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5 Proven SEO Strategies To Try In 2018

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SEO is overwhelming, right? Most people don’t understand the importance of having an SEO strategy to grow their website’s traffic or sales.

If you’re also one among them, you need an effective SEO strategy to build a high traffic website because search engine traffic is the most valuable source of traffic which can boost your sales and conversions.

Here are 5 proven and most effective SEO strategies for bloggers who are looking to get better rankings from search engines like Google.

Proven SEO strategies to try in 2018

#1. Keyword research for SEO

Your website’s SEO success depends on your keyword research. Most bloggers struggle to increase their website’s organic traffic because they don’t do proper keyword research.

If you’re also one among them, start focusing on finding better keywords and your traffic will never be the same. That being said, here are few to keep in mind while doing keyword research for SEO.

Long tail keywords are golden.

Most beginner bloggers don’t realize the importance of long tail keywords. Whether you know it or not, long tail keywords contribute to 70% of search queries are long tail. Have a look at the below illustration.

So if you want to rank better and get more traffic from search engines to your sites, start focusing on finding long tail keywords.

You can use tools like SEMrush, Ahrefs etc to easily find a ton of profitable and low volume long tail keywords no matter what industry you are in. Just make sure to pick the keywords with less search volume (monthly searches under 1000) to get better search rankings on Google.

Find and use LSI keywords

Google loves LSI (Latent Semantic Index) keywords which are simply synonymous keywords to the primary keyword that you want to rank for.

LSI keywords help you easily optimize your content without stuffing the same keywords again and again. You can use tools like LSI Graph, KWFinder etc for finding LSI keywords in any niche.

You can also use “related searches” on Google to find LSI keywords easily.

Consider search intent

While doing keyword research, it’s essential for everyone to focus and consider “search intent”. Search intent has everything to do with the “searcher’s intention”.

Why are they searching? What’s the intent behind those searches?

Once you know your target audience pulse and search intent, you can easily pick better performing keywords which not only bring you more traffic but also sales and conversions to your website.

#2. Rethink your content marketing strategy

Gone are the days where you can get first page results by creating 500 word articles. Google is getting smarter and better each day and rewarding the sites with long form of content.

In fact the average content length of top 10 search results is around 2000 words.

Brian Dean also concluded the same that, the average length of your content directly impacts your search engine rankings.

So if you’re still creating those 500 to 1000 word articles and expecting great results from Google, you’re going to be disappointed. Read here for my detailed analysis on how long your blog posts should be.

I’m not saying that you should create 2000+ long form of articles every single time but make sure to create detailed articles especially if you want to rank for popular and competitive keywords.

That being said, here are few quick tips for you to create long form of content easily.

  • Research is the key. The more time you spend on researching the topics, genres, references for your articles, the easier you can create massive blog posts. Always make sure to go through all the top 10 results on Google search for the keywords or topics that you want rank for.
  • Outlining is everything. When it comes to creating long form of useful content, make sure to outline cleverly. You can use Google Docs to easily break down your content into separate sections with subheadings so you’ll find it much easier to create longer blog posts.
  • Get into the habit of writing daily. The more you write, the easier it becomes for you to churn out massive articles. It’s as simple as that.
  • Create a solid social media strategy: Social media should be an important part of your off-page SEO strategy and you should make sure you have a strong social media plan to build your brand’s following and active community.

#3. Competitor research is the key

One of the easiest ways to win at SEO is to analyse your competitor websites. Firstly, make a list of all the important competitor websites so you can start analyzing them for better results in terms of traffic and sales.

Competitor analysis allows you to find out everything from keyword research to backlink analysis to content marketing strategies your competitors are using to get better results.

So if you’ve decided to perform a thorough research of your competitors, make sure to analyse the following things.

