In my day job, I work as a marketing consultant. While I focus on several core areas, one of my main geekeries is SEO and content marketing. While my knowledge is vastly applied to helping professional service firms grow, I do get a lot of questions from my blogging friends about how the latest Google updates affect how they blog. And if you’ve been wondering the same thing – well, you’re in luck. Because I’m going share some knowledge with you. And if you’re already a SEO snob…then you probably already know all of this. But for those who don’t…behold: the five things you need to start doing to help build your blog’s Google after the recent Hummingbird update.
1. If you’re not social, get social. Social networking – for some – is a huge pain in the rear. In my world (shared with my SEO/social media partner in crime Rachel Calish) it’s pretty freaking cool. But I digress. Social networking is now becoming more and more imperative to online success across the board. You don’t have to have a million followers – you just have to put yourself out there and be active. Want more? I’ve got a FRESH social media guide coming this way soon. I promise.
2. Don’t be afraid of long content. Gone are the days of ranking well for 250-500 word blog posts. Google wants to see more of you – or at least more of what you write – to assess how valuable your site really is for specific search terms. So don’t stop yourself at 750 words. DOUBLE THAT POST! Or at least, double the word count of some of your posts. Content longer than 1,500 words is a good thing for your Google.
3. Start using video. Your users want to see your pretty face – and so do search engines! Video is a great way to connect with your audience, and Google knows that. So: by adding video to your site, you’ll increase user friendliness – and everyone will love your blog that much more (including search engines).
4. Add good sized photos. I’ve harped on this before, but you need large photos (at least 500 px in width) on your site. Do all of your pictures have to be that big? No. But it speaks to the quality of the photo content you’re adding to your site. Which leads back to usability. Which leads back to both Google and your visitors being happy.
5. Hashtags are now vital. Ok, maybe they’re not completely vital yet, but they will be eventually. Right now they’re…important. Because hash tag answers will be coming up in search results. Which means: when you’re using all of your social media platforms like I told you to above, start using hashtags in your content. You’ll thank me in a year.
Have blogging or SEO questions? Post them in the comments!
This photo has nothing to do with this post. I just thought the pet baboon story was funny today.