How SEO Blog Posts Work: SEO Blogging Strategy for Small Business (Pt2)

HomeBusiness StartupsHow SEO Blog Posts Work: SEO Blogging Strategy for Small Business (Pt2)
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Strategy for SEO Blog posts that will help small business to drive traffic, increase brand awareness, generate more leads, getting more conversions, building back links, thought leadership, was dealt with massively and decisively in SEO Blogging Strategy for Small Business: Keyword Research & Content Pillars.

I also showed you how to do effective keyword research for, SEO blog posts, by using two techniques or tools that work for you. This post on how SEO blog posts work will dwell on what types of keyword you should use after your keyword research and why you should choose them.

‘How SEO blog posts work’ will also teach you what type of keyword works for what type of SEO blogging strategy. It is time to know whether you should optimize for short tail keyword, long tail keyword or question keyword and why.

Then, I will show you proven on-page optimization techniques that will help you optimize your web page and content for better organic search ranking.

Types of keywords for SEO blog posts and their purposes

Short tail keywords for SEO blog posts for small business

Short tail keywords are two to three word phrases that summarize search terms your target audience are using to find your small business or content. Short tail keywords typically have high search volume, and mostly very competitive.  

Depending on your small business type, your keyword research will most likely give you more short tail keywords. If you are in a niche market with few competitors or you are creating content around products/services that are not common in the market, short tail keywords will work fine for you.

One thing you should be careful with when using short tail keyword is that you should be sure you are going into keyword battle in which you have a good chance of winning.

You don’t want to guess your chances of surviving keyword battle.

After selecting your set of short tail keywords, Google each short tail keywords, take note of the top 5 – 10 websites ranking high in SERP for those keywords, check their link profile and Domain Authority, using Moz Open Site Explorer, to be sure you can compete well for the keywords.

Choosing to optimize your content for or ranking your website high on SERP for short tail keywords which website(s) with high Domain Authority and double your number/quality of back links, is a tall dream.  

You can achieve whatever goal you have set, but it will take you a lot of hard work to make winning this kind of keyword competition come through.  

Example of how to optimize for short tail keywords:

Using the restaurant business in the earlier SEO blogging strategy for small business, let’s say one of the content pillars is first date. We want to create SEO blog post for first date, and we need short tail keywords ideas to start with.

Short tail keyword research for first date using Moz Keyword Explorer:

How SEO blog posts work-short tail keyword

From Keyword Suggestions, we have

  • first date musical with 501-850 average searches
  • first date tips  with 2.9k-4.3k average searches
  • first date ideas with 11.5k-30.3k average searches

It is natural for the restaurant business to want to sharply create content and optimize it for first date tips or first date ideas because having search volume means many people are already searching for either.

BUT, the Keyword Difficulty Level is 50, AND

Take a look at SERP Analyisis section, it will be hell of an SEO stunt for the small restaurant to pull, in a bid to out-rank websites with Domain Authority (DA) of close to 100. If your DA within the range of 10, you may try. If not, hmmm.

You know the rest, I guess.

What’s the way forward for our restaurant business?

Long tail keywords can be of help here. Let’s see how.

Long tail keywords for SEO blog posts for small business

Long Tail keywords are great for SEO blog posts, especially for small business, because they are more targeted and have relatively medium or low competition. You can combine at least two short tail keywords to form a long tail keyword.

Long Tail keywords for SEO blog posts is the last resort when your competitor seems to have taken over the keyword battle completely. You could take a particular keyword that your competitor is already ranking for and add modifiers like year, frequency, place/location, special benefit or peculiar offer to make your own long tail keywords.

Long Tail keywords let you ride right on top of your competitor’s shoulder. This is possible by updating or adding to what they are already organically ranking for or spending PPC budget on.

Example of how to optimize for long tail keywords:

Using the restaurant business in the earlier SEO blogging strategy for small business, let’s say one of the content pillars is first date. We have ascertained that first date tips and first date ideas have high volumes but they will be difficult to compete for, considering the DA of website already ranking for them.

How can long tail keyword give our restaurant business a better chance?

One of our keyword variations/suggestions is first date tips for guys. 

How SEO blog posts work-long tail keyword

With first date tips for guys, search volume has reduce.

BUT, Difficulty Level has dropped to 29, AND

A website (position 2) with DA 26 ranked ahead of  DA 74 (position 3). And Keyword Opportunity is 100. If a website with DA 26, can get ahead of 74 and the Opportunity is 100, why can’t you try?

Let’s further modify first date tips for guys, and see the result:

How SEO blog posts work-long tail keyword02

First date tips for guys that are shy is our new keyword variation, after adding modifier ‘that are shy’. This has brought Keyword Difficultly to 21, Keyword Opportunity remains 100

AND

Websites with DA 32 and  DA 24 rank ahead of DA 65.

What else?

Let’s further modify First date tips for guys that are shy:

How SEO blog posts work-long tail keyword03

Our new long tail keyword variation is Best First date tips for guys that are shy.

