In this eighth installment in our how to start a blog challenge, we talk about turning to SEO. Good blogging and SEO go together like peanut butter and jelly, so optimized content marketing naturally warrants incorporating SEO best practices into every step of the process.
SEO optimization does vary by industry, so depending on your goals for your content (thought leadership vs. building your local SEO presence, for example), you’ll employ different methods of searching for keywords.
While we aren’t SEO experts around BlogMutt, we’ve found that arming yourself with the right tools to educate and keep you up-to-date on search engine algorithm changes and keywords that rank low in competition and high in relevance are essential to ensnaring the right audience.
So, without further ado, let’s talk about keyword research and SEO, and how to apply them to your blog correctly.
1. Invest in an SEO/keyword research tool; read up and learn about it.
Now that you’re a well-oiled machine when it comes to getting blog posts done, the next step is to be more strategic with your blogging before we get any further.
By investing in an SEO/keyword research tool, you’ll be able to suss out the keywords you should target to make the biggest impact on your rankings on search engines.
But where to start? Moz and SEMRush are the leaders in the industry and are both services we’ve used in the past. Both are stellar, thorough, and a great user experience. That’s not to say you’ll be able to get fully up to speed in either overnight, though. Like anything worth doing, learning the basics of SEO will require your energy and concerted effort. Luckily, both Moz and SEMRush have done a great job with customer education to bring you into the fold quickly.
The other big thing to highlight here is that you will need to actually invest in one of these tools. There may be a free trial period, sure, but trust me, the investment in a quality tool to ensure your content is giving you the most bang for your buck is crucial.
If you need more easing in, but are interested in what other tools are out there, check out our ‘15 Best Tools For Starting A Business Blog‘ or Moz’s super-nifty Keyword Explorer.
2. Yes, of course: write four blog posts and delegate four.
You content manager, you. How boss. Productivity on lock.
3. Keep the ideas flowing by adding 10 more ideas to your running list.
Now that you have a keyword tool at your disposal, start using a column on your editorial calendar ‘Ideas’ tab for keywords to associate with each topic.
Or, wanna kill two birds with one stone? Check out this content hack, which combines performing keyword research and finding blog ideas at the same time. Why expend that time twice, especially if doing both at the same time makes it all a bit easier? 🙂
This month’s a wrap. Keep truckin’ away on that content, building your blogging Rome to its strongest, most unshakable self. You’re getting there. Head back here next month for the final installments in the challenge.
(Want a preview of the rest of the months? Or just a printable checklist to keep you honest? Download or print the full guide here.)