  • Find out their top performing keywords: When you are doing competitor analysis, you should start with the keyword research. Find out what keywords are generating more traffic to your competitors websites so you can also repeat the same with your blog by covering similar topics or keyword ideas.
  • Find out your competitors backlink sources: If you want to quickly boost your search rankings, you need to attract as many quality backlinks as possible because Google gives top priority to the pages with more links. The best way to attract more links is to analyse your competitors backlink sources so you can use tactics like blogger outreach, broken link building etc to get links to your own sites.
  • Analyse their content marketing strategy: How often your competitors are publishing new contents on their sites? How long their content is? How many comments, shares or tweets they are getting? Once you’ve answers to these questions, you can easily develop or tweak your own content marketing strategy which drives you better results.
  • Look for content gaps: The biggest benefit of doing competitor research is that it gives you content ideas as well as content gaps which you can use to strategically improve your website’s content.

For all the above things, you can use tools like Ahrefs, SEMrush etc so consider investing your money on these premium SEO tools if you want to get better results.

#4. Don’t forget the importance of on page optimization

On page optimization is a must and it refers to all the things that you can do to your website in order to rank better and higher in Google search for various keywords that you want to rank for.

On page SEO comes only after keyword research. So make sure to find out your primary and secondary keywords in order to properly optimize your content for various keywords.

That being said, you don’t have to stuff your keywords left and right on your web pages (which is called keyword stuff and you should avoid it at all costs) for getting better rankings.

Here are few places where you can insert your primary keywords for better on page optimization.

  • Heading
  • Page title
  • URL
  • Meta description
  • Image optimization

Apart from the above places, you can also insert your primary keyword here and there within your article (mostly at the beginning and end of the content) to better optimize for search engines like Google. Just make sure NOT to insert your primary keywords deliberately and let them flow naturally within your content.

Quick tip: If you’re using WordPress, make sure to install WordPress SEO by Yoast plugin which is free to use and helps you easily optimize your content for particular keywords.

#5. Website audits are essential

Last but not least: you need to find the reasons why your website is not getting the results it deserves. That means, you need to find and fix all the website technical related issues to start getting better search rankings.

Here are few vital reasons why every website needs an audit.

  • You can check your website’s health and find out all the issues it has (to rectify and get better results)
  • You can find out if your website has any penalties or negative attacks (so you can act quickly to fix your website penalties)
  • You can compare where your website stands against the competition (and also gives you a ton of ideas to improve your rankings)

So how can you perform site audits regularly?

You can use tools like SEMrush if you want to carefully analyse your website’s performance in search engines and it also gives you overall website health score along with the list of all the issues that your site has.

You can also use free SEO audit tools like Seoptimer, The Hoth etc for easily find common issues that your website has.

In a nutshell, an SEO audit helps you easily find all the website issues including missing title tags, image alt tags, lengthy descriptions, broken links etc so you can get better rankings by fixing them.

Conclusion about the best SEO strategies for bloggers

Creating and developing an SEO strategy is a must for every blogger who wants to build a profitable website online. If you’re someone who’s looking to get ahead in your industry, you need to focus on getting better at SEO.

The key here is to test everything and stick to the best SEO strategy that works well for your website and audience. So what do you think? Do you have an SEO strategy? Share your thoughts in the comments.

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Swadhin Agrawal is a professional blogger, often writing articles about the intersection of social media, blogging and online marketing tools and how businesses can scale with his suggested tactics. He is the founder of DigitalGYD.com and WPChime, a blog about WordPress tips and tricks.

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1 Successful Blogger Assumption that Needs to Go

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I see a lot of bloggers who make excuses as to why they fail.

Some outside condition or circumstance holds sway over these folks.

But even worse; said bloggers tend to say successful bloggers did not have to face any hardship or traumatic circumstances on their way to becoming established, pro bloggers.

I cannot tell a lie; I made a similar assumption as a new blogger. I believed millionaire bloggers took an easy journey while bum me had to face obstacles millionaires never had to face.

I discuss why you need to let this assumption go to build a successful blog:

OK guys.

I live a dream life.

Spending months or years in places like Fiji, Bali, Thailand and Costa Rica, I have seen some of the most spectacular places on earth.

But I faced many obstacles along the way. I ran into financial hardships. OK; let me rephrase that. I lost all of my money LOL! I also had a difficult time with family at points during my blogging journey, some of whom questioned my decisions.

