Keys To A Good Blog Post: What You Should Be Looking For
Today, good SEO requires excellent content. One of the most common types of content is the blog post. But there’s more to blogging than just throwing some text into a WordPress text box and peppering in your keywords; there’s a lot that goes into making a blog post that will support the SEO goals of your website and not hinder them.
What kind of components are we talking about? That all depends on your end goal. Do you need to entertain your audience? Are you looking to educate them? Are you doing both at the same time? Do you want to use your blog post for something else entirely? Whatever the answer to that question may be, it’s going to change how you approach blogging.
It’s true that blogging campaigns can be of any size, and that the bigger your campaign gets the more complex it can be. Yet even though, there are universalities in play that go into the creation of any good blog post, no matter the size, the scope, or the end goal. Here are a few things to consider.
The Importance of SEO
This just wouldn’t be a proper discussion of blogging as an SEO tool without directly referencing how SEO effects blogging and vice versa. The best blog writers — professionals that do this for a living — will tell you that they’re more than just writers but SEO marketing experts as well. Today, it’s just as important to know how to get the right eyes on your content as it is to how to write that content in the first place. That means blogging is, in essence, all about SEO.
That being said, bloggers need to stay on the bleeding edge of SEO developments if they want to keep their content being seen. It’s hard staying one step ahead of the curve, as you’ve got to keep aware of SEO standards such as keyword density, meta-tagging techniques, inbound and outbound linking requirements, and anything else that keeps Google happy (or at least keeps Google from getting mad at you).
At the same time, the best bloggers know that you’ve got to write for humans, not for search algorithms. In other words, if you’re not using natural language in your blogs because you’re slavishly beholden to hitting your keyword requirements, you’re doing your readers a major disservice. Not only that, but Google and other search engines are becoming better at spotting artificial keyword-stuffing every day, so it’s best to leave off with such activities and stick to natural language — even if it means that it’s harder to get those keywords in.
Include Images, Video, or Both
Humanity is a visual species. The lion’s share of our perceptions are filtered through our eyes, and that makes video or still images a highly popular choice in keeping the attention of readers when it comes to blog content. You want to attract as much of that attention as possible, so that means it’s an excellent idea to integrate a good balance of visual content into blog posts to maintain reader engagement and enthusiasm.
How much is enough when it comes to image and video content? All but the most academic online publications will use at least a header image to accompany the title of a new blog post. This is the bare minimum standard when it comes to integrated multimedia. Such an image should not just be related to the blog topic directly but should also be designed to hook the reader, enticing them to click through and read the entire post.
By the same token, there is certainly the possibility of having too much of a good thing. It’s generally inadvisable to have more than one image per post subheading unless providing graphical data. Additionally, video content should be treated as the highlight of your post, so more than one embedded video can detract from that. Finally, not meta tagging images or embedded video can negatively impact the SEO of your blog post as well, so you need to be thorough.
Content is King
Here’s the big one: you’re not going to have a very interesting blog post unless the written content of that post is up to snuff. No matter the topic you’re writing on, your content needs to be incisive, timely, and riveting — and in order to accomplish that, you need to ensure you’ve got all the facts you need at your disposal.
If you don’t research thoroughly — even exhaustively — you’re going to make embarrassing mistakes that will discredit you as a blogger, and that’s exactly what you don’t want. This means you’ll need more than Wikipedia entries to back you up if you’re making an argumentative point. You’ll also need to make sure you attribute any sources that you use. Plagiarism is a serious problem when it comes to online blogging, so protect yourself and your reputation!
Link it All
Guess what? Your blog doesn’t exist in a vacuum. It’s also not going to do you any good whatsoever if visitors to your site don’t know you’ve got new blog content ready for consumption unless it’s linked somewhere, such as on your social media feed. In other words, if you’re not interconnected with the rest of the internet, it doesn’t matter how good your content is or how amazing your professionally-designed website looks.
That’s why link building has grown to be such an important facet of SEO. If your website doesn’t have a robust network of both inlinks and outlinks, search engines aren’t going to prioritise your content as high as content from sites with better link networks. In other words, you need to ensure that your content is linked to other content across your site and that you also have links that lead away from your site as well.
Don’t Forget the Call to Action
A well-told story is great, but not if it doesn’t have a happy ending. You’ve got to finish with a bang, and that means you’ll need a quality call to action that reinforces your blog post’s central point or call to action. This CTA can take a number of different forms depending on your content and the goal for your post, but missing out on a CTA will leave your entire blog feeling flat and incomplete.
Your CTA should complement your end goal. If you’re looking for engagement from your audience, come straight out and ask for comments on the blog post that you can then respond to and begin a discussion. If you’re plugging a specific service or a business partner, you better believe your CTA should include an outlink to a sales funnel or capture page. Even a simple request to “like and share this post” on social media is a CTA.
Ticking All the Boxes
All these requirements make writing an effective blog a rough job from an SEO standpoint. It’s not easy to tick all those boxes when it comes to not just providing engaging content but also keeping up with things like link building, keyword and meta management, and multimedia inclusion, but getting it right can be incredibly rewarding.
Whether you’re marketing your business, looking to entertain your readership, or educating them on an important issue, keep the above components in mind. Doing so will help you reap some serious rewards in supercharging your site SEO through blogging.