It has further dropped Keyword Difficulty to 19, Keyword Opportunity remains 100, DA 32 and 24 are ahead of DA 65. So, our restaurant business have a go at either First date tips for guys that are shy or Best First date tips for guys that are shy.  

Question keywords for SEO blog posts for small business

Question keywords are formed from most frequently asked questions through search queries. Moz keyword explorer and keywordtool.io are keyword research tools which I am quite familiar with, when it comes to fetching question keywords.

When you are planning SEO blog posts that will solve problems, teach your target audience, answer FAQ about your products/services, your competitors’ offerings, question keywords.

Most of search results that appear as Google Rich Snippets answer questions.

Right?

During your keyword research for SEO blog post, do some work to include question keywords your content plan. If question keywords do not form your blog post title or the content idea, you could insert question keywords in your content body.

Answer question keywords within your content body with clear simple sentence, ordered list or a quoted answer.

You won’t appreciate the ‘pin code’ I just gave until you try it.

How does question keywords work?

This is it.

How SEO blog posts work-question keywords

Those are Question Keywords for First date tips for shy guys. How to deal with shy guys has averagely good search volume here. Let’s dig into it.

How SEO blog posts work-question keywords02

Planning and Publishing SEO blog posts for small business

There are few things I want to point out under planning and publishing your SEO blog posts. They are:

  • Consistency in SEO blogging
  • Optimizing blog post title for search
  • 10 SEO-focused titles for SEO blog posts

Consistency in SEO blog posts

Consistency precedes follower-ship. It is hard to find someone who has large number of followers but not consistent in whatever they do.

Whether you are doing something awesome or you are notorious for something, you must consistently do it before people start keeping tab on you.

So, being consistent with your SEO blog posts is key for success of your strategy.

Be consistent in the volume and quality of your SEO blog posts. Don’t start with pretty good quality blog posts, then increase quantity in order to increase traffic without stepping up quality of your content.

Sacrificing quality for quantity is a perpetual temptation in SEO blogging, content marketing in general. Do your best to resist this beautiful evil.

When good quality SEO blog posts start bringing more traffic, get you engagement plus referrals, you will be tempted to double the number of posts you do within a certain period.

I know you will be tempted. I am not guessing.

Either you resist the temptation to sacrifice content quality for quantity by sticking to what currently works for you, or you invest more time, more money, more resources into increasing number of SEO blog posts and depth, don’t get carried away.

Optimizing SEO blog post title for search

Use long tail or question keyword for your SEO blog post title.

That is my sincere advice for you regarding optimizing your SEO blog post for search. I have explained how long tail keywords and question keywords work earlier. Borrow from this insight to coin catchy title that will raise curiosity, answer question or cause controversy.

Example of SEO blog post title that is optimized for search:

For our restaurant business, we could combine short tail keyword with question keyword to get:

First Date Tips: How to Deal with A Shy Guy

How SEO blog posts work-blog post title

A website of DA 29, PA 19 and 140k back links comes ahead of DA 62, PA 25 and 1.1m back links. This is the kind of organic ranking ranking our restaurant business can fight in without breaking its back.

10 SEO-focused titles for SEO blog posts

These are 10 good SEO-focused titles you could borrow from for your SEO blog posts:

  • How to ____ in X Steps
  • X Secrets You Didn’t Know About ____
  • How to____
  • X Things We Learned From _____
  • The Worst Advice You Can Hear About ____
  • Read What These X Experts Have to Say About ____
  • ____ 101: All the Basics You Need to Know.
  • X Reasons Your ____ Isn’t Working.
  • X Common Misconceptions About ____.
  • What Will ____ Be Like in X Years?

Let’s say X is 14 and we are writing about first date, using formula  X Secrets You Didn’t Know About ____

we will SEO blog title like:

How SEO blog posts work-blog post title02

 

Keep finding the remaining X yourself. Lol!

On-page optimization for SEO blog post

SEO blog posts should be optimized for search, if you really care about reaping the fruit of your labour on and investment in content. On-page optimization helps your content and web pages to be more easily found via search.

So, I am sharing with you some on-page optimization tips for for your SEO blog posts.

  • Optimize page title tags, Meta description tag, URL with keyword
  • Break content into topics and subtopics
  • Use H1-H6 tags for headings
  • Include keywords in headings
  • Use simple sentences, in paragraphs
  • Format text with bold, italics, quotes
  • Optimize image name, caption, Alt text with keywords
  • Include internal and external links
  • Include various content formats like image, video and infographics
  • Embed tweets and quote sources of facts and figures
  • Master the use of Yoast SEO plugin for (WordPress blog)
  • Sprinkle keywords evenly across content body

Optimize SEO blog posts page title tags, Meta description tag, URL with keyword

Page Title tag is Google search engine’s first port of call to know what your web content is all about. SO, you have 65 to 70 characters to summarize your entire SEO blog post. Use long tail keyword or question keyword here and ensure your ‘main keyword’ starts the title.

If your ‘main keyword’ does not start your Page Title tag, let it be as close to the start as possible.

Break SEO blog post bodyy into topics and subtopics

Do not lump your ideas together within the body of your content. Never!

