Chances are that if you are a new blogger, you want your work to be read by as many people as possible. Unless you are a literary genius, it is unlikely that this can happen organically therefore you need to work on your Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). This is the art of making your blog more visible in search engines so that more people can read it. Here is a list of SEO advice for new bloggers.
Content is King
If your content is poor, all the rest of the advice is irrelevant because SEO depends on your content. You need good, clean content as a solid starting point. This means that your ideas must be fresh and engaging and relevant to your audience, and your content must be well written.
Links to content
Create links to other sites as although this looks like you are directing your readers away from your site, it actually will work favourably to you in terms of SEO. Make sure that the links are relevant and informative and do not expect anything in return as it is the gesture which counts. Linking to other bloggers is a great way to build relationships and create strong links – and to help your website SEO status.
The Google keyword tool helps you identify what phrases people are searching for. If you use the popular ‘keywords,’ throughout your content, people are more likely to find your blog. Therefore you should include the ‘keywords’ in your heading, the first paragraph and even your URL.
Trackbacks means that you permit people to create links in your comments section, which means that people are encouraging traffic to your blog via these links.
Linking your blog to your Twitter page and to your Facebook page is a great way to spread the word about your blog and to encourage people to read it. If you don’t already have Twitter or Facebook set up, it takes a short amount of time to do this and is well worth the effort. There are plenty of other social networking sites like Soundcloud for music, Blogster, Faceparty, Flixster, Friends Reunited etc. Therefore do your research and identify social networking sites that are relevant to your blog and get linking.
URLs and Slugs
A ‘slug’ is the field that is situated below the title of the article and determines the URL or website of the article. You should always make sure that your URL contains the same keywords as your title and content and it will be viewed favourably.
Internally link to your other articles
If you interlink keywords across articles, it creates a strong message to Google about what your articles are about, as well as being a great way to encourage page views across your site as you are encouraging your readers to click through to other sites.
WordPress is a free open source blogging and content management tool which is a highly effective way to manage your blog. There are of course other blogging platforms including Blogger, Tumblr, LiveJournal and Movable Type. One advantage of using WordPress is the ‘plug-in’ architecture which allows you to include additional features to your blog, therefore setting it apart from other bloggers. Examples of this include:
Google XML Sitemaps – A tool to provide Google with an easy to read overview of all the pages on your site, and will automatically update every time you add new posts to your blog.
WP Super Cache and W3 Total Cache – A tool that means the next person to view your blog doesn’t have to wait for the home page to be created. This reduces the time it takes a reader to view your page and increases the probability of keeping more readers. This makes your content fast and efficient.
WordPress Related Posts Plugin – Install and ink to 4 or 5 similar articles at the bottom of each article. This guides your readers to more of your articles on similar topics and guides search engines around your blog.
Although all this information might seem a little daunting in the beginning, take your time and persevere and your efforts will be rewarded. Start by choosing your blogging platform and spend time on each method until you are fully satisfied that you have generated results. There is no rush, it is important to create something that has quality and endurance so that you give yourself the best chance of making your site a success.