Blogging confused me. Being an entrepreneur baffled me. I became terribly frustrated with my blogging trajectory a few times during my blogging career.

My mom has suffered through a terminal illness while I built my blog. I battled depression earlier during my blogging career.

But here I am. Blogging From Paradise.

Established, pro bloggers usually face and embrace far more difficult obstacles on our blogging journey. Doing so makes us more fearless which helps us grow like a weed while most bloggers feel weighed down by fear, doubt and anxiety.

I can almost guarantee you that assuming successful bloggers had an easy, bump-free, smooth journey is a root cause of your blogging struggles. Even if you succeed on some level you stunt your blogging growth by assuming successful bloggers had it easy while you have it much harder.

Not true, guys.

Diving deeper into obstacles and strong fears, you begin to see why nudging into these energies feels highly unpleasant but also helps you develop a type of fearlessness. Being more fearless than the average blogger helps you create prolifically, build new connections and most of all, you avoid panicking and being shaken out when your blogging results don’t seem to be growing too much.

My life became easier after I nudged into deep blogging and life fears because after these unpleasant but brief experiences, I no longer feared burning out, being criticized or failing. Letting go those 3 chief fears made me work more persistently, more energized and more focused than most bloggers, promoting my success.

Excuses Are For Losers

Excuses are for losers. If you make excuses that you cannot succeed because you face difficult obstacles that top bloggers did not have to face, you only hurt yourself because the statement is untrue.

You lose traffic and profits because you don’t do the uncomfortable but freeing things successful bloggers do to succeed.

Guys; this journey is fun and quite fascinating. Sometimes this blogging journey feels scary. Move forward through scary moments. Do not make excuses. Do not explain away your struggles and failures because you assume successful bloggers would not have succeeded if they did not face the same struggles, because this assumption is untrue.

You probably have yet to face the really deep, scary fears we all need to face before gaining blogging success so release your excuses, move forward based on your passion, be generous, open and willing to do whatever it takes to succeed.

Blogging gets easier if you cease making excuses and start getting things done.

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Why Bloggers Need to Start Paying More Attention to Your Pay Stubs

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It’s payday, and you’re ready to go out and celebrate with your coworkers, friends, and family. For bloggers and internet marketers, the concept of a ‘paycheck’ might be something totally new — or something they actually issue to themselves on a monthly basis. However, even for those in the workplace, fewer people are getting actual paychecks and paystubs, as automation is now key.

If you’re asking, “What is a pay stub?,” then congratulations on getting paid via direct deposit. As of 2016, 82 percent of American workers received their paychecks that way.

With direct deposit, you only have to check your bank account to make sure the money was credited. You should still receive a payroll stub from your employer, though, and you need to pay attention to it.

Read on to find out more about why paycheck stubs are important — even for bloggers.

What is Gross vs. Net Pay?

The biggest and most obvious thing displayed on a pay stub is the amount of money you made. But looking at your pay stub also allows you to figure out how you made that money.

There are two types of pay displayed on that stub: gross pay and net pay. The gross wages are the overall amount of income you earned over that pay period, regardless of if it’s biweekly or monthly.

Do you get paid hourly? If so, you would take the number of hours you worked and multiply that by your hourly rate. Both of those things should also appear on your paycheck stubs.

In the world of blogging and affiliate marketing, you might be getting paid a $100 commission on every new hosting referral made, but after taxes, you could be looking at another 30% cut in actual profit made.

As an example, let’s say a worker named Bob makes $20 an hour and worked precisely 80 hours the last two weeks. That means the “gross pay” amount on his check should be $1,600.

What if Bob has an annual salary of $50,000 instead of an hourly wage? Then he would need to divide $50,000 by the total number of paydays in the year. If he’s paid every two weeks, then that adds up to 26 annual pay periods.

Net pay is how much money you’re actually going to see in your bank account after various deductions get applied. Those deductions can include things like taxes, health insurance, and your 401(k).

Employer Contributions

When looking at your payroll stub, you’ll also see a space for something called “Employer Contributions.” What does that mean?

