Writing a blog post like all other writing is a skill. You can help your reader to understand the primary thought of your post by giving headings, subheadings, and clear sections. If people understand and like your text, they are much more inclined to share, like, tweet and link to your post. But that alone can’t guarantee that your post will rank on Search Engine. Google ranking algorithm is still largely a mystery to many of the bloggers. In this post, we are going to share lessons from our experience. Here are 10 things you should do right now to your blog to improve the SEO.
Add more text to existing content
Longer contents are easier to rank, especially if your page is already listed in search engine’s result. There are few steps to follow. First, identify your existing content that is ranking in Google’s second or third page of search result. A content that is already ranking can be easily optimized to get on the first page. You can identify such content from Google Search Console. Calculate the word counts for each of these pages. Add more relevant text to any pages with the word count less than 1,000.
Create more Engaging content
Google consider Bounce rate as a ranking signal. The fewer people bounce from your page the better your ranking is. There are few tactics that can be used to make a content engaging.
i) Break a long paragraph into multiple sentences, each of these sentences should connect with the other using ‘power phrases’ and create a complete flow like bucket bridges. Power phrases are the trigger that grabs attention, example:
But wait there’s more,…
On the other hand…
But that’s just part of the story…
And we don’t stop there…
ii) Add images throughout your content. Relevant images in the content help in many ways, it breaks a section to multiple easy-to-read smaller sections. Images visually illustrate your thought and immediately connect with a reader who is just scanning through your page (which is the majority).
iii) Include embedded media like videos. A visitor who is not reading your article, but spends 2 minutes or more on your page for watching an embedded youtube video is as valuable as the one who reads through your entire content in 2 minutes. Google will consider both of them highly engaged.
Steal your Competitor’s leads
This is especially if you have a strong competitor. Many people drop off from the buyer’s journey while simply searching for ‘alternative’, shop around before actually making the purchase decision. Create comparison content around the keyword “[competitor name] alternative” for all your major competitors. This strategy will give you access to some high converting leads.
Add ‘freshness’ to old content
The query results on Google deserve freshness. Writing appealing fresh content regularly is tough. The alternative is to update the old contents that are ‘not so fresh’ with some relevant text or images and republish. For most CMS while republishing the new date resets, which in turn reflect on Google search result.
Use shorter user-friendly URL
Keyword relevance in the title, URL and content are known ranking factors. Most blogger adds the long chain keywords in the URL and makes it complex, not human-readable. Google, in fact, considers first four or five words in a URL for ranking signal. Avoid keyword stuffing and create meaningful short URL for better ranking. Brands that use shortened URL in vanity domain in social share, receives about 25% more clicks.
Migrate to HTTPS platform
Improve Site Speed
Site speed is also a Google ranking factor and it even affects user accessibility. Page speed is now increasingly important as mobile searches have surpassed desktop searches. On slower mobile connections, pages usually take more time than desktop. You can grade your site using Google’s PageSpeed tool and take corrective actions. If you have just static content, it is better to use a CDN (Content Distribution Network) that serves content to end-users from high availability and high-performance servers deployed in multiple data centers globally.
Templatize your content
According to one study by HubSpot, businesses with 401-1000 pages get 6x more leads than businesses with 51-100 index pages. Creating a larger volume of content by hiring competent writers will be prohibitively expensive. One solution is to create a few structure template and use those recurrently. You can plan for a few like Blog, Infographic, and case study. Here the most time-consuming part is the research and identifying relevant data and case studies for your chosen topic. Such tasks can be easily outsourced than hiring a full-time writer.
Creating Niche Content
An in-depth content on niche topic can out rank broad-topic content from a stronger content marketer. If you constantly create in-depth, longer and attractive niche content for a particular industry, it’s not very difficult to beat your bigger competitor in the ranking game.
Create your Outreach plan
Outreach is important to distribute your content, press release and backlinking. Outreach usually has three steps
i) Finding prospects
ii) Looking up their email addresses
iii) Sending the outreach email.
You should look for similar industry high authority bloggers or journalists to talk about your content. Outreach is easy if you create, test and curate your best converting cold email templates.
As it turns out, improving search engine ranks for your content is not an easy task. But in our experience, a few minor changes in your content length, content freshness, user-experience and site speed can go a long way in getting your content to the top of the search result page. LXRSEO is one tool that can help you in the process by grading your pages and explicitly streamline your SEO process with inbuilt SEO Checklist and Task Manager.