One of the most common challenges it seems, is how you, a blog owner, can rank your website higher in search. The Internet is not only a part of our lives that we can’t live without, but also an integral component in the way we communicate and shop. It’s clear to see how this technology will continue influencing everything, leaving us with challenges to keeping our websites visible. In this post, I share a wide holistic approach to helping your websites rank. Want to find out? Read on!
The Internet has become an integral part of our lives. Studies show that up to 85% of the people who spend time online also purchase from sites like Amazon, Ebay and Walmart using their mobile devices or computers! This is a huge market because even if only 10-15%, of these individuals buy something every single day it still translates into millions in sales each year.
With online purchasing growing at a rapid rate, it’s no surprise that many companies are realizing the potential for growth. PayPal reported revenues of $4 billion in 2016 and they’re projecting an increase to over 5 times this amount by 2022!
Amazon is one of the largest online retailers, with sales volume constantly increasing. In 2021 Statistica published their revenue at $583 billion but Amazon expects this number will grow by over 71% in just four years time, to $999 billion!
As we know, YouTube is also a major player in the field, with countless opportunities to help you rank higher in search, in fact Brian Dean at Backlinko even provides an awesome video that shows us how to rank higher in search when using YouTube for our marketing initiatives. Keep in mind – Your YouTube videos will also show up in Google SERPs…
If you’re serious about having an online presence, you’ll need to do something to increase web traffic to your site. Thankfully, there are many ways to do this, and one effective method includes SEO.
Having mentioned SEO… There are many ways to increase web traffic and get your website seen by more people. SEO or search engine optimization is one way, but there are many other things you can do as well. Keep in mind that SEO is important, but it’s not the only thing you should focus on. There are many other ways to get your website seen by more people and to attract more visitors. So don’t worry if you’re not an expert at SEO.
Have you always had the desire to start your own website but didn’t know where or how? If so, I’ll go over some important points that should be kept in mind when doing so – While there are some aspects might seem “complicated” in reality they are not as complicated (as many people may think)!
Websites and Online Content
Your website is your shop! The content you post on it will decide how many customers come into yours, just as a company’s products and services determine what they sell in their stores – and if people don’t want anything else from them then there won’t be any buyers for whatever goods or services offered at all! So before starting work with an idea of creating fresh new material (which can take hours!), think about whether this could possibly make enough difference to warrant spending time doing instead another thing entirely…
Nowadays most businesses fail not because they did something wrong but simply from contributing factors, such as lack-of interest by potential consumers who are bombarded day after day through advertising everywhere around us.
If you want to stand out in today’s noisy marketplace, it is imperative that your business differentiate itself. One small way of doing this successfully has been found by entrepreneurs who sell products or services online through sites like Etsy and Shopify.
The thing about these smaller markets though – they’re not just difficult; sometimes impossible to crack into! That doesn’t mean we should give up however because there might still be hope for us if our product / service offers something no one else does: unique value proposition with strong customer engagement capabilities.
There are so many websites out there who offer the same thing, but if you provide more detailed and specific information only a user would know, then your site will surely stand apart from others. I’m sure you’ve seen those other sites that just have a couple of lines of product or service descriptions on them? They don’t really give much information and what’s there is all taken from other websites. Providing that quality content is another example of how to stand out.
Keep People Hooked to Your Business by Providing Them With Something More
Good content is hard work, but the payoff can be huge. You’ll need to invest some time in creating engaging and interesting material that your target audience will enjoy reading – or else they won’t come back! And even if you do manage this feat of creativity (which isn’t easy), don’t forget: there are many ways for prospects ‘to get their hands on’ quality info about whatever product/service providers want them too without ever having leave home…
When you invest your time in good content, people will come back for more. They’ll be able to get a feel for the product and see that it’s worth their while without even having heard about them yet!
The purpose of content marketing is to build a relationship with your audience by giving them valuable, timely information that they can easily access on any device.
Get to the Point and Provide What Visitors Want
While writing your content, remember that just because you want to be informative doesn’t mean it needs an essay-length article. Studies have shown between around 600 words is the average length for online articles on many websites; however if you’re looking at filling up space with text then 1000+ word posts do significantly better than shorter ones!
Don’t have much material? Try adding other interactive pieces like surveys or quiz questions instead of plain old paragraphs so there’s something new each time someone visits. Adding video content to your post also serves as a great resource – and an entertaining one too!
Interactive content is great for keeping your audience engaged, but it can be time-consuming and difficult to create. Luckily there’s an easier trick! Just use bullet points or charts in between text so that you have a visual guide on what should go where – this makes reading through the post much quicker, because there are no longer long blocks without any interactivity whatsoever.
In general I recommend using something similar across all pages: At the very (minimal) least one visual, some bullet points and text. Your page will be more balanced with these elements if you do so.
Be Genuine and Personable
When you are writing a blog post or any other kind of text for that matter, it is easy to lose sight on how your words come across. It’s like going from being in a person-to-person conversation with someone too a less personable, more professional attitude entirely; all we can do then is to attempt to include some entertaining aspect to our content, include whatever we can to have a unique voice.
This may seem counter-intuitive (personal vs professional voices) since our goal seemed originally to simply give readers something they could understand, but I find myself more often than not struggling so much just trying keep my own personal voice authentic, while also maintaining some professionalism – which isn’t always an easy balance.
This has been a problem from the start, but it becomes more of an issue as your business (website) grows. As you narrow down what is drawing your audience to visit and buy from your website, in order to ensure continued success with marketing campaigns or product lines, your content has the tendency to narrow down as well – This can be a legitimate danger. Be mindful that any changes made could also bounce your visitors away instead–and there’s often no way to know which direction content changes will go until after making those alterations!
Content creators often forget about page speed (it’s easy to forget at times). This is a big mistake because it takes longer for the visitor to load pages with heavy graphics, which makes your website seem less appealing and therefore lower quality, compared against competitors’ sites in Google’s search engine results page (SERP). Always be mindful of this, and do use speed reports (such as Google’s PageSpeed insights) to help in this regard. If the content page has a noticeable impact, consider spitting it into smaller related posts, or publish it as a series.
