Right, I’m not going to beat around the bush; this blog post is getting straight to the point. The SEO point. You’re about to learn how to use keywords in a blog post for SEO the RIGHT way. No muss, no fluff, no foolin’ around, just cold, hard facts. What you should and shouldn’t be doing to make sure that your blog post is worth the time you’re putting into it.
What’s the point in having a blog if no one can find it?
If you’re just delving into SEO for the first time, here are a few other blog posts that you might find useful:
How to Use Keywords in a Blog Post for SEO
Step One: Find Your Keyword
I go into LOTS of detail about how I find keywords for myself and my clients in the blog post How to Find SEO Keywords for Your Blog that Actually Perform. Although it’s not the first thing you need to do to write a blog post, it is important to have a list of keywords that you can pick from, when you do have the inspiration to write a blog or two.
You can either look for a keyword to base a blog post around it, or you can come up with a blog post idea and then look for a keyword that you can cleverly slide right in with it.
Step Two: Choose Your Title (Carefully)
The title of your blog post is DAMN important, and I always recommend that you include your keyword or term.
The key-phrase (like a keyword but longer) for this particular blog post is: use keywords in a blog post for SEO
It’s long, yes, but it’s specific. Well, specific-ish. The more specific you are, the higher on Google you are likely to place. It’s a saturated bloggy-world out there, so you must be prepared to battle it out with hundreds and thousands of others.
Using that keyword/phrase, I chose a title: How to Use Keywords in a Blog Post for SEO.
I do not have a high Google ranking right now. My blog is still relatively new and unloved. I work on it sporadically because I’m super busy with my lovely clients, which is embarrassing. I DO NOT expect to land very high in the Google results for that particular keyword/phrase, but I do feel it is a title that might do well on Pinterest.
It might not be a keyword that I can do very well out of on Google, but on Pinterest, the situation could be very different. I’m basing this on previous blog posts, which haven’t landed anywhere near the top Google results, but still do well out of Pinterest traffic.
👉🏻 A keyword can still be a keyword, even if it’s not designed for Google.
HOWEVER … As I discuss in How to Find SEO Keywords for Your Blog that Actually Perform, keywords + SEO together have been a winning combination for my vape website: best-ecig.co.uk. I target specific brand/model names for the keywords unless it’s a troubleshooting blog post or similar, and even they have done fairly well out of Google traffic. Search results are the biggest driver of traffic to that particular site, and it’s because I put ALL of the hacks I talk about in this blog post, into action.
Step Three: Paragraph One
You should insert your keyword or term into paragraph one, as close to the top as you can get it. I have highlighted the keywords used in this blog post, just in case you were wondering what the funky highlighting was all about. Now you know. It highlights the placement of every single visible keyword/term.
Step Four: Throughout the Text + 1 Subheading
Right, in one of my other blog posts (4 Things You Definitely Shouldn’t Do With Your SEO Blog Keywords) I discuss ‘keyword stuffing’, and this is when you add too many keywords or phrases to a blog post in a bid to manipulate Google into ranking you higher. As you can imagine, Google doesn’t take too highly to you trying to manipulate the system and you will be penalised if you are caught doing this. You WILL get caught and then penalised. It WILL happen. Your traffic will suffer as a result. You’ll get bumped right down the results for the search terms and keywords you’re trying to target.
You should add a few keywords or phrases/terms here-and-there throughout the bulk of your blog post, though. I also recommend including it in one of your subheadings. Maybe even two subheadings if you have enough of them and/or the blog post is long enough.
On my vaping website, I use the keyword in two subheadings. If the keyword phrase is “Vype ePen review”, I will use that exact phrase as an H1-style heading at the top of the blog post. I will then use the phrase as an H2-style heading at the bottom. The first one will say “Vype ePen Review” and the second one will say “Vype ePen Review — Conclusion”. Every blog post on that site follows that exact process, and I also follow the other SEO hacks listed on this page. They work splendidly for me.
Step Five: Add Images
You should always add a couple of images to a blog post, just to liven it up and prevent it from being a massive, solid block of text. The images also give you another way to use keywords in a blog post for SEO — alt-tags. (It’s the next step.)
