Many people start blogs because they are passionate about a topic and want to tell people about it. However, in order for a blog to be successful, we must go beyond writing about what interests us and focusing on the little things that make a big impact on SEO. Some tasks, like allowing for email subscription and verifying your blog’s URL with the major search engines, only take a few minutes but can create a huge difference in traffic, engagement, and overall growth.
All websites should have an XML sitemap and should be verified on Google, Bing, and Yahoo. Sitemaps are like a little to-do list that tells search engine spiders all the pages on your site, so they are indexed faster.
Search Engine Verification
Search engine verification is also important. Google and Bing have webmaster dashboards that allow you to verify your site, submit a sitemap, and view analytics data about your site’s users and how it is indexed by search engines.
Whether a user is searching for a blog by name or specific topic, social media profiles are always some of the top results. Blogs should have, at least, a Google+ page (with personal authorship pages set up for authors) and a Facebook page. Twitter is also useful for promoting links to new posts. Completing your profiles and keeping the news feeds updated with relevant articles, information, and blog posts will help engage readers while also showing them relevant social media profiles in search results.
Setting up an RSS feed often only takes 10 to 20 minutes, if it isn’t done automatically. Making sure your readers have an RSS feed that can subscribe to or share on social media from, you are increasing traffic and engagement, two factors that can help SEO. It should also be as easy as possible for readers to subscribe to your blog via email. Services like Google’s Feedburner can take your raw RSS feed and offer a free email subscription box to add to your blog for free.
Keyword research is a little thing that should be done before every blog post is written. Take 5 to 15 minutes and review the terms that users are searching for that causes them to come to your blog. If old posts keep drawing traffic, write more about that topic. Conversely, if users are repeatedly looking for an applicable topic, coming to your site, then leaving after only a few moments, write more content about those topics.
Kelsey Jones runs her own social media and search marketing business, MoxieDot where she helps clients grow their online presence. She was voted one of the top 100 marketers of the year by Invesp in 2009 and has worked for Yelp, Run.com, and Bounty Towels. Check her out at MoxieDot and on Twitter @wonderwall7.