The Challenges with Mailing Lists & Newsletters
It’s easy to see why websites use mailing lists. They’re a great way of keeping in touch and staying up-to date by placing your important information directly in the eyes of your subscribers, without having too many notifications popping up all at once! Websites often send out information via these subscriptions every week or sometimes more frequently depending upon the strategy they follow; but it does need some thought put into whether this an effective feature (for you) before implementing.
Many email applications (and the networks they connect through) offer anti spam filters which can result in newsletters going straight to junk! What’s worse, you can end up on a RBL (Realtime Block List), which often can prevent legitimate users from getting your email. It’s important to use the services of a bonafide bulk mail autoresponder, and also to follow their advice and guides to get your mailings working (and in compliance) with their systems. naturally you’d also need to address the monthly (or email volume based) costs.
Technical stuff aside, as I mentioned, maintaining a subscriber mailing list is not the panacea of all websites! Consider this…
You would think that the best way to market your business is by sending out newsletters, right? Well before you do anything else I want you take pause and ask yourself if this will really help grow or just confuse everyone even more. The last thing we need as marketers are people who send mixed messages so please don’t fall into their trap!
The cost of sending out newsletters is only the beginning – You need to think about how often they are read, and if people will follow your website because you’re “pushing” something. Being overly aggressive in sales message delivery, can result in damaging your brand image (and long term sales growth). Growing your business through your website (and it’s traffic) is not a sprint – It’s a long term commitment to better growth.
I know some small businesses might not worry too much when it comes time for them send their promotional material – They just do whatever takes the least amount of work possible per mailings -But this isn’t always best for branding purposes! When you’re marketing your business on the web, it is important that you always think about ways to grow in the long term.
Plainly put… Long term wins hands down over a quick short-term buck!
If you determine a mailing list is a good fit for your business, that’s terrific. Always keep in mind the question: What’s the point of having a mailing list if no one sees them? If they don’t, then it wastes all that valuable time and money just to have people on your mailing list. In order for it be worthwhile, you should make sure at least some subscribers get excited about what’s coming from you! And keep an eye on your statistics, including conversion goals (to see if the mailing list is a benefit to sales, or an expense liability).
No Mailing List? Provide Another Option
Incorporating an option for people to subscribe your RSS feed is a great way of giving them the choice whether they want that information or not. This means only those who are really interested will take time and invest in learning more about what you have going on, which also gives accurate feedback as well because most readers actually read everything written!
Arguably, from personal experience, RSS (commonly referred to as a “feed”), seems to work better for many.
Incorporating an option for people to subscribe to your RSS feed is a great way of giving them the choice whether they want that information or not. This means only those who are really interested will take time and invest in learning more about what you have going on, which also gives accurate feedback as well because most readers actually read everything written!
Always Strive to Provide Value in Your Content
Give your posts (content) an edge by providing insider information. Don’t just repackage other people’s work as if it were yours; use insights and impressions that are truly unique to you so readers will want more!
The best way of generating interest in your posts (content) is by giving insider information. Don’t just re-write the same duplicate content found elsewhere online – If you have a certain product or service that would be perfect for someone’s needs (your audience) but not quite right for them due to constraints like budgeting resources, then offer an honest impression about what makes it (your offering) different from competitors’ products / services providing similar services, which could potentially help people convert into purchasing yours!
Genuinely Participate in Your Niche
Use a similar approach to joining an online community that you would take if socializing at meetups or conferences. Find out how they operate, what their communication style is like – and then jump right in!
Joining an online community is a great way to start your own website and build up traffic. You will have access not only to learn from others in the niche, but also earn credibility as well!
If you want to generate traffic and build your audience, write on other people’s blogs. Just make sure your posts are worth reading, so they’ll come visit your website in order find more of the information which interests them! Make sure your posts and / or your bio (when guest blogging) contains links back to your website.
Give Credit When Using Other People’s Content
In today’s world of information overload, it can be difficult for the average person to find quality sources of content that are both relevant and legitimate.
Sometimes a good starting point can be to quote other people, or include their quotes in your content.
In order not only maintain your sanity (as in “less stress”) but also build up credibility with those around you and on social media platforms such as LinkedIn or Facebook (or any other channel), be sure to add links back to the original (quoted) content, so they know where exactly their thoughts came from! (And can also have a better context of your article). It’s also common courtesy to link back (and that can encourage others to link to your website).
You might be surprised to realize that unless you’re a major site (and with deep pockets), your website will not show up in Google search results right away. The reason for this may include how many new websites often use free platforms or even “spammy” services, including having their pages created without spending time building backlinks (which does take time). naturally search engines need to preserve the integrity of search results they return to people who are looking for answers.
By linking to your quote source, you are not only generating traffic but also increasing the chance that they will index your site (as this in the long term encourages backlinks to your related content). One way Google might identify if a webpage belongs in its database, is by checking how many links back (to the website) seem legitimate. We all know this isn’t always accurate though since sites may have high-quality backlinks without necessarily influencing anyone at all.
In plainer language…
Your website will be indexer faster with linking to your quote source because most search engines do not immediately add new sites. The number of links back from other websites in good standing, helps the (Google) algorithm decide whether or not your website content deserves an appearance on page one (or closer to it) for keywords related to yours, so it’s important that these reputable sources are linked too!
Experiment With Sharing on Article Directories
Three that come to mind are:
You can also get your article posted on other article directories and then link back to your website. There are many sites like Ezine Articles that allow you to upload content for free, but have certain criteria about what kind of articles they will accept; however, this one is arguably best among them all!
This is a slow process to bring to fruition (in your traffic building initiative), but in my opinion, is worth the effort.
By stacking your content in other places (in addition to your website), you are increasing both your website’s visibility and SEO power. When people want information about a specific topic or product from an online source they will often go to various pages before finding what’s best suited for them; this process helps improve rankings by ensuring all relevant links lead back towards one main page (on your website), rather than every single piece within existence having its own link which could be quite bulky if done extensively – making it easier instead just have many small ones scattered across different websites so there isn’t as much spammy traffic building up!
