, that’s the entrepreneurial equivalent of the disease. And if you go by with it as you venture into blogging, you’re not going to walk away with the best results. What you should do instead is to focus on your current task.
Going for Cheap Tools
There’s nothing wrong with using free tools to help you get started with your blog. But they will bite you in the ass if you depend on them too much.
Remember, blogging is an investment. And eventually, you have to shell out cash for tools that will help your blog in the long run.
For instance, you need to set up your blog on the right web host. The decision of which host to choose when setting up your blog is essential. Your choice can make or break your blog’s success.
So don’t base your decision on a host’s cost. Instead, focus on the resources that this host can provide.
Skimping on Guest Posts
Think that you should always publish your best content on your blog? Well, you need to rethink it.
The thing is, publishing top-notch articles as guest posts is a “more crowded” way to go. The visitors on the site where you submitted your post can see your work. As a result, it raises your visibility and exposure. And because it can further increase your online reach, you would want that.
Plus, you can build your readership this way. If your submitted post is beloved by a site’s many visitors, you can begin counting them as your fans.
Making mistakes is terrible. But it would help if you got over them. What’s important is how you deal with your mistakes.
The way I see it, you shouldn’t let your fear of making a mistake get the best of you. Instead of giving in to anxieties, you should do something about the problem. If you sit there, nothing will happen. But if you get up, something good and promising just might come knocking on your door.
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