After bogging for years, I realized how important blogging for my new business would be. Your blog is the core of your online marketing operations.
Each new post gives you something new to promote, a way to connect with other people and brands, and an opportunity to build links. Th
at being said, each blog post is only going to give your site a temporary lift if you’re not doing any optimization or thinking about SEO.
I’m not saying you should be writing for the search engines. Quite the contrary actually. I’m suggesting that you put a level of SEO polish on everything you write, AFTER you write it. That last part is key.
The only problem I was having was the amount of time it took to do keyword research and optimize a post. Well, I put together this tutorial to show you a quick and easy solution to optimizing every post you write.
In this short tutorial, I’ll show you how to conduct proper Blog Post SEO and show you the difference between an un-optimized post and an optimized one.
Read Also: Mobile SEO: It Exists and You Need It
1. Brainstorm your first keywords
In 3-4 words, state what your blog post is about. For this post, it’s “keyword research blog post.”
Now, start brainstorming any search queries that you think people would use to find your blog post. Try to use a wide range of vocabulary and synonyms to come up with more queries. Write them all down in a notepad file or in a spreadsheet colum.
2. Explore the wild
Head to Google and start searching for some of the keywords you just came up with. You want to look for 2 things right now.
1) First, check for any other words or terms people are using that you missed. Forums and comments on blog posts are helpful because you’ll see many different people discussing the topic in their own words.
2) Secondly, titles of other blog posts are also very helpful. Other bloggers have already gone through this research, so take some of the keywords they chose to use in their post content & titles. Last time I did this I was writing a tutorial blog post and noticed some people were simply using the terms “article” and “post” in place of “tutorial” to search for the same information.
After every search you do in Google, scroll to the bottom of the SERP and check for “Related Searches.” Google often supplies these as highly relevant alternative search queries for users. In other words, exactly what you’re looking for!
Make sure you’re copying & pasting the new keywords you find into your notepad file.
3. Check search volume
When you’re done with your keyword research, go to Google’s keyword planner (you’ll need to signup for Adwords which is free), and choose the top option, “Search for keyword and ad group ideas.” Copy & paste in your list and click “Get Ideas”.
Don’t get hung up on the search volume data here because it’s innaccurate. The reason I suggest going here at all is because the relational data should be pretty accurate. In other words, the actual volume for any given keyword may not be accurate, but if one keyword gets more search volume than another, you can value that keyword as more important.
Try out some different combinations you may have missed and then pick one primary keyword to target. Your primary keyword shouldn’t simply be the keyword with the most volume, it should be the keyword that best describes your post content and gets search volume.
4. Visualize your data
One last step before you implement your findings. Take any of the search queries that got more than ‘0’ for search volume and copy them to your clipboard.
Go to Tagcrowd and paste in your list. This is going to give you a snapshot of your keywords with the most frequently occurring terms larger and less frequent terms smaller.
5. Implement your research
First off, include the main keyword you chose in step 3 in the post title and include it once in your post content. Now, install SEO Quake for Chrome or Firefox.
While viewing the draft of your post, click on the SEO Quake extension and choose the “Keyword Density” option. This is is going to give you a list of the words, 2-word combinations, and 3-word combinations that appear in your post along with the percentage of content that each takes up (density).
Now pull up your tagcrowd image. Do they look the same?
What you found in the first 4 steps are the most important words for optimizing your post. You can now you can see them visualized and how they actually appear in your content at the same time! Cool right?
All you need to do now is to implement the keywords until the keyword density you get from SEO Quake looks similar to your Tagcrowd image. Since perfection is far from possible when optimizing a post, I find that this quick and dirty approach is easy to implement and effective.
Take a look back at the 3-4 words you chose in step 1. They’re not the most important still are they? Take this as an illustration of the subtle difference in your use of language that a few minutes of keyword research will lead to.
In the future, you can check what keywords are sending your post the most traffic, and readjust your content accordingly to better optimize it.
One last reminder, don’t compromise the quality of your content! Write something awesome, optimize it for the search engines, and publish.