I was about twelve years old when my techie computer programming parents turned to me and said, “Amy, we just got you your domain name. It’s time to start blogging so you can rank on Google someday.”
Boy was I lucky to be raised by total nerds.
Anyways, since then I’ve spent the past decade or so blogging on ye olde blog here at AmySuto.com, spinning tales of what I’m up to and sharing the knowledge I’ve learned along the way.
And now, it’s time for me to share all of my secrets when it comes to the magical witchcraft of ~search engine optimization~ aka SEO for blog posts and articles. But before we even dive into that, let’s start with why the hell even bother with blogs anyways.
What is a Blog Even Good For?
As it turns out, you don’t have to be a sultry narrator of a Sex In the City-esque show to get benefits out of blogging.
Here’s a huge secret: your blog is the best free marketing tool ever. If your website has a blog, people will probably find one of your articles on Google while searching for something they’re looking for. Without having to pay a dime — bam! You’ve got traffic (the good kind, not the LA kind!)
If you’re a realtor or therapist or any kind of service provider, a blog helps to share your expertise with potential clients. When we’re making decisions about who to work with, we want to get a sense of who someone is and what they’re best at, and blogs are a great way to capture your unique personality while sharing your superpowers.
If you run a Shopify store or sell products, a blog is a fantastic way to announce new product releases, share behind-the-scenes content from your warehouse, and your company’s story. Now more than ever, we care about how our stuff is being made: story matters when it comes to sales. And every blog post you write is just another entrypoint that a new customer can find you on Google.
For me, this blog has been a huge source of incoming traffic. I’ve gotten leads for my own freelance writing and also I’ve met some really awesome folks who have found my work on here. Sometimes when you shout into the void… it shouts back? In a really friendly way?
But in order for people to find your blog on 100 vegan nutritional yeast recipes, you’ve got to make sure it’s properly optimized so that Google and other search engines can direct traffic your way.
Search Engine Optimization = Witchcraft, But for Google’s Algorithm
When I wrote my article on how I ghostwrite memoirs, I made sure to include the keywords I was targeting was in every part of my article, from my article title, subheadings, and topic sentences. I even included my keywords in photo descriptions and the article’s metadata. If you’re blogging on WordPress like I am, I would recommend checking out plugins like Yoast that help automatically check and see if you’re hitting all the marks for the keywords you’re targeting in your article.
All that SEO legwork really pays off: from that one article alone, I’ve booked several jobs from people who found me on Google who were interested in hiring a memoir ghostwriter, which was one of the reasons why I wrote that blog post. See? SEO witchcraft does work!
But how does one go about targeting an audience?
If you know what you want people to search to find you — like, “hire a memoir ghostwriter” — you can reverse engineer that phrase into keywords that you can build a blog article around.
Don’t know what keywords to target? Use a keyword discovery tool like Google’s Keyword Research Tool to help you do some digging. Higher competition keywords mean you’re competing with more websites to get first-page results, and lower competition keywords mean you’ve got a better shot at getting at the homepage.
Because my nerdy parents got me on the blogging train early, this website is very well ranked. Almost every article I write ends up on the first page of Google results for the keywords I’m targeting in my SEO research. (Thanks, Mom and Dad!)
If you didn’t grow up learning HTML and how to code websites, that’s cool: you can also increase your site’s ranking from getting backlinks, AKA getting other websites of high authority to link to you. For example, I have websites like The Los Angeles Times and NYU that have linked to my websites, which has helped me rank high on Google even on new websites I’ve created.
Google’s algorithm changes over time, so you’ll need to keep fine-tuning your ability to both optimize your posts and get high-quality backlinks.
Content is King, So Write Good Stuff for Your Blog
Now to my last point of this article: write blogs people actually want to read!
In all of my blog posts, I share with you stories about my life, things that I’m learning, and info that will help you accomplish your goals as well. At the very least I choose aesthetically-pleasing photos of coffee and tea, which is and has always been my blog’s #vibe.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve landed on a blog in search results where I go to read and learn something, and then it reads like a robot wrote the post! And then — byeeeeeeeeee — I’m outta there.
Your blogs aren’t just Google bait: they’re meant to convert clicks into fans. And those fans will support you in anything you do if they see that you’ve put a level of care into the construction of all the articles on your website.
When In Doubt: Hire a Blog Writer/Content Writer/Blog Ghostwriter
If you’re not a writer but want epic blog posts written for your website, I’m your gal! I offer my blog writing/ghostwriting services starting at $300 per 500-word post that’s optimized for your target keywords and written in you or your brand’s voice. Send me more details about your blog writing needs and let’s talk! You can also book this service directly on my Upwork profile.