We all know the importance of maintaining an up-to-date blog and creating fresh content for both Google and your readers. But are you missing out on these blogging basics? Below is a checklist of five questions to ask yourself when putting a new blog post together.
1. Have You Researched Your Target Keywords and Trends?
To make sure that your blog post gets found and read by as many people as possible, you will firstly want to know what your target audience is searching for. If you were writing about ‘Family Friendly Pets’ for example, you may want to see what household animals people are currently searching for, such as dogs, rabbits, cats or even chinchillas and geckos. By using tools such as Google Trends and Adwords Keyword Planner you can see what is popular in search trends right now and also some keyword suggestions for your chosen target area.
2. Have You Written Enough Content?
When writing a new blog post, you want to make sure that you have enough content to get your point across and also engage search engine spiders. The more valuable information you can put together, with your targetted keywords included, the more this will help you to build a content rich website. Google values fresh and high quality / valuable content, so as well as increasing your readership, it could also benefit you in the SERPs as well. So get writing!
3. Have You Optimised Your Content Structure?
Once you have written your blog post, you will want to make sure that it is structured for optimum effect. Start by creating a catchy title that will grab your readers attention, but also includes your targetted keyword/s for SEO benefits.
Use subheadings to break up text into readable chunks and add header tags rather than bolding these headings. Of course, your title with be a H1 tag, but then you will want to make sure that your subheadings use H2, H3 or even H4 tags, depending on their importance on the page. Search engine spiders will firstly crawl your H1 tag followed by H2, H3 etc when indexing any fresh content on your site. So make sure that you are also including keywords in these headings where possible (but no keyword stuffing please!).
4. Have all Images Been Given an Alt Tag?
In the same way that you have structured the text in your new blog post, have you given any thought to your images? If an image online does not have an Alt Tag, then Google spiders cannot see what the photo is off. Therefore, you need to give every image in your blog post an Alt Tag, which describes what the photo is of. Therefore, if you have a photo of a ‘golden hamster’, you will want to make sure that you give this photo and Alt Tag saying this (again this is a good opportunity to use your target keywords on the page).
5. Have You Linked to Relevant Pages on Your Website / Blog?
When writing a new blog post, if you have written on a related topic before or have further information on a webpage of your site, then you should be linking to it! Think of internal links as a paper trail. Not only for your readers to find more valuable information on a topic, but also for search bots too. Any followed links from your blog post to other pages on your website will be crawled and indexed by search spiders, which will enrich your site’s structure and also share link juice across your website.