The purpose of search engine optimization (SEO) is to improve your ranking with the major engines like Google, and Bing, etc! This means you will be able attract more traffic from these “article directory” sources which can lead directly back into increasing sales for yourself.
The other goal often associated with SEO’s are article boosts – where content you publish on the article directory website might actually end up being ranked higher than those on your own website likely because you’ve written them well enough to have added some luck getting noticed – This is terrific! Why? Because the higher ranked article will get more traffic, and when people click through to your website – You win!
This gives you an opportunity to not only gain new visitors from outside sources, but keep old ones too! This grows your visibility and your readership.
Make Sure Your Content is Good Quality!
If you want to generate traffic and make your site more visible on the web, have a professional writer creating your content articles. This is easier said than done – but if done correctly (and I’m sure that with enough time anything’s possible!), this will be one of more effective ways in getting people curious about what we’ve got going at your website! A professional will be able to write your content in an appropriate tone of voice, and will provide unique, quality content, specifically for you.
A professional content writer can help keep your website content initiatives flowing smoothly – It takes time for your website to earn a name, and even if you’re not considered an expert in the field yet – you can start by putting yourself out there with the helpful advice or materials your writer creates, that will answer people’s questions.
Your content should be helping others – in other words it should be client focused! Not “you” focused.
Helping others is a surefire way to get noticed by your audience. People are more likely to link back to your website, recommending and sharing your articles they have found helpful – all of which will help increase traffic for you site!
The best part? You can offer your visitors (for example: potential clients) free-of-charge because it’s in line with what people might need anyway…and when someone does come looking from outside sources like search engines, social media sites, article directories, etc. there’ll always be an answer available at no cost thanks entirely too your well written content.
Analytics are Key to Finding Opportunities
Use analytics to track website traffic. If you want the best insights into how your site is performing, then it’s time for some serious metrics analysis! There are many ways that businesses use these numbers and they can help with improving certain aspects of business like content strategy or marketing campaign effectiveness by giving specific details on what works well (and doesn’t).
To get the most out of your website, you need to know how many people visit and what they do while on it. There’s a few different ways for analytics – each with its advantages in terms or detail that can be tracked depending on whether it’s something like visitors’ demographics or behavior patterns across various visits over time such as frequency per day / weekend, etc.? You also might want information about which pages these individuals were viewing so if any one thing didn’t work well there could possibly be an issue elsewhere instead!
In addition we can see here that while users can disable Java script in their browsers, the effect would be negligible. Google Analytics is the most popular analytics software out there, but you can use others too. If you’re thinking of an alternative (there are many), you should have a very compelling reason for consideration for doing so.
To add a bit more perspective…
Google analytics provides us with detailed information about how our website is being used. This includes what people are clicking on and where they’re going, which can help make any changes or additions you want to make more obvious (to see)!
Some websites choose not go through this process because they don’t want other companies gaining information about what customers do when visiting those sites – but most people seem to feel some other analytics services provide enough data without having even more user sessions captured by an external source like google. Of course we’re also talking about privacy here (and there are ways you can help your analytics to obfuscate some data.
Take Advantage of Keyword Research (Long Tail Keywords)
Keyword tools can be one of the most important things that you do. First, decide what keywords people might use when they want to look for your product or service – this will help with ranking in search engine results pages (SERPs).
Keyword research tools are a must for any marketer looking to take their business online. The first step is deciding what keywords your audience is using to search – Or what keywords you want to rank for, and then using those terms in your content so it shows higher up in Google when, they do an search!
I specifically prefer long-tail keywords as they are better able to target interested audiences, often with lower competition.
What are “Long-Tail” Keywords?
A long-tail keyword is a word or phrase that is used to describe what someone is looking for. It is different from a short keyword, which is a word or phrase that people use to find something quickly. An example of a short keyword would be “apple.” An example of a long-tail keyword would be “red delicious apple recipes.”
As you can see, using the keyword “apple” places your content in immense (less focused) overwhelming competition. Whereas “red delicious apple recipes” is pretty specific, less competitive and likely better targets the audience you’re appealing to.
Long-Tail Keyword Tools
Here are some of the resources I’d suggest using (some are paid tools, others are free):
There are several tools available, the above are presently some of the more common ones I see being used.
Keyword tools are a must-have for any SEO campaign. You can’t just rely on luck, you need to plan your strategy and decide what keywords will best represent the products, services, or content that your website offers.
The goal of the keyword research process is to find actual keywords that people really use when they’re looking for your website content. To do this, you initially need a wider range of words and phrases because there’s no one-size fits all! The more perspectives involved in finding these terms, results in providing you with better results.
Doing this gives you an initial pool of words that you can then dig down to find the long-tail keywords. I should reiterate, this way you can find keywords that are really specific and long-tail phrases using the above tools or with others, like Google’s Keyword Planner – whichever works best in terms of workflow!
Do You See the Benefits of Long-Tail Keywords?
- Competition is lower.
- Long-tail keywords tend to foster more engagement
- Search volume using long-tail keywords is lower.
- But… It’s easier to rank higher in search engines.
- Lot’s of pages ranking higher, builds your traffic!
Use of long-tail keywords provides a better growth curve for your website over time!
Don’t Engage in Keyword Stuffing
Keyword stuffing is when you put a lot of keywords into your content to try and make it rank higher in search engines.
This is bad, really bad.
It’s a sure way to get your site penalized and not rank in search engines for anything at all! Search engines like Google, etc.
This is why WordPress plugins, like Rank Math help by letting you know the keyword density of each page of content you publish on your website – It helps you avoid using your keywords too much (or too little).
I generally strive to keep my keyword density between 1 – 2%. Additionally, plugins like this can also work with your keyword research initiatives as well.
Do Not Reuse Content From Other Resources
Search engines are about provided references to unique content that people are searching for.
