What Is SEO, and How to Use It to Grow Your Blog Traffic

What is SEO? SEO stands for search engine optimization. We've put together some simple, key SEO tips that will help improve that Google ranking for your blog or website!

What is SEO? SEO stands for search engine optimization and is the process of gaining more traffic to your website through organic search engine results. SEO helps improve search engine rankings, drives traffic and makes your website more visible online.

There are many strings to an SEO bow, from the words you put in the content to the descriptions you place on an image. SEO isn’t just about making the website user-friendly for search engines; it’s about creating a blog that people will want to read.

So What Is SEO?

Getting a good placement on Google can be tough. However, once you understand the importance of SEO and have a grasp of the basics, you will start to see results. The above video gives an easy-to-understand SEO overview in just three minutes!

We’ve put together some simple, key SEO tips that will help improve that Google ranking!

1. Create Unique Blog Content

what is seo? - create original content

Google highly values unique content. If you aim to have a top-notch, SEO-friendly blog, then multiple locations on the internet as duplicate content.

Having duplicate content can lead to lower rankings and a loss of traffic since search engines rarely display multiple versions of the same content. That’s why it’s vital for blog content to be fresh and original. Moreover, you should never resort to plagiarizing someone else’s work!

2. Use Relevant, Researched Keywords

what is seo? keywords

Keywords play a crucial role in SEO, helping people find your blog through search engines. By conducting keyword research, you can gain insights into popular searches and create content that resonates with your audience. It’s important to use relevant keywords in page titles, meta descriptions, and URLs to optimize visibility.

While singular keywords may have higher search volumes, competition is fierce and it can be challenging to stand out. Consider pairing a high-volume keyword with a more descriptive and specific phrase. For instance, instead of using “dogs” as a keyword, try “crazy dog haircuts.”

Additionally, it’s worth noting that the use of primary keywords should be balanced throughout the blog content. Incorporating them 3-4 times will help enhance the optimization of your blog. Keep in mind that staying up to date with current keyword trends and tools like SEMRush can further improve your content strategy. The keywords should be placed in the following places:

  • Blog title
  • First paragraph
  • Subheading
  • Image file name and alt text
  • Meta description
  • Permalink

3. Length of Content

what is seo? - content length

Previously, blog posts that ranged from 300-500 words were considered the standard length. While these posts still hold value, Google’s ranking algorithm now tends to favor longer blog posts. Ideally, aiming for blog posts with a minimum of 1,000 words is recommended.

Google continues to prioritize content that is informative and comprehensive. By creating longer blog posts, you have more opportunities to incorporate relevant keywords and keyword phrases, thus enhancing your search ranking potential.

4. Optimizing Content

what is seo - optimizing content

Now that you’ve crafted a one-of-a-kind blog post, surpassing the 1,000-word mark, and seamlessly weaving in key phrases 3-4 times, it’s time to take it one step further – optimizing the content for stellar SEO performance. Rest assured, we’ll enhance the word choice, structure, readability, and eloquence, while keeping the original essence intact. Let’s make it shine!

  • Permalink – the full URL used for a post. If it is over six words, you may need to consider shortening it.
  • Headings – It can be hard to read a load of text without it being broken up by heading titles. Headings also work as signposts for the reader. Make sure the appropriate <h1>, <h2> and <h3> tags are in the HTML text. H1 should surround blog post titles, and subheadings should always be H2.
  • Post titles are the first thing that a search engine will pick up. The title should be about 50-60 characters long, as Google has a limit and will cut off anything over this. The primary keywords should be included in the post title.
  • The meta description is a snippet of text that summarizes the content of the post. It should be 155 characters long and include the primary keywords.
what is seo? h2 tag

Adding code to a subheading in HTML text

5. Adding Internal and External Links

what is seo? - add links

By incorporating both internal and external links into your content, you can boost the SEO of your blog post. Internal links are hyperlinks that direct readers to other pages within the same blog or site, helping to keep them engaged and on your website for longer periods.

Adding reputable external links to blog content enhances the credibility of your website. However, it’s important to ensure that these external links are up-to-date and still relevant. Quality external links to high-ranking websites can also strengthen the authority of your blog by providing readers with relevant references to other sources.

Remember to review and update all links regularly to ensure they remain current and align with the content of your post.

6. What Is SEO Image Optimization?

what is seo - image optimization

When creating content for a blog, always include an image. Images bring the post to life and allow the reader to relate to the article, not to mention images also contribute to SEO. Once the right image for the post has been found, it can be optimized for SEO by doing the following:

  • Change the image file name to include the keywords.
  • Scale the image to the size required. Big images and file sizes impact load time, which impacts SEO (slower load times have a negative impact).
  • Add alt text (or alt tags) to all images. Alt text adds a description to the image. This description will then be in place if the image is not available or if a description is required for a visually impaired reader.
  • Caption – the image caption is different from the alt text. This is the text that appears alongside the image and helps readers to understand what’s happening in the image.

Do you have any SEO tips? Why not share them with us on social media? Just tag @topfivecom and use #top5SEO.

Download our free SEO checklist below to be more efficient and productive and to help you nail that SEO!

ultimate seo checklist download | What is SEO? what is seo, and how to use it to grow your blog traffic