I’m sure I’m right in thinking that most bloggers want more people reading and sharing content from their blogs. With that in mind, I’ve put together a simple list of 5 things you can do quite easily to increase the number of visitors coming to your blog via search engines. Chances are that you’re probably doing most of it right already but I just feel it’s good to be mindful of these things if you want to get better results.
1. Get some focus
What one subject do you write about the most? What is your blog best known for? Those are two questions you should ask yourself before you do anything else. Even if you don’t have the best analytics in the world (do you have any at all?) you should know which posts are most successful with regards to what’s being read and shared. Those are the things you should be concentrating on. Simply put: Do more of that and less of the other. If you enjoy writing about the other stuff too, consider starting another separate blog for it.
2. Look after your blogroll
Most blogging platforms have the facility to have a blogroll, that’s basically a list of links to other blogs. As with the rest of your content, you should also have focus in mind here too. Link to blogs that are similar to yours with regards to the content they are posting. That’s not all you should do if you want to really improve your ranking, get those blogs to link back to you too. If you’ve followed step one above and your content is good (which I’m sure it is) they would be silly not to link back to you!
3. Think keywords
Keywords are important and if your blog has focus, should be almost organic. Know what keywords people are using to find you already (Google Webmaster Tools are good for this) and think about the keywords you want people to find you by. Once you’ve got your keywords down, prioritise them. Your main site keywords should, if possible, feature in the page title on your homepage and in as many pieces of content as possible. If you can squeeze them into post titles too, you’re doing well but don’t put them anywhere that they aren’t relevant. That’s a big no-no!
There will also be keywords that are particularly relevant to whatever piece of content you’re writing too. Getting those into your post titles and at the very least into the first paragraph of your post are absolutely essential. Again, keep it relevant and keep it readable. Stuff too many keywords in there and no human being or search engine is going to want to come near you!
4. Links are good
When you’re writing a post, there are probably going to be plenty of opportunities to link to other relevant pieces of content out there on the web and also on your own site. Both will increase your site’s overall authority and page rank. Always remember to use good descriptive anchor text for your links and always be descriptive in your “title” attribute too. If you can get your keywords in there whilst keeping it relevant and humanly readable too, you’re doing it right.
5. A picture speaks a thousand words
Pictures are good. Not only do they grab people’s attention and hold them on a page a little longer but search engines like them too. Search engines and people alike will like them even more if they have good relevant “alt” and “title” attributes and the image filename and content are relevant to the text that is around them. As with links, if you can get your keywords in there too you’re definitely winning.
N.B. You won’t get any prizes for pointing out how bad I am at practising what I preach.