Out of all the questions we get from style publishers, the most popular one right now is SEO. Whilst most publishers understand the importance of SEO, very few know what they need to do to improve their search engine rankings.
With this in mind, I thought I’d put together the ultimate SEO guide specifically for you, the Digital Style Publisher!
Don’t get obsessed with keywords
Sure keywords are great for optimising your content but there’s a fine line between them looking natural and stuffed. You may think that using keywords often will improve your blog’s SEO but in actual fact high keyword densities will be punished. Less is more!
My top tip is to stop worrying about how many times you insert a particular keyword into your content. Instead focus on writing naturally and creating awesome content. It’s fine to include your keywords when they naturally appear in your text but if you stuff them here, there and everywhere, your content is going to appear unnatural to both readers and search engines – eek!
Add Alt Tags on Images
Be concise and literal when it comes to writing your image alt tags unless it is important to be more descriptive because of the context of the blog post. I should mention though that alt text which is too long will lose impact and may mean it is not indexed efficiently in Google. Alt text is a good way to tell Google what is going on in a blog post, e.g. if your post is on the Chloé Drew bag then mention this in your alt tag. Beware though! Do not repeatedly use the same alt text, try to mix it up and make sure it is relevant to the picture itself.
Use a responsive web design
If your fashion blog’s design isn’t already responsive then now’s the time to make a change! You may not think you need a responsive web design but with more and more people using their smartphones to browse their favourite blogs, you could end up losing a lot of readers if your blog isn’t compatible with their devices. Fresh from Google HQ on April 21st is the new mobile search algorithm that increases the rankings of mobile friendly sites. So if you want your blog to appear high on mobile search rankings, you need to invest in a responsive web design ASAP!
The new mobile search algorithm works in real time, so as soon as Google crawls your blog and sees it is responsive, your blog will automatically receive ranking benefits. Aside from SEO benefits, a responsive web design will also help you to deliver a better user experience to your readers and allow you to future proof your blog against new device launches. Responsive design is a must-have for digital content creators in 2015!
Download theFEED today, WordPress mobile plugin, created by chloédigital in collaboration with rewardStyle. It’s free!
Make sure your content is 100% unique
The point of running your own fashion blog is to share your own thoughts and ideas, so if you’re having to pinch them off other people, blogging’s maybe not for you. The problem with having lots of plagiarised content on your blog is that you will get penalised by Google’s Panda algorithm. Receiving a penalty will cause your blog to crash in the rankings and you’re very likely to see a drop in traffic too – eek!
Create fresh, unique and interesting content and you’ll be just fine! It’s okay to get inspiration from other different sources, just make sure you don’t copy exact ideas and language. If you use anyone else’s ideas, it’s good blogging etiquette to credit them.
Remember that creating content on a regular basis is also beneficial to your blog’s SEO. Google thrives on fresh content and will be more likely to crawl and rank your blog frequently if you are constantly updating it with new content!
Maintain a speedy site
If your blog takes ages to load, unfortunately people aren’t going to stick around to read it. If they’ve clicked off your blog within seconds, it will affect your bounce rate and signal to Google that your blog isn’t offering a great experience, which will harm your SEO.
This is why I tell all of our bloggers to maintain a speedy site. You can check how speedy your blog is by using a free online tool by Pingdom. If you find that your blog is taking more than a couple of seconds to load, you will need to do some investigative work to find out what’s slowing it down. Unused plugins and monster-sized images are often two of the main culprits.
If you have a number of unused plugins installed on your WordPress blog then I recommend getting rid of them as soon as possible. Chucking out all of the plugins you no longer use will allow you to improve your blog speed, which will in turn help you to improve your rankings.
Those guilty of using monster-sized images on their fashion blog need to make sure they optimise them before uploading them. The file size of your blog images should be no more than 80Kb (at absolute max). Dropping the image quality of your jpeg images by up to 70% will reduce the image file size and help you maintain good site speeds.
Avoid using Do Follow links
If you assign the ‘Do Follow’ attribute to all of the links in your blog posts, you could be harming your site’s SEO. You could also be penalised by Google if you take payment in return for featuring a ‘Do Follow’ link to another website, as you will be violating the search engine’s guidelines.
There you have it, your guide to SEO! The main thing is don’t freak out too much when it comes to SEO, Google’s aim is to highlight great content, make this your primary aim, keep in mind these points and you will do just great!
Are you a chloédigital publisher? Take action with this post by asking your support specialist for SEO optimisation on your blog.
Want to become one? Find out all the benefits here.