Having spent some time recently reviewing blog use for SEO purposes and the advantages it has from a content based link-building strategy, I thought I would compile this short article just outlining my findings.
Most major online companies now run a branded or on-site blog that works as a great way to both engage with and update viewers with latest news related to your company. However, the blog also offers a great asset to use for improving internal linking structure on your site and also a great way of boosting target key-terms.
The architecture of a blog is hugely beneficial for SEO purposes, from a search engine perspective it contains an abundance of relevant information that holds both a high amount of authority and most importantly is updated regularly as freshness is an important factor for SERPS rankings.
In addition freshness indicates that the content is current and relevant, therefore increasing the chances of being shared via social channels furthering the content’s reliability and trustworthiness, again all positives for improving rankings.
User Journey & Retaining Viewers
Another factor to take into consideration for your blog is the user journey or path as this will help retain users. So often users will finish reading a blog post and the path or journey has come to a prompt end, therefore leading viewers to drop out. If you can capture a viewer’s attention, you increase the chance of the viewer navigating on to more pages of the site.
A feature which we use on our blog is the ‘link within’ element, more commonly known as a ‘you might also like’ section, which sits at the foot of each article. This feature has been proven to retain users and reduce bounce rates. It also helps search engine spiders crawl similar or relevant content effectively, whilst distributing authority across your top posts.
We recommend to utilise your Google analytics account and study bounce rates, specifically related to the blog to see where those drop outs are happening and maybe identify on-page why this is happening.
The key is to remember to use the site strictly as a VIEWER!
I am anticipating you have already conducted your keyword research and have taken into account your target terms. Blog posts offer a great opportunity to implement some key-terms or target terms to help in your SERP rankings.
Incorporating terms into the Blog title will allow your CMS to pull them into nicely optimised URL structures and meta titles (dependant on how modern your CMS platform is).
Now that you have optimised titles and URL structures we can begin to look at the body content and internal linking. This will ensure that not only is the content engaging for the user but also highlights a standard user journey for those who would like to further their reading on this subject.
In this instance we can see the subject is about BrightonSEO and therefore linking to pages on-site relevant to the subject or the BrightonSEO homepage will improve site usability, help support the narrative of the content and build further authority for the term BrightonSEO.
Beware though, keyword stuffing and over optimisation of anchor text will be picked up, we suggest implementing no more than 5 links per blog post, as this will be perceived as just spam content.
With the algorithm updates recently and the emergence of Penguin, it’s becoming apparent that content led based link-building strategies are the most natural and ethical way to improve rankings. Sound internal linking structure is also a crucial factor of improving your websites health, and in turn will aid your rankings.