If the content is the King, we can say SEO is the Queen. 1WD has already brought you a lot of articles on SEO to help you optimize your blog and make it search engine friendly so you can increase your traffic and your sales. Today I will talk about WordPress SEO Optimization, being that it’s the most used platform by self hosted blogs. They say that WordPress is SEO Optimized which is the reason they use it, but it’s not fully SEO Optimized and so to reach the 100% you have to put in a little hard work apart from all the plug-ins we suggested already.
Its pretty easy to submit your blog or website to the search engines by just copying your sitemap’s URL and hitting the next buttons for their submission process. But in order to make the search engines pick your new posts and inject them into their site’s data we need to optimize our posts, just as we optimize our blog. It includes the keywords, that we use in our blog or website’s header as well as the Titles and the Tags. So in order to write a perfectly SEO optimized blog post, we need to think about it just as a web page and use some, or all, of my tips below. We will focus mainly on WordPress, for it is pretty easy to optimize for the search engines.
Post Title and SEO Title
Many users might not have yet realized that the title you write in the top bar is different than the one you write down in the SEO plugin’s bar. The title that you write in the POST Title bar is the one that appears on your blog above your post’s description or on the header bar of your browser. Whereas the SEO Title is the one that is tracked by the Search Engines and put up in their search results. Google shows up to 60 characters in their search results so it would be a better idea if you use as close to 60 characters as you can.
SEO Description And Keywords
I know many of the WordPress users just write a post, submit it and put it up on their Social Media thinking it will save the day. But trust me, that’s not the right way to deal with getting traffic. You need to have some organic and search engine traffic and search engines rely on the SEO description and keywords of your blog, more than the post content. You need to insert something into that description box that a reader can get the gist of the post easily, that it’s the thing they are searching for, because this description is the one that is shown below the post title in the search results. You should write up to 160 characters in here for the same reason as in the post title. And don’t forget about the keywords at all, for these are something that makes your post appealing. The words in this tab shows the search engine what the post is about, just like the description shows the reader.
Now, the real fact is that some users, just put in all the keywords related to the post inside that keywords box. But that is not going to give you any fruit, because search engines take these keywords and then search them throughout the content of the post, to confirm whether the post is truly about the keyword that reader has searched for. Now you might be thinking about what to put in that box, well here is deal, just think of yourself as a reader and look for the words that you would use to search for a specific blog post, for they are the one that will be more effective.
This permalink is what adds up to your blog post’s link to let the readers get directed towards it. Most of the users use their post title as the permalink, and so you would be wondering whats the importance of a permalink. Well take the example of this post. The post title is ‘A Detailed Guide To Write An SEO Optimized Blog Post in WordPress’, and now if I use the same as my permalink, it would hurt my SEO. The reason is that the words ‘A, To, An, In’ are STOP words, and these are skipped by the search engines, to save their disk space and speed up indexing. We need to avoid having these stop words in our permalinks, and so the permalink I used for this post is rather ‘guide-write-seo-optimized-blog-post’. Oh and by the way if you have already submitted your post, don’t try to change your permalink now, for the old permalink will give an ERROR to your readers and it will effect your blog/website’s reputation.
You can find some more stop words HERE.
This is a crucial step while writing a blog post, especially when your blog has a very high bounce rate. Bounce rate is actually the percentage of the readers that run away from your blog without jumping to another page. How we work it out is that we link the old post on our blogs to the related words on our new blog post. WordPress has a new feature now while inserting/editing a link. You can now easily click or link to existing content and write the related word that you are searching a related post for, and select it. This option in WordPress clearly shows how user friendly WordPress has become for bloggers, to easily optimize their blogs. In SEO terms, interlinking to your old posts improves your page rank and gives a new route to the search engines to crawl over your old blog posts if they may have faced an error crawling it before.
When I used to blog for my own blog a long time ago, I usually used to ignore this step and didn’t realize that I was doing something wrong until I started adopting this method for my new blog, when I saw some traffic being generated from ‘http://images.google.com‘. This happened because I optimized the images that I insert in my blog posts. The method to do that is very simple. After you insert your image, just open its options, and add the details of the image into the tab ‘Alternate Text’. See, for example, the image above is for the image settings, so I used ‘Image-Settings’ as an alternate text. Now whenever someone will search for ‘Image-Settings’ they will land on this post.
There are many plugins to do this, but the best one is SEO Friendly Images which automatically adds the name of the image as its Alternate Text, and so for this purpose when you are saving an image, always save it with the details that are in the picture.
To summarize all the important steps above, I would want you to do take care of your post’s keywords for that is what the search engine will crawl upon your post. In order for your post to gain a good position in the search results (rather than a post that tries to scam the system by filling everything with keyword after keyword and no real content), just take care of these things below and you will notice the difference:
After choosing a keyword for your blog post, try to make sure:
- The title contains the keyword.
- The title starts with the keyword.
- The permalink contains the keyword.
- The SEO description contains the keyword.
- The SEO description starts with the keyword.
- The SEO keyword contains the keyword.
- The content has the keyword with a density of at most 4.5%
- An image in the post contains the keyword as the alternate text.
- The content contains a Bold keyword.
- The content contains an Italicized keyword.
- The content contains an Underlined keyword.
- The content contains a keyword linked to a post on the same blog.
- The content contains a keyword linked to a post from some other website/blog.
- The content contains the keyword in the first and in the last 100 words.
The reason of having a keyword in the title, permalink, description and keywords is obvious. The keyword density being too low will prove that your post is not a scam. The keywords being bold, italicized and underlined is because search engines sometimes give preference to text that is different than the main body text and detecting the ones that ‘stand out’ as keywords will help further imporve yor ranking. Linking to other blogs also can improve your ranking.
I believe that this detailed guide to writing an SEO Optimized Blog post will help you reach your goal and you will surely notice the difference after implementing this method. Do leave your comments below to share your experience and even if you have something to ask about.