Your blog rocks. You write with passion and want to share your experiences with others. As a content creator you wish it was all you could worry about. No matter how good your writing is and how people value your perspective there is one thing that you can always make better. That is your SEO. SEO is a word that makes every blogger cringe. Some of you might argue that building an active readership is more important than SEO tips (I do agree with that), but it is always necessary to give equal importance to SEO. Especially that the very basic SEO tips and adjustments are within your reach and do not require money and time. Search engines like Google constantly roll out algorithm updates like Panda, Penguin, EMD(Exact Matched Domain) and you can never be sure which one will strike your blog. Google continues to promote valuable, useful content

so follow these 6 simple rules to on top of the game.

Quality, Not Quantity

 search engine optimization

Search engines like google promote useful content. You must have heard the phrase "Quality Content". But what exactly is the quality content? It is the content people really look for and find useful. The one that matches the keywords they look for and provides them with the necessary information. As you know Search Engines are always busy digging through high quality content. So, if you maintain good quality in your blog posts, your blog will be noticed by the crawlers and bots and will give much importance to your blog in the SERP, before you can say Search Engine Results Page. Quality also means readability – this you can test with one of the tools I write about in this post.

Keyword Research

search engine optimization
You want to write a post that comes from your heart and share your unique perspective. Keyword research does not mean you have to compromise your integrity. It means you have to find the keywords that match people's search and expectations. I know Keyword Research is not an easy task as you need to spend a lot of time on it to spot on the correct keyword. But it surely is worth it. Specific keyword research makes your blog posts attractive for those who look for that exact keyword. There are a lot of keyword research tools available. I use Google Adwords Keyword Tool and get most of the data there. Once I target the keyword I use SEO by Yoast WordPress plugin to check the density of keyword in my blog post and to see if it is included in all the important elements like: Title, Headings and meta description. I never exaggerate. It is not about stuffing keywords everywhere, but about using them wisely and intentionally.

On-page and Off-page Links

search engine optimization

Every blog post becomes and interactive hyper-text. Unlike printed text, the ones we read in the internet allow us to usefully link content. That is an important feature that helps your reader become more engaged. Make sure to include links (useful ones) within your text. I link to other posts and outside sources to make the experience more immersive and full. Google examines the useful links and gives you extra points for that. But only if the links make sense. Same goes to off-page links. You may link to other blogs and other blogs should link to you it there are relevant texts that call for that. Your travel experience can be quoted by someone from a friended blogger and vice versa. It is all about making sense with those links however.
Actually backlinks should come naturally, but it is difficult. One of the best ways to get them is to do some guest blogging. Remember No Paid Links. They may seem an easy solution but are a very hazardous one. Google can totally ban your page for that, so it is not worth the risk.

Your Visual Content Matters

Once you place the Keyword which you are targeting in the Post title, Permalink, Post description and if possible in the first and last sentence of the blog post, it is time to check how your pictures and other visuals are described. Most files on your camera are automatically saved as IMG_123 or something similar. Make sure to name your files according to what they present. When you add such well described media to your blog post, make sure to also add relevant description and alt tag (alternative description). It would be best to include the relevant keyword in both.

Less is more

Remember to keep things simple. Text should be not only informative but also simple and have a high readability rank. You can check this with Hemingway or with SEO by Yoast plugin. This plugin is my favourite one as it makes sure all your SEO requirements are fulfilled once you simply put your text in WordPress text editor. Also make sure to update all the plugins you may have and get rid of the ones you do not use.

Social Media

You might not be a great fan of Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or Google Plus, but remember that once your content is shared on those, it automatically gives your blog extra power. It does help. So try to find your favourite platform and share the useful content with your audience. Every "like" and every "+1" makes your blog grow. I advocate Google Plus as it gives you access to segmented communities with people who actually share your interest and will find the things you post useful.

As I mentioned Search Engines like Google frequently update its algorithms in order to uncover the quality content. One trend will prevail – Google will promote that good, informative and quality content that matches people needs. You do not need to change the way you blog. Just make sure you follow my 6 tips. All you need to to do is to be updated time to time to escape those Penguin kicks and Panda slaps. And learning about SEO tips always helps.

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