If you’ve been wanting to lean how to write blog posts for SEO AND conversions, you’ve come to the right place.
There are so many blog posts out there that teaches people how to write SEO blog posts, but the advice generally stops once an internet searcher lands on the post you’ve published to your website.
I, personally, think it’s extremely important to think about conversions, too. And not after you’ve written the post — before the outline is even created.
You need to know what information you plan on presenting to your readers and why they even care about the topic you plan to write about. And then, once you have that information, you need to do strategic keyword research, create a content brief with an outline of your ideas, do the writing and editing, and make sure all the technical SEO best practices are addressed before you hit the publish button.
Want the exact recipe to write a strategic and SEO-friendly blog post? In this episode of Talk Copy to Me, I’ll share exactly how to prepare, research, outline, write, edit and publish an SEO blog post that not only attracts your ideal clients, but helps move them to convert.
Want to know how to write SEO blog posts? Here is what Erin wants you to know
How SEO and conversions go hand in hand
Why you should understand your target audience and their search intent
How a content strategy should rule all individual blog topics
How to do keyword research and choosing the right keyword phrase
The importance of creating a content brief to organize your thoughts and goals
How to outline your blog post’s introduction, conclusion, and supporting points
How to write blog posts for SEO using the content brief
How to edit the post for clarity, messaging, and to address tech SEO needs
The importance of using relevant images and optimizing their size and alt text
Other podcast episodes and resources mentioned in this episodes:
Want to make SEO even easier for yourself? Grab the SEO Website Checklist for FREEEEEEEE and you’ll always know exactly what you need to do when you create a new website page or blog post
Grab my course Blogging Foundations now while it’s on sale for only $37. Updates are being made behind the scenes and bonuses are being added and the updated course will be delivered on September 5, 2023. But make sure to buy it before that date because the price will increase back to $97 once that date rolls around!
Quotes about how to write blog posts for SEO from your host, Erin Ollila
“In order to know what to write a blog post about, you really need to know how to build a strategy, where these topics that you create are relevant, and they’re interlinked between each other so people can continue their search throughout your website.” – Erin Ollila
“As a creator…I don’t want you to think that this is a solitary, standalone process. I want you to think about your audience and invite them in, because they are playing a role in the success of the content you create.” – Erin Ollila
“The goal of searching for information on the internet is usually to achieve a specific outcome or conversion.” – Erin Ollila
“No matter what efforts you take from an SEO perspective, we do have to think past the click. We have to think past the moment that someone decides to do their search and they decide to click over to our result. What happens next is the key that determines whether the post itself will be successful.” – Erin Ollila
“When it comes to a blog post, ideally, you’re looking for a longer keyword phrase, because assuming it’s a longer phrase, it’s going to be a little more clear on the intent of the search.” – Erin Ollila
“I will literally repeat this over and over again. Copywriters do not just sit down at their keyboard and type away and then suddenly everything that they’re writing is complete. No, most often there’s a lot of preparation and a lot of research, and potentially even interviewing and things like that, that get done before they even think about what they’ll actually say and what words they’ll use.” – Erin Ollila
“Your content brief is going to help you stay organized, and it’s going to help you to not have to start on a blank page — because no one likes a blank page. I hate blank pages. I hate having to look at a blank screen and think that it’s my personal responsibility to say something genius right now. I mean, as a writer for a bajillion years, I do feel like that sometimes. I feel like it’s expected of me to like be witty and be smart and be interesting and share relevant data and stats and facts and present them in a way that helps people to understand them easily. And then, not only do they understand it, but I want to make them like it so much that they share it. Dude, that is such a burden. And we do not need to go there. You do not have to burden yourself to think that everything you have to write has to be perfect.” – Erin Ollila
“There are no hard and fast rules. If you’re going to just write 150 words, it’s probably not going to rank. Don’t even waste your time. But there is not a specific rule that says like 789 words are great, 2013 words are better.” – Erin Ollila
“We want to make it as easy as possible for Google to recognize our content, to review our content, and to serve the content that we’ve created to the right people that we want to review the content.” – Erin Ollila
Learn more about your host, Erin Ollila
Erin Ollila believes in the power of words and how a message can inform – and even transform – its intended audience. She graduated from Fairfield University with an M.F.A. in Creative Writing, and went on to co-found Spry, an award-winning online literary journal.
When Erin’s not helping her clients understand their website data or improve their website copy, you can catch her hosting the Talk Copy to Me podcast and guesting on shows such as Profit is a Choice, The Driven Woman Entrepreneur, Go Pitch Yourself, and Counsel Cast.
