How to Write SEO Friendly Blog Posts? – The Last Guide You’ll Need

December 24, 2019
How to Write SEO Friendly Blog Posts

Have you been investing a lot of time and effort in writing blog posts but not getting the results you were hoping for?

Do you want to learn how to write SEO Friendly blog posts that get ranked in the first pages of Google & receive a ton of organic traffic?

Writing SEO friendly blog content is probably the most difficult skill to learn.

But since Google is the single biggest source for driving organic traffic to a blog or website, you’ve no choice but to learn how to do it right.

So how do I write an SEO friendly blog content, you might ask?

Well, despite what other people think, there are some easy steps you can follow to ensure that every blog post you publish on your blog is SEO Friendly.

In this post, I have shared my personal step by step process to help you write SEO optimized blog posts that will help you rank higher in Google and appeal to readers at the same time.

This is a 10-Steps process that I personally follow to make sure all my blog posts are SEO Friendly.

How to Write SEO Friendly Blog Posts – Here’s My Process

  1. 1. Optimize Your Blog for Mobile Devices
  2. 2. Start with Keyword Research
  3. 3. Analyze Competitors’ Content
  4. 4. Create a Blog Outline that Users can Easily Scan
  5. 5. Write Your Content
  6. 6. Write Long Blog Posts
  7. 7. On-Page SEO
  8. 8. Master Link Building
  9. 9. Add Images & Videos
  10. 10. Ask Readers to Share on Social Media

Now before we get into the details of each step, it’s important to clarify what is SEO Friendly blog post first.

What is SEO Friendly Blog Post?

What is SEO Friendly Blog Post

The answer is simple: an SEO Friendly blog post is simply a combination of a user-friendly and search-engine friendly blog post.

In other words, your blog post needs to fulfill both the criteria:

  • • Have original, unique, and great content that provides value to readers.
  • • And at the same time, optimize your blog post in a way that search engines like Google can easily understand what the post is all about to gain higher ranking.

It’s basically a combination of original content and good SEO that will make a blog post SEO friendly and secure higher ranking on Google.

Although, getting this combination right in every blog post takes a lot of practice, but fortunately for you, there is an easy way.

In this post, you’ll learn how to write SEO Friendly blog posts step by step that will improve your blog post’s chances of ranking in the first pages of Google.

With that being said, let’s dive right in!

10 Steps to Follow for Writing SEO Friendly Blog Posts

10 Steps to follow for writing SEO Friendly blog posts

Here are the 10 steps that you can follow to write SEO Friendly blog posts.

These steps might sound very basic to some of you, but following these steps while writing your next blog post will definitely help you in making it SEO Friendly.

Here we go!

1 – Optimize Your Blog for Mobile Devices

Frankly, this is not actually a part of the process, but it’s essential to optimize your blog for mobile devices before you start writing your next blog post.

Why?

Well, it’s simple.

From 19th December 2018, Google has started crawling and indexing web pages based on how it loads and looks on a mobile device.

In fact, Google’s mobile-first indexing is also a ranking factor, meaning if your blog or website is not mobile responsive or takes longer to load, then Google will assign low rankings to your blog posts.

So, before you start following the below steps, check the mobile-friendliness of your blog using Google’s PageSpeed Insights tool and make necessary changes to improve it.

2 – Start with Keyword Research

Once you’ve ensured that your blog is mobile responsive, it’s time to move forward.

The process of writing an SEO Friendly blog post begins with keyword research.

You need to find a primary focus keyword and also a set of secondary keywords that your potential readers are searching for in Google.

To identify the right primary focus keyword for your blog post, you need to make sure that the keyword you’re selecting is:

Related to your blog niche:

Find a keyword that is closely related to and captures the main theme of your blog niche.

Popular among your target audience:

Look for a keyword that has a high search volume, or in simple words, is frequently used in the search queries.

And has low competition:

Research about the different variations of the primary focus keyword and choose the variation that has low competition so you can compete for the higher ranking on Google.

There are lots of different ways to find keywords that fit these criteria.

For example, you can simply use the Google Keyword Planner Tool.

But the main problem with this tool is that it does not come with many important features.

So, do yourself a favor and get a tool like SEMRush before investing time and efforts in writing your next blog post.

SEMRush offers a free 7-days trial that will help you do better keyword research and find the right primary focus keyword to target from all different variations.

3 – Analyze Competitors’ Content

If you really want to write blog posts that are SEO friendly and ranks in the first pages of Google, without competitor analysis, you would be simply shooting in the dark.

Writing blog posts that rank on Google is not going to happen based on guesswork.

You need to thoroughly analyze your competitors in order to outrank them in Google’s search results.

Specifically, here’s what you need to do:

  1. 1. Enter your primary focus keyword on Google
  2. 2. Check first 10 or 20 posts of the search results
  3. 3. Analyze their content inside out – This includes the title of their posts, URL, meta description, introduction content, post structure, length of the post, images, etc.

