So, you have started blogging. You have been writing generic blog posts, which are 500 to 800 words? I am sure you must have noticed that these blog posts aren’t doing so well on Google search. Actually, it is not easy writing blog posts which rank better on google search and which will drive you loads of organic traffic.
Writing random generic blog posts won’t help you grow your audience nor help you leverage your blog as a money making tool. To be able to succeed at blogging you need to rank better on Google. This alone will help you increase your audience and go to the next level. This is possible if you can consistently start creating high-quality content and practice a strategy which will help you reach your intended audience.
In this post, I will explain how to effectively write amazing blog posts which will make it easy for you to rank better on google and other search engines.
A Complete Guide To Writing Blog Posts Which Rank Better On Google
#Step 1 Understand the essentials of a blog post
Before you even write a blog post, have you ever thought of what are the essentials of a blog post? Let us see. What factors make a blog post stand out? Pay attention:
A Killer blog title or headline: Please note, a blog title or the headline is the first thing your readers notice, so if that is lacklustre, then you have lost the plot. Always, make your blog title engaging and interesting.
Images can make or break a post: In this times of visual appeal, a blog post can perform better only if it has some images to make it visually attractive. Don’t just write boring text, get some images into your post too.
The opening sequence: Your introduction is a great place to further capture the interest of your reader. Make this count. Your reader needs to know here why they should read your post.
Main content: Before I talk about the main content, Let me just mention; if you are doing a list style post it makes sense to give a small lead to the main content rather than just going to the list. However, if it is a general post, your main content should consist of your important points neatly divided into paragraphs, subheadings etc.
Closing: An ideal blog post will have a conclusion, this is where you re-affirm the purpose of the post and what it wants to achieve. Helps the reader get clarity in the end. Here, you can invite your audience to take action, in terms of commenting or sharing.
Keep the comments section active: The comments section of your blog will act as the discussion board for your blog post. Keep this open as long as possible. This is a great place to connect with your audience and understand their views.
For each of your posts, it would ideal to follow this structure. This will make your blog post have a clear approach which will help in seamlessly taking your reader through the paces.
#Step 2 Learn the On-page SEO process for blog posts
I have covered on-page SEO techniques in the past, where I have spoken about a more general approach to on-page SEO. But here we will take a look at how specifically we need to implement on-page SEO for blog posts.
One of the main aspects of on-page SEO is to improve the user experience. The reader is the most important factor. The key factors of on-page SEO include the value of content, keywords and user experience. In these 3 factors, the efficacy of keywords will determine the success of your blog post on search engines.
Keyword usage: Although, it is important to use primary keywords in your content, using them too often is a cause for concern. Keyword stuffing is considered bad practice and can attract severe penalties from search engines. Keywords should be ideally used in the following format;
- The title
- The URL
- The content ( 1% to 2% of the total words is optimum)
- Alt Image
Keyword research: After understanding keyword usage, it is essential to know how to research for the right keywords for your blog post. Keyword research is critical for the success of your on-page SEO. Keywords research gives you an understanding of what your audience is searching for on search engines. It will also tell me the volume of the search for you to ascertain if it is a good keyword to go after.
One of the best ways to research keywords is by using the Google Adwords Keyword Planner tool or SEMrush, While Google Keyword planner is free, SEMrush has a trial period offer and after that is paid.
Now, for example, if I am writing a post on Adsense alternatives or understanding how I can rank for Adsense alternatives, all I have to do to know what keywords to choose is by keying in Adsense alternatives in the SEMrush keyword overview field and click search. This will give me a list of keywords I can use in writing blog posts to rank better on google.
These keywords and related long tail options should be used in the following areas to strengthen your on-page SEO for the blog post:
- Title tag
- Meta tag
- Blog content
- Image alt text
If these steps are followed properly then you would have succeeded in performing keyword research to find and use appropriate keywords and related keywords to rank your blog post better.
#Step 3 Write blog posts which are useful to your audience
A successful blog post is one which adds practical value to your reader. Generic and mundane posts are not useful and this is something the search algorithm can understand. Hence, it is imperative that you write content which is relevant and adds value.
Your blog post needs to be unique and should be high quality. To make your blog post useful to your audience it is advisable that you start maintaining an editorial calendar to help you plan your posts better. Also, follow workable post structures.
A key to a useful post is when you write a strong introduction. The points that you have to include in making a strong introduction are:
- Emphasising on the benefits of the blog post
- Summarising the value of the blog content
- reiterating the statement made in the blog title and affirming the essence of the post
Always note, the idea of a string introduction is to grab the attention of the reader. Once you are able to pique the interest of the reader, they tend to stay longer on the post, which will indirectly influence your search ranking in the long run. Some of the ways you can hold your reader’s attention in the introduction area are by-
- Asking a question
- sharing data and statistics
- comparing a situation or scenario
- Debating a point
- Focusing on a pain area
- Using an example
- Quoting a domain expert
Let us see, some examples of strong introductions.
