Okay so you know how to optimize your website for SEO, but what do you need to do for writing SEO-optimized blog posts This SEO checklist will cover each thing you need to do for on-page SEO when you are writing an article. Write what you are passionate about and then make sure it gets seen by following these tips! You can also download a printable PDF version of this checklist for quick reference when you are writing your blog posts.
Formatting Your Blog Post for SEO
- Content Length. Is my content long-form? (2000-3000+ words) Is my content comprehensive and actually valuable to readers?
- Mobile-Friendly Design. Have I kept my sentences and paragraphs shorter for easier readability on mobile devices? (Keep paragraphs to 3-4 sentences max)
- URL Optimization. Have I changed the default URL for the blog post to something shorter and clearer? (You don’t want a bunch of numbers, dates, and unnecessary information that makes a super long URL)
Keyword Selection & Placement for Your Blog Post
- Focus Keyword Selection. Have I chosen a keyword to focus my content on for this post? Have I researched this keyword to make sure that it is the best phrasing/word choice? (Certain keywords bring in more monthly traffic than others, and certain keywords are easier to rank for than others. Use a SEO software/tool to figure this out)
- Related Keywords Selection. Have I added similar/related (to my focus keyword) phrases throughout my article? (You can find a list of similar/related keywords by using a SEO software/tool to figure this out)
- Focus Keyword Placement. Have I used my focus keyword at the beginning of my article (within the first 150 words) and near the end of my article? Have I used my focus keyword in at least one of my sub-headings (that uses the H2 tag. For more information on heading tags read our guide on heading tags here).
- Related Keyword Placement. Have I used my related keywords in my sub-headings (that use the H2 tag)?
Properly Tagging and Marking Up Your Blog Post for SEO
Using proper heading tags in your posts and applying schema markup can make a huge difference in your blog post’s SEO. For our full guide on heading tags check out this post. We’ll break down schema markup in this section, and if you would like a more detailed post on this topic comment below! We are always open to hearing what you want to hear more about on the topic of SEO.
- H1/Title Tag Optimization. Does my H1 tag include a long-tail keyword? Is my H1 tag 20-70 characters long? Is my title catchy and clearly lets people know what the post is about? (Think about using attention-grabbing headline starters too such as ‘how to,’ ‘guide,’ ‘checklist,’ ‘free,’ ‘simple,’ ‘easy,’ etc.)
- H2/H3 Tags For Subheadings. Have I added proper H2 and H3 tags to my subheadings throughout my article? Are the subheadings helpful? Do I include related keywords in my subheadings?
- Meta-Description. Have I added a custom meta-description for this blog post? For our full guide on how to write a meta-description read here.
- Schema Markup. Have I added schema markup to my blog post? (Use Google’s Structured Data Markup Helper, choose the articles option, copy and past URL of blog post, click ‘start tagging,’ mark it up using the tool, export HTML and copy and paste the HTML to replace your original post)
Adding Links To Your Blog Post for SEO
- Internal Links. Have I added links throughout my article to relevant pages and posts from my own website?
- Outbound Links. Have I added 2-4 outbound links (when relevant) for every 1000 words or so? (Outbound links are links that direct you to a different website)
Sharing Your Blog Post to Increase Traffic & Backlinks
- Sharing With Influencers. Have I shared this with any influencers I think might be genuinely interested in this topic? (Please note that you cannot expect anyone to share content, but if you offer genuine value to their audience and it is a great, non-competitive match then reach out!)
- Sharing on Social. Have I shared this on all of my social feeds?
- Syndication. Have I considered syndicating this content? (Medium and LinkedIn are a great place to start).
- Guest Blogging. Have I considered using this piece as a submission on another larger, credible site to send their audience traffic to my site?
Download Our SEO Checklist For Publishing a Blog Post
That’s it! Creating consistent, quality content on your site is the main way to increase your search engine rankings, traffic and brand loyalty over time. Use this handy checklist to make sure you are getting the most out of your content every time you press publish! You can download a PDF version of this SEO Checklist by signing up with your email below. We send relevant news and advice regarding SEO and digital marketing when something new comes up.