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