Stay in touch with Erin Ollila, SEO website copywriter:
Learn more about Erin’s VIP Day options if you’d like to learn more about how you can hire her to help you with your marketing
Here’s the transcript for episode 087 on how to write blog posts for SEO and for conversions, too
NOTE: This podcast was transcribed by an AI tool only. Please forgive any typos or errors.
blog post, write, potatoes, content, keyword, images, keyword research, podcast, meta description, peel, goal, episode, seo, topic, keyword phrase, title, create, article, share, post, content creators, audience engagement, sharing content, SEO, conversions, click a link, blog posts, show notes, listen to the episode, blog campaigns, writing a good blog post, content strategy, keyword research, ranking, longer keyword phrases, clearer intent, basic facts, list of options, title, headings, subheadings, outline of the content, social sharing, promoting on social media, email promotion, Virtual Assistant, alt text, image description, content brief, editing, SEO best practices
Erin Ollila, with a short promo by Jenna Warriner of the Shiny New Clients podcast
Erin Ollila 00:04
Hey friends, welcome to the Top coffee Timmy podcast. Here we empower small business owners to step into the spotlight with their marketing and messaging. I’m your host, Erin Ollila. Let’s get started and talk coffee.
Erin Ollila 00:24
Hello friends today we are here to talk all about how to write a strategic and SEO focused blog post. Now before I even get started, I should tell you that this episode of the talk copy to me podcast is sponsored by blogging foundations, which is my entry level course on how to write a strong and solid blog post. I am revamping the course right now as we speak, but you can buy it at a discounted price of only $37. Before it jumps back up into price and launches in the first week of September for its normal price of $97. So if you’re interested in improving your blogging, you’re going to want to grab blogging foundations, and the link to do that will be in the podcast description and the show notes. But let’s jump right in and talk about what a strategic blog post is and how to write one that not only ranks, obviously, there’s your SEO info. We want it to rank but we also want it to convert. And before we even get started, I should say that no matter what I say, I’m never going to do this episode justice. Why? Because I really, truly love blogging. And I think that there are so many intricacies that you should know about when you create a strategic blog campaign and you write a really good blog post and I can’t cover them all in a short episode of the Topkapi to me podcast. Now we’re already two minutes in and I haven’t even taught you anything today. So who knows how long this episode is gonna be. But I’m gonna try really hard to keep it short. But back to what I was saying. Blogging itself is a really complex connection of content. And it’s not necessarily as simple as it seems. You know, the missing piece here is content strategy. And I’m not covering that in this episode. But I promise to come back and have an episode all on building a strategy to your content. Because I think that in itself is its own conversation. You know, in order to know what to write a blog post about, you really need to know how to build a strategy, where these topics that you create are relevant, they’re interlinked between each other. So you can people can kind of continue their search throughout your website. They’re there for a reason when it comes to your audience’s level of awareness level of readiness. So all of those intricacies and all of that complexity in building a content strategy is not part of this episode. So again, what we’re here today to talk about is one singular blog post. How the heck do you write one that not only moves you up on the search engine rankings, but you, you write it so that people click on that, you know, result and they find their way to your site? And they convert? You know, a lot of the times when when I hear other writers and marketers talk about SEO, and they talk about conversion, they see them as two extremely separate things. And I’ve never felt that way personally. Yes, they are two major pieces of a marketing puzzle. However, the idea of attracting isn’t and should never be the only goal of SEO. I mean, let’s think this through for a second. Okay, let’s say you want information. Let’s say you’re trying to find out like movie times in your local area, and you type in your area you type in the movie you want to see and you say movie times. What’s the goal here? Is it just because you’re curious about what times like the movie theater is playing this one movie? Like? No, the goal is that you want to book tickets to that movie, and you don’t know what time those tickets are going to be available. But you want to know the time so that you can make a reservation for yourself at the movies or at least show up when you should? Now of course not everything in the world is related back to a conversion. But as a consumer as someone who uses the internet, I think you can understand that. With every search. There’s really a goal in mind, right like you have a goal to get At a certain amount of information, and many of times the information that you receive, if it’s not something where you will actually looking for like a conversion, meaning like, if it’s not something you know you’re going to buy right then and there. It’s something that might help you make a decision about a future purchasing, you know, a product that you buy, or a purchasing action that you take. So why would we only invest our SEO efforts into attracting people to our site, and then not doing anything with them, when they find their way to our site, what the real goal where SEO and conversion really hold hands together is, no matter what you create, for your website, for your blog post for your case studies and things like that, you know, in this individual case, we’re talking about a blog post specifically. But no matter what you create, you, as the creator need to know what you’re asking of your readers. And I know this kind of seems a little twisted, because we all think, well, we’re giving to our readers, right? Like we’re writing this thing, we’re sharing information