Blogging With The Search Engines In Mind. Part 1

Blogs are different from the static websites due to two reasons namely their genuine social nature and the ability to inform search engines every time they get updated.

As you know, a big chunk of SEO is all about building back links. Different from static websites, this task is a lot easier with blogs by leveraging the social media capabilities of syndicating valuable content; also, it’s worth mentioning the perceived authority social media environment is assigned with by the search engines, especially Google.

4 SEO principles that your blog must follow

1. Search Engine friendly Site Structure

Make sure your visitors (especially new ones) and search engine bots can access with ease any part of your blog. If you’re just starting out blogging, forget adsense advertising and focus on making content available with minimum click-thru rate.

Offer options at the end of each post and try to grab your reader’s attention for prolonged periods of time. A good way for achieving this is by systematically reference your best posts on related topics with hyperlinks throughout the text body (read my PageRank post for a deeper understanding). You also can use a “related posts” plugin at the end of each entry.

Have your blog categorized around representative keywords for your niche market. Doing so will help these categories rank well for the targeted key terms which, in the end, boosts your overall blog rankings in SERPs. For more details, read this complete walkthrough about optimizing your site’s internal structure.

Keep in mind not to overlap category pages with tag pages (don’t tag a post with “SEO your blog” and then include it on “SEO your blog” category). Also, limit the number of categories to as few as possible but at the same time keep them laser focused.

2. Link out to related blogs and build backlinks

Considering the social nature of blogs linking out to niche related blogs should be a common encounter in your blogging activity. Lately, this practice has deflated in volume as Darren Rowse from ProBlogger notices in his post on outbound links scarcity. Read my previous entry on outbound linking and see why you must link out on an ongoing basis.

In addition to referencing related blogs, submit your weblog to the best blog directories as filtered by Loren Baker in a post on Search Engine Journal. Even if you’re not accepted on your first submission, try again later as you progress, because this type of one way links are valued by Google and other SEs. Also don’t neglect the potential article distribution has to offer. Through an effective article submission software you can gain a fairly large number of backlinks from reputable article directories with good PageRank values and consistent amount of daily visits.

3. Be wary to Duplicate content

As Google filters are becoming more sophisticated on spotting duplicate content, the majority of blogging platforms do a good job of redirecting duplicate content URLs to the original versions. This post has a sub-section dedicated to duplicate content generators on blogs.

To benefit from content scrapers that steal content and use it to create automatic content generation websites, insert in the post’s body links that point back to your blog entries.

4. Generate XML Sitemaps

An XML sitemap is a file that contains a list of URLs for existing posts on your blog and its role is to inform search engines when new entries or posts are published on the site. As new content is added the sitemap is updated automatically. Note that you can prioritize crawling for certain content pages. Learn more in Webmaster Tools Central.

Creating a blog XML sitemap is a very basic process of finding the plugin, installing it in your back office and generating the sitemap with a push of a button. The plugin I use with WordPress is Google Sitemap Generator Plugin. The secret to getting crawled frequently is to publish content on a regular basis.

Follow the second part of this post here.

So, how’s your blog handling SEO? Have something else to add in addition to what was covered?

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2 Comments For This Post

  1. seo firm India Says:

    The article is good but most of the points are routine and avialable in most of the websites.

  2. Cristian Says:

    Do you say that there isn’t sufficient unique information for building an article dedicated to SEO-ing a blog or that there are distinct issues to write about but not covered with this post?

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