by Beth Hrusch, Senior Editor at Interact Media, a business blog writing service that teaches writing tips and best practices.
Many of you who write business blogs to promote your company already know that your blog should be search engine optimized. As part of a content marketing strategy, business blogs are just another content type that can be used to get the word out, generate buzz and demonstrate your authority. So, if you want people to find them, you need help from the search engines.
However, the rules of SEO have changed over the years, in response to the increasing sophistication of search engines and the growing demand of Internet users for high-quality content that answers their needs. This means no more keyword-stuffed fluff and salesy verbiage. It also means that when you write your blogs, you need to be aware of the changing nature of SEO, and stay up-to-date with the latest wisdom.
Here are 5 SEO tips for optimizing your business blogs for better search engine rankings:
1. Research Keywords
Target your market by researching the best keywords for your business (obvious, yes!). But, when youâ€™re done choosing your primary keywords, make sure to create a list of related, secondary terms that will help search engines index your blogs properly. For example, a pet groomer might want â€œpet groomingâ€ as a primary keyword, and words such as â€œdogâ€, â€œcatâ€, â€œpawsâ€™ and â€œclawsâ€ as secondary words, to be scattered throughout the content.
These secondary keywords usually occur naturally in your text, but itâ€™s a good idea to make a mental list first, then check to make sure youâ€™ve incorporated them into your content. Without secondary keywords, your content runs the risk of being indexed improperly.
2. Choose a Good Title
There are varying opinions regarding what kind of title is best for SEO purposes. Some feel that a clever, catchy title grabs more attention, while others like to stick to strictly SEO optimized titles for business blogsâ€”ones that include the keyword but can be dull. The ideal solution is, of course, to combine both concepts. The best business blog titles are both attention-grabbing and search engine optimized.
Titles are important to the search engines, so spend some time on them. Interesting titles, and ones that are SEO-friendly, are not mutually exclusive!
3. Update Your Business Blog Regularly
Many people still donâ€™t recognize that search engines reward sites that produce fresh, updated content. The nature of blogging lends itself to this, but if you think that posting just once to your business blog every couple of weeks is going to help you rank, you may be disappointed with your results. Yes, blogging takes time and maintenance. Many companies assign the business blog to an employee or group of employees who can continuously product new material. Others outsource their blogs to professional copywriters.
Whoever is responsible for your company blog, they should be aware that the more often a blog is updated with new content, the more often the search engines will come around to index you. Each post is another opportunity for you to rank for your keywords, and fresh content also tells search engines that your site is active and interested in staying up-to-date, so make sure to keep up with it.
4. Generate Links
Links are the way that websites communicate, and the easiest way for search engine algorithms to judge the value of a site. So, link building is a crucial part of any online marketing strategy. How do you get high-quality â€œauthority sitesâ€ to link to you? The answer is simple– create interesting, useful and thought-provoking content (see below).
Linking is a two-way street, so link to other good sites often. While this may seem counterproductive to your own marketing efforts, it actually helps establish your authority because it not only boosts your blog’s SEO power, it also shows that you are up on the latest news and topics written by other bloggers in your industry and willing to share what you know with your readers.
Also, itâ€™s crucial that you set up an RSS feed for your blogs, so readers can subscribe and share your posts more easily.
5. Offer value
In other words, write great content! All the SEO tips in the world wonâ€™t help you if your content is not helpful to your readers. It takes time, but when you keep producing quality blog posts that address your readersâ€™ needs and concerns, offer tips and solutions to their problems and demonstrate your knowledge and authority, you will rank naturally, through such vehicles as social media, RSS recommendations, back links and bookmarking.
As we speak, Google is implementing over 500 improvements to their algorithm. Is your business blog ready for the new face of SEO?