with them. But what’s their role in the content creation, you know, in 2023, and I know we’re, you know, working our way toward the end of the year. But like, in 2023, I think we can all acknowledge there is a massive, massive amount of content on the internet. And with the addition of AI, and I know, we’ve talked about that for a few recent episodes, but with the addition of AI, that massive amount of content is just going to like quadruple into more and more content, much of it junk content. So a reader does play a role in what they’re reading. If you’re creating something for an audience, you should be thinking about the role that they play in the content you’re creating. Sometimes, the role that they play, or the job that they’re given, let’s say is just to kind of circle through more and more of your content, you know, maybe you’re asking them to read another post, because you’ve inserted something that says, like, read more, and then the title of a post, maybe it’s something that you’re saying, like join my email list, maybe you’re asking them to outright purchase something, maybe you’re asking them for a review, maybe you’re asking them to share the content. But but as a creator of someone who creates blog posts and shares them on their website, I don’t want you to think that this is a solidary standalone process, I want you to think about your audience and invite them in, because they are playing a role in the success of the content you create, and SEO and conversions, which is kind of how we went down this track, but they’re really related. And they you know, the conversion that could literally be can you convert someone to click the link to read the next blog post, you know, when I write these show notes, if they’re falling in a series, which this one is, this is falling in a series of, I think maybe five episodes that are related to content specifically. So what I try to do in my show notes is have like a Read More section that has the titles of all of the other blog posts within an app blog posts, excuse me, all of the other episodes within this series. So for this show notes as an example, I’ll be able to link back to the original what is evergreen content podcast, as well as the episode that we did last week with Rebecca Tracy about using evergreen content for your business and not necessarily relying on social media. And what I’m doing there, if I’m thinking about conversion, for a shownotes type of blog post, I’m asking my reader, one to listen to the episode. And to to take an additional action, that action being to click through and read some of the other episodes within the series. But that doesn’t mean that’s the only action that I could ask my audience member to take. In the show notes for a podcast, I could ask them to leave me a review on Apple or Spotify. I could ask them to to sign up for a podcast a newsletter, I could ask them to share some of the images from the episode or share the entire link to the show notes with their audience. I could ask them for feedback on what they like about the episode. So I share this before we start talking about the single blog posts so that you can start to think to yourself, no matter what efforts you take from an SEO perspective, we do have to think past the click. We have to think past the moment that someone decides to you know, they do their search and they decide to click over to our result. What happens in Next is the key that determines whether the post itself will be successful, or whether the marketing goals overall we’ll make that will be successful based on the post or will make the post successful because our goals are achieved. So that’s the overview of why blogs are important because it allows us to do that much and what we need to consider before we even consider sitting down and writing the blog post. Alright, so I mentioned again, that content strategy is not going to be covered in this episode, which means we’re assuming with what you hear today, we’re assuming that you, you’ve done the strategy, and you know, the topic. So step one here, if you’re thinking about, like, what it takes to have that strategic and SEO friendly blog post, is to identify what your topic is, you don’t want to have a list of 40 topics that you could talk about. While I love content ideation. You don’t need a million topics, you need one singular topic for each blog post that you write. Again, we’re assuming that’s done during the content strategy and ideation phase. But for this particular episode, the next thing that you need, once you’re clear on the topic, what do you think it is? Actually, let’s pop quiz time. What do you think you need after you have your topic? Do you think that you would write an outline? Do you think that you would do some keyword research? Do you think that you would just jump in and start writing? If you’ve you know, taken the time to figure that out for yourself? The answer is keyword research. While you don’t have to use the keyword immediately, like through the first draft of your actual writing, it is very important to identify what your keyword is before you do any writing. So you start with the topic. Well, let’s just say the topic is peeling potatoes. I use this as a silly example sometime. But let’s say you’re someone who is in the food industry, and you want to write a blog post about peeling potatoes. Now first, we’ll measure on the scale of is this evergreen? Is this news specific? Is this timely. And I think we can all understand that and a post about peeling potatoes. Since these the strategy to peel a potato has pretty much never changed over time. Except, you know, maybe given a couple more options with the rise of the Industrial Revolution and technology and those things. peeling potatoes is simply taking the skin off of a potato with some blade like object. So yeah, it’s an evergreen post. There’s your topic peeling potatoes. Now, we do our keyword research to find the ideal string of words that we want to target. Because for something like peeling potatoes, it could be those two words peeling potatoes, it could be how to peel a potato. Another one could be how to peel potatoes. A third could be like the best options for peeling potatoes. Another one could be like tools do I use to peel a potato so you understand that