- Don’t steal content from other websites or sources.
- Don’t use free articles (the same ones are posted on tons of other websites).
- Don’t use PLR (Private Label Rights) content (again, tons of others use them too – so you get lost in the herd).
- Don’t reuse content from other sources, even with permission – It won’t perform well for you (as you’d not be providing original content).
It’s okay to use quotes / snippets from other websites (when you’re describing something relevant), but be sure to link back to the original!
Put Your Energy into What’s Working!
You might have started your website with the best of intentions, but if it’s not attracting visitors and getting results then you’re likely wasting time on something that doesn’t matter. Before long those hours start adding up so stop dreaming about what could’ve been – take action now!
You need to know which part your website works best, and make adjustments accordingly so you can get more traffic with less trouble.
Tools like Google Analytics can help you see what’s working and where. Concentrating on that will give your website more visitors, even if it seems like the less popular pages might get more clicks at first glance.
So – The analytics on your website may be telling a different story than you expected.
Here’s a simple example…
If you assume the most popular pages would be reviews for laptops (on your eCommerce website) , you may be surprised if analytics show you your blog posts receive the most visits than the laptop reviews.
Common sense, focus on the blog posts (which include links to your ecommerce pages). This way your blog works as a great marketing tool to drive and help convert your visitors!
As a secondary objective, the analytics also suggest the need to adjust your review pages (but still use your blog to drive traffic to various pages on your website).
Speaking of “what’s working”, within analytics, these are the numbers I focus on:
Time spend on a page.
Analytics show how long people spend on each page of your website. This can help you figure out what people are interested in and what they are not. You can then use this information to make your website better (as you’ll know what content seems to capture and hold interest).
This tells you how many people left your website right after they got there. It is important to know this, because it means that the page they landed on isn’t very good and people don’t like it. You should make changes on the page!
Exit pages tell you how many people who surf to a specific page and then leave. If this number is very high, it suggests that specific page isn’t as good. You will want to change it so that more people stay on your website.
If you see a lot of people coming back to your website, it means they like your website.
Pages per visit.
Analytics show how many pages people visit on your website. This can help you figure out what people are interested in and what they are not. You can then use this information to make your website better.
Conversion rates show how many people who visit your website do what you want them to do, like buy a product or sign up for a service. If you see low conversion rates it means that people don’t like what you are offering so you should change it.
There are lots more analytics I consider, but for a very quick snapshot, the above are what I look at initially.
Consider Gratis Offers as Part of Your Website Marketing
Giving out free samples is a great way to engage with your customers and create lasting relationships. You could also provide a free ebook on how-to complete simple tasks, advice, or guides that are available for everyone!
Real estate websites for example, could give away home selling guides about how to maximize property value. Asking for contact information could have a couple pitfalls. Contact information is commonly used to send newsletter, but as we saw already, sending newsletters is not necessarily the best approach for all websites. What’s more… In and age of privacy sensitivity, giving away things on condition of providing contact information, can send your visitors to other websites (where they get the same of better for free).
Here’s the rub… Don’t attach strings (then it’s not really “free”). Giving something for nothing is a winning strategy that can help you get more followers on your website. People love free stuff and will spread the word about what we’re giving away, which means new visitors who just want our goodies! They’ll also likely add a backlink to your valuable website content.
Using freebies to help generate interest in your website is a great way to get more visitors on-board with what you have going on. And the best part about giving something away for free? Again, people will share it, which means over time you’ll build tons of new potential customers!
Use Online and Offline Advertising
Marketing your website (business) is not an option, it’s a necessity. The only way around this crucial component of any startup company would be if you had enough investors or patrons who were willing to foot the bill for advertising, but even then there’d still need some form of marketing campaign in place.
Without visitors and customers none whatsoever can thrive! It doesn’t matter how big or small, your budget might start out at either high or low levels; every new entrant has their work cut out just getting noticed by visitors and consumers, let alone gaining traction among them which often times means investing wisely on things such as branding.
Marketing can take many forms and will depend on what you’re trying do with your website; whether it’s online advertising such as Google Adwords campaigns (which I do recommend at times) , offline fliers handed out at events like festivals where people are already looking for the things you provide; and much more!
One of the most popular ways to advertise online is through Google Adwords. The system offers space for advertisers and it’s up them what kind of advertisement they want, like pop ups or banners; however there are certain things you should know about this particular service before signing on the dotted line!
A quick search will show that many people have had bad experiences (good ones too, of course) with these types of advertisements showing up anywhere from your homepage, across all different pages, which can really disrupt a browsing experience, not just because its an interruption – but also due to an upward spiral effect where each time someone bounces away from your site it costs money (for the ad that brought them to your website in the first place) and thus might make you want to reconsider.
Nevertheless… Online ads are a great way to bring (targeted) visitors onto your website through either keywords, demographics or geographical-based advertising; but it needs to be handled with care because the last thing you would want is to drive away customers who happen upon your website because the ad is not quite as targeted as it could be. This is why it’s very important to ensure your Google Ads are well written, targeted, to your specific niche.
So what does this mean in “plain language”?
Google Adwords are good when you advertise your website, because you can put ads on other websites. You can also target by keywords or category of people you want to see the ad, like age group, gender, location, interests etc.
Just as important as online advertising is offline advertising; this means handing out flyers at events so that people stop long enough to read what’s on them and maybe even take them away to read later.
I’ve had great results with this; for example I used it back when I was promoting another website (that specialized in business websites) at business events throughout the area. The event organizers were often very happy that I helped spread the word about what was going on and thus they would come by my booth to take a look.
After some time people would remember me and then ask for flyers that they could hand out to their co-workers, friends, family etc. This means that you don’t need to spend money on placing ads in newspapers or on radio advertising; but rather use the power of your direct contacts (and perhaps online social media) to get the word out about your new website.
As we know, more people continue to use websites like LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, etc. to chat with friends and family; share stuff they find interesting (or not); and even meet new people online. Taking advantage of social media is a great way to spread the word about your website; it’s also easy to create social media accounts for your site and give them some of your visual branding as well.
