Believe it or not, you could be a part of the staggering 75% of people that don’t complete their blog posts on WordPress as well as they should be. Use the tips in this post to ensure that you key in all the right information, improve your readers’ experience and push your SEO through the roof!
Setting Up Your Post Editor
Screen Options When you open up a new post through the ADD NEW button, you’ll see a tab at the top called SCREEN OPTIONS. This allows you to pick and choose what fields and toggles you want to be able to see in the post editor. For me, I don’t need the “custom fields” option so I don’t have it selected. Setting up your post editor for what you specifically need to save you time in the future when having to go to those specific fields.
Help Button This tab gives you quick explanations about the various parts to the post editor. You can have a lot of your questions answered here.
Getting Ready to Write
Yoast SEO Plugin
Typically when I begin my first draft I begin with focusing on SEO. For me, this allows me to stay organized and on topic when I begin writing. I do this through the Yoast plugin that makes it really easy to set up your post for great SEO.
Focus Keyword: While I’m writing the post is when I normally choose what the focus keyword will be the post. The keyword will work as the backbone of the post and shape what the post is gonna look like. When I’m writing and keep in mind of the focus keyword is when I produce both my best work. I little tip is to have your focus keyword to be a word or phrase that is used often throughout the post.
SEO Title: This isn’t just the title you think is good or catchy but it is the title that is gonna give you the best SEO. Make sure your SEO title includes the focus keyword as it’s what is gonna get people to see your post in search results.
Meta Descriptions: The is a small description of your post that is 1-2 sentences long. It’s the small preview that people will see when they search for the post below the title.
Post Title This is the title of what the post is going to be when it’s published. The blog title is what is ultimately going to be the headline of your post and what will be the deciding factor on if readers choose to read your posts.
Pro tip: Include your keyword in your post title for even better SEO!
Post Permalink / Slug A good thing to do for the post permalink/slug is to keep it simple and to have the keyword included for better SEO.
Content: You can have a whole post full of great content but there are a few items that you should be sure to include.
- Introduction: You want to be able to give your readers a small taste of what’s to come before they get to the bulk of the content, it will also help with keeping your readers focused on the whole post.
- Closing/Call To Action (CTA): The end of your blog post should give some direction on what you want your readers to do. This can be asking a question and getting a response on the post comments or subscribing to your newsletter.
Images are a vital piece to every post! You want to sure that you are using them correctly and optimizing them in the best way possible.
- Save them down for web and save them the same size. For most blogs and sites, if there is a sidebar, then saving images down to 700-800px wide (less than 500kb) is optimal.
- Name your images descriptively and in simple English, this is will help with SEO.
Example: FreePeople-fringe-top.jpg NOT: img4738.jpg
- Add Title Tags to Your Images
- Add Alt titles and descriptions
Don’t Forget These Important Pieces
Featured Image This is the image you select to represent the post. Featured images are often seen as the thumbnail of your post and the picture that is seen in post excerpts. Depending on what theme your site is running, they can have a huge impact on your blog.
Tips for featured images:
- Have images follow the same ratio. You’ll want to keep a uniform look for all of your featured image sizes.
- Should be your branded graphics (and brand graphics should be consistent with your overall site branding)
- From post to post, your featured images should be similar. (Though it doesn’t always have to be)
Categories Don’t go crazy with the categories. One category is just as good as if there were 3. Typically, 1-2 are ideal.
Tags Along with not inputting images correctly on posts, leaving tags out of your posts is also bad. Tags are keywords that are relevant to that post. If I use a tag in one blog post, I should have used it at least three times throughout the post.
Excerpt If you run a theme that uses excerpts, instead of pulling the first 50 or so words, it will pull the excerpt you write for the post. Another benefit is that excerpts are pulled when the post is shared on social media. With excerpts, you can craft a message that best represents the post.
Publish toggle allows you to customize the status, publication time/date, and to what profiles you are sharing your post automatically. If scheduling your post, make sure to select “OK” after you’ve entered the date and time (a very common beginner mistake). You may want to think about publishing your post at a crazy time like midnight to accommodate for your readers from around the world. I publish my posts between the hours of 12:00 am – 3:00 am Pacific standard time for my UK readers. By making this simple change you may be surprised by the increase in your readership on your posts.
Let me know in the comments if there is anything else I should have added or if this post helped you out with writing your posts for your blog.
Until next time,