1.5.15 22

SEO Tips for Bloggers

When I first started out blogging, I knew that SEO—search engine optimization—was important to creating a successful blog, but I really had no idea where to start or what best practices I should be implementing.

A little less than a year later, I’ve learned a lot about the strategy behind SEO and how to use it to my advantage to grow this blog. Since a lot of my readers are fellow bloggers, I wanted to share the best SEO tips for bloggers I’ve found in my research that have been successful once implemented.

Before we begin, let me stress that if you’re blogging or want to start a blog, I highly recommend using WordPress. I initially blogged on Blogger, but when I made the change to a self-hosted WordPress.org site, my page views grew about 20% without me having to do anything new simply because my content appeared more often as relevant hits in my readers’ online searches. Pretty ironic considering that Blogger is a Google platform!

Another major reason to switch to WordPress from Blogger is a lot of the tips below cannot be implemented on Blogger because of the limitations of the platform. But the number one rule of SEO is to create quality, unique content that provides people with information they need, which can be done on any platform. So without further ado, here are my top 7 SEO tips for bloggers:

SEO Tips for Bloggers

I love alliterative or play-on-word headlines as much as any magazine editor, but they are a total SEO buzzkill. Instead, it’s best to title your post someway readers can easily find it. For example, an outfit post on pink maxi dresses should be called “How to Wear Pink Maxi Dress” instead of “Pretty in Pink.”

Taking it a step further, it’s ideal if the post title is the same as the focus keyword set for the post. For example, in SEO by Yoast—the plugin which I use, and highly recommend—the focus keyword for this post is “SEO Tips for Bloggers,” which is the same as the post title.

SEO Tips for Bloggers

On Blogger, you cannot set the focus keyword that is associated with your post, but on WordPress, you can. This helps with SEO tremendously as it allows search engine crawlers identify more accurately what your post is about, and in turn, enables readers to find content relevant to what they are looking for.

When selecting a keyword, be sure to pick one that quickly encompasses what your post is about. A short phrase like “how to make fabric hair ties” or a few words like “gifts under $25” is ideal.

SEO by Yoast allows you to set your focus keyword, and then gives your post a rating of poor, okay, or good based on usage of that keyword. SEO by Yoast also encourages and rewards use of the focus keyword in the post URL, the post title, the metadata, and content. Becoming more aware of how focus keywords work by striving to meet this criteria has helped me strengthen my content and how I structure my posts, ultimately driving more traffic to my blog.

SEO Tips for Bloggers

A tip I recently learned is that you can log into Google Adwords to use their keyword planner to see how often a keyword is used by Google searchers. This allows you to create content around what people are looking for—there’s no point in creating a post no one wants to read!

I don’t necessarily use this tool to brainstorm new posts, but instead, I take the post I already decided to write and pick the best focus keyword possible for my content. I try out a few different keywords that accurately describes my content, and then select the one that is most searched for by Google users.

SEO Tips for Bloggers

For SEO, the ideal post title is: the URL of your site / post title. For instance, the URL of this post is: atouchofteal.com/seo-tips-for-bloggers. You’ll note there is no date or category included. In Blogger, this clean URL structure is impossible to have, even if you own your own domain. In WordPress, this permalink structure is the default.

SEO Tips for Bloggers

I fell victim to this major SEO no-no for a long time. When uploading images to your blog, don’t settle for the standard image name your camera provides such as “IMG_4601.” Instead, rename your images to match your focus keyword so that web crawlers understand what you’re uploading images of, which will help your SEO.

Also ensure that you use hyphens to separate words in your image titles. For example, “SEO-Tips-for-Bloggers” is correct, while “SEO Tips for Bloggers” is not. Spaces are not allowed in URLs, so WordPress will randomly fill in characters and numbers—you know the ‘%0%49%%’ crap you’ve seen!—which defeats the purpose of strategically naming your image.

SEO Tips for Bloggers

After you’ve uploaded your keyword-named images, be sure to also input that keyword as the alt-text. Alt-text stands for alternative text, and this is the text that will show up in case your picture doesn’t load for whatever reason. Not only will this let your reader know what the picture should be in case it isn’t there, but it allows your keyword to be in yet another place on the page in text form which search engine crawlers can pick up (they can’t “read” images).

