SEO can be really scary, whether you're a new blogger or seasoned veteran. SEO, which means search engine optimization, is one of the areas that IFB bloggers express the most concern, frustration, or lack of knowledge about. You don't have to be super knowledgeable about SEO in order for it to make an impact on your blog.
At the heart of SEO is this concept: What are internet users searching for and how can I help them find it on my site? If you are styling an outfit with neon trends or buckled sandals, how can you help people find it? Because if you're writing about a topic, you want the people searching for it to find it! And that's what SEO does: it helps people find it. SEO is an area where, if you work smart, you can see an increase in traffic. Here are 5 ways that you can use SEO to your advantage to boost traffic.
1. Make Sure Post Titles and Permalinks are Keyword Rich.
While you may want to name your post something clever, it helps to try and make your title clever, specific and concise. Most Search Engines only pick up the first 60 characters (letters, symbols, and numbers) of a post, so keep your title within that length.
If you make your Post Title keyword rich, then your post permalink (or the url linking to the post) will be just as rich. If you'd like to change your permalink to have different keywords, here are instructions for changing your WordPress permalink in Blogger permalink.
2. Rename Images with Descriptive Words.
Before uploading your images to the internet (whether through Blogger, WordPress, or to an external sites like Flickr), be sure to rename them. This is typically as simple as double-clicking the title until it is highlighted, and then renaming the file. Be sure to keep the correct file extension, whether it's .gif or .jpg or something else!
If your photo comes from you camera or phone and is named IMG_0135.jpg, people on the internet may not be able to find it…because why would they be searching for that? If you rename your photo from IMG_0135.jpg to ValentinoRockstudShoes.jpg, then people using search engines to find this style of shoe will come across your image and site. Easy!
3. Fill in IMG ALT Tags.
Similarly to renaming your images, adding a handful of descriptive and concise search terms can help search engines find your site images more easily and direct more readers to your site. Since fashion is such a visual medium, use it to your advantage! Just be sure not to use 50 terms, because the bots that search posts for keywords may see it as overcompensating and penalize it for you. Shoot for 5-10 words or phrases, and don't be too redundant!
4. Assign Categories and Tags Wisely!
Blog categories and tags create additional blog “slugs” (urls) for the given category or tag keyword. Each time you place a post in the category or tag, search engines recognize that it has new content. This is great, because search engines LOVE new content, and new content helps improve your rankings on websites.
We suggest limiting your tags to 25 or less, so that you're constantly creating new content in those tags. Many sources online suggest that categories do not have a maximum limit, but that you should ensure that each category has approximately 10 or most posts in them, and that they are again, constantly being used and receiving new content.
5. Fill in Meta-Tags:
If you have a WordPress SEO plugin installed, there's inevitably a box below your post that has the Meta Tags in them. You'll typically find these tags in your plugin, and here's what information to put into each field.
- Title: Keep your Meta Title under 60 characters, and make it SEO rich. If your title is keyword rich, use it; but if it's not you can change it to contain different information
- Description: This should stay under 160 characters and be a concise, yet descriptive paragraph of the blog post's content
- Keywords: These are keywords you would find in the post, or that are related to the post. These are best as phrases and not sentences. Keywords for this post could include seo tips, the basics of seo, how to use seo, what are meta tags, how to use img alt tag.
BONUS: Use IFB's Traffic for Bloggers eCourse to Help Your SEO Strategy!
These tips just touch the top of the iceberg when it comes to SEO, but they should be easy enough tips to help you learn and understand SEO better and help increase traffic for your site. If you're ready to learn more or you're just really stuck on how to use SEO to your best advantage, check out the IFB course Traffic for Bloggers! It takes a deep dive into how you can start to use SEO tricks to grow your traffic dramatically.