our topic is going to be the indicator to what you would do your keyword research on. And the data that you get from the keyword research would indicate what your keyword phrase would be. Now, I’ve said this many times I’ve probably likely even said it on this podcast. But if you’re new or if you missed what I said, when I say the word keyword, I do not mean one individual word, most often, actually all the time because let’s be real, can you imagine trying to rank for one word on the internet these days? Like apple, orange banana, it’s going to be extremely hard to rank for these common words. But what we’re doing with our SEO best practices is that we’re trying to rank for a phrase so when you hear keyword likely think that most often, the person who’s saying keyword is talking about a phrase or a string of words. When it comes to a blog post, ideally, you’re looking for a longer keyword phrase, because assuming it’s a longer phrase, it’s going to be a little more clear on the intent of the search. So the final option I had said was like best tools to peel potatoes. We can assume that the person who is looking for that article understands already that you need some type of tool to help you peel a potato. Whereas if you wrote a post called How to appeal a potato, you may have to explain you know much beginner facts like the idea that like you would need a tool such as like a blade or or a knife or something to that effect. So once you have that information like once you have the data from the keyword research of your basic topic, you’re going to be given, you know, a longer, like list of options for keywords you could use, you would then look at that option of the keyword research that’s given to you and make your best decision based on the content you know that you want to share within the blog post, and the amount of search volume and competition that the data is giving you based on these keywords tools that you’re using.
Jenna Warriner 15:35
Aaron a claim so sorry to interrupt. Um, you look amazing. By the way, I love your hat. I just had to stop by because I know your listeners want to be the best copywriters they can be. And since they love listening to this podcast and staying up to date with the science of copywriting and SEO and all of that, I thought they also might like to hear about marketing psychology and how to get clients for their businesses and social media marketing too. So I wanted to swing by and invite you all to tune into the shiny new clients podcast, the world’s newest Marketing Podcast hosted by me. Hi, I’m Jenna again. I’m so sorry to interrupt. Anyway, it’s available anywhere you get your podcasts. That’s all for me love you. Bye.
Erin Ollila 16:20
Once you have identified what keyword phrase that you want to use in your blog post, you’re going to take the next step. And my friends, the next step is not writing your blog post. I know I know. Aaron, when are we going to write a blog post? That’s probably what you’re thinking? Isn’t this our this whole episode supposed to be about writing a blog post? It is but you don’t just jump right into writing. And I will literally repeat this over and over again. copywriters do not just sit down at the key that their keyboard and type away and then suddenly everything that they’re writing is complete. No, most often there’s a lot of preparation and a lot of research and potentially even interviewing and things like that, that get done before they even think about what they’ll actually say what words they’ll use. So your content brief is going to help you stay organized. And it is going to help you not have to start on a blank page because no one likes a blank page. I hate blank pages. I hate having to like look at a blank screen and think like, it’s my personal responsibility to say something genius right now. I mean, as a writer for a bajillion years, I do feel like that sometimes I feel like it’s you know, it’s expected of me to like be witty and be smart and Be interesting and share relevant data and, you know, stats and facts and present them in a way that helps like people can understand easily. And then not only do they understand it, but I want to make them like it so much that they share it. Do that is such a burden. And we do not need to go there. You do not have to burden yourself to think that everything you have to write has to be perfect. And yes, I know I just did an episode on this. But it’s important to think about right, it’s important to remind ourselves and when we don’t have to start from a blank page. And we have a content brief that gives us instructions on what to write all of that pressure is kind of gone. So let’s get into what you have to do to write a content brief. A good content brief will have a few key. It’s not really a section, but a few important notes at the top of your content brief. First, you’re going to want to address why you’re writing about this topic. Or another way to look at that is like what’s the goal of this blog post. So for a post on peeling potatoes for that person in the food industry, or maybe they’re selling tools, I peel potatoes, whatever it is there why maybe to educate younger members of society who haven’t really cooks before, how to do some of the rudimentary like cooking things. So they felt confident in the kitchen. It could be the goal could be to make people feel confident in a beginner’s cooking step so that way they would try something, you know, a little more advanced in the future. Or, I mean, the goal could outright be like, hey, buy my potato peeler, because I just taught you how to peel potatoes. And I told you this will make it easy. So here’s the link, go buy the potato peeler, right. But when you know what this y is and what this goal is, it helps you determine the conversion immediately, right? You don’t have to do a million different types of conversion through a blog post. If it’s I know this potato pilling example is getting a little old at this point. But if the goal is just to sell us, you know, your special potato peeler, then that’s it. That’s your call to action. That’s what you’re going to be instructing them to do next. And once you know that, you can write the blog post based on leading them to that potential goal. So They read it and it doesn’t feel so awkward at