3 Ways to Transform Your WordPress Blog into an SEO Machine

22 January 2014

Detroit: Over 80% of blogs stagnate with no traffic and few readers but the difficulty often lies with how people are invited to participate.

Simply having one doesn’t make it produce results.

What are the most efficient ways to get blog posts read?

  • Sharing on social media
  • Using an email list to distribute new posts
  • Google or Facebook advertising to drive awareness
  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Using ALL of these options is perfect, but if you can only choose one, then SEO gets vote every time.

If you have a few hours to put in, here are THREE WAYS to change your WordPress blog (or website) into a search-friendly traffic generator.

1. Install a good SEO plug-in. My favorite free SEO solution is WordPress SEO by Yoast, which makes it simple as red light, yellow light, and green light. Pretty obvious, right? But remember that setting up it isn’t useful in and of itself – and many bloggers stop at this first step. Its real power lies in understanding how to employ it properly and decide the right keywords.

2. Do keyword research. Head over to the Google Keyword Popularity Tool and devote some time in keyword research to comprehend which keywords drive the most traffic. The trick with keywords is to never presume you know which ones are best; ALWAYS research to make sure you are using popular keywords that best suit your product, service and/or blog topic.

If you use localized keywords for your SEO efforts – such as “az life coach” or “life coach in phoenix” rather than just “life coach,” you are much more likely to rank well – with the extra advantage of landing more targeted readers. This is particularly significant if you are a local business.

I advocate creating a free account on AdWords (or log-in to your account, if you have one), then search for the keywords you think are most likely to be searched. Adding your city and state will give you local search results to review, plus some great thoughts for blog posts that fit what people are seeking. Using the keywords you put in, Google will bring up a list of keywords actually searched the previous month. I prefer to export them to Excel, get rid of needless columns, rank them from most to least popular, then save the document for easy reference later.

3. Choose one keyword, then incorporate it in your post permalink, title and first sentence. If you have WordPress set to name the page URL as your post name (settings> permalinks> post name), this will automatically put the keyword in your post URL – also called the permalink. This is a vital component for SEO success.

Then, just use the default text for the “SEO title” field at the bottom of the page (which is your title plus the name of your blog), and copy the first sentence of the post into the “Meta Description” field. If good writing dictates NOT using the keyword in the first sentence (which happens frequently but is not optimal), then paste in the first blog sentence that DOES have the keyword in it, or write one that uses the keyword and describes the post in a way that people would like to read it. Put the keyword in the “Meta Keywords” field, and then you are all done.

SEO magic occurs when you spot one keyword to focus on, then put it in the trifecta of permalink, page title and page description.

Ensure that keyword is incorporated in the body of post a few times, as related and appropriate, hit publish and you are good to go.

One last note – Be certain and offer NUMEROUS WAYS for readers to subscribe. If you can’t convert them to subscribers via email or RSS and/or they aren’t seeing your new posts, odds are good they won’t think to revisit your site. Your SEO may bring them to your blog the first time, but it may not bring them back.

Read more: WordPress Web Development Detroit

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