Why SEO Still Matters For Bloggers
By: Amanda Boyce

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Every morning fully equipped with our mugs of coffee and open laptops, the IFB team sits down for our content meeting, which is where we not only discuss current events (did you see his latest tweet? What are they thinking?!) but also dig through our analytics to see how our SEO is doing. Fashion blogs, blogging, community are some of our most common search terms, which makes sense. Then, there are those search terms that make you go Wait, what? But, regardless of what the findings are, the IFB team spends a good amount of time analyzing the site’s SEO and figuring out what you want. That’s the beauty of SEO and, to be honest, is what makes for any successful site or blog.

Yes, IFB is living proof that SEO works. I know many naysayers say that SEO is an old marketing tactic, that it doesn’t work and isn’t worth the time or the money. I’ve seen many articles dedicated to the death of SEO and I’ve heard many bloggers state that they don’t care about SEO, which boggles my mind.

The bottom line is: SEO can and will work for you if you use it in a naturally organic way.

That means not dropping tons of keywords in every other sentence, which is what most companies have done in the past. The most historic company blogs (I won’t point any fingers) have used blogging as a means to drop as many SEO friendly terms into a blog post, rendering a post completely unreadable but hey, it gets the traffic in so companies don’t care. But, for us bloggers, SEO means researching what your readers what,  analyzing the web  to see online user behavior, targeting readers with posts they are already searching for and implementing other SEO-specific tactics to get readers to your site.

For example, in the past 6 months, I’ve made it my goal to triple the amount of traffic for HeartIFB.com. Sounds impossible, right? At first, I thought I was setting myself up for disaster. But, after doing research, I found that IFB’s audience was already there, waiting in the wings for content that they were scouring the digital space for. My job was to guide the reader to IFB’s site.

How did I do this?

First, I analyzed the search terms that IFB’s readers were using. You can easily find these search terms in your Google Analytics as well as your WordPress dashboard. If you haven’t installed Google Analytics into your site, I want you to immediately stop reading this and GET THEE HERE. It’s a bloggers ultimate tool… Just be sure to come back after you’ve got it all set up.

I noticed that many of our readers were searching for these topics: Instagram, blogging, business, bio, social media, Twitter, self-portraits, photography, apps. Once I gathered information about what our readers were looking for, I started working with our Editorial team to develop clear, concise content on all of these topics. Throughout the past 6 months, IFB’s editorial team has built multiple layers of content on those topics specifically, from beginner-oriented posts to more advanced tips and tutorials. Now, thanks to our tailored SEO-content, our readership has tripled and, what’s even better, our readers are staying on our site for 6-10 minutes per page! That’s an eternity on the Internet! It just goes to prove that if you build strong, reader-oriented content and lay it out in an easily digestible way, the readers will come and stay.

Research, target and implement. That’s the formula for SEO success.

The takeaway for bloggers is that SEO is about making your content visible through keywords, tagging and. You’ve spent time and effort writing your posts and shooting your photos, why wouldn’t you want to share your posts with as many readers as possible? If you have yet to make your way through the SEO journey, we have this handy beginner’s guide to SEO that you can download and print out for your SEO adventures.

 

The next part, which should be a whole other post because it really is another layer of a blogger’s marketing strategy, is to keep the reader on the site. Just getting your readers to your site isn’t enough. In fact, once you get their attention, you really need to make the most of their time or else, guess what? Those readers will bounce out of your site faster than you can say totes amaze.

 

Image by olly  on Shuttershock.com

 

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Comments

  1. Jummy says:

    I’m not a fashion blogger but I have found IFB immensely helpful for tips on becoming a better blogger. I’m one of those people who didn’t think SEO is that important or useful, but after reading this article and exploring within my Google Analytics account (so cool to delve into what brings people to my site!), I’m ready to try the organic approach you share.

    The good thing about doing this research is it can help you figure out future blog topics.

  2. I’m not a fashion blogger either but find plenty of handy tips here! If you have any on how to use Google Analytics more intelligently they would be much appreciated :)

  3. Rachel says:

    I do some SEO things automatically or because of some snippets I have read on IFB, but I’d never really thought about it that way. Off to read the IFB SEO archives to see what I should be doing – a 3x rise in readers sounds amazing!

  4. Most of my traffic comes from search engines and I’ve spent the past few months working on improving the SEO of my posts. I don’t do it for every post because I do like creating some “just for fun” outfit posts for my dedicated readers, but I work very hard writing useful posts on topics people are interested in and searching for. It’s not all that easy though and I use a plugin tool to make sure the search engines can “see” my keywords. Googles bots don’t read a post the way a human being does, and my usual preambles often confuse the bots. Creating a good, readable, post with good SEO takes time.
    Looking forward to seeing your post on how to keep readers on the site. My bounce rate is way high so some hints would be helpful.

  5. Avatar of Zoobia
    Zoobia says:

    This definitely gives me something to think about. Like the majority of bloggers, I’d like to increase my traffic and reach so I suppose reading about SEO is the first step. I’m going to check my analytics account right now to see where I can improve things and which keywords to use in order to do just that.

  6. Lydie says:

    amazing tips. am installing the google analytics now!! thanks

  7. Kionon says:

    I’m an IFB member and a style blogger. I have no interest in marketing or advertising. I have no interest in making money. What I *am* interested in is having conversations develop on my blog about my posts, where readers talk not just with me, but with others inside of the commenting section. Can SEO help me do that?

    • Linda says:

      of course SEO can help you do that, people have to find your blog for the first time somewhere. Your potential readers are using search engines to find websites that interest them, and you’re doing yourself a disservice by ignoring them.