the end when you’re like, Oh, and by the way, here’s a peeler, go buy it, and I’m gonna make money from, you know, if you educate them and explain in a way that makes them feel comfortable that like your tool truly will make it easy for them. There’s nothing that they need to feel like nervous about when it comes to safety and using your tool. And that will help them do this process fast and conveniently and in a safe way, they’re going to be excited to purchase when they get to the end. Another thing that goes in your content brief, are any requirements you have for the content. Now, this seems silly, if you’re writing a blog post for yourself, you might think like, well, I know the requirements, I am the person who’s writing this. I come from the world of like larger marketing companies. So often, you’re right, a single writer for their own website might not need to write down the requirements. But I find it’s really good, like best practices. One, you may be assigning content briefs to employees one day. And two, like I mentioned, it keeps that goal clearly in mind. If one of your requirements happens to be that, like, you actually do share the link within the the article in the blog post, and you read it later. And you’re like, Oh, I never shared the link, it’s a reminder that you should go and do that. Some other types of requirements could be things such as what images you should be using within this blog post, so that later when it’s time to source images, you’re not thinking like, oh, my gosh, I don’t know what to say, Well, if you know what images you want from the beginning, and you just add them to the content brief, you can go and check that box off later. A very common and very smart requirement could also be word count. Now, again, there’s no hard and fast rules, like if you’re going to just write 150 words, it’s probably not going to rank, don’t even waste your time. But it is not a specific rule that says like 789 words are great. 2013 words are better. But it can give you an idea that you do want to vary the length of your content so that your audience, especially if you’re producing a lot of content, your audience isn’t overwhelmed, you know, so maybe you do have some smaller pieces that are about 700 words. And maybe you do have a handful of longer pieces that are about 2500 words. Well, you want to make sure you’re mixing it up. And you might know, okay, this individual, like earlier article about peeling potatoes doesn’t have to be that long. Because it’s pretty basic, I’ll make this one of my shorter post. In this, since we’re talking about like requirements for the content, you’re also gonna want to put your SEO content. What is that main keyword that needs to be used throughout the article? Are there any secondary keywords that you want to use, or maybe like keyword synonyms, which are basically like I mentioned before, things that are phrased similarly, such as how to appeal a potato, how to peel potatoes, those would be keyword synonyms, you’re going to move on from that, and you’re going to do an outline of the content. But before you do that, there is one section that should stay at the top. And that’s your social, well, I would say sharing plans, are you going to promote this on social media? Are you going to write an email about it? What’s the frequency in which you will share it, if you’re not doing your own social your own emailing, you can hand the fully written content off to like, let’s say, a VA or your social media manager, and you give them the content, and it’s instructions that help them do their job. And know let’s say, Okay, I’m gonna post this once a month, you know, on social media, or I’m gonna post this on threads or Twitter, which is now x or whatever it’s called, I’m gonna post it, you know, every two weeks on there, for the next three months, I want to see like how you know how that tracks over time, whatever those instructions are, will make their job so much easier. And if you’re still doing your own social, your own emailing, it’s, again, the instructions for you on how to move forward with this. So don’t skip that really is important. But that’s all of the stuff that stays on the top of your content brief. The rest of your content brief is going to be an outline of the blog posts that you plan on writing. Now, we’re going to try to make this as simple as possible for you. A really good strategic blog post does not have to be complex. You can look at it I know I’ve said this a few times on this podcast, but I like to really liken it to like the type of content we created in like middle school or high school with an introduction, a conclusion and then supporting paragraphs. So we think about like those, you know, research papers we did when we were younger. The introduction really kind of states the thesis What is this about? The conclusion sums up that thesis. And all of those like interior paragraphs, let’s say, are just supporting points for the thesis we’re trying to make. So in the case of the potato peelers, which we’re obviously talking about a lot today, the introduction is just telling the audience like, you want to know how to make, how to peel potatoes so that you can cook with them, without the peel the peels on or do whatever the heck you want to do with them without the peels on. In this article, I’m going to show you how to do that. The conclusion is pretty much stating, now isn’t that great, you’ve learned all these ways to peel potatoes, and now you can go and do it on their on your own. And the supporting points could be like how to use a peeler to peel potatoes, how to use
Erin Ollila 25:51
