Learn how to optimize blog posts in order to maximize exposure in Google and other search engines with the below SEO best practices for blogging.
SEO Best Practices for Blog Posts
- Adhere to Key SEO Element Character Limits
Keep search engines from truncating titles and descriptions while increasing the SEO value of key on-page elements by adhering to the following character limit guidelines.
- Page Titles: 50-60 characters
- Meta Descriptions: 160 characters
- Meta Keywords: Do not use, omit or remove
- Headings: 70 characters
- Image ALT Text: 100 characters
- Carefully Construct Page Titles
Page titles are typically not visible on the site itself and can usually be found in the web browser title bar or tab. They are often used by search engines as the title of the result snippet and play a significant role in search engine rankings.
Make sure page titles are both relevant and related to the actual content on the post. Blog post (page) titles between 50 and 60 characters long prevent search engines from shortening or cutting off the title.
- Avoid Keyphrase Optimizing Meta Descriptions
Meta descriptions are also not visible on the page and will most likely be used in search engine result snippets. Although meta descriptions are no longer used by Google as a ranking signal, they can effect click through ratios, which can in-turn effect search engine rankings.
Pro Tip! Don’t worry about optimizing meta descriptions for keyphrases, focus on usability – getting them to click!
- Meta Keywords: Just NO
Meta keywords are no longer a weighted search engine ranking signal. Use of them is strongly discouraged. Omit or remove all instances of meta keywords site-wide.
- Use Sequential Headings
Make use of short, easy to digest text headings within post content. Stick to using only one H1 and H2 class heading. Multiple H3, H4 and so on can be used. Order is important, meaning H1 before H2.
Pro Tip! Avoid duplicating headings with other headings or page titles and focus on using headings relevant to post content.
- Don’t Forget to Add Image Properties
When using an image, always fill in the associated title and ALT description fields with text that is both relevant and related to the content where the image is displayed. The majority of content management systems (CMSs) provide an interface for editing image properties.
Pro Tip! Avoid duplication and focus efforts on images that are displayed in the ATF (above the fold) portion of the post.
- Write Rich, Easy to Digest Sentences
Copy should be structured with short, easy to read sentences. Paragraphs with 2-3 sentences are ideal.
- Adhere to a Consistent Posting Schedule
Maintaining a consistent posting schedule teaches search engine crawlers how frequently the website is updated (and when to return). If you post monthly, make sure new posts go live on the same day/time each and every month.
- Link to Internal Content
Include links to key landing pages within the first paragraph of blog posts when relevant. Include 1 link per post if applicable. Link to past posts when relevant as well.
- Link to External Resources
Don’t be afraid to link to other resources on the web, especially when it makes sense. Google tends to favor pages with outbound links to external websites that are in alignment with the content focus of the originating link.