Maximise Blog Success With eComOne’s Essential Technical SEO Checklist

maximise blog success with essential technical seo checklist

Article Author
Joe Burton

Did you know that according to recent studies, more than 77% of internet users regularly read blogs? And according to statistics by envisagedigital.co.uk, there are more than 4.4 million blog posts published every day, totalling more than 1.5 billion blog posts per year. 

That’s a lot of content for people looking for information, and a huge amount of competition for websites wanting to be the place they get it from.

In fact, there is so much competing content out there, that even with the huge numbers of blog readers, research by Ahrefs found that more than 90% of blog posts receive no organic traffic, with only 5.7% of blog posts ranking in the top 10 of Google within the first year of being published.

So let’s take a second to put this into perspective. 

But here’s the good news…

There are things you can do to stop your blog posts from becoming another tragic statistic. Where many will hit the publish button and assume their work is done, dooming their post to end up nothing more than another blog fatality, there are ways that you can go above and beyond to give your blog the best chance of thriving. 

Introducing technical SEO for blogs.

So you’ve locked down your blog topic, done your keyword research, blasted out some killer content…now it’s time to make sure it’s technically set for success. Follow our 5 blog SEO tips below to ensure your blog post is prepped for success.

To ensure the best results, I have split the tips into two categories;

  • On blog – These are steps that will be carried out on your blog (before you hit that publish button).
  • Off blog – These are steps that will be carried out outside of your actual blog post, this could be on your website in general or using another tool. 

So let’s start with our on blog tips.

Internal Linking (going out of your blog) – Adding internal links going out of your blog post is an essential step in creating a truly beneficial post. This is your chance to turn your blog post from nothing more than a page of text and media, into a powerful tool for moving people through your conversion funnel and increasing your ecommerce store sales.

Adding internal links enables you to help your visitors move through your website, guiding them to other pages they might be interested in. Whether you’re linking to a product category page, a product page or another blog post, well placed internal links allow you to maximise the time that your visitors spend on your website. 

Ideally for any ecommerce store, there are 2 types of internal links that are important and that should be included in all blog posts. These are an internal link to a category/product page implemented through a call to action button, and links to other related blog posts, whether this is through a slider at the bottom of your post, or simply a list of other related blogs (see example below). The most important thing to remember is that you DO NOT want a visitor to reach the bottom of your blog post and then have nowhere else to go.

Blog Post URL – Although the vast majority of platforms will auto-generate page URLs for you based on page titles (although you can choose to manually change these), there are still some platforms where you have to manually create your own. 

Now although it’s widely debated how much of an impact using strategically structured, keyword rich URLs has on SEO, it is non the less great practice to make sure URLs are properly written. For example, let’s say that somebody has asked a question on a forum (Quora, Reddit, community, Shopify etc) and you have a blog that answers this question. You drop your page’s raw URL in the comment section so the person can view your post, but which of these two URL’s do you think people are more likely to click;

So although keywords used in the URL might not carry huge weight in terms of Google ranking, they do have important benefits such as;

  1. They look more trustworthy and more professional meaning people are much more likely to click on them as opposed to URLs that contain lots of numbers and special characters.
  2. They provide a great way to show website structure, as you see in the example above, the URL shows that the big commerce SEO guide can be found in the news folder on the website.
  3. They make it a lot easier for people to find your page again using the URL search bar as people can easily remember and recognise the URL in their history log, or even to type it into their URL bar.

So the 3 main rules of writing URLs are:

  • Use relevant and descriptive keywords that provide the best description of what your page is about.
  • Try to limit special characters as they can make URLs look less user friendly.
  • Try to always separate words with an “-” symbol instead of “_”, this is due to google not recognising the _ symbol as a separator, meaning Google would see the URL slug “the_guide_to_ecommerce” as “theguidetoecommerce”, further reducing any keyword ranking ability your URL has.

Now onto our off blog tips.

Blog discoverability – So let’s do a quick test…

Firstly I want you to open up a new tab and go to your website homepage, 

Next, I want you to scroll no more than 70% of the way down your homepage, 

Finally, from doing the first two steps (without having clicked on any other links or entered your dropdown menu navigation), ask yourself, were you able to find a link to access your blog? 

