If you've written a blog post about a subject you already know pretty well, chances are you've written it in the most user-friendly and conversational way imaginable. If you're already doing this, then you've already put a tick in the box for search engines. 
 
The other half though is ensuring your blog posts are optimised for SEO (search engine optimisation) purposes as well as for the people out there reading them. Much like any skill, blog optimising can be improved with practice - that is, once you know the core principles to cover. 
 
SEO blog optimisation sounds daunting, but there's no coding involved to tick all the right boxes, so you don't need to learn another language! 
 
Some of the steps outlined in this article ensure when followed that your blog posts are SEO-friendly. Following these steps caters to your readers as well as the search engines. 
 
Before we begin, keep these two principles in mind before you start typing the first word of your post: 
 
A user-friendly blog post is an SEO-friendly blog post (and vice versa) 
A post does not necessarily have great content just because it's SEO optimised 
 

1. Plan and research your blog 

If you consider what information is going into your post and what it should look like at the start, you'll save a huge amount of time later on.  
 
Let's say you were a marketer considering what to write for your next blog post, it'd be worthwhile doing your research to find an exciting topic - keep a note of the URL and title.  
 
When you're ready to put the post together, take the subject and carry out keyword research to find out about the benefits the topic will present to your reader, the topics to cover within the post, and understand the objective for the post. 
 
Covering the above areas before you start writing will make things much easier when putting the content together. 
 

2. Keywords should be used (not stuffed) 

Ensuring your blog contains the target keywords that are relevant to your website and industry will put you in a good place with the search engines.  
 
What we don't recommend though, is stuffing the post full of keywords. By that, we mean going crazy including keywords just because you think you need to, making the post a difficult read. 
 
Keywords should be included in the post title, in headings and subheadings, in the main body, and towards the end in the post summary.  
 
To check that you are not keyword stuffing, head over to the keyword tool within Google AdWords and run a search for your target keyword. The results provide a list of keywords that are similar to your main keyword - include these in your post too. 
 

3. Structure your blog post 

Instead of creating a 1000 word post all in one go, it's much easier splitting the post into manageable chunks or sections. 
 
Split the post into five 200 word sections covering each topic or point. This proves useful when you don't have adequate time to compile the post in one sitting. 
 
Make good use of titles and where appropriate include your keywords in the title headings. When the structure is in place, it's much easier to come back to when you revisit. 
 

4. Use links where appropriate 

If you are writing your very first blog post, then you might not have any other posts to link to on your website that are relevant. 
 
However, adding 4 or 5 internal links to other pages on your site would be beneficial if it is appropriate to do so. 
 
Using internal linking enables search engines to crawl (discover) new pages on your website, which is an excellent way of ensuring links are included in their search index. It also helps search engines to find out what your post (or website) is about. 
 
Also adding external links to another website is good practice, especially when you are referencing an authoritative website that supports your content or provides further reading on a particular topic. 
 

5. Headings should be sequential 

When we think about optimising our blog, it's worth ensuring you follow the correct heading structure. 
 
For starters, H1 headings should only be used once, usually in the page title, which should also include your main keywords. 
 
Main sections of your post that follow the title should use H2 level headings, with H3 level headings used for subheadings and so on. Ensuring you've structured your blog well, it makes it easier to follow the mechanics to include correctly placed headings. 
 
Following these practices assists search engines by making the crawling process simpler, resulting in faster crawl rates. It also makes your post simpler for users to read. 
 

Summary 

Make use of these blog SEO best practices, and you'll soon realise the benefits they bring. Craft compelling titles, add images and videos, tweak your blog URL, share your content across social channels and ensure your content is directed towards your target audience. 
 
Keep in mind a blog is one of the most straightforward ways of improving SEO results and driving traffic to your website. 
 
If your current website doesn't have blogging functionality, why not get in touch with our friendly team to find out more about the professional and bespoke business websites we can offer. 
 
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