One of the biggest sources of traffic on the web is Google (and it’s fellow search engines). As a result it makes sense that a blogger interested in building traffic to their blog would take some time to learn how Search Engines Rank sites.
Today’s task in the 31 Day Project your task is to do an SEO Audit of your blog.
I’ve written everything I know on SEO previously in a post called Search Engine Optimization for Blogs so I wont rehash it all in this post and I’d highly recommend you head to that post for a refresher on the topic (or an introduction to it if you’ve not learned much about SEO before).
Invest in Your Knowledge of SEO
If you have a budget for your education and want to learn from a real expert in SEO I highly recommend checking out Aaron Wall’s SEO Book (aff). It costs $79 and is the best resource I’ve found on the topic with 328 pages of instruction (with free updates – and Aaron does update it) plus a nifty little bonus called 33 Days to Online Profits. It has a 100% Money Back Guarantee if you find that it’s not for you.
A few tips for your SEO Audit
It can be easy to get overwhelmed by Search Engine Optimization so if you’re new to it or need a place to start here are a few basics that you might want to work on today:
- Make the Titles of Your Posts the Title Tags of Your Post Pages (Aaron shares how to optimize your title tags for SEO in this post. Also check out Title Tags and SEO).
- Use Good Anchor Text for internal links – hunt back through your old posts for poor anchor text to replace.
- Pick a few posts to do some analysis of your use of Keywords as outlined in the SEO for Blogs post. You might like to rewrite some older posts to make the most of this knowledge.
- Use good keywords in images in your posts – if you are optimizing particular posts that contain images renaming them and using good Alt Tags with the keywords you’re chasing can give you a boost.
- Think about head tags in your posts – here’s a very quick tutorial on head tags.
- Pick some key posts that you want to grow the SEO ranking for. Link to them from your sidebar/menus.
A Last word on Balance in Search Engine Optimization
Search Engine Optimization can become something of an obsession (as can many aspects of blogging if you concentrate on them to the exclusion of other factors). For a little balance on the topic you might find my Confessions of a Linkaholic and Should Bloggers Write for Humans or Computers? helpful.
Further Reading on SEO
If you want to read more you might like to check out a recent post from Matt Cutts which is a summary of a talk he did on Whitehat SEO for bloggers (or watch the video of the talk below if you’ve got a spare hour – it is really great):
One of the key issues with blogs is that software like WordPress raises a huge number of issues that are quite hard to address.
Once you have sorted unique meta descriptions and titles for all your pages you are still left with a huge problem which is the large number of unnecessary pages that are generated. For example canonicalization issues, archive pages, tag pages and comment feeds.
I did a breakdown of all the issue son johnchow.com at http://www.blogstorm.co.uk/blog/duplicate-content-john-chow/ if anybody is interested in more advanced blog SEO.
the seobook and site is a great resource, I have been reading a lot of his tactics and used his tools on his webpage – its a good asset to use I say
Wonderful tips. I’m trying to implement you suggestions on my blog. Thanks a lot Darren.
Darren – I’m really glad you mentioned the whole balance issue with search engine optimization. Being a more technically minded person, I’ve found it very easy to get lost in tweaking my website and my articles. Getting lost in any one thing means the others are likely to slide. Balance is crucial.
Ok So one exercise. Why not each one visit the above commentators blog and rate the SEO !
Good advice! I think a lot of bloggers forget about this, because they figure a blog is already SEO friendly.
This is excellent advice. I also highly recommend investing in Aaron Wall’s SEO Book (linked in Darren’s post) as it really helped me further my skills.
I purchased the book last week. I’m so happy I did. It’s an excellent resource.
The problem with SEO is that we don’t know enough about it.
I have tried using SEO tactics such as using good keywords ,but I lately realized that SEO is more than Keywords.
It seems that building and maintaining a high traffic blog will require continuous learning. That is the part we are weak at.
Live to learn and Learn to Live.
