19 Ingredients for a Perfect Blog Post
Perfect Blog Guide Outline:
- Who is this Article For?
- 19 Ingredients of a perfect blog
- Additional Tips
- Practices to avoid
Who is this Blog for?
Majority of people working in Digital Marketing, perform SEO and manage Social Media, understand the importance of a well-written BLOG. They understand that relevant and quality content delivers enormous value for its readers who are searching that information, which provides credibility and authority to the source as well as helps your website to rank higher on SERPs (search engine results pages).
At the same time, this article is not just for those who are starting out their Digital Marketing journey, or learning about search engine optimization for their own website, or simply those who are looking to educate themselves on On-Page SEO and learn how write a “Google Friendly” Blog. It is also for anyone who have been writing Blogs, posts and articles, but not necessarily followed a “Secret Sauce” recipe or was not aware of ideal article structure and all the ingredients of a “Perfect Blog post”.
So first let’s be clear on what exactly Blog is before diving in, according to Oxford Dictionary – Blog is a regularly updated website or web page, typically one run by an individual or small group, that is written in an informal or conversational style, and can either be used for personal use or to fulfill a business need. If your business doesn’t have a blog, you might want to reconsider — B2B marketers who use blogs receive 67% more leads than those who do not, and blogs have been rated the 5th most trusted source for accurate online information. In other words, we will refer to “Perfect Blog Post”, as the best article in terms of quality content and optimization to meet Google’s SEO ranking requirements.
Ingredients of a Perfect Blog Post:
1. Plan your Blog
Prior to Writing any article in your Blog make sure that you research the topic, decide on targeted keywords and overall the question you are planning to answer in your post. Either it is a review, recommendation or a guide, make sure to do your research first. Approach keyword research as an art project, be diligent, take your time. Make sure you have all these prior to starting writing:
- Targeted Keywords (1-2 per page/article)
- Related words & Proof words
- Competitor Keywords on same subject
2. Come up with “Right” Article Title
By “Right” we mean that your article has to answer popular search queries that searchers are inputting in search engines, it also has to be relevant and intriguing. Your article will be a desired answer to their questions, and will make it valuable for both readers and search engine itself.
3. Your Perfect Blog Article title should be one of those three:
- Start with “How to…”
- Be a list (7 reasons, 11 easy steps, 19 simple ingredients)
- Be an intriguing question (Need Complete SEO in one day?) so visitors would like to click on it to find out the answer
4. General Blog Requirements:
- Has to be over 1,800 words, preferably over 2,500 words
- Be well structured, include H1, H2, H3 across the blog
- H1 only one header per page (very Important otherwise would get search engine confused)
- Make it fun and engaging
- Improve readability score, use good size font 14-16, 1.5 spacing
- Use as many bullet points and outlines as possible throughout the article. It adds structure and highlights important objectives to readers
5. Keyword Density
There is no magic number to how many keywords to have per article, general rule of thumb is 1-2 targeted keywords per every 100-150 words. You are expected to use related words, synonyms or proof words, but do not use same keywords over and over again, it would be considered “keyword stuffing”. Google’s algorithm doesn’t like it and can decrease your site’s ranking due to that.
6. Be aware of your Perfect Blog Readability Score:
- Use simple language, easy words to read and understand
- Not more than 5 sentences in a paragraph
- Not more than 20 words in a sentence
- Use active verbs, keep readers mind awake
- Avoid passive words, indirect speech, double negatives
- Use BOLD and use ALL CAPS when trying to make a point
7. Outline, Tips and Tricks, Takeaways and Recommendations
Make sure to include those sections in your Blog post structure, and put it in the beginning of your article. This helps readers to know exactly what to expect and improves overall user experience.
8. Internal linking within your Article
Link your Blogs between each other and often. Let’s say you are writing about “8 Benefits of Blogging for SEO”, and you also have a separate article on “How to Perform SEO in 2021” and another one on “What is SEO?”. In this case scenario, you would interconnect them by writing something along those lines: “If you need a quick guide how to write a Blog, please click here and insert appropriate Blog’s link. You can also suggest your readers to learn more about SEO and link Blog post describing On-site SEO elements. Main goal of internal linking is to improve your visitors site experience and ease their navigation process. At the same time, we want them to click on as many pages as possible, which will increase their time spent on your site and decrease bounce rate, both factors are huge positives for your SEO.
9. Content Relevance Score
The term refers to how well the information on a website corresponds to a search query. Relevance criteria include content elements like the visible text, as well as images or videos. In addition, relevance can be generated through meta elements like title, meta description and alt tags. Google will even take your targeted keywords out of the post and try reading article without them. Will the article still deliver relevant information? If yes, then your score is high and you will get bonus points added to your ranking.
