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We talk about blogging a lot on this blog. There’s a good reason for it.
Blogging as a strategy is a very effective way of stocking your site with new pages and content. Regularly updating your site’s content shows search engines that you are actively maintaining the site, and good keyword-driven copywriting demonstrates that you have a great deal of information on a focused topic.
So, at a glance, that’s what’s happening with your content out there in the ether. But let’s get back to the source.
Both human beings and search engines prefer quality to quantity when it comes to web content, and good on-site optimization serves both masters equally, contributing in a big way to the overall quality of your blog. Be sure your blog itself is optimized to enhance the effect content marketing has on organic traffic.
Here are some SEO practices to use when starting or maintaining your blogging strategy.
Appropriate tagging and metadata
Be sure to cover the basic markup, as well as some context-sensitive inclusions.
- Title and description – be sure your blog posts include keyword-informed <title> and <description> tags
- Heading tags – use your <h1> and <h2> tags for headings and subheadings, remembering to include keywords
- rel=nofollow – If you have a comments section on your site, you should use the “nofollow” value of the “rel” attribute in the links in that section. This will prevent search engines from associating your site with any disreputable sites linked to by spammers or bots. You should use the “nofollow” value any time you’re linking to a website you’re not 100% sure about.
Cross-linking posts and pages
Keep your visitors engaged and reading! Consider adding links to other related content you’ve written as a postscript to your blog posts. This will give your voracious readership a better chance of finding the answers to their questions and can reinforce keyword performance for other pages on your site.
Let’s say you’ve got a landing page focused on geographic keywords, like [your product/service] + [nearby city]. You could consider writing a blog post about a project/order/whatever you did for a client in that city, and then link to your keyword-rich post from your landing page and vice versa.
Use pagination (page load speed, visitor ease, obvious navigation)
You should paginate your blog to improve page load time and reduce the strain on your visitors and their browsers. Page load time is a key ranking signal for search engines—a snappier site will significantly outrank a sluggish one holding all else constant. Consider the amount of posts to display per page—the number is a function of how your layout and image sizes.
The more opportunities for people to share your content, the better. Sharing generates exposure and links, and social activity is a marginally understood but important signal for search engine algorithms. The more people actively interacting with your content the better.
The Tip of the Iceberg
This introduction should cover some of the groundwork you need to have a polished and well-tuned blog. The tactics outlined here, while useful, are a supplement to careful keyword planning, prospect and buyer persona research, and focused strategy with defined team roles. SEO success is achieved through planning and ongoing investment—we encourage you to check out some of our other posts in preparation for your own blogging campaigns.
Read on about blogging and SEO: