Are search engines able to crawl your blog’s content with ease? If not, it could have a significant impact on both your search rankings and traffic. Google, Bing, Yahoo and even some of the lower-tiered search engines work by scanning, or crawling, websites to determine what they are about. If a blog site was designed in a manner that prevents proper crawling, however, it won’t be able to rank it accordingly.
Don’t Use Images as Text
It may seem harmless enough, but avoid using images in place of text on your blog. Some companies, for instance, will display their name, address and phone number as an image at the bottom of their blog. Search engines have come a long ways over the years, but they are still unable to read text displayed in images. Therefore, displaying your contact information — or any information for that matter — in an image isn’t going to prove beneficial. If you want to rank for local keywords, place your contact information in plain text somewhere on your blog.
If you do want to use a text image, make sure you fill in the ‘alt tag’ field on your image with keywords or the actual words in the image. Why? Because search engines do read this, as well as it assists vision-impaired visitors who use site reading software understand what the image says.
Search Engine-Friendly URLs
When crafting new posts and pages for your blog, try to get into the habit of using meaningful, relevant URLs.
According to Google, “Creating descriptive categories and filenames for the documents on your website can not only help you keep your site better organized, but it could also lead to better crawling of your documents by search engines.”
Search engines look at URLs to see if they contain keywords, and if they do, the post or page is more likely to rank for that keyword. Depending on which content management system (CMS) your blog is using, it may already have a built-in feature for using search engine-friendly URLs.
Use a Simple Directory Structure
It’s also recommended that you use a simple directory structure for your blog. Instead of /dir1/dir2/abc/0123/newpost, perhaps you can use /category/newpost. Forcing search engines to crawl through a heap of directories could bog down their ability to size up your blog’s content. If your blog has a simple directory structure, however, it will encourage proper crawling and indexing.
Consolidate CSS Files Together
If your blog is currently using two or more external Cascading Style Sheets (CSS), try combining them together into a single CSS file. Websites and blogs with an excessive number of CSS files often suffer from load times, as visitors must load each and every file upon accessing the site. Subsequently, these long load times can lead to increased difficulty when search engines attempt to crawl your site. You can check out this article for a step-by-step guide on how to consolidate your blog’s external CSS files.
Have any other blogging SEO tips that you would like to share with our readers? Let us know in the comments section below!