Blogs… words that are your voice, authentically – opportunity to promote your brand, unique content, great tool for SEO…
Creating this quality content on a consistent basis is of immeasurable value to your customers.
So how do you get back into blogging after an extended period of MIA?
STEP 1: Just start writing!
Don’t feel bad. The world’s best writers have struggled with writing consistently too. They have some advice:
“If I waited for perfection, I would never write a word.” – Margaret Atwood
“Lower your standards and keep writing.” –William Stafford
“Planning to write is not writing. Outlining-researching-talking to people about what you’re doing, none of that is writing. Writing is writing.” – E.L. Doctorow
Do you see a theme here?
The point is to just get out there and go write. Just get to it… the computer, your ipad, the legal pad… whatever works for you!
STEP 2: Optimize your blog!
So, now let’s say you have written that great blog post. You are not done yet… there is still a lot to do.
We are living in a digital age, and in a digital age you have to optimize your blog to make search engines find it.
What good is it to create killer content if nobody ever reads what you write?
A little SEO is needed in order to avoid such a situation and ensure your blog posts can be found by potential customers. These include:
Add a Title Tag
You need a good title tag that will show up as the headline of your search result. Usually this is simply the title of your blog post. Here is what a title tag looks like:
Aim to make your title tag as short as possible without losing meaning and include a keyword you’d like your blog post to show up for.
Add a Meta Description
The meta description is the short block of text below your title tag that shows up in search results. It gives the reader a short summary of what they expect to read if they click on your result. As such, try to write a summary that is eye-catching and grab’s the reader’s attention.
Add a H1 Tag
H1 is the HTML tag that indicates a heading on a website. Most of the time, the H1 tag will be the same as your title tag, but not always. H1 tags are meant for people already on your site. Title tags are meant for people who are on search engines to get them to click on your search result and go to your website.
H1 tags may be a bit confusing, but the long story short is that adding an H1 tag to your blog post can significantly improve SEO and page traffic. For an in-depth look at how to incorporate H1 tags into your blog post, check out Neil Patel’s guide on H1 tags here.
Add ALT Tags
A picture says a thousand words. Blogs can see a 94% boost in traffic when including images. But none of your images will show up in search results if you don’t add ALT tags to them.
Let’s say your blog includes a picture of London’s Big Ben. Adding an ALT tag to the image that says “London Big Ben” will ensure that picture shows up in Google Images. Without an ALT tag, the picture won’t show up anywhere.
Pick a keyword for the blog
You want your blog post to rank for a certain keyword. To rank effectively, you should mention the keyword 2-3 times in the post at a minimum. Also the keywords should be used as close to the start of the article as possible.
Align WordPress tags/categories with your keyword
WordPress lets you organize blog posts by tags and categories. This makes it easier for people to search for topics on your website. Aligning the WordPress tags with the keyword you want your post to appear for has been shown to boost SEO.
Resubmit XML Sitemap Process
Resubmitting your XML Sitemap is important because it can speed up the process of indexing your website by Google. If you change content to your website by adding a blog post, Google will eventually index the new page on your website. But by submitting your XML Sitemap to Google directly, the page might get indexed faster.
The process is quite simple. Follow these instructions:
- Log into your Google Search Console. If you don’t have one, follow these steps to create one.
- Navigate to Dashboard > Crawl > Fetch as Google
- Input tail end of blog web address into URL input field
- Click “Fetch and Render”
- Wait until Status is complete, then
- Click “Request Indexing”
- Enter Google Captcha and select “Crawl this URL and its direct links”
- Click “Go”
STEP 3: Create a content strategy!
So now that we got the technical SEO jargon out of the way, we can move on to content strategy for your posts.
In general, you should aim to have one keyword phrase per page on your website.
For a blog post, aim to reuse the keyword at least twice in the article, three times is better.
You should include one or two links to internal content on your website.
And you should add an image or two or twelve (whatever is appropriate!) to the post. Pictures make your content more engaging and easier to read, so add them.
Also, try to add a link to at least one other relevant, external website article from a high authority website.
And finally, don’t be shy. Share your posts on social media. It’s one of the best ways to boost traffic.
How do you a pick a keyword for your posts?
Google Analytics and Google Search Console are great tools for this. They allow you to see top keywords that are being used to find your content and top pages.
You can find a detailed explanation on how to use Google Search Console for SEO here.
STEP 4: Create a posting schedule!
As mentioned earlier, creating quality content on a consistent basis is of immeasurable value to your customers and marketing plan.
The tricky part here is staying consistent.
In order to do that, you need to create a blogging schedule and stick to it.
There are tons of tools out there to help you plan your blogging schedule.
Got writer’s block? Here is a list of different kind of topics you can blog about.
One helpful strategy to get you posting consistently is to prepare 5 to 10 blogs in advance to ensure that you always have something to post each week. It is much less stressful this way than to write a new post each week as you go along.
Get Back to Blogging!
Tackle Blogging as any other task and of course, the more you blog, the easier it becomes over time.
So, don’t stress, kick out some killer content and get back to blogging!!!!