SEO Tips for Bloggers

A backlink is when another website links back to your site from their site. The number of backlinks is one tool search engines use as a indicator to determine the popularity or importance of a website or page.

That being said, backlinking to your OWN content is equally important. Find relevant, natural places to include references to previous posts and you’ll be an expert at this in no time.

So there you have it—my top seven SEO tips for bloggers. Let me know if you have any additional tips that are worth adding or questions about SEO in the comments section below! 

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22 Comments

  1. Melanie wrote:

    Great advice! I hardly know anything about SEO so this is really helpful!
    Melanie @ meandmr.com

    Published 1.5.15
    Reply
    • Katie wrote:

      Thanks, Melanie! Let me know if you have any other questions! xo

      Published 1.5.15
      Reply
  2. These are great tips – I actually did not know about no 3 and will definitely look into it! I need to start backlinking!

    – Deniz
    http://www.dressedupdeniz.com

    Published 1.5.15
    Reply
    • Katie wrote:

      Thanks Deniz! You have so many beautiful posts to back link, I am sure you’ll be great in no time! xo

      Published 1.5.15
      Reply
  3. Joanna wrote:

    You have no idea how helpful this is for me! THANK YOU! 🙂

    lovejoanna.com

    Published 1.5.15
    Reply
    • Katie wrote:

      You’re so welcome, Joanna! xo

      Published 1.5.15
      Reply
  4. Emily wrote:

    Great tips! SEO is so important & I totally agree with your blogger vs. WordPress statement. I am ready to make the move! xo
    Twenty-Somethings

    Published 1.5.15
    Reply
    • Katie wrote:

      Thanks Emily! Let me know if you have any questions throughout the process!

      Published 1.5.15
      Reply
  5. Such a helpful post girl, thanks for these tips! Happy Monday!

    xo

    Michaela

    http://michaelajeanblog.com

    Published 1.5.15
    Reply
    • Katie wrote:

      You’re so welcome, Michaela! Happy Monday to you, too.

      Published 1.5.15
      Reply
  6. Shannen wrote:

    Thanks for the great tips 🙂

    http://shannenandco.blogspot.ie/

    Published 1.5.15
    Reply
    • Katie wrote:

      You’re welcome, lady! xo

      Published 1.5.15
      Reply
  7. Great tips, thank you so much!
    xx, Mikkaela

    Published 1.5.15
    Reply
    • Katie wrote:

      You’re so welcome! Glad they were helpful :]

      Published 1.5.15
      Reply
  8. Nadia wrote:

    Very good! Thanks!

    Published 1.5.15
    Reply
    • Katie wrote:

      You’re welcome!

      Published 1.5.15
      Reply
  9. Tina wrote:

    Hi Katie! I know nothing about SEO and did not know how much more traffic it could drive! These are really really great tips that I need to start practicing. How did you make your switch from Blogger to WordPress? Was it a difficult migration? I’m interested in it now for the plugins!

    Tina
    http://www.justatinabit.com

    Published 1.5.15
    Reply
    • Katie wrote:

      Hey Tina!

      SEO is a wonderful thing! I hired Lisette from High Note Designs to do my transfer for me, only because I am super OCD about my blog and didn’t want anything lost or broken in the process. She made sure all my links redirected so I kept all my traffic, and imported all my old posts onto my WordPress site. There are definitely ways you can do this yourself, but I didn’t spend too much time looking into them before getting overwhelmed and looking for a professional.

      Lisette can also transfer your design over onto WordPress, and since you have such a nice one, it might be something worth looking into!

      Let me know if you have any questions – I would be happy to answer them.

      k.

      Published 1.5.15
      Reply
  10. Lovely tips, thanks for sharing!

    http://www.morestylethanfashion.com

    Published 1.6.15
    Reply
  11. Kaley wrote:

    Awesome share – there are definitely some tips I did not know about on here – thanks!

    xoxo

    Kaley

    My Closet Life Blog

    Published 1.6.15
    Reply
  12. Alyssa wrote:

    These tips are great! My blog is on Blogger and I plan on keeping it on Blogger until I get my own domain, but these tips were still very helpful. Thank you!

    Running Alyssa

    Published 4.26.15
    Reply
  13. Harmony wrote:

    You should make your posts pinable

    Published 7.7.16
    Reply