Every website owner would love to know what it takes to write blog content that ranks highly in Google and above their competition. This would allow them to generate more targeted traffic to their website, brand, product and/or services. There’s no better feeling than getting floods of organic traffic to your website from blog content you wrote months or even years ago.
Before we get started however, it’s important to realize that not every blog post you write will rank highly in Google. This is just the nature of the SEO landscape and rapidly growing competition. With that being said, in this article we will uncover a few areas to focus on to give yourself the best possible chance at ranking your blog content highly in the search engines.
Let’s dive in!
1. Target the Right Keywords
First things first, it’s crucially important that you target the right keywords when you craft a blog post. Too many people try to target keyword phrases that are far too competitive or broad in scope and wonder why they are buried in the search results.
Instead, use keyword research tools such as Ubersuggest, Keywords Everywhere, Ahrefs and Keywordtool.io to identify long-tail keyword phrases to go after (terms with 3, 4, 5 or more words in them). This will give you a much better chance of actually ranking highly in Google and driving more traffic to your website.
For example, say you run a dog training blog, instead of targeting the keyword “dog training”, you may want to research longer-tail terms such “how to train a dog to walk on a leash”. Now this is just an example, you will want to also look into “keyword difficulty” and “search volume” for the term you’re targeting. This will give you a better idea how competitive a given keyword phrase is and how many people are searching for it each month.
2. Create Long-Form Style Content
Once you have your keyword(s) chosen, plan to make this content long-form style of at least 1,500 words or more. Google more than ever is looking for comprehensive and detailed content to rank on page #1. Content that really covers a subject in its entirety and that is going to help people find solutions to their problems will generally perform better than “thin”, vague or shorter articles. This makes sense because Google wants to provide their users with the best possible search experience possible, therefore they will favor blog content that goes above and beyond the rest.
3. Optimize Your Copy & SEO Tags
You will also want to make sure that the copy you write is properly optimized by adding in your target phrase(s) (where appropriate) into your article. Additionally, you will want to insert internal links to point readers to other helpful posts and/or pages on your website. Do not overdue it with your copy optimization and internal linking however, this needs to be natural and only where it makes sense.
You will also want to make sure your SEO tags are optimized properly. These include your title tags, meta descriptions, header tags (H1, H2, H3 etc) and image ALT tags. If you use WordPress, a great plugin to help make this process easier is Yoast. Within these tags you will want to target your main keyword and variations of your term. Just like your copy, make this natural and appealing to both human visitors and the search engines.
4. Add Article Schema Markup
Schema markup is a snippet of code that can help Google better understand what your blog content is about. There is even specific “article” schema markup you can implement on each one of your blog posts. This can potentially aid in higher search engine rankings and may also give you a better shot at ranking for featured snippet type results. Schema markup isn’t just limited to “article” markup either, so make sure to read up on which type of markup would be best for your business.
5. Build Backlinks to Your Article
Last but certainly not least is to build quality backlinks to your specific blog content. A really powerful way to do this is via guest posting. Try researching other websites within your general niche and see if you can write a blog post for them. Many times you are allowed to add a link within your guest post which is very beneficial from an SEO perspective. While you should also be building backlinks to your homepage, be sure to construct link building campaigns geared towards certain articles you want to rank higher in Google. Overtime, the authority of your posts and website as a whole will increase.
These steps above should provide you a good starting point in order to obtain better rankings for your blog content. If you do happen to start gaining some great keyword rankings, make sure to document the process it took you to get there so you can repeat this for future content. As with anything in SEO, continue to test and remain patient. This is a long-term strategy but if done correctly can really increase your organic search presence.
Evan Hoeflich has been an Internet Marketer since 2007, specializing in SEO, blogging and content generation. He runs his website where he helps other bloggers and business owners gain more traction in the major search engines. He has a passion for coaching and sharing his Internet Marketing experience with his readers.