Thanks for the great ideas.
Thanks for the recommendation for Aaron’s book Darren, I’ll have to check it out!
This article shut down all my browsers. Concretely that video or what is that. I had to disable plug-ins in my Opera to see the article.
seobook is brilliant. It helped me get my wife’s blog ranking number 1 for her keywords in just a month or so.
So far my blog has remained on page one of Google’s search engine results when specific terms such as “adsense consultant” are used. I have also found out that my blog appears on page one of Yahoo’s search results at an even HIGHER rank than my Google ranking.
One of my clients (The Computer Dude) also appears on page one of Google’s search engine results.
I’m very glad that you pointed out the importance of how search engine rankings can vastly help one’s site. I read somewhere that basically half of the traffic that one gets to their site is from the search engines.
I have seen so many people post about how they are wondering why their site or blog hasn’t turned up in the search engines because they automatically assume that once their site is on the Internet then it will automatically show up on page one of the search engines.
Oh, by the way have you heard the recent “buzz” about how a few people managed to get their site on the search engines in a matter of 4 days? The info is still quite new to me and currently I am going over it to see if I can implement it into my and my clients’ sites.
just bought seo book last week ,its so wonderful and interesting.getting wonderful tips
thank u darren
Touny – I have heard of so many problems with Opera lately that I can’t figure out why anyone is using it. I highly recommend using Firefox if you do a lot of web surfing, but especially if you are blogging or doing business online. So many blogs look or act broken in Opera, but work just fine in Firefox, IE and others.
Darren – your site looks great, I like the new design. Nothing on this page caused problems for me, the video is fine as well. I’m using Firefox.
PLEASE IMMEDIATELY STOP POSTING ARTICLES LIKE THIS!
This type of article is extremely subversive in that, once again, it takes me away from all the fun posting stuff. Once again I am forced to delve into the mysteries of this strange blog “admin thingy” to yet again tweak and do stuff that hurts my brain.
Every time lately, you write another great article like this I have to tear my work apart to make it better. I’m seriously considering banning you from my screen. But I won’t, I know it, I admit it, I’m addicted to all this great stuff. Please keep it up… one day I may even get back to publishing my marketing stuff for restaurant owners. ;)
I used to have alt tags for the images in my website. But didn’t thought of using the same technique here in the blog. Thanx for sharing it.
I have previously purchased & read the SEO book countless times & still i refer back to it, I totally recommend it to any one in this field or about to enter the seo field to take an interest as what ever you know now will be doubled or even trebled after you have read it.
Regards, Resonate (CBarker)
SEO SEM Web Analytics Consultant
Over the past few months I’ve noticed a huge surge in traffic from search engines – and I know very little about SEO. I find it interesting to see what people are searching for, and how that eventually leads them to my blog.
Even more interesting, is my blog shows up in the top five search results most of the time. How I did that, I have no idea!
SEO is definitely a valuable asset for any blogger!
e-Fuzion offers online marketing services which include low cost website designing, search engine optimization, SEO in Google,Yahoo, MSN, Link Building, affiliate marketing, Web Development, Pay per Click management and other online activites which will help you to grow your online business & further help you in becoming a brand.
I’ve read the book some time ago.Is good but not enough.I think practice and experiments will make the difference between a good seo and bad one.Also experiment the dark side of the seo – will expand your horizons.:)
how about using h2,h3,h4 and so on in blog post…??
Your article is much more informatics for all of the visitor. I am very happy to read it. This is really very nice. Thank you for it.
Agreed. The H2 must have some impact? No? Everyone focused on H1, but I’ve always wondered about the others.
I think people under estimate the power of SEO. It should be the most important aspect of web creation in either pages or images. This can increase your overall traffic more than any other aspect. Dont leave any rock unturned when it comes to SEO. This is the best and also should be the biggest investment with of course the greatest returns.
Darren,Thanks for your tips.Its good start for beginners