a knife to peel potatoes, like how to make it easier to peel potatoes, whatever the different options are, how to use, I think I remember when I did a training on this once I had used this example, which is why it comes up frequently. But in doing the actual keyword research within the training of the people that I was training, I had this big screen, I had my computer connected, and I typed in how to peel a potato. So we were just kind of looking through search engine results, because to me, it’s obvious how to peel a potato, it’s it seems very simple, and cut and dry. But the beauty of the keyword research is like we found out that you could like hook up this like something too. It’s like a screwdriver gun. Like if I hope I hope you guys know what I’m talking about. And like use it to just brush the potato to get the peel off. So in doing research, you know that those are could be potential supporting points to this introduction that you have of how to explain that to your audience. Now, let me take an example that may be easier for the audience. Maybe you’re a photographer, and you’re talking about how to prepare for your family photos. You know, maybe the example could be like, you don’t have to be super matchy for your photos. But you should use complementary colors. And you should consider what the like environment is you’re taking pictures of so that like the environment doesn’t clash with the color scheme of the clothes. As an example, Autumn photos in New England are our leaves, our yellows, and oranges and reds. So you’d want to wear a color that matched with you know, the background. Those are all those interior points that we’re kind of explaining in our our blog posts that we’re writing. So when it comes to outlining the content, the first thing I recommend you doing is making a no, what do you want for your introduction in your conclusion. When you get good at writing blog post, I encourage you to add a story like element to your introduction. This could be a true story. Like it could be like a way like something you’re sharing from your personal life, your your business life, something you’re sharing about a client, of course that you have permission to share. Or it could be something like in the creative writing world, what we call like be imagining i. So it could be like imagine XYZ and you bring them you bring the reader into the blog post by asking them to imagine this thing that you’re sharing with them. Once you’ve written notes on what you plan on saying in your intro, and conclusion, then before you even write like big things, you write the like the title, the headings and the subheadings. And it’s easy to do that it’s not as complicated as you think because the title could be the world’s worst title. This is just to get you started. So in this case, it’s how to peel a potato. There’s my title, it’s also my keyword. But those interior paragraphs remember I said like the the research paper, the things that support my thesis, those are all the headings. So if you’re using the engagement photos example, I’m assuming that engagement family photos as an as an example. It could be, you know, know what your setting is. And then you talk about like what colors will be in their background, then it could be like, you don’t have to match. Those are the headings because those are the main points. So again, you’re not writing you’re not filling anything out, you’re just writing a little note to yourself, of what all of those interior points will be. Once that’s done, you can if you haven’t done it yet, and the conclusions, conclusion section, write out maybe a call to action or write out whatever that end goal is that you want to have in the piece. And then you have full creative liberty to go in and start to fill in the body of your blog post. So use the skeleton that you’ve created by the outline and use it as the inspiration to fill in the blanks. Now. You’re not staring at a blank page anymore. If anything, you know exactly what you have to Right, you’re just writing within the space that needs to be completed. So that’s kind of like you do the topic throughout your content strategy. You do the keyword research, you write the content brief, you fill out the content brief. And then you can put your writing hat to the side, because like you’ve done the work at this point, it’s time to put your editing hat on. Once you have a chance, read it as if you were reading it for the first time. Read it as if you know this, you’re learning about whatever this thing is, like your audience would be reading it. You don’t have to worry about specific like perfect grammar. The internet is definitely not as hardcore as it used to be no one has perfect grammar like, Don’t stress yourself out to the point that thinks you’re like writing something as if you are creating like a college thesis or writing a published book. Obviously, you don’t want to have a completely messy blog post. So you’re going to do a little bit of cleaning up. And when you’re doing this editing this cleaning up of your blog post, you’re very likely going to see that you’re missing a little bit or that you’ve overwritten in some points. And in that case, just make a note for yourself like, it’s so much easier to edit quickly, and make some notes and then go back and do the work, then try to edit and write at the same time. When you’ve completed this process of editing and kind of perfecting your blog post, you’re not actually done yet, there’s a little bit more work that you need to do to actually make a strategic and actually make it SEO friendly. Earlier I mentioned that you’re going to be adding images into your blog post. The reason we do that is because people need some brain space to process the information that we share to them. So whether you’re adding large horizontal images, or vertical images, or little icons, or you’re spacing things out as bullet points instead of paragraphs, you do need to think about the design of the page, so that the information you present to the end reader is easily digestible. So images are a great way to do that. But when we think about images for a blog post, we have to think about things such as sizing, and naming conventions, because we want to make it as easy as possible for Google to recognize our content, to review our content, and to serve the content that we’ve created to the right people that we want to review the content. So we’re gonna we’re thinking about images as an example. And sizing, we want to make sure that the like weight of a picture is low, as well as the size is correct. And Mobley responsive. We do that. Because when Google scans our site, if it takes too long to load, and it would take too long to load, if your images are too heavy, that’s that’s most of the reason, or the incorrect sizing is done. Meaning your mobile, mobile design of your site does not really adjust. It’s just a really large picture that never shrinks down to size and mobile.