  8. I love the mix of fashion and blogging tips on here – readable, and, as you say, exactly what I’m looking for! Now I know how you read my mind ;) I’m just getting the hang of SEO but I think it’s definitely worth it.

  9. Christina says:

    That’s so impressive (and inspiring) that you were able to triple your traffic so fast! Thanks for the tips. Since I run an online sales and coupon site, I rely heavily on SEO for traffic, but my stats have recently taken a pretty significant blow due to Google Penguin. I’m just starting the steps to begin to recover, but it’s been hard. Has anyone else been affected by this? I’m taking it as a call to action to really focus on other ways of generating traffic, but it’s a pain!

    • Krista says:

      Yes I took a hit with Google Penguin. Majority of my traffic was coming from Google prior to Penguin but after the update I’ve lost my rankings for all my major keywords. My website is more an online shopping resource than a blog. I’m trying to recover my rankings but as you know it doesn’t happen quickly! I’ve been researching other traffic methods (probably things I should have been implementing all along) but am a bit slow getting going with them.

  10. Borjana says:

    And this is why I adore your articles and stay here more then 10 minutes;) I always learn something new to improve my blog (I’m ashamed to say that I didn’t know about anything you wrote here:-)) But,I’m gonna google it and use it immediately!
    Thank you for making me better;)
    xx
    B.

  11. Fashion-isha says:

    I just want to tell you that whatever you’ve been doing it’s been working. Recently I find myself totally interested in the article you have been publishing and drinking in all of your amazing and valuable information. The fact that you write article like this one sharing the deepest secrets of blog success for all of us and in the most understandable terms (after all we are fashion bloggers not computer geeks) just makes me love you guys even more!

    Thanks for these invaluable tips and keep up the GREAT work!
    xo
    Sharon

  12. I totally agree with everything stated in this article! I had an obsession with SEO before I began blogging, so this was definitely to my advantage! SEO is still very much alive and kicking, and I have seen the proof in my blog. Simple steps such as naming your images accurately, instead of vaguely, so you can rank in the image search results. Don’t just name it with an image number or whoever is in the image, give a good description!

  13. One more useful tip – if you do not already have a Google Webmasters account then create one ASAP! This will allow you to see the number of impressions your site receives from Google’s search engine, the number of clicks you get to your site from those keyword(s), and your search ranking for those keyword searches. There are also a ton of other useful reports: links to your site, your top linked content… great and useful site analytics you want to know.

    http://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/

  14. Oh yeah organic search is the foundation of the blog world. It will always matter. Now, are people losing trust in blogs? that’s my question. When I’m writing a report for school, if I use a blog as a resource the teacher will doc major points off the paper telling me source is not credible at all.

  15. ODYSSEY says:

    It’s impressive you were able to increase traffic x3! What you’re doing is clearly working.
    I only wish Google Analytics had clear instructions on the installation process. (I got through to the “copy code” stage and then Google left me hanging. After visiting the help section and doing more research, I remained mystified and gave up.)
    I’ve learned a lot by reading your posts. Thanks so much for sharing your knowledge. It is greatly appreciated!

    Stephanie

  16. Jade says:

    I use the Stat section of Blogger to see what search terms bring in the most viewers to my blog and that’s really helped me out. There’s a few words and phrases that are constantly at the top of the list so I’ve started doing more posts relating to those and since then I’ve been getting more visitors each day! Such a simple and quick thing to check but it gives BIG rewards :-)

  17. I have a niche fashion blog concentrating on hats. Most of my traffic is from Google, and I use organic SEO by focusing on writing about the type of hat I am wearing in a given post. I also write “how-to” type posts answering the common questions about wearing and choosing hats. I think IFB traffic is staying on your site longer because of the quality information you provide on topics of interest to bloggers. SEO gets us here, but your great articles keep us coming back!

  18. Sinead says:

    this is great. @ Odyssey – i’m with you! I’ve gotten as far as copying it into the HTML page on blogger, but then when i log in it always says there has been no visits, but blogger analytics tells me there has. I find the whole SEO thing really confusing, but it’s helpful to see and hear how other people do it!

  19. Avatar of Akaleistar
    Akaleistar says:

    This is something that I have to work on doing better.

  20. I definitely herald the importance of incorporating SEO into your blog. However, as a blogger who is not tech savvy at ALL, I wonder if it’s prudent to hire SEO companies to help out with the nitty gritty. If anyone have worked with these companies, I’d love to hear your thoughts and feedback!

    http://www.goodbadandfab.com
    personal style and fashion musings of a LA fashion lawyer living life in the fab lane

  21. Jennifer says:

    Thank you for the tips! Putting it on my blog now!

  22. From SEO point of view blogs are most important and its much help full to increase rankings..

  23. Anderson says:

    twitter can be useful for link negotiation, brand exposure and maybe content inspiration. But I think an SEO’s time could be better spent doing other SEO stuff. Sure if you have a massive team and funding go for it, but i wouldn’t recommend it to one-man-band SEOs. It is must for every bloggers …. so it still matters Thank you for sharing this article

  24. Amanda, Bloggers should be focused on gaining links from reputable sites in their industry. If this means linking out to other sites and then telling them about it.. go for it. In most cases bloggers are writing about niche’s that might not be all that competitive in Google’s Search Metrics. This can help gain both a following for your blog and also increase search traffic.

  25. Asad Hanif says:

    in my point of view every website must have a blog. because we cant update our clients websites. but if we have access of that blog which are belong to that site. we will update it in a week. and it will boost ranking.

  26. Is there any other way to promote your business on internet? I don’t think so therefore SEO will always be the most important thing even after 10 years from now.

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