Use as much WHITESPACE as possible. Let the ideas you are passing across with your content be well-categorised. Let there be topics and subtopics. Let it be clear when you are giving examples and analogies.

Breaking your content body into topics and subtopics helps human to understand the order of importance of key points in your content. It shows how organized you can be as a person. (That is my personal bias thou!)

Use H1-H6 tags for headings for SEO blog posts

After you have broken down your content body into topics and subtopics, you engaging headings with appropriate Heading Tag to make it meaningful.

There are H1, H2, H3, H4, H5 and H6 heading tags in most Content Management System (CMS), eg WordPress, that I have seen. Use each heading tag to tell Google search engine which idea is a topic and which one is a subtopic, example or list under a topic.

Normally, H1 heading tag goes to your web page title. You want to use H2 tag for your first paragraph, introductory question keyword or a statement that well embodies your content idea.

Using H3 tag for a topic and H4 tag for subtopics under it is fine. But don’t use H2 tag to explain what is a subtopic under H3 tag.

Never! I repeat, never!

You are riding a bicycle in front of a train on its track like that.  You don’t want to throw your entire SEO content under the bus. Right?

Include keywords in headings tags

Breaking your content body down with heading tags makes readable to your target audience and search engines, while including keywords in your heading tags increases the chances of your content being found by search engine.

Heading tags (H2-H6) are parts of HTML snippets do crawl in order to learn more about your content. Endeavor to give search engine crawlers more clue as to what your content idea is about by using heading tags, as advised earlier on in the post.

Use simple sentences and paragraphs in SEO blog posts

You are not creating content to impress that high school babe that refused to say YES. I am helping her to say YES now, so don’t write to impress her. Don’t create content to anyone either.

Let your content body come through in simple sentences, well-spaced paragraphs. With this, you help target audience digest your content easily and fast.

To separate your paragraphs, use images, questions and bucket brigades. Examples of bucket, as Brian Dean, calls them, are

How SEO blog posts work-bucket brigades

  • Here is the deal
  • There is a catch
  • This is it
  • What is the real story?

Format SEO blog post with bold, italics, quotes

Variety is the spice of life. That is major reason you use tweak some parts of your content with bold, italic and quotes.

If you are quoting someone, or you make a strong statement which you don’t mind being quoted, why don’t you use citation or quote in your CMS to make the statement look different?

Use bold to highlight points you want audience to read again. Use italic to highlight colloquial statement or slang. Be consistent all the way though.  

That’s straight from my heart, to you!

Optimize image name, caption, Alt text with keywords

Image is a big deal in optimizing blog post for search. Check out how Google display image results ahead of other search results to know that I am not joking.

Sometimes, try hard as you may, your blog post won’t come top of organic ranking for certain keywords. But when you optimize images within the blog post for such keywords, you stand better chance.

For image name, rename or save an image with keyword the blog post is about. Include keyword or relevant search queries in caption and Alt text. I discusses how to optimize images for search in a previous post already.

Include internal and external links in SEO blog posts

Links are the path for Google search engine crawlers to navigate the Internet, from one website to another, from one web page to the other.

Add both internal links and outbound links to your SEO blog post to ease navigation for spiders. At least one internal link and one outbound link per blog post.

DRUM ROLL. Spiders on the way!

Internal link? Check.

Outbound link? Check.

Include various content formats like image, video and infographics in SEO blog posts

Here we are again with varieties within your SEO blog post content body. Use different content formats within a blog post to retain reader’s attention.

It can explain your content idea better too. We all assimilate in different ways. Make your content welcome to those who don’t well with ‘texty’ information. For me, it is video, I live videos. If not for file size, I could put one video for every paragraph in this blog post.

Put some more images, more infographic, and some more video. Your target audience will ask you for more content. Trust me.

Embed tweets and quote sources of facts and figures in SEO blog posts

You will need relevant plugin for this to work on your CMS. Once, you have the appropriate plugin that allows you to embed tweets in your content body, search for popular tweets about your content idea or tweet from a thought leader you don’t mind referencing.

Embed the tweet one time. The tweets may be quotes, narrating an experience or facts and figures that will buttress your point.

Master the use of Yoast SEO plugin

WordPress blog owners, this is for you. Yoast SEO plugin will help avoid keyword stuffing, ensure your blog post is very readable, optimize your blog post’s Page title tag, URL and Meta Description.

Someone once asked me how is easy is it to make Yoast SEO plugin give your blog post ‘green light’, I smiled. Keep on writing, keep on tweaking. You will soon wrap your head around what it takes.

Hope you have learnt more on SEO blogging strategy for your small business. At this juncture, you should be able to plan, research, post and optimize good content that is sustainable over time by now.

Using organic channels to promote and distribute your content across email, web and social is what the next SEO blogging strategy for small business series will be here.

Are you expecting it? Use the comment box below to tell me what you look forward to learning.

It feels good to know you are there reading our post. Thanks for your time.

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Adeyemi likes story-telling. He delivers ROI using value-adding content across digital channels such as social media, email, website. Wondering how content can solve problems posed by your business objectives? Let's talk. #SEOnero @obadeyemi