In my last post, I covered SEO and why it is important to you as a blogger. In case you missed it, you can check it out here.
Now that we have covered WHY SEO is important, I want to offer up a few tips on HOW to optimize your blog. There are a million and one ways to get higher rankings, but for now I just want to cover some of the basics that any blogger can use to his or her advantage.
1. Submit Your Site
-Submitting your site to Google is the first step in getting ranked. It’s quick and easy and will help Google crawl your content to find the keywords that best fit your niche. All you have to do is add your site using this link: https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/submit-url?pli=1.
-As discussed in Part I, you have to figure out what keywords you want to target. Once you have those figured out, you will want to start including them in your blog posts. For example, if you are going for the phrase “deer hunting tips”, you will want to include that exact phrase in about 2-4% of your article. So if your article is 500 words long, then you want to put the phrase “deer hunting tips” in 3 or 4 times(that makes 9-12 words, which is roughly the right percentage) . Google actually punishes your site if you just try and stuff keywords in to your posts simply for the sake of SEO. You have to strategically add your keywords and make them blend with the article.
3. Post Tags
- Tags are the little words or phrases you see at the bottom of individual posts. If you are using WordPress, put your keywords in the little “Tags” block on the right side of your dashboard when writing a post(hint: it’s right under the “categories” block). I haven’t posted any articles on any platform besides WP, so I’m not sure exactly how that works, but I am sure there is a similar block somewhere on your dashboard that allows for tags. This is a simple step often overlooked by bloggers that can pay big dividends.
-Backlinks are simply links to your site from other sites. Generally you will find these on peoples’ blogrolls. When trying to get backlinks, look for highly reputable bloggers or websites in your niche. Google is smart, and it knows what sites have the largest followings and the best content. So when it crawls a reputable site and sees that they are recommending your blog, you get kudos from Google. They’re basically saying “If xyz.com thinks you are awesome, then we do to”. You can build backlinks from bloggers by simply asking for a listing on their blogroll, or for an even larger SEO boost, ask to do a guest post. Just make sure that if you write a guest post to include a link to your site.
-If you were to ask me for my opinion on the single BEST SEO tactic, using Youtube would be it. This is by far the best and most under-utilized SEO rank builder out there.Youtube is actually owned by Google, so Google plays favorites with videos that are posted with your keywords. So when you do a Google search, usually there are 2 or 3 Youtube videos that pop up along with websites.
I used this tactic with my business website and captured the #1, 2, 3, and 4 rankings for the keywords I was after in about a month(do a search for “mentor ohio boot camp” and you’ll see what I mean). However, there is a certain way you have to post videos in order to get them ranked.
First off, your keyword or phrase needs to be included in your title. If you are going after the keyword “fly tying tips”, then that exact phrase should be part of your title.
Second, in the description, the first thing you should type in is your website’s URL. However, you can’t just type in www.xyz.com, you have to include the “http://” as well. This will show an active link to your site in the description. If you don’t put the http:// in, then the link will not be active.
Third, your keyword should also be in the video description, after your URL. So you would write something like “Here are some great fly tying tips for beginners”.
Fourth, make sure the video has awesome content and you will start getting traffic to your site.
OK, there is your SEO crash course for the day. Even using 2 or 3 of these tips will get your website found on Google. There are about 5,665,343 other ways to use SEO, but this is a good start. If you have any other tips or tactics, I am sure the awesome bloggers at the OBN would love to hear them in the comments section below. And if you have any more questions, don’t hesitate to contact me here and I would be more than happy to help.
Paul Schmid owns and operates a small personal training studio in Kirtland, Ohio. He is also a self proclaimed master woodsman who loves hunting, fishing, and picking up heavy things. His blog, The Healthy Outdoorsman, was created to help hunters and fishermen excel at their crafts through fitness and nutrition. From hunting specific workouts, to healthy wild game recipes, The H.O. has it all.