Ever since I first connected to the internet and realised blogs might be a great way to make some money, I was hooked on the ideal. I researched and studied and researched and studied some more. In fact, while I’m on the subject, if anyone out there is wondering how best to get started, I’d just suggest that they go for it. But, they also need to put the time and effort into learning about blogging.
In principle, blogging is incredibly easy to do. It’s simple to do it, sure. However, to do it right, that’s a completely different story.
As part of an interesting campaign that Click Consult are running, I was asked to write about my own personal experiences of blogging and SEO. That is what this post is all about – the things I’ve learnt throughout my many years of blogging. I hope that someone new to blogging will read this and find the information useful.
Never Underestimate the Importance of High-Quality Images
This is another mistake I made in the start – I used to skip on the images. I figured if my pages loaded quicker, then people would be more likely to stop at my blogs and read them. I discovered though that plain text, especially if it’s a long-form post of 750 words or more can be tedious and dry. Readers need visual stimulation and pointers that go along with the text their reading
This is why it’s ultimately important to not only have images on your blog posts, even if it’s just one or two well-chosen pictures. Even more crucially, you need to make sure that they are of the highest quality possible. This is vital, particularly as nowadays people are accessing the internet on the move on tiny screens. The bigger, sharper and all-round better the image is, the experience will be for your readers.
Alt Text for Images Should Be for Humans Not Google
As a blogger, I’ve learned for instance, that it is very important to include alt text for my images. In the days of old, like many who started blogging with a view of trying to get as many hits as possible, I tried to put my keywords into everything, including the alt text for images. I’ve since learned from these mistakes. Alt text for images is important, though it should be written for your visitors rather than search engines. It helps people who are having trouble see your images understand what the image is displaying, so keywords should only be included if they are relevant to the image.
Although it can be labour-intensive, I have also gained a greater appreciation for internal linking. This is incredibly important for providing something of a blueprint of your site to Google. It then enables them to understand the hierarchy of posts on your website or blog, meaning you can give a boost to the posts you want to draw attention to by giving them more link value.
When I first started, I never really gave as much time as I should have to tagging posts. Over the years though, even after Google stopped including them in its ranking process, I always make sure, if nothing else that my posts have suitable meta tags. Why are they so important? If I was to explain it to a newbie, I’d explain it as being a simple way for search engines to determine if the information in the metal tag relates to the content on that page.
Ideal Blog Length
That brings us to the much-debated subject of ideal blog length post. It’s interesting that people are still pushing 200 to 500-word posts, when I have noticed a real shift towards longer, beefier posts. As always quality, in terms of quantity, is important. However, it was thought that a strong 500 worder was enough to keep the attention of the average visitor to your blog while giving them enough information.
Nowadays, I’ve read that the average blog post length for page 1 rankings is around 1,500 to 2000 words. That might not make a lot of sense, but just because the word length is higher, it doesn’t mean that the content is still not killer.
My best advice would be to write as much as you need to cover a particular subject. Obviously, if you can push it into the 1000 words, that’s great. But, there’s no point adding filler just to give it a better word count, that is more likely to send visitors away.