Sunday, March 9, 2014

Say G'Day Saturday Linky Party {77} ~ My top 5 Blogging Tips for Better SEO

G'day sweet friends! Welcome to this week's Say G'Day Saturday linky party!

This week has been a busy one for me and my little blog as I have been doing lots of bloggy housekeeping. I am very guilty of being a negligent party host so I hope you can forgive me for not visiting this week. Can I make up for it by sharing some blogging advice?

When I first started blogging I did it as a way of learning how to navigate the web, be technologically aware, make a blog post and to be creative. Never once did I think I would still be blogging in 2014 and words like Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Google Analytics, Social Media or even Pinterest weren't even on my radar! These days though, I'm a little more savvy with the workings of Google and I've even learnt a few things about SEO. I've been spending the last few weeks trying to optimize my site by just doing a few simple (but time-consuming!) things. If you would like to increase your search engine traffic and learn from my blogging mistakes you might enjoy reading my

Top 5 SEO tips to help you and your blog!

Say G'Day Saturday Linky Party ~ My top 5 SEO Tips - SEO image

First of all, let's quickly understand the term SEO. SEO or Search Engine Optimization literally means the process of enhancing the visibility of a website or a web page in a search engine's search results. The higher the rank on the search results page, the more visitors it will receive from the search engine's users. For example, when I type Pinning Bloggers Masterlist into Google, the first results come from my blog.

Say G'Day saturday Linky Party ~ My top 5 SEO Tips - search engine image

If a page appears high up in search results, it’s more likely to be clicked, which means more traffic Yay! However, it's not a simple task for bloggers to enhance SEO because they are different to usual websites in that blogs are focused on creating something worthy of attention and conversation as well as advertising a product ie your blog. So, as bloggers, we need to make sure that SEO is a priority when we write our posts if we want to increase traffic to our blogs. There are easy ways to do this and I think these are the five easiest.

1. Add a META DESCRIPTION to your blog.
This only has to be done once and it is where you add a description of your blog and the general topics you post about. You want to include keywords that people will search for that fit your blog.

To add this description in Blogger:
  • Open up the blogger dashboard
  • Find Settings
  • Go to Meta Tags>Edit
  • Click "yes" to enable search description and then add your description. 
Say G'Day saturday Linky Party ~ My top 5 SEO Tips - meta description image

My description says "A lifestyle blog by Natasha in Oz for the modern day woman about home decor, cooking, parenting, social media, music and life Down Under."

I included my name because it is so intrinsically associated with my blog but you don't have to. I also included the main topics I blog about the most such as home decor and social media as both of these terms are often searched for.
2. Think about Keywords
Every blogger should know about keywords because your blog’s ranking and traffic depend on the particular keyword that you targeting. Let's say you are a food blogger then you need to include keywords such as 'Recipe' or 'Bake'. If you blog about decorating then you might use keywords such as 'Decor' or 'Design'. Think about the terms that you use when searching for something. Just remember that as a rule, search engines generally give more weight to the first 200 words within a page so ensure that keywords are used near the top of the post and then proportionally throughout the post. Your blog post should also include your keyword within the title.Be sure links within your site use your keyword phrase. For example if your target is 'delicious recipe' then link to the words 'delicious recipe' instead of a 'Click here' link.

3. Don't Keyword Stuff!
Keyword stuffing is keyword overloading and it's essential a no-no.  Keywords can be overused and this then becomes detrimental to search engine ranking because it could be considered Spam. Don't force your keyword into your blog post over and over again, just think about the best places to insert it so it looks natural and fits with your content.

4. Optimize images by adding Titles and Alt Text 
It is important to remember that  people search Google for images as well as for pages, so it's essential that you add titles and Alt text to your photos. I'm mortified at how many older posts of mine contain images without descriptions or even my name on them - I wish I'd known about doing this when I started blogging! It's so easy to rename your photos within your blog post draft and this is something I've been doing for the last few weeks. 

How to edit image names:
  • Upload your photo into your post 
  • Put your mouse over the photo, click on the picture then click on "Properties" 
  • The box 'Image Properties' then pops up. 
You can now include a new title for your image as well as alternate text. Both of these titles need to describe your post and can be the same. Ensure you use those keywords you thought so carefully about in these descriptors! I've just completed this exercise on some posts from 2010. One example is below. I had actually posted a recipe and hadn't even included the word 'Recipe' in my keywords! I also hadn't added any info to my pictures! Bad Blogger!

Say G'Day saturday Linky Party ~ My top 5 SEO Tips - optimizing pictures image

An added bonus of going to all this trouble is that the description you use will come up when someone pins your image on Pinterest! It really is worth going to this extra effort each and every time you post something.

5. Use Social Media
Market your content on various social networks and media. Try various titles and descriptions that can engage users. I really target Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and Pinterest. I've already blogged about Google before so I won't go on again about how important it is to really engage with Google+. Just know that you really need to get a Google+ identity if you don't already have one! Finally, don’t feel pressured to have a presence on every social network available! Just focus on the ones you feel most comfortable using then branch out when you feel you have mastered it. I know I'm harping on Google+ but don't forget that when content is shared, Google tracks the mentions, recognizes your content and ultimately helps with your SEO.

I hope you might be able to use some of this information for your blog. If you have any other suggestions please let me know in the comments. If you have also blogged about SEO or blogging why not share you post at this week's Linky Party!

Before we start the party I just want to share five posts that you might have missed from last week's party. As always just click the picture to be taken straight to the post and 

please be a kind blogger and pin from the original source!

Keep Calm and Pin from the Original Source ~ www.natashainoz.com

Sarah from Hyacinths for the Soul made some divine pictures with the Waterlogue App. 
Have you tried that app yet? 

Those clever Crafty Lumberjacks, Andrew and Dennis, made the sweetest clover wreath. If you haven't seen their blog yet you MUST! It is full of fabulous ideas and inspiration.

Jemma from At Home with Jemma shared her beautiful Winter windowsill garden. 

Carolyn from Warm Heart Bears shared her post about her February tea.

Ramon from Row House Events and Interiors shared this Blue White and Silver Bar.

Sammi from Every Home is a Castle shared her fabulous Ikea bookcase that they customised. 
I love it!
Custom billy bookcases

Thank you so much for joining in with last week's party ! Please feel free to grab an "I Was Featured" button!

Natasha in Oz

So, what have you been up to this week? 

If you have been crafting, baking, planning, gardening or organising a party this week I would love it if you could share your favourite post of the week with me at this weekend's

Say G'day Saturday Linky Party.

Say Gday Linky Party

You can link up a post about your favourite recipe, craft, idea, tutorial, Instagram pics, DIY projects or even your own linky parties. Just add the url of your particular blog post that you would like us to visit to the Linky tool below.

Feel free to grab the code for the Say G'day Saturday button and add that to your post so that your readers might be able to find other bloggers who would like to Say G'Day!

I'd also love it if you could tweet about the party-just click the 'Tweet Button' below!

Say G'Day Saturday

Please note: by linking up to the Say G'day Party, you are giving me permission to use any part of your post, including pictures, in feature posts on Natasha in Oz. I may also feature your posts on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest with all credit being given to the original source.

Let's try and Say G'day to as many people as possible this weekend!

Thanks so much for joining in with this week's party. Please click the button below to see where I am linking up this week!

Thanks so much for visiting today and I will see you during the week!
Best wishes,

Natasha In Oz 

Please join me each weekend for the Say G'day Saturday Linky Party!
You can also visit me at PINTERESTTWITTER, GOOGLE+


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