7 Ways to Write a Good SEO Optimized Post in WordPress
Your online presence won’t be effective without a good deal of traffic coming to your site. Certainly, there are several ways how you can get more visitors. However, if you aren’t ready to spend a fortune on paid advertising and media exposure, search engine optimization (SEO) is indispensable. Besides, only SEO can help your previously published content rank better and keep bringing new traffic to your site.
That’s why this article will focus on must-have elements of successful SEO activities. Use them to appear higher in search engines and enjoy a continuous flow of new visitors to your website.
How to write an SEO-optimized blog post?
1. Mind the difference between titles and meta titles
Though often confusing for many users, post and meta titles have a difference that you should bear in mind.
A post title means the article title that your visitors see on your website. A meta title, on the contrary, is what people will be shown by search engines when your article appears on result pages.
If a meta title hasn’t been indicated in SEO settings manually, search engines will consider a post title as a meta title.
Note: Your meta title should include a primary keyword (preferably long tail) and have no more than 60 characters. Otherwise, part of it could be cut off in search results.
2. Meta description
Meta descriptions play a significant role both in the perception of your article by people and in search engine ranking. Thus, it is one of the major things you should think of when trying to drive extra organic traffic.
Most SEO plugins allow adding a meta title to your post while editing it. To write a successful meta description, you should approach it as a promotional pitch for your article.
You have only 156 characters to explain the main idea of it and enrich it with appropriate keywords in a way that will motivate people to follow the link and read your post.
Even if you neglected meta descriptions before, you need to return to your older publications and add those.
Since search engines treat every blog post as a separate webpage, you could use them as a way to drive traffic from different search queries. Thus, try to vary keywords you use in articles and their meta descriptions.
This way, you’ll be able to diversify sources of traffic and appear in search results more often.
3. Keywords for images
The first thing you need to remember is that search engines cannot read images even if they are nothing but a text in .jpg format.
However, there is a way to attach a caption to an image that would be recognized by Google. I’m talking about image names and alt attributes.
The most common mistake is to download images as is, with their names completely irrelevant for your SEO purposes (e.g. photo1.png). Moreover, the image name should be in line with what it is conveying.
Think about a screenshot of a CTA button on a Hubspot blog. A simple name “Hubspot” won’t do because it doesn’t show exactly what the image is about. A more proper name would be “Hubspot-CTA” or “CTA-hubspot-blog“.
Another important aspect of image SEO is an alt-attribute. This is basically a short text describing the purpose of an image. It can be added manually when you upload an image to WordPress library or written as an attribute to <img> in WordPress text editor.
Adding keywords to the alt text is seen as an effective way to enhance your SEO since these texts are scanned by search engines. However, don’t try to fill too many words in there. The optimal number is 2-3.
4. Optimized permalink
A permalink is an addition to the URL of your page that links directly to the page. Usually, a permalink contains the name of the article. Yet, there are some aspects you need to be aware of.
The most important thing you need to remember is to exclude stop-words from the permalink. Let’s take the example of this article called “7 Ways to Write a Good SEO Optimized Post in WordPress”. If you decide to use the same name as a permalink, it won’t be good for your SEO. The reason therefor is that search engines skip stop-words, such as “to, a, in” when analyzing a webpage. Thus, you need to exclude them from a permalink to enhance your SEO.
Another common problem is that many people use an underscore ( _ ) in permalinks. This is wrong as search engines consider underscores as a word connector. Therefore, write_good would be considered the same as writegood.
Instead, you need to use hyphens ( – ) to separate words in URLs so that they will be read by search engines correctly.
Thus, a correct permalink for this article will be “7-ways-write-good-seo-optimized-post-wordpress”.
5. Interlinking older posts
This is a very useful idea if you want to lower your bounce rate (i.e. the percentage of visitors that leave your site after visiting only one page). Moreover, putting links to your older entries will be good for your SEO, since search engines love backlinks to webpages and put them higher in search results.
If you are writing an article on a subject that you’ve already partly covered, insert a link there so that your visitors could read related materials and stay on your site a bit longer.
If you decide to employ interlinking, you need to insert links natively so that it doesn’t look odd. This could be done with anchor text technique. Anchor text is a highlighted text that you click to follow the link. To be effective, it should naturally follow your train of thought in corresponding sentences.
6. Section headings
To improve readability, you should always divide your text into sections, each with an H2, H3 heading. The post title uses H1 heading. The following headings should take H2, H3 headings and so on. The choice of a heading depends on the importance of the section in your article plan.
Apart from readability, headings influence SEO. Since headings are supposed to summarize the thought of the webpage section, they are considered important keywords when scanned by search engines. Thus, you’d better use your focus keywords there.
Similar to anchor text, your headings should sound natural.
7. Keyword density
Finally, to make your content rank well in search engines, make sure that your focus keywords appear often enough in the main text. Though not a decisive factor these days, keyword frequency still matters to search engines, since it helps them to extract the main focus of an article.
In case of blog posts, SEO specialists recommend achieving the keyword density of 1-3%. However, don’t try too hard to fill your article with those words.
Higher density may be considered “keyword stuffing” by Google and be penalized. Thus, it is important that your keywords are placed naturally and don’t seem like a piece of spam.
As you can see, there’s nothing difficult in making your blog posts SEO-friendly. Follow these rules to optimize your content:
Add keywords to titles and meta titles;
Write meta description with an appropriate keyword;
Include keywords in image names and alt-attributes;
Optimize permalinks by removing stop-words and using hyphens;
Interlink related articles;
Use keywords in section headings;
Ensure appropriate keyword density.