Erin Ollila 33:20
Those two things are kind of like big strikes against you from Google’s perspective. And not just Google, imagine, as a, you know, normal internet user, when you click over to a site, let’s say on your phone, or even on the computer. And it’s just like not loading and not loading and not loading. I think we all know how frustrating that is like, no one is going to stay for more than a few seconds before they click off and go somewhere else. So you want those images that you upload to your blog post to, you know, be the correct dimensions as well as being a low weight, not heavy, large images. I use just tiny png to like compress my images before I put them on my website. But there are many plugin tools that you can use on your site. There are many other options besides tiny png I think image opt in is one I used to use that you can make, you know, really get those images as as best possible both for your site and for SEO purposes. So you’ve done the editing, you’ve added images in your think you’re ready to go. Not quite yet. Almost though you’re not right there. What you need to do now is all of the little tech SEO things you may have forgotten or just not knew you had to do. So let’s go back to that title. As an example. If I titled it how to peel potatoes. I mean that’s the key word I’m using then cool, great keep the title because it has the keyword within it. However, if you didn’t actually use your keyword phrase in your title, you’re going to want to go back and adjust that title now so that your keyword phrase is in there. Then you’re going to want to scan the document quickly. Do you have your keyword phrases in your headings or your sub headings Since you’d like you, you should have been somewhere I mean, if we’re going to choose a keyword we have to remember we actually have to use that keyword. In addition, do you have your keyword very early in your blog post, I think the old suggestion was like you needed it within the first 100 words, or the first paragraph or something like that. But But in truth, you really just need to have it very early so that it gives an indicator about like, what keywords you’re using, and what the post is about. Once you’ve scanned the document to make sure you’re using your keyword enough, and I’ll kind of like interject here to say, Everyone always says like, what’s enough? Like, how many times do I actually keyword use the keyword? And in truth, that is such a really subjective? Answer I, you don’t want to overuse a keyword, meaning like you don’t want to use it too many times. You just want to use your keyword phrase, often, but naturally, throughout your blog post, which is why keywords synonyms are so important, because if your keyword is how to peel potatoes, and you have that in the title, you have that let’s say in the first header, maybe the intro says something like you’re wondering how to peel potatoes. And then maybe you say use it again later. Like if you keep saying how to peel potatoes, how to peel potatoes, how to peel potatoes, like it doesn’t feel natural. And with Google’s E A T update, what they want is true authority pieces, true pieces of expertise, true pieces of connection that your your writing to help, you know the content is I mean, it’s actually called the helpful content update. You want to be providing good quality content, and stuffing keywords will never give you good quality content. However, if you don’t use the keywords at all, how will you rank for that the content so I’m sorry that I can’t give you like an exact number, like you need to use it twice in the headings and 15 times in the post. I actually think that’s a pretty generic way to think about SEO. You just want to use the keywords and their synonyms as often as you can, but only in a way that feels like a natural conversational tone so that the people who read it enjoy reading it. Alright, I was saying something different here. We were talking about oh, we were talking about images, then we started to talk about this, because we want to use our keyword. So we’ve talked about the title. We’ve talked about using it within the body of the post. You should also be using your keywords within the meta description. If you don’t know what a meta description is. It’s basically a very short excerpt or explainer, that is shown in the SERP. So the search engines result page. So you know, for the person who searches how to peel a potato, they’re gonna get results shown to them. That’s the search the SERP excuse me, those results, if you remember, it has the title of the article in bigger, bolder letters. And underneath that in ordinary text has a bit of an explanation. Now, Google sometimes ignores what you write within your own meta description, because you know, it’s feisty, and it likes to do what it likes to do. But your blog post like for WordPress, for example, I use Yoast or you could use like all in one or whatever, like SEO tool that you use within your own website. SiteGround. Show it any of those tools give you an option to write your own meta description, you’re gonna want to use the keyword in there. And I think the meta description is a vital piece of content when you’re