I know you’ve heard about it. SEO is all the buzz. But if you are like me you have gone through years of blogging without really understanding what SEO is.
Yes, I knew that SEO stood for Search Engine Optimization. But that was about it. A little over one year ago, I found out that the way to optimize my posts was through key words. I got the Yoast SEO plugin for WordPress, optimized the back-end of my blog (a different post altogether), and started making sure I had a keyword optimized in each post and that was it.
I chose my keywords just based on the topic of my post. I worked on linking with that word set, making it the alt tag for all my photos, and doing whatever else it took to make sure my post got a “green light” from the SEO plugin. (More on that later.)
I thought that was enough.
This year, I worked my way through Tabitha Philen’s course Monetize 45. Most of the information in the course was not new to me. I am doing a pretty good job on Pinterest. I’ve got the email-list-building thing going pretty good. I know how to promote my posts fairly effectively over social media.
Then I got to the lesson on SEO and noticed that she had several videos on the topic. Hmmm. I remember a client of mine suggesting that I watch those videos. Maybe I should check this out a little more. It’s been on my mind to learn more about SEO for a while. What is Search Engine Optimization? So I watched the videos.
And I found out that in order for SEO to work, you have to actually optimize for keywords that people are looking for. It doesn’t really do you any good to optimize for the phrase “Free Homeschool Printables” if only 45 people are searching for that phrase in Google. Which perhaps begs the question: What is the purpose of SEO?
That’s where I should start.
SEO-Coaching: What is The Purpose of SEO
The purpose of Search Engine Optimization is to optimize your blog for Google searches in order to bring you more traffic. When someone searches for “Free Homeschool Printables” and you have done a good job of optimizing your posts about Free Homeschool Printables, your blog should be on the first page of Google. Sounds simple, right?
The better you do at optimizing, the higher up you will show in search results. The importance of this is in improving your ORGANIC TRAFFIC. That is, people who find your website because they were searching for something specific on Google and a post you wrote was exactly what they needed. More traffic means more eyes on your message, more eyes on your ads, more revenue, etc. So Search Engine Optimization is pretty important.
SEO-Coaching: What Gives a Post Great Search Engine Optimization?
Keywords. That’s it! You find a keyword lots of people are looking for and you optimize for that keyword. Optimizing your post for a strong key word (or two) will give you great Search Engine Optimization. However, finding a strong keyword and optimizing it are two different things.
Using the Yoast Plugin I mentioned above (WordPress SEO by YOAST) will help you optimize for the keyword of choice. By using that plugin you will actually learn how to optimize your post for a keyword. You work through all of the steps to get your post a “green light” and your post is optimized. I love the plugin and it is free. It’s a great place to start.
Here are some of the ways to optimize for a key word.
Use the keyword in the name of your photos for the post. [SEO Coaching.jpg] It seems silly but it gets the job done.
Use the keyword in the “alt tag” field of your photos for the post.
Use the keyword in the text of your post.
Format the keyword in h2 (font size) as the title of a sub-section.
Link to another website with a strong article about the keyword using the keyword. I tried to do that for this post. I couldn’t find a single post about SEO-Coaching that I wanted to link to.
Make sure the keyword is near the beginning of the title.
Make sure the keyword is in the URL for your post.
Make sure the keyword is in the Meta Description for your post.
SEO-Coaching: Finding A Strong Key Word
Did you notice how I used the phrase SEO-Coaching in my title, my URL, my H2 titles? That was on purpose. Because as it turns out, each week 170 people are searching Google for the phrase SEO-coaching. And only 26 people are writing about it. The demand for this keyword is not fantastic, but it could bring as many as 700 people to HomeschoolBlogging.com this month if I do a good job of optimizing for that key word.
This post is all about optimizing your posts. But how do you find the keywords? How do you optimize your blog (not just the posts)? We are actually going to have an entire series about SEO-Coaching here on Homeschool Blogging – don’t miss it! Sign up for our newsletter list below.
[gravityform id=”2″ name=”Subscription Sign Up”]