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How to write a blog post that gets the best traffic to your site

An 8 step Process for Optimizing your post & Trello Template

You will get the most from this post if you use the Trello Template I’ve created.  Join the Goodness Squad and I’ll send it to you right away!

You’ll also be sent a simple Google Docs checklist in case you don’t use Trello.

You write blog posts so that people will read them

But unless you know how to write a blog post the right way, your blog posts may not ever be read by the people who need them.

My 10-year-old daughter is currently writing and illustrating a book with her best friend – and she is dreaming of the thousands of people that will someday read it.  Her Dad told her:

“You are just like your mom”

And I was SO PROUD.  Because of course, right?  If she is going to take the time to write it, why wouldn’t she want people to read it?

Misty Marsh and daughter doing hair in bathroom

You want impact and deserve income

You don’t write blog posts hoping that no one reads them. You write articles because you want to make an impact.  You want to help others.  You want to earn income for your family.  You want to spread goodness and light.  You write blog posts so that people will read them.

But here’s the problem:

Wanting people to read what you write doesn’t automatically mean that is what happens.  

Writing quality blog posts takes work

As I talked to my daughter about possibly self-publishing her book on Amazon and working to market it online she said:  “Oh, that sounds hard mom”  {a long pause and some deep thinking}  I think I want to do it.  I think it’ll be worth it.”

Getting your writing read takes more than just writing it – you have to learn how to market it too.   But I’d rather spend 10 hours on an article that reaches the people who need it than spend the same 10 hours writing 5 posts that end up on page 2092 of Google’s search results, wouldn’t you?

If you agree – and are willing to put more time into your blog posts – then you need to keep reading.  I’ve written out the 8 step process I go through each time I write a blog post for you.  I’ve also created a Google Doc template for you – a checklist of sorts – so you can keep track of everything for your own posts.  You’ll find blog writing examples and the techniques smart bloggers use to get their blog posts in front of the right people. Excited?  Let’s go!

You've Got this!

I hope that you will use this 8-step guide and the included google doc to write your very next blog post.  I want that post SEEN by the right people.  I want you to be able to reach the people God would have you reach and improve their lives in some way by what you write.  I want you to benefit from all the work you put into your blog. 

And you CAN!  You absolutely can.  It will take action and practice, but this 8-step process will simplify it for you so you can do what works starting NOW with less trial and error.  You’ll know that the work you are putting in has a purpose instead of just guessing all willy-nilly what to focus your time on.

You Should Know

I am an affiliate for many of the blogging tools I list below.  This means that if you choose to purchase one of those tools, I will earn a small commission.  This does not result in any increased cost to you.  In fact, it sometimes results in a decreased cost. I choose to be an affiliate only for products I love – products I can answer questions about because I use them regularly.

All affiliate links are clearly marked as such.  If it is not marked as an affiliate link, I am not an affiliate for that company – but I’m recommending them anyway just because I think they will be of value to you.  You can see my full affiliate disclosure here.

Help Others

Do you have a friend that could use this post?  Share it with them!  I call my readers the “Goodness Squad,” as we are all trying to make sharing goodness online less complicated and more rewarding. Just click on a button below!

Step #1: Choose Your BLog Post topic

Writing about whatever is on your mind isn’t the best idea if you want your blog posts to drive quality, targeted traffic to your website.  It also isn’t enough if you want to truly impact people.

The very first step in “how to write a blog post” that is worth your time is to make sure you are strategic about choosing your topic.

1A. How to Write a blog post your followers want to read

This seems obvious, right?  What you write about should be something your followers want to read.  But when I was a new blogger, I didn’t really know how to write a blog post about something my readers wanted to know about.  So, I would just guess and sadly, I’d write blog posts that fell flat.  If you are writing posts that don’t have the impact and reach you were hoping for this step is for you!

The first step you take when writing a blog post is to survey your audience.  I regularly ask my audience what they want to learn about or what they are struggling with inside my Facebook group, on Instagram and in my emails.  This allows me to get an overall feel for what types of blog posts would resonate best with them and allows me to truly meet their needs.  You should be surveying your audience regularly as well!

Another way to do this is to keep a list (use Google Keep or another list building app) of questions people ask you – through email, on Facebook, in your DMs, etc.  You can also add questions to the list that are regularly asked in other Facebook groups (those you don’t own but are a member of) in your niche.  This information is a gold mine!  Use it to choose an overall topic for your next blog post. 

Then, post a quick poll or question inside your Facebook group asking what specific questions your followers have on that topic.  This will help you know what problems you should be looking to solve and the questions you should be answering in your blog post.

1B. How to Write a blog post that will resonate with the masses

Once you know your blog post topic is one that your existing readers want to hear about, your next step is to make sure that the topic is something the masses will also be interested in. 

