Overstuffing blog posts-and even websites, for that matter-with keywords is a universal no-no. Not only do readers have difficulty remaining focused throughout the post, but search engines also frown upon the unnatural use of keywords.
Below is a checklist of 5 tasks to perform in order to properly optimize the web copy of a blog post:
1. Write your post: Don’t rack your brain trying to include keywords in your post. If they naturally come out in the content of your post, then great! If not, just focus on writing a valuable, well-thought-out post.
2. Inject keywords: Hit two birds with one stone when you read over your post to check for spelling errors and to insert keywords throughout. You may come across areas in your post where you can naturally insert a keyword. See below for an excerpt of a post without keywords and an example where I added keywords after the post was written:
Excerpt of post before I added keywords:
Is your website focused primarily on your business and how wonderful you are? If so, your prospects might be feeling left out.
Excerpt of post after I added keywords:
Is your website copy focused primarily on your business and how wonderful you are? If so, your prospects might be feeling left out.
In the above example, you’ll see that I added the word copy after the word website. Website copy is one of our keywords, but the word website, alone,is not.
When injecting keywords throughout your blog web copy (See? I added web copy after the word blog. Web copyis another one of our keywords), make sure you abide by, what I like to call, the golden compromise. The golden compromise is when you add keywords throughout your post to ensure that both the readers and the search engines benefit.
For example, when you try to stuff too many keywords into your posts, the post will no longer flow properly. It will be difficult for readers to follow and stay interested. Search engines also know when you’re stuffing keywords into a post. Therefore, keywords should naturally fit into the flow of your blog web copy so that readers can remain focused and interested and search engines can categorize and rank your post.
3. Add a post title: Your post title should grab your readers’ attention. This is your place to be creative! Look at the title of this post, Is Your Blog Web Copy Packed like a Can of Sardines?I managed to fit a keyword into the title (web copy), while still being creative and drawing readers in-which is the entire purpose of the post title.
4. Add meta data: This blog is run on the Thesis theme, which has built-in SEO features. Many blog themes do not have this feature, which means you’ll have to use a plug-in that adds SEO features to your blog. If your blog is on WordPress.org, you can upload the All in One SEO pack plug-in, which enables you to add a meta title, meta description, and meta keywords to each blog post.
The difference between meta titles and post titles is that meta titles should be keyword rich for optimization purposes. Because the meta title is used for search engine purposes only, you don’t have to make the meta title catchy-simply make it informative in 60 characters or less.
Below is an example of the difference between a post title and a meta title:
Post Title:Tips for Handling and Preventing Negative Online PR
Meta Title:Online PR: How to Handle and Prevent Negative PR
The meta description of the post must be 160 characters or less. It should be informative, yet incorporate keywords and phrases.
For example, the post title we focused on above, Tips for Handling and Preventing Negative Online PR, might have a meta description along the lines of:
Online PR and marketing firm shares tips for how to handle and prevent negative online PR.
Notice how there are three keywords strewn throughout the description? This is great for SEO purposes.
5. Hyperlink Keywords:When you hyperlink keywords, readers can then click to another blog post or website page around the topic of the hyperlinked keyword. Search engines also note these hyperlinked keywords and use them in ranking your blog post.