If you Googled this before, then you probably saw some answers that didn't fully convince you of what you need to do. Happily, I like giving very technical information, so this article will help you optimize your blog posts for SEO in just a few seconds.
In order to have an SEO optimized article, you need to make sure you've done a proper keyword research, you have a fixed content strategy and you create quality and relevant content for your readers. Of course, there are a lot of technical details, but I'll go ahead and tell you everything you need to know.
How To Optimize Articles For SEO
1. Choose a proper title
One of the most important things you need to do is choose a proper title. Of course, it should contain your keyword somewhere at the beginning and be interesting for the potential readers. Make sure you do a keyword research before you actually start writing anything.
No one will ever go on a link that doesn't seem to provide them with some value, so it's very important to give them a reason. The SEO specialists at MOZ way that you should use the title as a "sales pitch" and have them visiting your website because of that.
Some other options, such as "How To's" and "Why Do" could work amazingly, because show the readers that you have the information they need.
2. Optimize your meta description
The meta description doesn't provide any value for SEO, but it's essential for humans. They need to know what they will find if they access your link, so make sure to give that to them.
Use your keyword to let them know what to expect, and invite them to visit your website and find something new. If you're an agency, you can even throw in a price, especially if you're ranking for a price-based query.
3. Use proper headers
I'm talking of course, about the HTML tags and it's a part of the on-page optimization process. In general, you should only have one H1 tag on your page, that's also your title. John Mueller from Google said at some point that it doesn't really matter how many H1's you have, but by making a logic connection, we can safely say that your title is supposed to give the search engine an indication of what your article is about, so you should only use one.
Now, the H2 tags should introduce synonyms to your main keywords and ask questions. In general, a blog post is about sharing information, and those H2 tags will help you create context for that.
The rest of the HTML tags, from H3 to H6 should be use to give structure to your article. If you make a detailed list, for example, as I'm doing in this article, you should use an HTML tag for every point of the list.
4. Optimize your images
Not a day goes by where I don't find a website with a horrible loading speed. This usually happens because the images are not optimized. There are four very important things you need to keep in mind when optimizing your blog images.
- Keep the size under 200bk.
- Make sure they are relevant to the topic.
- Change their file name to match your keyword.
- Make sure they have an alt tag.\
As long as you follow these four rules, you should have a good loading speed and provide a good user experience.
5. Use internal links
I'm sure you heard this before and it's extremely important. Internal links help create a structure for your website and create queries.
If you go over to your Google Search Console, you will see your queries under the performance tab. Of course, backlinks help even more, but if you can't really get many backlinks, you can stick to creating your own queries by interlinking your articles. You can see in this article how I linked my on-page optimization article to the "on-page optimization" anchor and created a query, so Google understands what I'm talking about.
6. Write for the people
And I can't stress this enough. After the Hummingbird update, Google started understanding more and more about what people are searching for. For example, if you search for "pasta" you will get recipes or local restaurant. This happens because Google is thinking you're looking for one of those, so it will help you.
This is why you can now search the most irrelevant things and still get an answer, because Google is learning behaviors. So in conclusion, you need to provide your readers with valuable information, and the search engines will do their job.
7. Have a content strategy
I can't say it's mandatory, but if you want your blog to go somewhere, you need a content strategy. It will help you get an overview on all your articles, it will help you interlink them and you can see how every page is performing.
This goes hand in hand with your keyword research because you need both of them in order to succeed.
8. Introduce a CTA
And the best example to do so, is by telling your audience to either subscribe to your newsletter, share the article or give you a message for your services or products. Just as I'm doing right now to end this article, and I'm telling you to go ahead and subscribe to my newsletter to always know when something new for your website is up, and to get the latest SEO information!