It’s never too late to learn about or apply content strategies for optimizing your blog. The earlier a blogger can start applying such techniques, the better.
Yet, most first blogs come with a fairly steep learning curve for the uninitiated. At first, simply getting posts published on a regular basis can seem overwhelming, and then panic can set in when you realizing what you’ve been doing wrong or haven’t been doing at all.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) will help increase website traffic and help build credibility in your readers’ eyes as well as ensuring a strong user experience that leads to higher engagement and more conversions.
Know Your Niche
Even if you think you know your audience, always keep drilling down and asking more questions to better refine your ideal reader and/or customer.
A memorable domain name that is no more than a few words and easy to spell certainly helps when it comes to content strategy and optimizing your blog.
Whether or not your domain contains keywords related to your content is up for grabs, but definitely ensure the title and tagline of your site makes your niche obvious.
In pursuit of offering informative and problem-solving articles to your audience, hone in around five categories that will form the backbone of your blog’s content.
What information tags can be used to describe the type of content in each category? What backlinking strategy can you use to connect to authoritative websites and also encourage such sites to link to you? Finally, never underestimate the power of developing a persona that represents your ideal content reader. Doing so will help bring great focus to the rest of your blogging efforts.
Research Keywords and Apply SEO
Once you’ve defined your niche and developed some visitor personas, it’s time to get serious about keyword research. What questions are your ideal readers seeking to answer when they search online? Turn these questions into blog posts that fit your niche.
Single words are not enough. Rather than use “wigs” consider something like “styling wigs.” This can then become a potential post category that multiple related post can then be grouped under.
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If you use WordPress, the SEO Yoast plugin is a must-have that will help you write effective posts. The plugin is easy to follow and ensures important parts of a post are not overlooked when it comes to keywords and content strategy.
Optimize Blog Posts
In the eyes of search engines, longer is generally better when it comes to blog posts. Yet, that doesn’t mean every post needs to be over 2,500 words if you are publishing fairly often.
Informative posts form the backbone of your content and maybe you end up doing a super detailed posts once a month or once a quarter. Always keep in mind that posts are a great way to spur discussion and connect with readers on a regular basis, so let your personality shine through as well.
Overtime, a routine will form and churning out optimized blog posts will become easier. In addition to applying keywords, you’ll incorporate the process of linking to authoritative sites to backup claims as well as linking to helpful posts on your site internally.
Pay attention to the URL of each blog post as well. Keep keyword nouns and verbs, but eliminate prepositions and articles. Make sure each post ends with a call to action and a link (if necessary) for readers to follow to complete that action. Images matter as well and should contain ALT image descriptions that contain the post’s keyword(s) if relevant.
Develop Authority Over Time
Authority matters in the eyes of Google as well as your readers. If your posts aren’t working toward accomplishing that, what’s the point? It’s easy to remember this by keeping the four Vs in mind. Volume matters, so the most posts you publisher on a topic, the better.
Velocity indicates regular output, so weekly is obviously better than monthly. Variety is indeed the spice of life as well, at least when it can be related to your niche. Finally, veracity matters most. Content that is shared and talked about is key.
Implement a Strategic Editorial Calendar
Pay attention to popular keyword trends and news related to your niche and plan accordingly. An editorial calendar will allow room for posts tailored to current headlines, but also reserve spots to ensure posts can accomplish all that’s been outlined above in a timely manner.
A calendar kept in a spreadsheet can also become a place to access posts titles that can then be scheduled to be shared on various social media websites.
Good practices take time, and content strategy and optimizing your blog is no exception. It’s time well spent and gets easier with experience.
What other tips would you add when it comes to content strategy and optimizing your blog?
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