writing a blog post. Because as it’s what’s shown on the search engines page, it’s what talks about the intent. So for example, if you had a title of a blog post, that was how to peel potatoes, but then someone came over and you know, the the meta description said something like in this article, you’ll learn how to peel potatoes, if you’ve never done it before. That’s the meta description description. Stay with me here. But then they click over to the article. And it is not a description of how to peel a potato. Instead, it is a list of like the 40 different tools that you can use to peel a potato with no explanation on how to actually peel the thing, just a list of tools. Not only is the internet searcher going to be like what the heck just happened and frustrated and click off of your site. But Google is going to be frustrated because Google uses their good name to show someone to your site. And you let that person down and you made Google look bad. So Google is going to start to notice those things and it’s going to kind of decrease your search engine rankings if you have a lot of people who are coming to your site and leaving because the content you’re serving them doesn’t actually match the intention. So that the meta description. Can you believe it here? We have been talking for almost 40 minutes. Did I not say this is going to be a short episode, guys? I’m in such trouble. Oh my god, Aaron, why don’t I finish strong? The Meta description is your opportunity to introduce what the blog post is about to the random internet searcher who has not been to your site? Yeah. So it’s a way to entice them, it’s a way to make it really clear what they expect. And you definitely want to use your keyword in there, if you can, you also want to make sure the naming conventions of those images. Maybe they have the keyword, but at least they’re descriptive about what the image is itself. And that you’re using the alt text, number one with the priority of accessibility, because I will lecture this until my dying day, the alt text is for accessibility purposes, so that people who cannot visually see the image can have a description of what is in the image so that they understand what the image is about. But if you can also include some type of SEO or keyword relevancy within there, using an example of, maybe it’s an image of like a potato with a knife on the side, the the alt text could say something like, this is an image of a potato with a knife on the side for an article about how to peel potatoes, right, like there’s your keyword all the way at the end. But yet, you’re still describing the image. Alt text is very important. It gives you an opportunity to kind of like use more words than you use just on the title of the image to describe what is within the image.
Erin Ollila 41:50
If you can start this just to sum it up quickly, if you can start your blog post with knowing the precise topic you want to talk about doing the keyword research necessary to choose a very strategic keyword phrase for your article, writing a content brief that outlines the goals of the article, the requirements of the article, and then an actual true outline of what would be said in the blog post. Then you completed that outline, you edited the final blog post and adjusted as necessary. And then went in to make sure you are using in following SEO best practices on things like you know, the the title, the body, the Met the body of the blog posts, the meta description, the alt text, the naming conventions of the images, the sizing of them and things like that you have done every single thing that you need to do to write a strategic and SEO friendly blog post. Friends it is I’ve talked way too long today. So I’m gonna stop right now. But thank you for coming today. Go out there and write a blog post please. And if you do if you’ve listened to this episode, and it is inspired you to actually write a blog post, please share it with me, share it with me on social email me whatever you do, I would love to see the blog posts you’ve created. And if you are a little hesitant but still want to work on blog post again, just a reminder that this episode is sponsored by the blogging foundations course. Go in, grab it while it’s on sale. Now it will the new and improved version will be delivered the first week of September. So you know everything you need to do to write that really SEO friendly blog post and kind of just keep the cycle going on repeat for your business so that you can attract a wider yet more strategic and ideal audience to your business. And I really hope that this episode helped you do that. All right, friend. I will see you back here next week where we will talk all things case studies and how they can really supercharge your marketing efforts. Until next week when we talk copy. Have a great week friends. Thank you so much for listening to this episode of Top copy to me. If you enjoyed spending your time with me today. I would be so honored if you could subscribe to the show and leave a review. Want to continue the conversation. Head on over to Instagram and follow me at Erin Ollila. Until next time friends
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