It starts with the keywords and how you use them in your posts.
Keywords are the terms your target audience is typing in that search box on Google when they need an answer, or they are looking for you! Or your client!
“Virtual assistant for bloggers” and “fitness coach for women over 40” and “how to create a Pin in Canva” are all examples of keywords.
Knowing the keywords that you (or your client) would like to be known for is so essential to bringing “organic” traffic to your website, but that’s only one part of the equation. You also need to know how to use your keywords strategically.
So here are six places that you should be using keywords.
In the Page Titles
The title is the keyword field to which Google and other search providers give the most weight. So you definitely want to use your keywords here.
And did you know that you can give your post a title for your readers and one for search engines? If you’ve thought of a clever and click-worthy title for your post but you know it’s not great for search engines, you can still use it! Just open up the snippet editor in the Yoast SEO plugin and put the more search engine friendly title there.
You can see below how I have a different SEO title than the one I used above!
In Your Sub-Headings
People today rarely read an entire article from start to finish. Instead, they “skim” it for the most important points. Based on that they will decide if they want to invest time in reading the entire post. If your blog post is more than a few paragraphs long, be sure to include sub-headings to break up the text and give those skimmers an idea of what to expect.
And don’t forget to use your keywords in your sub-headings to tell the search engines what your content is about
In the Image Titles and File Names
Anytime you search for something on Google you’ll see images appear at the top of the search results. These images will almost always have file names and titles that correspond to the keyword you’ve searched.
So it’s important to always use your keywords in the file names of your images.
When you name your images be sure to add dashes in place of the spaces. Search Engines can’t read an image name like this: chocolatebrownies.jpg. Instead, your image name should look like this: chocolate-brownies.jpg.
And be sure to write titles and alt attributes that clearly describe what the image is about.How to Use Keywords to Drive Traffic to your blogClick To Tweet
In The Meta Descriptions
The meta description is the bit of text that shows up below a listing in Google and other search engines. With WordPress, you can set your meta description by using the Yoast SEO plugin. I used Yoast to set the Meta Description you see below. This way I was able to choose what text Google used for my website.
Meta descriptions don’t really have any weight when it comes to your search results placement. But they can have a great deal of impact on whether or not someone clicks through to your site. If you write a meta description with a strong call to action and using your keywords, people will be more likely to click through and read your post.
In YOur Inbound Links
As you create new blog posts and pages for your website, it’s a good idea to link from one to another. This has two benefits: it helps readers learn more about a subject, and it helps the search engines find and explore other content on your site.
In both cases, you should use keywords as the “anchor text” for your links. It’s a clear declaration to both human and non-human readers that the content linked to is about a specific subject.
In Your Content
That is probably obvious, but you need to include keywords in your content. It’s important not only for search engines but for your readers too. Just don’t use the same phrase over and over again. Doing so will turn your readers off. And it can look like keyword stuffing to Google which is a major no-no.
Instead, use variations of your keywords throughout your blog post. This way you won’t bore your readers! And you’ll reinforce your main point with the search engines! Search engines are way smarter than they use to be. They can now recognize synonyms and rank your content accordingly.
Don’t worry if you don’t get your SEO perfect right away. It can take time to properly optimize your blog for search engines. And it’s something that you will have to maintain. But remember to keep these six areas in mind for every post you write. If you do, your site will be much easier to find in a search.