When it comes to Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) it can feel like a black hole that’s going to suck you in with loads of wasted time for no real result. That’s true if you don’t think clearly about what you’re trying to achieve. I definitely advocate having an SEO plugin on your WordPress website. In particular, I recommend Rank Math SEO. It’s a free plugin .. we like free when its this good!
Let me be clear, I am not paid to write this, have no affiliation with them but if they did that then I would. I’m a fan of their plugin and what it does for free.
This is a long one so, grab that cuppa and a note pad.
When it comes to writing blog posts, it’s a good idea to focus it around one keyword or phrase for a subject area that you are wanting to be found for, and indexed by Google and other search engines. I wrote a blog post about what to focus on to boost your blog posts for SEO. This blog post you’re currently reading now teaches you how to do it.
Focus on one topic per blog
If you’re a wedding photographer, with no weddings to publish right now, why not write a blog post about a venue you’ve worked at. Sharing a few of your best photos from weddings at that venue, showing the different locations and the great features about that venue. Your keyword would then be that wedding venue location.
This means that you’ll be found as a wedding photographer who photographs at that venue. Repeat this for all venues you enjoy working at.
But, back to SEO and how to use RankMath.
Why I like RankMath SEO
The reason I love Rank Math SEO the best out of the main three SEO tools I know which are Yoast, All In One SEO and RankMath .. I love it because it’s explicit in what you can improve on your blog post for SEO. It literally tells you and your RankMath button turns from red, to yellow to green. So easy to understand when you’re doing good. If you want to know more, check out their comparison chart of what RankMath does versus the others.
There are many features and abilities that this tool does for free, that other plugins charge you for. Like Search Console integration, complete site wide analysis of your SEO and how to improve it, tracking 404 errors which is when your website bloops and links to missing content. I could keep going but for now I want to focus on your blog posts and what do to for that.
First step, write your blog post.
Write a blog post title that includes the main topic keyword or phrase .. about that topic you’re going to write.
Include that same phrase into the first sentence, or at least the first paragraph of your blog post. Do this in a human way. Words are powerful and can be said in a multitude of ways. You’ll notice that my post is about Search Engine Optimisation and I included that phrase in my first sentence. Within the first paragraph of this post, I’ve also mentioned RankMath SEO, the main topic of this post. Let that be your guide/inspiration of what you’re aiming to do on yours.
Write the rest of your blog post with no other aim than to get those those out of your head and on the screen (or document or notepad if you write there first). Then edit, refine and condense it so that there is little to no waffle filling. Say what you’re going to say.
Fire up RankMath SEO and add your keyword/phrase.
On the top right of your WordPress blog writing screen you’ll see a pinky red button with a number out of 100.
Click on this button to open up your RankMath SEO options.
It will open up a side panel on the right and it will you a preview of what search engines will display about your blog, ie. its title, the link and a short description. Beneath that preview screen is the first main point of focus, your keyword or phrase.
Into this box type your blog posts main keyword or phrase followed by a comma. So mine will be Rank Math SEO for this blog .. funny that huh, its their example too! One of the few times this coincidence will happen for me. If your keyword or phrase doesn’t turn into a yellow button, then its not an active keyword for RankMath to focus on.
You’ll also notice that I ticked this as Pillar Content, this means that this is content that is evergreen and always useful. Relating back to Wedding Photographers, if you are writing about a single wedding, this is not Pillar Content. If you are writing about a venue, I would say that is pillar content as that is about a venue that will be there for a long time. It’s useful information to your wedding parties. The same with talking all variety of suppliers you work with and how you work as a wedding photographer.
Now you’ve set your keyword, you’ll notice that the rankings out of 100 on the top button changes. Mine has now changed from 17 and a pink button upto 76 and a yellow button. It’s learning how to help us do our SEO better.
TIP: At this point in using the block editor in WordPress you’ll want to be able to flip between editing blocks and then viewing your Rank Math SEO tips again. If you want the WordPress blocks view to edit your text or image alt tags click on the cog, that’s your blog block settings. If you want to view the RankMath SEO tips, click on the colour button.
Refine your blog using RankMaths’ SEO Tips.
You’ll see above that in the course of writing this blog post for you that I’ve done the main key tick points of SEO for this article. I now need to write a better SEO description that includes my particular keyword phrase ‘Rank Math SEO’.