Practical Power Tip! – One great tool that can help you with the graphic branding of your social media accounts is: Snappa. It has templates you can edit for many of the social media platforms you might use (so you can ad in your website logo, etc.)
However, social media is also, in my opinion, one of the most overused promotional tools out there which makes it difficult to stand out from all the other people who are using it too; but if you do manage to come up with a good strategy that brings visitors to your website, then I say go for it!
Speaking of overused… One tool (as of this post), that I find many of my clients are not using, or not even aware of is Quora – This is often underused by people, who could really benefit from the extra targeted traffic you could drive back to your own website.
Grow Your Brand, Keep it Consistent.
Building a website is not just about building an online presence and coming up with creative content. It’s important to establish your brand from the start, so that you ensure a consistent standard as moving forward. This makes it easier for your audience to identify your website locally, as well as across other platforms (such as different social media channels).
My best advice is to try and look at your website as a “business”; all the different components that make up what you do. When it comes to marketing, try and align those parts – such as offline ads with online ads (you might want to use slightly different wording but similar graphics so they continue to reinforce your brand)
Also, don’t forget about your website or blog’s tagline – this is what people are going to see in the search engines when you do start ranking for certain keywords. It makes sense to keep it related to your business, so that people know what they’re looking at when it pops up in the search results.
Another thing in regards to branding is to make sure that the different parts of your business are in sync. In other words, if somebody likes a certain aspect of what you do – make sure they know how to find out more about that specific area of what you do! If you have a blog for example, that is doing very well and bringing people back to your site then try and advertise that (perhaps on top of your mobile-friendly webpage). This way, you can encourage visitors to continue browsing on your website and maybe even sign up for your newsletter.
Building your brand takes time, but it is worth the investment. You have to set expectations and make sure meet them – Every day! For example if you publish eight posts a month to your blog (or more), You will need to keep this schedule in play. The same goes for posting to your social media platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, etc. – Even during vacation periods! This will help cultivate an authentic following who trusts what you create because your efforts speak louder than words ever could.
When you miss a day of posting, traffic falls immediately. This is not necessarily bad if it’s only going to be temporary; however in the long run missing too many days will have an adverse effect on your rankings, and can lead yourself closer towards losing valuable visitors rather than gaining them!
If You Fail to Plan, You Plan to Fail
When you take a break from blogging, be sure to plan in advance. There are many things that can help with this process and one of them is outsourcing your posts or having articles written in advance, and scheduled to automatically post later. Post scheduling is a common method, and platforms like WordPress have scheduling built in.
In terms of social media, WordPress has plugins that can also automate the cross-posting of your blog posts to your social media accounts. Some examples (among many) are:
- WP to LinkedIn Auto Publish
- WP Google My Business Auto Publish
- Social Media Auto Publish
- Blog2Social: Social Media Auto Post & Scheduler
Or you could use a service to keep your schedule going:
The above are suggestions for your own research, as there are way more options than I could reasonably list here.
One common issue I observe on occasion is complacency. Success is a great feeling, but it can quickly turn to complacency. If you are publishing posts regularly make sure that the quality of your work does not decrease – there should always be an originality and freshness in everything you do. This is good planning!
When you know you’re going to have some challenges, that takes your time away from your website, you can stay on top by outsourcing some laborious tasks like graphic design or content writing; this way your website won’t lose its high standard – You want nothing more than for people who visit you to feel welcomed and appreciated from start until finish every time they come back to your website.
Be sure to have a plan in place fro when your website grows bigger than you can handle – You’ll need to have a plan to either bring people on-board to help you, or outsource some duties. Your planning should be proactive, have your solutions in place before you need them (this keeps things sailing smooth for you, and seamless for your audience.
Have a disaster plan in place!
When, and where are your website backups stored? If something bad happens, you’ll want to bring your website back up as soon as possible.
Do you have a backup hosting provider, in case something goes sideways with your existing.
Do you have a professional on hand to help you through technical issues?
Ensure You use the Best Tools
Ensuring your website / blog meets the needs of your audience. Don’t fall into the trap of developing your website (or blog) to match your personal aesthetics tastes – What you “like” and what your web savvy niche audience expects can be very different.
On the flip side of this same coin…
If you want a website that looks and feels like your own, then it’s important to develop the idea (not necessarily the layout) yourself. Sure there are freelancers who can construct something quickly for cheap, but their concept of what is needed may be very different from yours or your audience’s, so this could lead into problems down the line.
When you outsource your website development, it’s important that the freelancers understand what concepts are needed for each page. Otherwise their work will not match up with standard expectations (nor would it exceed them) and they’ll just produce something without understanding its purpose.
So what do we do in a circumstance where our budget is limited more than we want – What tools are available?
So you’re looking for a designer or developer? Great! It’s not all about paying ridiculously high costs, there are plenty of CMS tools out their that will help with development. A case in point, I recently saw a website where they paid in the area of about $8000, for a solution that normally would have cost a generous $4000 (at best)! What’s more, they were using a free CMS as the engine powering their website. I’m only mentioning this to demonstrate how needless issues can arise (in this case, extra financial expenditures) can result from a lack of knowledge (or lack of consulting a professional first).
It’s no secret that I’m a fan of WordPress, because it helps startups accelerate their website launches, while allowing a modular-type approach to adding future functionality, when budget allows. I think of it this way… Why re-invent a new tool, when one is already available? If someone can provide the wheel, use it and build on it.
On top of this, WordPress is well supported with a plethora of tools that can help enhance your website, or add functionality that your audience needs. Further WordPress is well supported!
So here’s some advice… Go with something that’s more standardized, is well supported, and that gives you the freedom to add (or remove) functionality as your website growth dictates.
