You have read quite a few posts on this blog about ranking a website (I mean domain name) on Google or other popular search engines. This time, we are not going to talk about ranking a root domain. Instead, we’ll talk about how to rank a blog post at the top of search engines. Does that sound interesting?
Well, optimization for better search rankings is not something that you should do only for the domain name. In fact, you should try to hit the nail on its head every time you write a new post on your blog. Remember, each post on your blog serves as a salesman for your site. Therefore, it’s important to optimize each of your blog posts for some specific keywords or phrases.
But how do you optimize an individual blog post so that it starts to appear at the top of search engine results in a short span of time?
Here are some of the most important tips to follow:
[If your site has good search engine authority, you can use these tips to help your blog posts rank higher in SERPs pretty quickly. However, you can also use these tips to improve the SEO of other parts of your website or blog.]
1. Choose a Topic That’s Relevant
Every niche blog has its own target audience. Whenever you plan to publish a new article or post on your blog, you should never ignore the requirements of your target audience. Therefore, you need to come up with a topic that’s useful to the audience you’re seeking. Even when it comes to ranking content at the top of Google search results, relevance is something that plays a crucial role.
The more relevant topics you choose to write on, the better rankings you can achieve for your blog posts. So, always be relevant.
2. Do Keyword Research
After people, it’s about search engines or SEO. Obviously, you want more and more people to read your blog post after you have published it. Therefore, you need to conduct keyword research to discover those important terms or phrases that you want to rank your post for.
When you publish a blog post, you definitely want it to be found in search engines. What’s more important, however, is that you attract the right kind of visitors (rather than just any type of visitors).
While conducting keyword research, you should –
Use the right set of keyword tools
Focus on long tail keywords for better conversions
Understand your current position
Analyze keyword competition
Pay attention to relevancy
Have realistic expectations (specially if you have a new site)
Though short-tail keywords generate tons of traffic, they are not the best when your main goal is to maximize conversions on your site. If you want to increase the rate of conversion, you should go for long-tail keywords.
3. Write the Post (while Focusing on Quality)
A lot of things have changed with Google over the last couple of months. Plenty of algorithmic updates (including Panda and Penguin) have been launched to help users (or searchers) find only top quality content when they search for information. High quality content is always the backbone of the entire process of obtaining top search rankings on Google. Since shallow content offers little or no value to the audience or user, Google doesn’t want to rank it at the top.
If you can’t afford to spend time that writing high quality content requires, you should not expect to rank your blog posts at the top of search results either.
Are you getting the point?
4. Optimize for the Selected Keywords
So, you have identified the keywords (or phrases) that you would like to focus on while writing your blog post. Next, it’s time to optimize. Whether it’s the title, the permalink, the Meta tags or the images, you need to include your most important keywords in all these places. By optimizing your blog posts for SEO appropriately, you can improve its ranking on Google in a short span of time.
While optimizing the blog post, you should make sure –
The title of your post includes keywords
(Most importantly), the post title begins with the main keyword
The post URL contains keywords
The Meta tags contain keywords
The content body has keywords
The image alt attribute also has keywords
Each of the above mentioned elements play a vital role when it comes to optimizing a blog post for better search rankings. However, you should never overdo any of it, as it may quickly lead to a search penalty. For example, the keyword density of the content body should never go beyond 3%. No matter what part of the post you are optimizing, you should say a firm ‘No’ to keyword stuffing.
5. Create Lots of Social Signals
I’m sure you have heard about social signaling. Today, Google also takes social signals (or social shares) into consideration for ranking content in search results. If you want to rank your blog posts at the top of search engines, you should make sure it gets the maximum number of social shares on platforms like Google+, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest among others. Promoting a blog post is no less important than writing or optimizing the same. Definitely, writing quality content is of utmost importance when you want to create a maximum number of social shares.
Do your blog posts rank really well? If not, you should abide by the above mentioned tips and guidelines for better results.