If you work a full-time job with benefits, then your employer pays for a significant portion of your health insurance. You might pay $50 every two weeks, but your employee might pay the other $100. This will be on your stub as “health insurance” or maybe “medical.”

If you’re lucky enough to work at a company that provides 401(k) matching for your retirement, then that will be under “Employer Contributions” as well.

Generating pay stubs used to be more complicated, but nowadays, companies can use an online pay stub generator. It may take a while to create a pay stub for everyone in the building, but the actual process isn’t nearly as arduous as it could be.

Most Bloggers Will Probably Ask ‘What is a Pay Stub?’

Answering the question “What is a pay stub?” is critical, but it isn’t all you’ll need to do to stay on top of your finances. More often then not, pay stubs are still being used, but since we are living in an electronic age, it’s usually all happening behind the scenes.

Avoid the temptation to throw away your pay stub as soon as you look at it. Keeping your pay check records will help you look for any patterns or problems at work. It’s also the best way to provide proof of income.

Don’t forget to put some of that paycheck in a savings account, too. For more on that topic, be sure to check out our top finance and stock market blogs to follow online.

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Why All Blogging Metrics Are Vanity Metrics

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Ha!

Made ya look, right guys?

I did a Facebook Live Broadcast recently discussing this concept.

Check it out here:

All blogging metrics are vanity metrics because you check any blogging metrics to see how YOU are doing. Who cares? What about your readers? How are your readers doing? How are you helping your readers? How are you assisting your readers? If I see one of my videos nabbed a few hundred views I realize my video nabbed a few hundred views but this is entirely unrelated to how my readers are doing, because numbers and human beings are different concepts. Numbers are inanimate objects. Humans are humans.

Passion

I love to blog. I know how I am doing when blogging because I feel passionate about blogging. Do I need to look at a number on a screen to verify that I feel passionate about blogging? Nope. Any time I check a metric I think about how I am doing but checking numbers on a screen has nothing to do with how my readers are doing.

I serve my readers not by checking stats but by writing this guest post. I serve my readers not by checking metrics but by creating a video. I serve my readers by commenting on their blogs and by promoting my readers, not by trying to get bigger and bigger numbers after poring over metrics for minutes or hours on end.

All metrics are vanity metrics because all metrics are about you; you never check metrics to see how your readers are doing but you do check metrics to see how you are doing.

Stats Can Serve a Useful Purpose If……

….you spend a few seconds or a few minutes gauging stats, to see if you want to head in a different direction.

Emphasis on seconds or minutes, guys. Stats can be a little stopover, indicating you may need to let go an activity or maybe you need to expand an activity. Beyond those few seconds or minutes, give the rest of your attention and energy to creating helpful content and building meaningful connections.

Stats never bought my eBook so I do not check metrics. People buy my eBook so I do serve people every day, for hours a day.

Stats are all about you and service is all about other people.

Stop obsessing over how you are doing. Exit survival mode. Exit self-service mode.

Focus on other human beings. Write your next blog post. Create a video. Comment genuinely on a blog, personalizing the comment after reading the blog post. Promote another blogger on social media or via your blog. Be a servant; not a stat checker.

Develop some skills and meet a ton of people daily. That is my blogging mantra.

If you don’t focus heavily on blogging outcomes/stats and trust advice from seasoned pro bloggers you will see increasing success eventually. If you believe in yourself and help people and hone your skills through persistent practice you will succeed through your patient generosity. No need to obsess over numbers because obsessing over numbers is obsessing over yourself. Obsessing over yourself is a recipe for failure because you will run a cyber diary and sell nothing by focusing on yourself; you need to serve human beings to grow your business, not yourself.

Be patient. Be persistent. Be generous. Create and connect. Don’t obsess over stats. If you follow your passion – and you better – you know exactly how you are doing. You’re doing great! No need to verify that feeling with numbers on a screen. You’re good. Ask other folks how they are doing and serve them. Help solve their problems.

Get out of your head into a life of service.

Blogging success will be yours.

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