If you’re going to do everything yourself (make sure you know what you’re doing… “There be dragons here”), and only plug in a professional where you think you need to, then you could consider the following…
There are a number of great tools for creating a website, depending on your needs. Some popular options include WordPress (I already mentioned), Wix, and Squarespace. These tools can make it easy to create a website without needing to know coding or design skills. They also offer a range of templates and designs to choose from, making it easy to create a website that looks great.
Make Sure to Engage Content Optimization Practises
The content of your website is one of the most important factosr when it comes to growing online. Optimizing each page and making sure that they’re optimized for search engines will not only help you rank higher in SERPs, but also create an engaging experience for website visitors who want more information.
Image optimization is the process of improving on the quality and size of images to make them load faster on websites. This is done by reducing the file size of the image while maintaining or increasing the quality. Images that are not optimized can slow down a website’s loading time, which can frustrate visitors and cause them to leave.
Image optimization is important because it helps websites load faster on mobile devices. This is important because people using mobile devices may get frustrated if a website takes too long to load, and they may leave the website. Another reason image optimization is important is because Google has an initiative called “Mobile First” which means that Google will rank websites that are optimized for mobile devices higher in search results than websites that are not optimized for mobile devices.
Your Website Should Use the Best Image Format
There are a number of different image formats that can be used on websites. Some of the most popular formats include AVIF, WebP, JPEG, PNG, and GIF.
JPEG is a popular format because it offers high quality images while keeping the file size small. This makes it a good format for images that will be displayed on websites. PNG is another popular format because it offers high quality images and transparency support. This makes it a good format for images that will be used on websites with a transparent background. GIF is a popular format for illustrations and animations because it offers low-quality images while keeping the file size small.
The AVIF image format is a good format for images that will be displayed on websites because it offers higher quality images while keeping the file size smaller than others. This makes it a good format for images that will be used on websites with a limited bandwidth – Or better… To load images much, much faster!
The WebP image format is a good format for images that will be displayed on websites because it also offers higher quality images while keeping the file size smaller than others (but arguably not as good as AVIF). This also makes it a good format for images that will be used on websites with a limited bandwidth, or simply to decrease the load time of images.
So which image format should I use?
Here’s how I approach the challenge…
For illustrated images, I use PNG, and then have the website offer AVIF, WebP as the delivered format – Falling back to PNG for web browsers that don’t support the modern formats.
Similarly, for photos I use JPG, and ensure the website delivers AVIF or WebP formats (then drop back to JPG for older web browsers).
This ensures my images are fast, and do not become a bottleneck for delivery content.
Does it make sense to manually create and upload the different formats? – No!
To maintain high productivity, and offload repetitive, intensive tasks, I use a WordPress plugin named Shortpixel to facilitate all this for me.
Shortpixel is a plugin for WordPress that helps you optimize your website’s images. This makes your website’s images load faster on mobile devices, which is important because people using mobile devices (they are the majority of web visitors) may get frustrated if a website takes too long to load, and they may leave the website.
Shortpixel also helps you rank higher in Google’s search results because of the improved loading speed!
If you use this referral link: Get an extra 100 images a month free from Shortpixel – Then both of us receive an extra 100 image optimizations each month, free!
Ensure Your Website Layout is Optimized
Googlebot is a program that helps Google rank websites. You can help Googlebot understand your website better by making sure your website’s layout is optimized.
Here’s how I make sure my WordPress websites are optimized for search engines and people:
Make Sure Mobile First Indexing is Enabled
Google supports Mobile First Indexing – meaning that Google indexes, and gives higher ranking to mobile version of a website over the desktop version of a website.
Ensure your theme uses responsive design. This may it works well for your audience (real people), while also helping people find your website through search engines (like Google).
Background note: Responsive design is a web design approach that makes websites look good on all devices (desktops, tablets, and mobile phones). Responsive design uses a combination of flexible grids, layouts, images, and media queries to adjust the content to fit the screen size of different devices.
Make Sure Your Website’s Layout is Compatible With Googlebot
Google provides a description of website layouts. However, this can get really technical!
To that end, I use well supported, responsive, WordPress themes. For me the fastest theme, is also the simplest to change (if I ever need to change a theme). In this case it’s a theme named GeneratePress.
I’m not suggesting you must use this theme, rather a suggestion to explore it, as it’s arguably the fastest loading theme available at present.
Ensure Primary Content Above the Fold is Shown on Mobile Devices
Make sure the most important things on your website are at the top, so people using their phones can see it without having to scroll down. That way they won’t be frustrated and leave your website. You can use a theme that is designed to be responsive for different devices, like mobile phones, so it looks good on all screens.
Ensure Content Reaches Your Audience
If you’re like me then you’ll want your content to reach as many people as possible (not all but the majority of traffic is good traffic). To that end, this means ensuring Google indexes your content. With Googlebot currently supporting Mobile First Indexing, again… The easiest way to reach Google is via a mobile friendly WordPress theme – as discussed above.
Understanding the priority of your content will help you design your website better. For example, if you are re-designing a website’s home page, and want people to be interested – Then place that information in the top. Is your “About” information important? It would make sense not to include any less important information like an about us link at the bottom; rather put that link nearer the top where it can offer value!
The Power of Meta Tags and Schema
Meta description, meta tag, schema… Huh?
Things like this can sound technical, or “difficult”, but in reality… Not so much.
Simply put… A meta tag is an HTML (coding) tag that is used to provide information about the document. It is not used to display information on the page, but is instead used to provide search engines with more information about the content of the page.
Schema markup is a type of code that you add to your website’s HTML to help search engines understand your website’s content. Schema markup is also known as structured data.
Some Standard Benefits of Meta Tags and Schema Usage
- Ensures your website is optimized for search engines.
- Helps search engines (Google for example) better understand the content on your website.
- Get more traffic to your website.
- Be found by a wider audience.
- Helps increase sales and revenue.
Is this something we are going to create ourselves for each piece of content on our websites? If, like me, you are not a developer, the answer would be no. So how do I add the appropriate schema and meta tags.
Simple… Again, I use a plugin, in this case I default to Rank Math.
Rank Math adds all that schema stuff, and other “mumbo jumbo” for me, automatically – That’s sweet!