Ask a question: It is important that you stay away from asking evident questions like ” Do you want to make money blogging? ” or ” How to get better at communicating?”. The trick is to ask a question which will lead to a discussion.
Look at this post on ShoutMeLoud, Note how the introduction has over 3 questions which evoke a discussion. This play of words, and using questions will help you quickly grab the attention of your readers and keep them hooked to your post. The longer a reader remains on your post, the better it is for your blog. Lesser bounce rate means greater chances to rank better on google.
Sharing data and statistics: Numbers have a positive effect always. Hence, a blog post which opens with statistics will engage your readers faster and better. Personally, I have written posts which cover statistics such as the one below:
Blog posts which cover data and statistics are quick to garner audience engagement like this post from Neil Patel on Quicksprout: The $100,000 Challenge: May Update, as you can see the post has more than 230 odd comments. So, wherever possible if you can share data and stats, in the introduction, it will help you ascertain that your readers will be hooked from the beginning.
#Step 4 Using the tried and tested marketing model
The effective way of selling your blog post to your readers and achieving top ranking on google and other search engines are dependent on a tried and tested methodology called AIDA, which is an acronym for AWARENESS, INTEREST, DESIRE, ACTION.
AIDA is the basis of success for any person who wants to prompt a positive action from a reader, audience or a buyer who lands on your blog, website or web page.
Your blog post should be created based on this simple principle. Let me explain.
Attention: The title and headline of your blog post should achieve this, Your reader should be attracted to your title and you should grab his attention with it. An attention grabbing title will serve as the key to a reader’s search query, which if you get right will help your blog post rank better on google and other search engines.
An example of an attention grabbing headline would be:
Interest: Generating interest is the sub- headline’s responsibility. Once you are done with the headline, focus your energies on writing stimulating sub-headlines, which will further entice the reader to continue reading your blog post. A well-written sub-headline will act as an explanatory tool for the search engine to understand better about what your blog post conveys. For example, see this lead page from John Chow’s Ultimate Dot Com lifestyle.
Here, you can notice a clear explanation of what the headline states. Which makes it clear about the focus on this landing page. Followed by an interest generating summary in the form of a sub-headline.
Desire: This is actually a simple step, all you have to do is follow the results derived from years of research. Make sue to use a bulleted list in your blog post. A limited and focused choice is highly appreciated by the readers. Also, bulleted lists in the post have known to improve social shares and increase the chances of ranking better on search. Invoke desire by creating a list of 4 to 6 bulleted points in your post and it will directly influence the following;
- Increase the number of social shares
- Improve blog subscription numbers
- Encourage free downloads
- Convert them to make a purchase
Action: Every blog post should have a call-to-action, which will ideally tell the reader what he needs to do next when he lands on your page. Having a prominent call-to-action and directing your audience to that in the fastest possible time will help you increase engagement on your blog post leading to a better social footprint. This will indirectly help rank better on google. Note: Check this amazing example of a clear and concise call-to-action on Darren Rowse’s Problogger.
#Step 5 Focus on building links to your blog posts
Building links are one of the most important aspects of improving your blog post ranking on search engines. Quality backlinks to your blog posts are highly influential in determining your rank on google. But how to achieve this effectively? Don’t worry let me explain:
Implement the broken link method: Look for broken links using Broken Link Checker in your niche. Find blogs or websites with distinct broken links by analysing the results on the software. Once you have a list of solid 404 links, you could go after these blog posts. All you will have to do is create a broken link outreach email and send it out to all the blog owners who have a broken link and tell them about the non-existent link and you can go on to make a suggestion on an alternative link ( which can be yours) to replace the dead end.
Guest blogging: One more proven method of building genuine and quality backlinks is by undertaking a strategic Guest posting activity. Reach out to authority sites in your domain and explore guest blogging opportunities. This will help you get link backs from reputed blogs and which will directly be responsible for you to rank better on google.
As a link building activity you could also explore social bookmarking and blog commenting which might help you establish link backs to your blog posts. This, in turn, will help your blog post rank better on google and other search engines.
Ranking your blog posts on search every single time can be difficult. But with a focused effort and a methodic approach as outlined in this post, you can achieve this over time. The only way you can consistently rank better on google is by focusing on delivering useful content to your reader. So, make it all about content and not about just search ranking.
I hope that anyone who has had a problem with ranking blog posts will find this information useful, if this works for you I would be glad to know about it. If you have any queries, you can just drop a comment and I will get back to you.
All Hail Content!