You can do this by editing the Snippet.
When I do this it pushes my SEO score into the 80+ out of 100 and the button turns green. YES! This is the point that I know this blog post will do okay for SEO.
Of course, I can spend extra time refining further and getting my remaining errors down, most of which are simple to do.
It gives advice on blog post titles to include a positive or negative word, to also use power words. But, we also need to understand that not every title needs to follow this otherwise a scan of your blog post titles will start looking formulaic. So understand that these are guidances and not firm and fast rules, some rules need to be understood and then broken with a reason.
There’s one error I nearly always fail in for Content Readability and that’s using a table of contents. I’ll get there folks, one day but for now .. it’s not a focus of my efforts to fix that last niggle.
In order to improve your SEO now that you’ve got your tips on what to do, you’ll need to go back to your blog and edit stuff.
WordPress Tips for how to do this in the block editor
This is the WordPress block editor
This is the standard WordPress blog post block editor. Each block can contain different types of content: text, images, headings, quotes, groups, columns and so much more.
Each block has its own settings. While the full blog post document has its own settings too, which is where you’ll find your categories, tags and more.
How to access the block editor settings and Rank Math settings
Earlier in the post I said that you will need to flip between the WordPress block editor settings of your blog and RankMath settings as well. Let me refresh that tip so its fresh in your mind.
Creating Internal and External Links
Creating a link in WordPress is pretty easy. Select the words you want to create into a link and then hit the ‘link’ button.
For internal links, type a few of the words of the blog post title you want to link to and it will bring up that post. I’d advise adding the link to a group of descriptive words. You’ll see above and right now, that I can internally link to a blog post I wrote previously about SEO boosting tips for blog posts, where I show the visual anatomy of a blog post and what impacts on SEO.
For external links, you’ll need to have the URL address of the place you want to link to on the internet. In this case I’m going to link directly to the RankMath website. So that you can do your research and also download the plugin for your WordPress website. Always set external links to open in a New Tab. This means that your viewers are not being taken immediately away from your website, the link will open in a new tab and your website will remain in their browser for them to come back to.
Changing your blog post title
If you wish to change your title to add power words, or you’re just wanting to improve the title from what you originally wrote. The go-to the top of the blog post and edit the title.
TIP: check your blog post permalink.
You can edit your SEO to be a simpler version of your blog post title. It’s best to have a blog URL between 50 to 75 characters. This does not include the main part of your domain but the bit in bold after your domain name.
Image Alt Text
Ah, now these are a powerhouse. This is where you get to be descriptive (but not too wordy) about what the image is portraying. This is where the power of words comes in, you get to describe using your keyword / phrase what the purpose of that image is, ie. the value it’s giving.
The Alt Text that I wrote for the above image is: A visual guide of the Image Alt Tag box in WordPress blocks editor so that you know where write the purpose of that image.
Alt text is also a powerful accessibility feature for those who are blind. Screen readers read through a website and any images that bring value to what the text is talking about, that image alt text is spoken aloud letting that person know what the image is about. Write in that box what you’d want described to your blind reader and google will also benefit, as well as you.
Now you know about Rank Math SEO and how to use it, here’s how to install it.
Within your WordPress admin dashboard you’ll see a menu on the left for Posts, Pages, Appearance etc. Look for Plugins and then Add New. In the search box on the right, enter the words Ranks Math SEO and it will show the results. Click Install Now to add the plugin to your WordPress website.
From here it will take you into a Wizard that will help you do the magic of setting up your SEO on your website, just for you.
Ta dah! You now have the beginnings of SEO set up on your website and also now know how to do SEO on your blog posts. And, blog posts of current and valuable content is exactly what google loves because you’ve done everything needed to teach it what is valuable about what you do. In turn, google say thank you and you’ll go up the rankings bit by bit with each and every blog post you publish and you will be found.
I cannot guarantee you a page one ranking immediately, or even soon. But, time, consistent effort and smart thinking about what you want to be found for .. well, that will help google, help you to be more visible. There’s lots more to do but this is your guide just for doing good SEO on your blog posts.
If you like what I’ve written and what I share, but don’t have the time to setup your website, design it, make it do the stuff you want to do .. that’s what I’m here for. Shoot me a message via my enquiry form and lets see how I can speed you up to being great online.