If a tree falls in an uninhabited forest, it makes a sound. It’s just that no one is around to hear it.
Right now, your company’s blog is the deserted woodland. Every time you draft up an awesome blog post and hit “Publish,” it makes a sound. But if the only people who see what you’ve written are your co-founder, your doting mother, and your keyboard-walking kitty, said sound doesn’t travel very far.
Want a megaphone? Start with a review of on-page SEO content writing tips, which are useful for any online publishing application. Then follow these seven straightforward strategies to building an SEO-friendly business blog post that attracts more eyeballs, encourages readers to linger, and improves your conversion rate beyond your keyboard cat’s wildest dreams.
1. Improve Your Site’s Load Speed
This step precedes the brainstorming process — and it has nothing to do with actually writing your blog post.
Desktop load speed has long been a crucial ranking factor for Google and other search engines. Now that the digital center of gravity is mobile, Google is about to weigh mobile load speed too. Make sure your site is up to speed (so to speak). Whole books have been written on this topic, but Moz has a great primer.
2. Use an SEO Plugin
SEO-friendly blogging is no longer a DIY affair. There are dozens of SEO plug-ins for various online publishing platforms. The cream of the crop — like Yoast Premium, a popular WordPress option — isn’t free. But they’re not particularly dear either. Depending on your product mix, the first handful of conversions should pay for themselves.
3. Plan Your Post Carefully
It’s almost time to start writing. Before you launch into a stream-of-consciousness tirade, take 10 minutes to brainstorm and (roughly) outline your post. Know about what you’re going to say, about where you’re going to say it, in about so many words. This saves a lot of time from the editing process — which, with poorly conceived posts, is more like rewriting.
4. Aim for Comprehensiveness
Short blog posts are easy to write. Unfortunately, they’re not all that SEO-friendly. For Google’s purposes, blog posts are irrelevant until they hit the 300-word mark, and that’s the bare minimum. For better results, shoot for at least 500 words. For best results, try for 1,000 words or better. Many SEO experts swear by a lengthy “sweet spot” in the neighborhood of 1,500 words. The upshot of this enforced long-windedness: it allows you to thoroughly explore complex concepts with all deserved nuance, informing and delighting your readers along the way.
5. Break It Up With Frequent Headings
Frequent H3 headings are easy on your readers’ eyes and attention spans. They’ll also endear you to Google. Look for ways to work partial and exact-match keywords into some of these headings. Failing that, at least make them entertaining to read. No “Part One, Part Two, Conclusion” sequences allowed.
6. Sprinkle High-Quality Outbound Links Throughout
Include a handful of high-quality outbound links in your blog posts. Three to four per 1,000 words is a good rule of thumb, but don’t skimp on essential links either — it’s better to over-link your citations than make unverifiable claims that give your readers (and your legal department) pause. When in doubt, choose reputable .org and .edu extensions, but authoritative .com extensions are fine too.
7. Create a Killer Meta Description
Before you publish, create a catchy meta description that includes your target keyword. Meta descriptions are not CEO panaceas. But they do help search engine bots make sense of your content. They’re useful aids for human Googlers too.
Do you have any tips for SEO-friendly blog posts? Share them here.