Social Animal

Simply visit SocialAnimal.com and type your blog post topic into the search field.  For example, I typed in “Write a blog post“, “How to write a blog post“, and “Blog post checklist” for this post.

With the free account (which is all I use), you’ll be shown the first 5 results.  These are the current most popular posts on social media.  This means these are posts that are getting shared!  I take a few minutes to scan/read each one and make notes of what I could do better in the blog post I write.

If none of the results have a lot of shares, then I may decide to choose a different topic.

Important – I’m sure this goes without saying, but please don’t ever copy a post or course structure/titles. That is not how to write a blog post.  This is simply market research – finding out what has worked, what may not have and how you can improve upon what is already available online.

Step #2: DO SEO Research before you start writing

Writing a blog post is different than writing a book – you aren’t writing for your readers alone.  You need to know how to write a blog post in such a way that it (hopefully) turns up in search results when someone searches for what you have to offer.  This is called on-page SEO

In order to do this well, you need to research what people are searching for when it comes to your topic.

2A. Find the Main keyword you will focus on as you write your blog post

What is a Keyword?

A “keyword” isn’t always just one word – in fact, it is usually a phrase that people are typing into Google (or other search engines).  As you write your blog post, you need to focus on a phrase that people are actually searching for.

How to determine what people are searching for

Are you wondering: How do I know what people are searching for?

There are tools out there that collect enormous amounts of data in order to help you answer that question – and many of them come at a hefty ($100+ mo) price.  But my favorite tool – Neil Patel’s Ubersuggest – is absolutely free. It’s better than many paid tools!

How to choose your keyword

Head over to Ubersuggest and start by entering in the same phrases you searched for on Social Animal and Udemy during step #1B.  Scroll down to the “keyword ideas” section and go through the various tabs (related, questions, etc).  Write down a handful of keyword phrases that you know you could naturally add to your blog post.  Now, enter each phrase into Ubersuggest separately and notice:

  • The search volume. I suggest going no lower than 100
  • SEO difficulty. This is how hard it is to turn up high in the search results for that term.  If you are a new blogger, try to find words that are under 20.  If you are more established, you can go higher.

You are looking for a keyword phrase that has a high number of searches each month and isn’t too competitive. For example, a phrase with 700 searches and a difficulty score of 25 would not be as good as one with 600 searches and a difficulty score of 15.  But 700 / 25 would probably be better than one with 100 searches and a difficulty score of 15.

As you can see, I’m choosing a keyword phrase (how to write a blog post) with a difficulty of 16 since I’m brand new (Jan 2020), but a pretty high search volume considering it’s SEO difficulty: 

Ubbersuggest screenshot

A few other things to consider:

If the data is available for your keyword phrase, you also want your keyword phrase to be one that:

  • People click on in search results (for example, people search “weather” but they don’t very often click on the search results as they just look at the results that come up)
  • Has searcher’s in your target market’s age range
Based on the data choose a keyword phrase that you will focus on strategically (and naturally) adding to your blog post copy.  
Ubbersuggest screenshot

As you can see, the percentage of people actually clicking on my keyword phrase (How to write a blog post) is less than 50%.  This means that although 1900 people search for it each month, only 772 people actually clicked on one of the results.  This helps me keep things in perspective as the 1900 isn’t really as awesome as I originally thought.  I’m not going to get thousands of people from this search, but I may get hundreds.  But since the majority (65%) of those who searched are in my target market age range (18-45), it’s worth it to me!

2B. Find Related keywords you can also use in your blog post

Google and other search engines are smart – and they are getting smarter all the time.  In order for your post to turn up in search results, you have to do more than just add your chosen keyword phrase all over the place.  You also need to have words that Google sees as related to that keyword phrase.

Type your chose keyword phrase into Google.  Scroll down to the end of the search results page and you’ll find a list of “searches related to {your keyword phrase here}.”  There are words that are highlighted in bold.  Write these down.  I wrote down: “writing examples“, “smart blogger“, and “template“.

Google related keyword phrases in search results

Now, scroll back through the search results.  You will see words in bold.  These are either words that are part of your keyword phrase OR they are additional related keywords.  Write these down as well!  I wrote down Writing, write, blog post, blog, posts, article.  

Google LSI Keywords in search results

All the words you’ve written down are words that Google expects to find in an article they show in search results for the keyword phrase you’ve chosen.  Be sure to sprinkle them throughout your blog post!

2C. Improve on your competitor's Post(s)

If you haven’t already, go install the Moz toolbar on your Chrome browser and then search for your chosen keyphrase again using Google.

You’ll now see two numbers under each search result,  PA and DA.  PA=Page rank and DA=Domain rank.  These are numerical representations of how credible Google sees that page and/or domain.  You want to find the lowest number.  You will also see the number of links that point to this domain.  Again, look for the lowest number of links.