By analyzing each of these elements, you’ll understand what kind of blog posts Google prefers to rank on its top search results.

Now, all you need to do is write a better and updated version of your competitors’ blog posts.

4 – Create an Outline that Readers can Easily Scan

The next step of the process is to create an outline of your blog post. By outline, I mean to create a ‘table-of-contents’ or ‘index’ of the post.

For example, before writing this blog post, I created its outline that looked like this:

Blog Content Outline Example

As you can see, a blog post should always have an introduction part, the article body part, and a conclusion part.

The article’s body part can be further divided into a number of sub-parts depending on the topic of the blog post.

Creating an outline offers a number of benefits. For instance, when you split your blog post into different parts like this, it will make it easier to write content faster and more efficiently.

In fact, this trick will be particularly useful when you’re writing a long (2000-3000+ words of) blog post and don’t have time to finish it in one sitting.

The blog post outline will allow you to easily work on various parts independently and without needing much time to re-organize your thoughts and re-generate your focus.

5 – Write Your Content

Once you’ve chosen a primary focus keyword and created an outline for your blog post, the next step is to start writing the first draft of your blog post.

Now remember, while you’re writing for Google, but writing SEO friendly blog post is really about writing for humans.

So, always keep your readers in mind and don’t write blog posts that only appeals to search engines.

In other words, as you write your blog post, make sure that you’re not damaging the user experience of your blog post while trying to improve its SEO-Friendliness.

Apart from this, there are a few other important things you need to keep in mind while writing content.

These important things include:

Use the primary focus keyword in the first 100 words

As you start writing, try to use the exact primary focus keyword in the introduction part, specifically in the first 100 words.

Although, remember not to stuff the focus keyword, but try to add it naturally.

One easy trick that most professional bloggers use is by asking a common question to your readers as I did at the beginning of this blog post.

Use primary focus keyword in sub-heading & throughout the text

If you want to make your blog post SEO optimized, then adding your primary focus keyword just once won’t cut it. You’ll also need to add your primary focus keywords multiple times throughout the content and at least once in one of the sub-headings.

Use secondary keywords

Along with the primary keywords, you should also find 3-5 secondary keywords that your potential readers also use and naturally add them throughout the content.

Using secondary keywords will allow you to rank for multiple keywords in Google and drive more organic traffic to your blog.

Write original content

This might fall under the ‘Common Sense’ category but I will say it anyway.

Write original content.

That means, do not copy or even re-write content from competitors’ posts because sooner or later Google bots will identify it and it may penalize your blog altogether.

Keep your paragraphs short

To make your blog post SEO friendly, you’ll have to write blog content in a way that is easy to read. And the best way to achieve that is by writing short paragraphs.

Short paragraphs have proven to increase readability, user experience, and SEO friendliness of blog posts.

Although, writing short paragraphs doesn’t mean you should also write short blog posts. (We’ll discuss this shortly.)

Use signal words

Signal words are important for adding structure to your blog content and also allow readers to quickly grasp the main idea of the topic.

For example, you can use signal words like ‘First of all’, ‘secondly’, ‘surely’, and ‘finally’ when you’re giving reasons to try a hack, tactic, strategy or buy a product.

Apart from this, you can also use signal words like ‘therefore’, ‘for this reason’, ‘so’, and ‘consequently’ to direct readers instantly to the conclusion of any particular sub-point.

Check for grammar & spelling mistakes

Grammar and spelling mistakes can kill your SEO friendliness and user experience, no matter how valuable or unique your blog post is.

So, make sure that your blog post is well-written and has no grammar, syntax, and spelling mistakes. Again, do yourself a favor and get the Grammarly tool.

Grammarly is a free grammar-check tool and it also works perfectly with Google Docs as well as Microsoft Word.

6 – Write Long Blog Posts

Gone are the days when you would write 600 to 800 words of a blog post and secure a higher ranking on Google.

Today, the longer your blog post is, the better it will perform in driving organic traffic.

Hubspot confirmed this in one of their studies that blog posts between 2250-2500 words have earned maximum organic traffic and ranking in the top positions on Google search results.

Hubspot Research: Word Count vs Average Organic Traffic

Brian Dean, the founder of Backlinko, recently conducted his own research on length of blog posts and found that the average word count of Google’s first-page search results was 1890 words.

Backlinko Research - Blog Post Word Count

Although, this does not mean that shorter blog posts will not get higher ranking or organic traffic from Google.

You need to understand that Google prefers ranking content that fulfills users’ search intent for any particular keyword.

So, while longer blog posts are recommended, but they must also fulfill the users’ search intent and provide the highest value possible.

7 – On-Page SEO

Once you’ve finished writing your blog post, the next step is to optimize on-page SEO elements before publishing the content.

When it comes to on-page SEO, there are three most important SEO attributes that you need to take care of.

