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We’ve all heard it over and over again. “Content is king” when it comes to blogging.
However, in business we don’t just blog for fun; we blog for other reasons, including content marketing, to drive Web traffic, to show off your business expertise, and to generate leads.
Blog posts don’t only have to engage your audience; they also have to be SEO friendly. Did you know that 97 percent of people use search engines to find blog posts? That’s a lot of people who could stumble onto your blog through organic Internet searches, so you must make sure search engines can find your work.
Here are four things to keep in mind to make your business blog posts SEO friendly:
1. Use a clear title. One of the most important factors in content marketing is SEO within a blog post title. It is the first thing that someone sees when scrolling through links during an Internet search, and it’s also the first thing search engines analyze at when evaluating your content. The key to a great SEO-friendly title is to keep it simple. For example, if someone is searching for a recipe to make apple pie, they may search for, “how to make an apple pie,” or “apple pie recipes.” The important keywords in that search are “apple pie,” so when writing about the subject you want to make sure “apple pie” is in the blog post title.
2. Don’t stuff keywords. Though keywords are very important for any content marketing strategy, it’s important not to stuff a ton of keywords into blog posts just for the sake of SEO. Instead, focus on no more than three keywords for each post. This way, it helps keep you focused on writing the blog post instead of focusing on keywords. It’s also important to note that if you stuff your blog posts with too many different keywords, search engines are programmed to penalize your posts.
Tip: Try using long tail keywords in your blog posts. A long tail keyword is a very targeted search phrase that contains three or more words. It often contains a head term with two more generic words. For example, the head term could be “apple” while the long tail keyword would be “apple pie recipe.”
3. Include keywords in the body, but write in a readable way. Once you have your keywords, make sure you mention them at a normal pace throughout the blog post. This means you should include your keywords in a reader-friendly way throughout the content.
Tip: Stay away from repeating your keywords too many times throughout the post. Experts suggest mentioning keywords five times throughout the post for the best search engine optimization.
4. Write a comprehensive meta description. Another thing many people forget about when writing blog posts is to fill out the meta description. The meta description is meant to give search engines and your readers information about your blog post’s content. This is a great place to use keywords so that search engines are able to find your blog posts more easily.
For more information on SEO, check out Google’s SEO section in Webmaster Tools. This page can provide you with answers to a number of questions you may have about the best ways to optimize your website.
Finally, remember for content marketing to work it’s not only about having an SEO-friendly blog post. It is also extremely important to write a blog post that is engaging to your audience.