I could probably come with a hundred and one different reasons why you need images in a blog post, and maybe that’s another blog post right of its own right there, but I’ll just say this: you need images in your blog. Whether they’re stock images or photos/graphics you took/created yourself, you need them in there. You MUST have an image/images.
Step Six: Give Your Images Alt-Tags
I told you this bit was coming. Alt-tags are another way to use keywords in a blog post for SEO and a very simple way at that. More of you should be doing it. If you’re not giving your blog images keyword-based alt-tags, start right now.
When you save the image, save it as your designated keyword or phrase. The images for this blog post have been given the following ‘names’ or alt-tags:
- Use Keywords in a Blog Post for SEO 1.jpg
- Use Keywords in a Blog Post for SEO 2.jpg
- Use Keywords in a Blog Post for SEO 3.jpg
It makes life so much easier if nothing else. It also helps you to make sure they’ve got the right keyword-based alt-tags, which are a bit like a nickname for your photos.
📌 Alt-tags literally means an alternative tag. It can also be known by a few other terms, including “alt description” and “alt attribute”.
Whatever you want to call it, an alt-tag is essentially this: a description/about me box for your photos. It helps to add to your SEO ‘score’, bumping it up and making Google think that your site is super-duper fabulous and totally deserves to be on the first page of the search results.
Google doesn’t know how to “read” an image. It does know how to read an alt-tag, though. You’re doing Google a favour and the search engine will LOVE you for it.
Step Seven: Insert Internal Links
Okay, so this tip and the next one aren’t exactly keyword-related. They are still important for good SEO on your blog, though.
Internal links are links to other posts on your blog. It’s a really good idea to link to posts that have similar keywords. As you can see in this post, I have added a number of links to other, relevant blog posts discussing similar SEO-based ideas. They are also hitting different, but similar, SEO-based keywords/terms.
If you’re a blogger looking for a way to spice up your blog, you may also find these posts useful:
- The Blogging Checklist: 10 Things You Should Do Before You Press Publish
- 5 Reasons Why You Should Use Shortlinks by Pretty Links
- How to Hide Pinterest Images in a Blog Post
(See what I did there … Smart, right?)
Step Eight: Insert External Links
Yep, you’re going to want to add links to other blogs while you’re there, too. It’s good practice to back up any figures and stats that you’ve included. So, for example, I’m about to tell you that over 63,000 searches are performed on Google every single second of the day, so making sure you cover ALL SEO best practices, including adding links to external websites, is very important.
I’m also just about to tell you that I came across that fun search engine fact on the internetlivestats.com website. (See the external link?)
That’s how easy external linking from your blog could be. If you wanted to be REALLY nice, you could pick someone else’s blog — someone who talks about similar things to you — and share their posts. Remember that you are driving a reader from your website to another website, though. Make sure you’re picky with the external websites and blogs you link to. It’s like your own personal recommendation. You don’t want to recommend something really crappy to people.
Step Nine: Meta Description
This is the little description that shows up underneath your blog link on the Google results page. You will want to include your blog post keyword within that description. It works with the keyword in your title to prove to Google (and other search engines) that you have the exact information someone is looking for and it’ll rank you higher in the results for that search term. Google doesn’t take the meta description itself into account when it ‘scores’ you. It does take into account how people react or act when they come across your link, however. If there isn’t a meta description that clearly explains what’s going on in that particular blog post, readers are going to be less likely to click on it.
Spending a minute or two on the meta description is a pain in the butt, yes, but it’s also one more thing that could make the world of difference to how much traffic you’re getting.
All of this might seem like an awful lot to remember, but there is an awesome plugin for WordPress, called Yoast, that reminds you. I use it for all of my own blogs/sites, and I recommend it to every single client I have. All of them download it. All of them tell me how wonderful it is. I imagine you’re about to do the same …
*Waits for gratitude.
I could talk about SEO for your blog for hours (and, you know me, I LOVE to talk), but I think I’ve probably overwhlemed you with enough information for one day. You can subscribe to my blog if you want to be kept in-the-loop with all of my guides and posts, and, as always, please feel free to get in touch if you have any questions, queries, suggestions, or you fancy hiring me to be YOUR blogger.
It’s been a pleasure blogging for you today. I really hope this post helps you understand how to use keywords in a blog for SEO. If you have any questions, feel free to shout them out. There’s a space for comments below, plus you can get in touch via the magic that is social media, too.