What are the benefits this plugin provides me?
The Rank Math plugin is an SEO plugin that adds schema markup and meta tags to your website automatically. This helps search engines better understand your website’s content and rank it higher in search results. The best benefits of using Rank Math are:
- Increased traffic to your website – Using schema markup and meta tags helps your website rank higher in search results, which means you will reach a wider audience.
- Increased sales and revenue – Higher rankings mean more people see your website, and the more people see your website, the more likely they are to buy from you.
- Easier optimization for search engines – Rank Math takes the guesswork out of optimizing your website for search engines. It adds all the necessary..
- Instant Indexing – Used by Google to describe the process of quickly adding new pages to its index. With the growth of mobile usage, it’s more important than ever for websites to be indexed quickly so that users can find them on their phones. Using schema markup and meta tags can help speed up the indexing process. Rank Math instantly submits your content to Google, Bing, and Yandex – Very nice!
- Overall, this plugin is really nice for use with WordPress websites. It takes all the guesswork out of SEO and helps ensure your site gets indexed correctly by providing the necessary code – All I need to do is write some content.
Naturally there are a ton more benefits. I prefer this modern SEO plugin over other because it does all this on the fly, it used AI for better results, and even provides me with advice while I write content.
Targeting Your Content – Using Long Tail Keywords
As with any content we write, keyword targeting (especially long-tail keywords) are important.
When you target a keyword with your website content, you are providing a signal to search engines that can help people find your content. This, in turn, can help increase traffic to your website and boost sales and revenue. Additionally, targeting keywords can help you rank higher in search results, reaching a wider audience and resulting in increased conversions.
What are Long-Tail Keywords?
Long-tail keywords, as the name implies, are keywords that have a longer search query. They usually contain three or more words and can help you better target your content to users. Using long tail keywords in your content can help:
Increase traffic to your website – This is because long tail keywords are more specific, meaning a smaller number of people use them to search for content. As a result, you can rank higher in search results and reach a narrower (pre-qualified leads) audience who is more likely to buy your products or services.
Increase sales and revenue – In addition to helping you increase traffic to your website, long-tail keywords also help convert those visitors to customers by helping you rank higher in search results. Long-tail keywords are more likely to be typed out by users because of their length, which means you have a better chance reaching the right audience who is considering your products or services.
Increase conversions – Ranking higher in search results for specific long-tail keywords can also help your website convert more visitors for these keywords. A study by Conductor showed how 34% of searchers use long-tail keywords.
Easier optimization for search engines – Since long-tail keywords are more specific, they allow you to target the content you’re creating on your website better. This results in search engines having an easier time indexing them and you ranking higher in search results.
Instant Indexing – Used by Google to describe the process of quickly adding new pages to its index. With the growth of mobile usage, it’s more important than ever for websites to be indexed quickly so that users can find them on their mobile devices. Using schema markup and meta tags can help speed up the indexing process. Note: The Rank Math plugin instantly submits your content to Google, Bing, and Yandex – Very nice!
Additionally, it should be noted that using long-tail keywords in your blog can help you rank higher in search results (for these keywords). However, the most important thing is having a high-quality website with great content.
Blogging is Vital to Your Website!
Your website should include a blog for a number of reasons, including:
- To help increase traffic to the website – This is because blog posts provide regular a “fresh” content stream, to be indexed by search engines and can help improve your website’s SEO. Additionally, blog posts can reach a wider audience through social media and other online channels.
- To help improve the website’s ranking in search results – As mentioned earlier, blog posts help improve your website’s SEO and can help you rank higher in search results.
- To help convert visitors into customers – Blog posts that target specific long-tail keywords can help convert more visitors into customers by helping you rank higher in search results. Additionally, high-quality blog content can help convince users to buy your products or services.
- To help establish yourself as a thought leader – Having high-quality blog content on your website can help you establish authority in your industry and encourage people to be more likely to buy your products or services. This is because they see you as an expert in the field with valuable information that can help them solve their problems or identify new opportunities.
Having a blog on your website is great for all of these reasons, but blogging isn’t enough. You need to be blogging consistently instead of only creating blog posts sporadically. This way, your website can compete with other websites online that are constantly adding new content. Additionally, you should consider including blog posts on your website’s homepage to give your visitors more reasons to buy from you.
What about Evergreen content?
Evergreen content is blog content that is always relevant, meaning it doesn’t become outdated over time. This type of content is great for your website because it can be shared regularly on social media and other online channels, without worrying about it becoming irrelevant. Additionally, evergreen content can help you rank higher in search engine results because it’s valuable and informative to users.
Blog Content Outsourcing vs In-house (DIY)
If you need blog content on your website but don’t have the time to do it, then you can hire someone else. They will write the posts for you and send them back – Or log into your blog and leave a draft for your approval. Be sure to include the keyword (long-tail is best) you’re targeting in your initial content request.
If you want more control over the content on your website, then you should consider doing it yourself.
Benefits to outsourcing and DIY blog content…
There are a number of benefits to outsourcing blog content, including:
- It can help save time – This is because you don’t have to write the posts yourself, which can be time-consuming.
- It can help improve the quality of your blog posts – This is because you can get help from professional writers who know how to write high-quality content.
- It can help you reach a wider audience – This is because outsourced blog posts can be shared on social media and other online channels.
- It can help improve your website’s SEO – This is because high-quality blog content can help you rank higher in search engine results.
- It can help you establish authority in your industry – This is because you’re seen as an expert in your field who can provide valuable information to help solve people’s problems.
- It can help increase traffic to your website – Blog posts that are shared on social media and other online channels will naturally attract more visitors.
Naturally writing your own blog posts (DIY) has several benefits, including:
- You’ll have more control over the content on your website.
- You can write about topics that are important to you.
- It will be satisfying knowing you wrote every word of the blog post yourself.
- You can add your own personal flair to each blog post.
- It will save you money because you won’t have to pay an outsourced writer anything.
How Often Should New Content be Published?