Keys to success:
- Use of Related and Proof Keywords
- Use synonyms of targeted keywords
- Add relevant resources, articles, images, videos
- Improve your Readability Score
- Your post should be detailed and comprehensive (answers questions in full)
10. Come up with an appealing Blog URL
It should reflect the Title, but at the same short and easy to read in one glance.
11. Implement Images and Videos
Use as many as you wish, as long as they do not slow down your site’s loading speed and are relevant to your article. Google prefers text over image, but text enhanced with appropriate images and videos is ranked even higher. Make sure to optimize every Image for SEO, can see full guide here.
12. Comment Sections is a Must
Add comments to your posts and make it easy for readers to comment. Add Facebook and Disqus Comment plugins, so readers can auto sign in with their accounts and won’t need to add their name & email to comment. Same idea as with internal linking, if visitors comment, they will spend more time on your site. It will reduce bounce rate, and increase time spent on site, plus will link their Facebook to your site. It will also make it easier for them to share your article through Facebook creating a backlink and improving your credibility. One thing to remember, make sure to respond and follow up on all the comments, whether thank for feedback or respond to their questions.
13. Displaying Related Posts
Create sections with Latest or Most Popular posts from your Blog. Can be at the end of your article, or on a sidebar right in front of customer’s eyes. Goal is to promote other relevant articles and tempt readers to click on them and stay longer on your website. In addition, plan to use attractive and appealing thumbnail pictures for your blog covers. Also use intriguing titles, so they would want to click on them to find out more.
14. External links to open in New Window
You want to make sure your readers stay on your page, and even if they decided to follow one of the links to read more on the subject, you don’t want them to leave your page, but to be redirected through the new tab or window.
15. Pop-up Windows
Do not use pop-up “subscription”, “sign up”, “get discount” windows, everyone hates them and usually visitors close the page right after they see a pop-up window on their screen. Certainly, doesn’t worth it.
16. Blog Page Optimization
- Use targeted keyword in first position of your page title tag
- Implement keywords in meta description (think storytelling)
- Blog URL should be a shorter version of the Article title
17. Optimize all Images and Videos used
Make sure to name your images properly, not “Blog 1 image”, but “Young male millennial in the city center, walking and using his iPhone” so even someone who cannot see the image would understand it and be able to better understand what message your article is aiming to deliver.
18. External links – use Dofollow Links
Search engine bots crawl the web through dofollow links, registering who is linking to who. These relationships pass a type of authority that SEO pros call “link juice” from one site to another.
19. Proofread, Proofread, Proofread
Take breaks between edits to make sure you are proofreading it with fresh head. If Google finds misspells, it will automatically decrease your articles credibility and lower SEO ranking. Once you are done writing, take a break, but make sure to come back and do a thorough proofread of your article.
- Test your Header on Title testing platforms, subjectline.com is one of my favourites.
- Make a list of synonyms and related keywords, there is plenty of websites that will help you to come up with proof and related keywords.
- Think who your audience is, who would read your article? Cater your article to their needs and interests, so they would enjoy reading it and share with others.
- Use only one H1 tag per article, this would be the title search engine will display on SERPs
- Edit with 10 second rule in mind, if it doesn’t grab your attention within 10 seconds, rewrite until it does.
Practices to Avoid:
- Don’t Write Shallow Content, Google’s algorithm is smart, it can tell if your content is valuable or if it is just a low-quality set of sentences filled with keywords.
- Do not clutter your Blog, keep it simple, on the point and without useless words, explanations and paragraphs to make higher word count.
- Do not copy and paste articles from other site’s or blogs, this would be easily discovered. Instead read several articles on the subject, analyze, add your own twist, opinion and vision and rewrite using your personal style.
- Do not use Keyword as Anchor Word for linking between your pages or to external pages. Otherwise all the relevancy of the article and its SEO juice will go to that external source.
In this article, we did not suggest you any individual preferences on state of mind, time of the day or your desk setup for writing Blogs. Many similar articles promote meditating, listening to a relaxing music, writing only early in the day or even drinking wine while writing. For us it is also important but it is strictly individual and only you know what helps you focus, open your mind and let the words flow…
Overall writing a Blog is not an easy task, writing a Perfect one with all the ingredients and optimizations is nothing short of an art project. Be realistic, allow yourself enough time. Pros take 5-6 hours to write and edit a single Blog, some take can take even 1-2 days depending on its length and researched subject. Just like anything well-made in this life, it requires a good plan, research, execution and control (proofreading). It also requires all 19 Blog Ingredients mentioned above to be checked off your plan in order for article to be a success, but you already have this guideline to follow, Enjoy!
Graham A 1/31/21