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SEO. It can feel like a topic that is only for the more advanced bloggers out there, and the thought of trying to learn it is completely overwhelming. It’s true that it can be a bit of an in depth topic with a lot of advanced strategies, but we’re going to tackle the basics today. There are some easy, actionable SEO strategies for mom bloggers to focus on from day 1–without getting overwhelmed!
As I’m sure you’re aware, Google is a search engine whose goal is to provide its customers (those doing searches) with the highest quality, most helpful, and recent content. The blog articles that Google deems most relevant and high-quality show up on page one of search results. This is ideally where we want to be as bloggers and business owners. It can take 6 months to a year or more for your SEO efforts to really kick-in, but there are things you can do from the beginning to set a strong foundation.
The most important thing to be doing at the very beginning is creating high quality content on a consistent basis and networking within the blogging community.
How to Find Long-Tail Keywords
When you’re trying to determine keywords that will help your SEO, you want to aim for long-tail keywords. One-word keywords like ‘pregnancy’ won’t help you rank, because you are competing against millions of other blog posts that talk about anything related to pregnancy.
On the other hand, if you’re using a longer phrase such as “pregnancy ailments for first time moms” and no one is searching for that, it’s not going to drive any traffic to your post either. As you get started with SEO, I recommend using:
When you start doing keyword searches, you want to look at how often a keyword is searched for. You don’t want to choose a keyword that is too popular, because you will have difficulty ranking. The bigger bloggers or magazines will always rank highest for highly competitive keywords. Don’t get stuck on finding the perfect keywords and long-tail keywords at the very beginning.
Review your list of keywords, pick-out a few that have at least 100+ searches, and start writing your post. Don’t get stuck in the details or on writing the perfect title at this point. Create a post title that you think people would type into the Google search bar based on the keywords you found.
Write for Readability and User-Friendliness
One of the biggest mistakes you can make as you get started with SEO is to keyword stuff paragraphs to the point that your post is difficult to read and your readers lose interest. It is ideal to have your long-tail keywords in your first paragraph, but you want to craft your paragraph in a way that you fluidly integrate your keywords.
Your blog post should be written for your audience, not for your Google ranking. For example, you’re writing a post on natural ways to help a baby fight a cold. What are some words or phrases that come to mind when crafting a blog post?
- Runny nose
- Stuffy nose
- Sore throat
- Difficulty breathing
- Help sleeping
- Essential Oils
- Vapor Rub
- Saline solution
- Neti pot
Doing an exercise like this can give you plenty of keywords to work with as you start to outline your blog post. Google likes longer blog posts, so maybe you turn this into a list of 25 ways to help a baby with a cold naturally rather than 5 ways. Having a longer word count can help you integrate more keywords that can help you rank with Google in the future.
Find Your Niche and Niche Down Even More
So many mom blogs are lifestyle blogs that contain multiple different topics that are related but not highly specific. Google doesn’t know exactly what your blog is about when you talk about a wide variety of topics. That doesn’t mean you can’t rank, it just means it might be a bit harder. You may be tempted to talk about recipes, clothing, breastfeeding, and travel, but when someone arrives at your blog, will they know what you’re an expert in? You’re able to better serve your audience if you are more concise in the topics you write about.
5 Things to Do in Each Blog Post for SEO
So now for some actionable items you can do for each blog post as you get started with SEO. Here’s where I suggest putting your attention: First and foremost, download the Yoast SEO plug-in. This is a free plug-in that shows you a red, yellow, or green rating for how well you are doing with SEO for a particular blog post. A green light doesn’t necessarily mean that your SEO is perfect in Google’s eyes, but it means you’re off to a good start. However, if you are stuck at a yellow light, just post your content. Done is better than perfect.
1- Header and Subhead Tags: We already talked a little bit about post titles earlier, but you also want to consider your headers and subheads. Using H2 and H3 headers and subheads allows Google to understand the main points of your article and whether or not it is relevant or useful. You want these headers and subheads to be related to your overall targeted keywords.
2- Permalink/Slug: The permalink, otherwise known as a slug, is the string of text at the end of your blog post’s link. So this post is https://www.letstalkmombusiness.com/seo-basics-mom-bloggers. When you’re drafting a blog post, you can find this under the post title. You are able to edit this to contain your keyword phrase.
3- Meta Description: Having the Yoast SEO plug-in installed will make this a snap. The meta description is what shows up under your blog post title when your post pulls up in Google search results. You want your meta description to be compelling and to concisely describe what your post is about so readers want to click through.
4- Keyword Phrase in Picture Titles: When you upload a picture into your blog post, you’ll be given the chance to title your photo. Usually a standard title is shown like ‘img001.jpg.” You want to change this so it reflects your targeted keyword phrase. Going back to our post example on ways to naturally help a baby fight a cold, you may title your image something like “saline spray for baby colds.” Don’t overthink this, just make sure it relates to what you’re talking about.
5- Keyword Phrase in Alt-Text: Alt text can be add when you upload a photo to your post as well. Typically, alt text is used to describe what is being seen in a photo so that Google knows what the photo is about. You want to carefully craft your alt text to include keywords that are most often searched for on Pinterest. When someone pins your photo to Pinterest to save your post, the alt text is what shows up as the pin description in Pinterest. At the end of the day, the most important thing you can do is get your post out into the world, with or without perfectly executed SEO.
A Few Bonus SEO Tips
- Pay attention to your site speed. This is an important factor that Google considers for your SEO ranking. Two great ways to keep your site moving quickly:
- WP Supercache- A caching plug-in that helps your site load faster.
- TinyPNG.com or TinyJPG.com- You can upload your photos in both PNG and JPG format, and this site will compress them so the files are smaller. This will help prevent large photos from slowing your site down.
- Submit a sitemap to search engines. There is a plug-in called Google XML that makes this easier. Submitting a sitemap makes your site more search-friendly.
- Mobile Responsiveness. Most people are using their phones to read your blog posts, so you want to ensure that the theme you choose is mobile responsive. Most are, but it’s best to double check. You’ll occasionally find free themes that do not have mobile responsiveness.
I hope that this gives you the confidence to get started with SEO and decreases feelings of overwhelm. The biggest factor in Google SEO ranking is still blog traffic, so share to social media, share with friends, and get moving on your Pinterest strategy!