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Optimizing Your Blog for Search Engines
Bloggers who are interested in building high traffic to their blog and maintaining a successful blog should pay particular attention to search engine optimization techniques which can help to improve the search engine rankings of their blogs. Search engines all employ some type of ranking algorithm which is used to determine the order in which websites are returned when an Internet user searches for information on a particular topic. However, not all search engines use the same algorithm for this purpose. As a result, there is no simple solution to optimizing a blog for high rankings on all search engines. There are a few tips though which can be useful for most search engines. These tips include using relevant keywords, generating backlinks to your blogs and using image tags in a beneficial way.
The Importance of Keywords
The use of relevant keywords in blog posts is one of the most common and also one of the simplest ways to optimize search engine rankings. However, not all bloggers agree on the best ways to use relevant keywords to optimize search engine rankings. Some bloggers believe keywords must be used often to create high keyword densities while others believe using keywords at lower densities of 1%-3% and paying attention to the placement of the keywords is the most worthwhile strategy. Still, other bloggers argue that merely using relevant keywords as they come naturally in the flow of the blog posts is sufficient to ensure search engines understand the content of the blog.
Regardless of the keyword strategy, a blogger opts to employ all bloggers can benefit from researching relevant keywords. They may have a blog which pertains to a general subject such as gardening but may not be aware of the search terms typically used by Internet users when researching this subject. Fortunately, there are many programs available which generate related keywords for a particular time which provides the blogger with other keywords they should consider incorporating into the blog. For the example of a blog about gardening, the blogger may want to use additional keywords such as container gardening or home gardening to attract more interest from search engine users.
Generating Favorable Back Links
Backlinks are also another common factor used in search engine ranking algorithms. Many search engines consider the number of backlinks pointing to a website as well as the quality of the sites which provide these backlinks. This means the search engine rankings of the website which points to your blog could influence the amount of weight the backlink contributes to your rankings. This is because some search engines consider higher ranking websites to be more valuable than other websites which do not rank well and therefore reward websites receiving backlinks from these high ranking websites quite favorably.
Some search engine algorithms also consider whether or not the backlinks are reciprocated or not reciprocated. In these cases, nonreciprocal links are usually considered to be more valuable than reciprocal links. Also, backlinks which come from link exchanges or link farms are typically not considered to be very influential to search engine rankings.
How Images Can Improve Search Engine Rankings
Bloggers should also be aware that any pictures used on their blog can be used to improve search engine rankings with some search engines. This aspect of search engine optimization is often overlooked because many bloggers believe the pictures are not viewed by search engines. While this is true, the search engines do crawl the code of the blog in addition to the content on the blog. This means the search engine will view the information provided in the image tags. Bloggers can take advantage of this by using the image tags to provide relevant keywords which can bolster search engine rankings. However, care should be taken to ensure the keywords used in these tags also accurately describe the image because blog visitors will often see the text included in these tags when they scroll over a picture on the blog.