We all know that blogging is one of the best ways to generate traffic for your web site. Not only does the content have to be of great quality, there are some other fundamental best practices you want to follow to ensure you’re getting the most out of the content you create.
The following steps will help you to build a better blog and make sure that your content helps you accomplish your business goals.
1. Post quality content consistently and frequently.
The search engines look for quality, consistency and quantity. First and foremost, make sure the content you generate helps your audience solve their problems. Readers are looking for information that will help them attain their own goals so think about the kind of content your audience is looking for and write about it regularly and frequently.
There is plenty of data out there that suggests that the more you write about a certain topic, the more the search engines look to you as an authority on that topic. And there is plenty of information out there on the blogging frequency. I like the advice in this post from Problogger. The post is a little dated but I would still say that the advice presented is still quite valid today.
2. Select a focus on one or two keywords or keyword phrases.
Selecting and focusing on a keyword or keyword phrase for each post will help Google and the other search engines find and categorize your content more quickly. When you choose a keyword phrase, it will also help you stay more focused in writing your topic so you do, in fact, provide a quality piece on that keyword phrase.
3. Optimize your content.
To build a better blog, you really do need to know how to optimize your blog posts. To “optimize” your content means to make it more search engine friendly and easier for bots to categorize your content. The easiest way to ensure that you’re optimizing your content is to install an optimization plugin. My personal favorite and recommended by Duct Tape Marketing is WordPress SEO by Yoast. The Yoast plugin will simply provide you with a checklist of things you need to do to optimize your post, and once you have sufficiently optimized, the plugin will give you a green light to go ahead and publish.
Some of the ways you might optimize are making sure that your keyword or keyword phrase that you’re focusing on appears in the title of your article, the URL of your page, the meta description, and the alt tags for your images.
Yoast will also tell you if you’re keyword or phrase should appear more frequently in your content. A keyword or phrase should appear in your post approximately 2 to 3 percent of your total word count. To avoid the appearance of keyword stuffing, ensure the content reads the way humans speak and still makes sense.
4. Link to other sources.
Every time you write a new post, be sure to link to another relevant article somewhere on your blog. This will encourage your readership to explore your website more. This will establish you as an authority and prove that you know what you’re talking about.
Link to external sources as well because it’s great for helping your audience to see that you’re well-read on the subject and you know other experts in the field. Be sure that when you do link to these other authority sources that you use the keywords in your anchor text to get the most benefit from the links.
5. Include a call to action.
This is a crucial practice in creating good content. Some calls to action might include downloading other content you have to offer, like an e-book, or an informational video. This will also help to establish you as an authority in your niche, and help to build trust and credibility with that reader. This can also help to build your mailing list as well as your lead capture.
6. Always include an attention-grabbing yet pertinent image.
If your blog post is comprised solely of text, your readers will be much less likely to want to read it. By including an image or two, not only does your content become more aesthetically appealing, but it gives the readers’ eye a rest and makes them want to keep reading. Always be sure to include the alt text in every image so that the search engines know how to categorize your image.
7. Share on social media.
Be sure to share your new content on your social media channels to boost search engine rankings just a little bit more. And, you can easily install a plugin that will make it easy for your readers to share your content. Having the buttons on each post enables them to share easily with a single click.
Writing great blog content is no easy task. If you’re going to invest time and money in this process, it’s important to have a system in place to help you get the most out of your content. If you follow this simple system, you should start to see an increase in readership and site visits and ultimately help you reach your larger business goals faster.