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Last updated on July 3, 2021

There is a morbid saying in SEO that says: the best place to hide a corpse is on the second page of Google.

It is true that if you are not on the first page, you will not get many clicks, if any, on your content.

Optimizing your blog posts for research is one of the best ways to generate continued traffic for years to come. Some of my most popular blog posts are posts that I wrote years ago that still get traffic today.

Although it may take a while—almost a year—In order for search engines to rank your articles and send you traffic, it is recommended that you optimize all of your articles for search.

Let’s take a look at three areas you can improve right now!

1. Use the right keyword density

Search engines need keywords to understand what your content is about.

If you don’t use enough keywords, your content may not rank well.

But how do you know how many times to use each keyword?

Here are two ways.

The first is to follow the rule of thumb of 1% to 2% keyword density.

Usually, using your keywords at this density is sufficient. For example, if you wrote a 1000 word blog post at 2% keyword density, your keyword and lightweight variations of this keyword – should appear 20 times.

But there is a better way.

By using a free tool, like this keyword density check, check the keyword density for the top 3 search results in Google for your keyword.

If the top three results use the keyword at 5% density, it’s fair to say you need to use that there as well. If they only use the keyword at 0.5% density, you can shrink as well.

Seeing what’s already ranking on Google is the best way to determine the keyword density you should be using.

And a little note: using the keyword more isn’t always better. Your content should read naturally, otherwise it will show up as keyword stuffing.

Keywords also don’t need to appear exclusively in your text. Here are different places to put the keyword:

  • Headers
  • Image file names
  • Alt Text (Only if applicable! Alt text is for screen readers and if the keyword doesn’t describe the photo, leave it out.)
  • Title of the article
  • Bulleted / numbered lists
  • The URL slug

2. Keep your content fresh and relevant

Going back to old articles and updating them by adding more relevant information and updated photos can give your ranking a boost.

The best content to update is your handy fruit… in other words, blog posts that are almost on the first page but are not quite yet.

To find them, go to your Google Search Console and click on Performance.

Screenshot of the Google Search Console menu.

Then turn on Average position by clicking on it.

Screenshot of the Google Search Console graphic.

Below the graph, you’ll see all of the different keywords you rank for. Sort the queries by position.

Screenshot of Google Search Console queries.

Finally, look for the keywords you rank on outside of page 1 (these are usually positions 10-19).

Go to the blog post related to the keyword and update it with more relevant information, better images, check keyword density, optimize images (which we will talk about next) to try to improve its classification.

Pro tip: to improve the user experience, use this plugin to show when you last updated a message. Readers want to read up-to-date, relevant blog posts and this is the easiest way to let them know your content is up to date.

3. Optimize your images

Google has made it clear that website speed is a ranking factor.

Large images are the cause of slow websites.

Before uploading any images to your website, be sure to resize and compress them.

To resize the images I use Be Funky.

Head toward Create> Photo Editor to resize your image.

Then drag and drop your image to download.

Under the Edit tab, click Resize.

Screenshot of the BeFunky image editor.

After resizing your image (I usually use a maximum height OR width of 1000 pixels), save it.

While saving your image, you can compress it by adjusting the slider.

Screenshot of the slider for image compression.

The cursor will tell you what the quality of your image will be. Try to keep it in the « Good quality » range.

After that I like to do another squeeze ride heading to TinyPNG where I drag and drop my image and it is automatically compressed a bit more.

This will optimize your images for your website so that they don’t contribute to your load time.

You can find which images already on your website need to be compressed using GTMetrix.

Add your url and click Test your site.

Screenshot of GTMetrix.

In your report, go to the Structure tab and scroll down until you find something that says Correctly size images. Click to open the box.

Screenshot of GTMetrix.

The box lists all the images you need to resize.

Screenshot of GTMetrix.

And don’t forget to save your images with keywords in the filename, using dashes (-) for spaces. For example: « dana-nicole-copywriter.jpg« .

Optimizing blog posts for research

These three easy ways can help you rank higher in Google and are quick to implement.

To learn more about SEO, get yourself a copy of my latest ebook Fluency in SEO. I teach you the same strategies I use to rank my website portfolio and generate almost a million visitors from search every year!

This article may include affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn income on qualifying purchases.

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