If your answer to that question is yes, then congratulations, you’re already giving your visitors the best chance of finding your blog. However, if your answer is no, you may want to consider restructuring your website architecture to make it easier for people to find your blog section. 

Although this step may not necessarily help in terms of search engine ranking, it is incredibly important in terms of discoverability by crawl bots and by visitors. Ensuring your pages can be found by Google crawlers is incredibly important as this gives your page the best chance of being found and indexed. Combine this with the fact that for 99.9% of websites the homepage will be by far the most commonly visited page, it is well worth making sure your homepage lets visitors know that your website has a blog section.

To sum up, if you want people to read your blogs, then make it as easy as possible for people to find them, don’t hide them in the footer, or bury them in a dropdown menu, make sure that as soon as people land on your website, they can clearly see that your website has a blog section.

Add internal links going into your blog post – Think of internal links as doorways, the more doorways you have going into your blog post, the more chance there is of people finding it. Now by no means does this mean that you should go crazy and start adding internal links on pages where they aren’t even relevant, however, it absolutely means that you should make sure you’re adding links from pages that are. 

As you can see in the above example, the latest blog post is about the best spin bikes, so I have chosen six pages that are perfect for adding a link into this blog post. Not only will this greatly help this new blog post to increase its discoverability and traffic, but this will also allow the new post to increase its page rank as it has more pages passing rank to it, which will help the page perform better in Google.

As an added bonus, this is a killer way to increase sales as it gives you the opportunity to provide a ton of additional information about a product. Simply add an internal link from your product page to your blog post that’s packed full of additional stats, facts, benefits and reviews of your product to leave customers with absolutely no doubts or uncertainty about making a purchase.

Manually index your new post in Google Search Console – Without a doubt, one of your biggest priorities for any important pages on your website should be that Google can find them, crawl them and index them. It is essential to understand that if Google cannot find your page, Google will not be able to index it, as a result, your page will be completely undiscoverable on Google, meaning A LOT of lost traffic.

However, the good news is that you can ensure you don’t have to worry about this by following a couple of simple steps. Firstly you will need a Google Search Console account, if you do not have one of these, it is vital you get one set up as this is a huge tool for helping you ensure your website gets found and indexed by Google. 

Once you have your Google Search Console account set up, go into your account and head to the search bar at the top

Once you have pasted your new page URL and hit enter, you will be taken to a page where Google will tell you whether your page has been crawled and indexed. If your page has not been crawled and indexed, simply click the ‘request indexing’ button to ask Google to index your new page.

And there you have it, your page will now be submitted to Google for indexing so you don’t have to rely on Google manually having to find your page to crawl and index it. This is a great practice that I’d highly recommend whenever posting new content. 

So there you have it, 5 top tips to make sure your blog is set for success. Remember, it doesn’t matter how killer your content is…if Google doesn’t know it exists, or people can’t find it on your website, it might as well not exist, so add links, get it indexed, and make sure it’s visible in your website navigation.

eComOne’s Bonus Tip!!!

Add article schema to help your posts stand out on Google – So first of all we should probably address what exactly schema is. So in its simplest form, schema is a way of providing Google with additional information about your article so Google has the option to present this extra information in the search results. 

Let’s look at the examples below

Without schema markup

With schema markup

As you can see from the two examples above, the BBC Good Food article contains significantly more information in the search results than the Morrisons article, with the BBC article including the recipe’s average star rating, number of reviews, time to make, and an article image. 

This is down to the schema that has been implemented on the BBC article which has allowed Google to be able to include all of this extra information in the search result. Now other than providing more information, it’s also fair to say that the BBC example is a lot more eye catching, looks more professional and certainly has a bigger presence in the search results, all of which is hugely beneficial for increasing click through rates.

It is also worth noting that these are not the only pieces of information that can be added through schema, so don’t worry if your posts aren’t designed for people to leave reviews or votes. Schema markup can include information such as the article title, name of blog author, and the date the post was published, plus your article image.

To see if your website already has schema implemented, go to Google’s rich results tester tool, or for more information on article schema, check out this Google guide.

For more help, why not head over to our Technical SEO section, or alternatively give our team a call to see how we can help your website stand out above the competition.

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