SEO Title

Your primary focus keyword must appear in the SEO title of your blog post, preferably in the beginning words of the title.

SEO Title Example

You see, Google considers SEO title among other things while indexing web pages and assigning rankings to particular keywords.

And by mentioned the primary focus keyword in the SEO, you’ll simply let Google know that this is the keyword you’re trying to rank for.

So, include your primary focus keyword at the beginning of the SEO title and keep the title short and to the point.

According to HubSpot Research, the ideal blog post title should have between 8 to 12 words or 60 characters.

Blog Post URL

URL basically stands for Uniform Resource Locator, and it is basically a unique address of a specific webpage.

Blog Post URL Example

Now, most content management systems like WordPress will automatically generate the URL for you, but it’s important that your blog post URL includes your primary focus keyword in it.

This practice will not only allow Google bots to easily identify and index your blog posts, but it will also let your users easily identify what a blog post or webpage is about.

For example, WordPress created the following URL for this blog post by default and then I changed it to include my primary focus keyword for this post.

  • Default URL: screwedupengineer.com/how-to-write-seo-friendly-blog-posts-the-last-guide-you-will-ever-need
  • Custom URL: screwedupengineer.com/how-to-write-seo-friendly-blog-posts

The idea is to shorten the URL and include the primary focus keyword.

Important Note: Never change your blog post URL once it is published.

Meta Description

Meta description is simply a short excerpt of your blog post, which generally appears below your SEO title & URL in Google’s search results.

Blog Post Meta Description Example

Now, just like SEO title & URL, the Meta Description of your blog post plays a huge role in securing a higher ranking on Google.

Therefore, you must include your primary focus keyword when writing the meta description of your next blog post.

The ideal length of meta description is 155-165 characters and you should also try to make it compelling to increase the click-through rates.

8 – Master Link Building

Links are very important when it comes to making a blog post SEO friendly.

There are mainly two types of links.

Internal Links

Interlink links are basically hyperlinks that link to other blog posts on your blog or website.

The general rule of thumb is to include 2-5 internal links to other related articles that are published on your blog.

Internal links contribute a lot of value in terms of SEO as it will help Google bots to understand your blog better and it will also guide your readers towards other helpful articles on your blog.

External links

External links are hyperlinks that link to articles or webpages that exist on different websites.

This type of links are very helpful as linking to trustworthy websites can increase the credibility of your blog post and it’s also a great way to provide references to relevant data.

In other words, linking to influential & reputable websites also shows Google that you’ve performed proper research and it also strengthens your blog post by providing research-backed statistics.

9 – Add Images & Videos

Images and videos play an important role in making a blog post SEO friendly.

For instance, they make your blog post visually appealing and increase the chances of being shared.

Although, Google is a text-based search engine and therefore it doesn’t understand images.

So, when adding images to your blog posts, make sure that you’re adding a descriptive text in the image alt-text tag to help Google understand what the images are about in your blog posts.

Videos, on the other hand, are just as important.

For example, online video consumption has exploded in recent years. Today, an average person spends 84 minutes watching online videos on a day-to-day basis.

And by adding relevant videos in your blog post, you will be able to increase time spend on your blog, which will ultimately reduce your bounce rate and Google will also consider it as a good user experience and impact the post’s ranking in the search results.

10 – Ask Readers to Share on Social Media

Once you’ve finished writing the blog content and have taken care of all SEO aspects, it’s time to request your readers to share it on their social media.

You see, getting organic shares on the social media platform helps a lot in getting your blog post in the first pages of Google.

Matt Cutts, the former head of the webspam team at Google, also confirmed this in one of his videos that Google uses data from social media websites to determine the ranking of webpages.

These social shares are basically social signals such as like, share, and comments on your blog post on social media networks like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, and more.

So, use small call-to-actions in between or at the end of your blog posts to encourage social sharing.

You can simply ask your readers to share your blog post on their social media if they liked your article.

For reference, you can take a look at my call-to-action for social media sharing encouragement after the conclusion part of this blog post.

Conclusion

With this, we have come to the end of this blog post.

Now, let’s quickly review all the steps to make sure you got it right.

Before writing a new blog post:

  • • Find a low-competition, high-traffic primary focus keyword
  • • Do some competitors’ analysis
  • • Write original content that offers a ton of value to your readers
  • • And optimize your blog post with primary & secondary keywords as I explained above.

Following the steps mentioned in this post will definitely help you in writing SEO friendly blog posts.

So, follow all the steps carefully to earn ranking in the first pages of Google search results and get a ton of organic traffic.

Before you go, I have a tiny request.

If you liked this blog post, can you please share it on social media?

I’ve put so much effort into writing this blog post to provide value to you.

I know that the majority of people don’t really click on the share buttons because they think that us bloggers don’t need their social share. But here’s the truth…

Your social share will actually help me a lot in growing this blog.

So, please share it on either Facebook or LinkedIn. Or just tweet it! 🙂

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