Once you’ve decided to start a blog for your website, the next question is: how often should blog content be published?
Ideally, you should be publishing new content on a regular basis – at the very least once a week, if not more. This way, your website can compete with other websites online that are constantly adding new content.
The reality of how often to post content is this…
There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as the frequency with which you should publish blog content depends on a number of factors, including:
- The topic of your blog
- The size of your website
- The amount of time you have to write blog posts
- How often you can update your website’s content
That said, in my opinion weekly posts are the minimum, but if you are serious, and intend to make a passive income from blogging, then publishing new blog content on a daily basis is definitely the best way to ensure that your website remains competitive.
Blog Posts – The best length for each post
There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question as well. This is because the optimal blog post length depends on a number of factors, including:
- The topic you’re writing about
- The average reading speed of your target audience
- The amount of time it takes to create a blog post
The length of a blog post is not a hard number, after all your audience contains unique people, and like any of us, we can say that “x” number of words is the magic number.
The recommended word count (that seems to be commonly floating around) for a blog post is 1000 words, but it can be anywhere from 600 to 2000+ words. In fact one of the premier (if not the best) SEO blogs published the post: What’s The Ideal Blog Post Length For SEO?
One quote in that post says:
“…According to a HubSpot study from 2021, the ideal blog post length for SEO should be 2,100-2,400 words…”
And they also bring forward John Mueller’s (Google’s Senior Webmaster Trends Analyst) Twitter quote:
“…Word count is not indicative of quality. Some pages have a lot of words that say nothing. Some pages have very few words that are very important & relevant to queries…”
What does this tell us?
Focus on the quality of your content, not on the number of words. High-quality content, that’s useful, meaningful, and all those other good things, will perform better – hands down – that content which has loads of words (just to reach a target word count).
So… If your post is 600 words or 16000 words, in reality it matters not!
Quality or quantity!
Don’t Always Use Commenting on Your Blog!
While this might sound counter intuitive, hear me out…
There was a time (long ago) before social media was a really big thing, that blogs encouraged comments, as they provided a multi-way engagement:
- Readers could comment to the author.
- The author could comment to readers.
- Readers could comment to each other.
Wait! Isn’t this what social media does today? – Yes!
Social media has taken on this roll, and that’s a good thing as your blog can reach a much larger audience. More people are discussing, sharing, etc. on social media than your blog commenting would ever achieve.
Don’t get me wrong, some blogs still enable commenting, I assume to accommodate those who still do that. But it has a serious drawback:
A brand new blog is not going to have lots of comments! And enabling commenting, advertises to readers “Here is a blog with no engagement”. Do you really want that image? Even your own blog should be auto-posting your content links to social media…
Social media is where the discussion is happening, not in your blog comment section
Common sense, leverage social media! Incidentally, this also helps with the performance of your blog, because it won’t be loading commenting scripts, and code that are unneeded (allowing your blog posts to load even faster). That’s a plus to your SEO.
Work With Search Engines – Helping Them and Visitors
Find Your Content
Without question, your website content is written for people. But here’s the thing:
We no longer live in a world where you are going out to find the people, it’s the other way around, people need to find you! Of course one big tool people use are search engines.
Help search engines find your content. Currently WordPress already creates a basic sitemap. Just add:
/wp-sitemap. xml at the end of your domain URL (for your WordPress website).
Simply put, a sitemap.xml file is a file that helps search engines find your website’s content.
A basic sitemap provides search engine with the most minimum. To that end, I use a plugin that can provide search engines with well organized sitemaps for blog posts, images, video content, etc. As mentioned above Rank Math does that too, and there are several other plugins that can better organize sitemaps for search crawlers.
When you (use a plugin to) create your sitemap(s), it becomes a simple thing to submit them to search engines like:
Also provides some inherit benefits:
- Your website will be found more easily by search engines.
- Your website’s content can be indexed more quickly by search engines.
- Increased web traffic.
- Increased revenue.
These are just the direct benefits to the site owner, you can see then, why sitemaps is essential part of any website.
Organize Content in Silos
Blog silos are groups of posts which all relate to the same topic.
One very good reason to use blog silos is because they help search engines better understand and index your content. This is because all of the posts in a blog silo are about the same topic. When you have lots of blog posts on different topics, it can be difficult for search engines to determine what your website is really about.
Another reason to use blog silos is because they can help you increase web traffic. This is because people who are looking for information on a specific topic, are more likely to visit a website that has lots of posts on that topic. And when they find your website, they are more likely to stay and browse around.
Finally, blog silos can help you increase passive revenue from the improved traffic. This is because people visiting your website who are looking for information about a specific topic, may click an advertisement, or affiliate link that is related to that topic. This means you can earn more revenue from each visitor.
How does a blog get ranked on a search engine?
A blog can get ranked on a search engine by optimizing the site for certain keywords that people are likely to use when searching for information on the topic. Additionally, backlinks from other websites can help boost the blog’s ranking. Also share your content and ensure you specify a canonical link!
What is a canonical link?
A canonical link is a way of telling Google which version of your website you want them to index. By adding a canonical link, you can ensure that your website appears higher in search results.
Do blogs increase SEO?
Blogs provide relevant information to searchers. There is no definitive answer to whether or not blogs increase SEO. However, from my personal experience, I have found that blogging regularly does help your website rank higher in search engines. This is because your website will be seen as more authoritative and relevant by search engines when it has a blog with regular content.
Quality website content is essential for your business to rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs). Additionally, if using a mailing list, niche focus, sharing your content on social media, and long tail keywords can help you improve your website’s visibility and traffic. Utilizing analytics while organizing your content silos can also help you better understand your website’s audience and direct traffic while increasing revenue. Finally, branding your business helps customers remember who you are and what you offer.
Start promoting your blog content like a pro and see the results for yourself. Work with a few of the above initiatives, then add more as you get results. And if you also need help getting started or want someone to take care of all the blog writing for you, feel free to reach out! Check out my Blog Content Writing Services and I can help you get your content written!