The search results with the lowest numbers are the competitor(s) it will be easiest for you to beat in the search result rankings.  Go read their article(s) and see what you can do better.  How can you offer something more/different/better?

Moz competitor info in search results

That’s it!  Now you know how to write a blog post that your readers, the masses, AND the search engines will love.

2D. Find Pinterest Keywords

Did you know that Pinterest is not really a social media platform?  Nope.  It’s a search engine – a visual search engine.  Think about it – when is the last time you went to Pinterest to search for a recipe or a haircut idea?  Yep – search engine.  This means that you also need to know how to write a blog post for Pinterest.

For that reason, you need to pay attention to what people are searching for on Pinterest that relates to what you plan to write a blog post about.  Luckily, this is pretty easy.  Simply search for something related to what you are planning to write a blog post about.  Underneath your search, Pinterest will show some extra words/phrases.  These are phrases people are searching for!  

For example, I searched “how to write a blog post” and learned that people are searching for “how to write  blog post tips” and “how to write a blog post free worksheets” and “how to write a blog post in 30 minutes” as well as a few others

Well, I would never suggest spending just 30 minutes on a post, so that didn’t work for me – but I knew I’d be including a worksheet in this post so that one works for me.  I added it to my list of related keyword phrases.  I will also include it in the Pinterest pin description I write in step #7B.

Pinterest keywords via search

Step #3: Decide how you want to serve your readers

This is a step that many bloggers miss – it is one I never even gave any thought to for years with my past websites.  But it’s important – knowing how to write a blog post that actually serves your readers can help you focus your writing and allow your readers to leave with something of value.

3A. Choose a Focus for your blog post

Every piece of content you write – on your blog, Instagram, Email, Facebook – anywhere should do one of 4 things for your readers:

  1. Inspire them
  2. Educate them
  3. Entertain them
  4. Motivate them
These are the types of content that get shared the most on social media.  These are the types of content people choose to read after scanning them.  So, choose one focus for the blog post you will be writing.  For example, my focus with this post is to educate you.  

3B. Choose a Goal for your blog post

Every blog post you write should also have a goal – something you want the reader to do after they read the post.  There are two types of goals:

1.  The action you want the reader to take in their life after reading your post.  

For example, my goal with this post is for you to use the google doc I provide to you – and this post – to write your very next blog post.  Everything I write needs to lead you toward being able to do that.  By the time you are done reading I want you to have everything, you need to write a blog post that will drive quality traffic to your website.

2.  The action you want the reader to take before they close their browser or go to a different site.

In most cases, for me, this is to join my email list or if they are already on my email list it is to share this post on social media.  You will see that I invite you to do these two things throughout my post.

Related:

Step #4: Write your Blog post

The preparation you just went through in steps #1 – #3 is something very few bloggers are willing to take the time to do.  For that reason, if you take the time to do those steps, you will be FAR ahead of most of your competition. Those preparatory steps are an important foundation for writing blog posts that are seen and shared – and therefore drive the right types of traffic (your target audience) to your site. Don’t just rely on luck.  If you truly want to grow your blog as a business you should not start writing until you have properly prepared.  

That being said, the writing process is just as important as the preparation you make and should be well thought out and well organized.  Your #1 goal of anything you write should be to serve your readers – to make their life better in some way.

4A. How to Write blog post Title

Why headlines/Blog Post Titles are so important

Your blog post headlines are your #1 marketing tool.  The entire purpose of a headline/title is to entice people to read your blog post.  Plus, most people will share content on social media based on the title alone – even if they have not read the article. But it can’t be clickbaity – it has to deliver on what you promise.  It should also include your keyword phrase, emotional words, and not be too long.

That’s a tall order!  I often (not always) spend 20-40 minutes creating a title for a blog post.  Don’t be scared to invest a good chunk of time into writing a title for your blog post.  It is a wise investment of your time.  This is one step you absolutely do not want to skip!

Hands Down the Best tool for writing your headlines and how to use it

I use CoSchedule’s Headline Analyzer for writing my post titles.  When I started using this tool with my email subject lines years ago, I nearly tripled my open rate! Now I use it for any and all titles.  Here is my 3-step process:

  1. Google your main keyword phrase and look at the titles.  I also go back to Social Animal and look at those titles.  I know these titles are showing up in search results and getting shared on social media.
  2. I create a similar headline, but with my own twist.  I try to include emotional words, power words, clear & descriptive adjectives (I use a thesaurus) and a promise of how readers will benefit by reading the post.
  3. I plug that title into the Headline Analyzer and tweak and change it until I get a score of at least 70.
Here is this post’s title broken down:

How to write a blog post that gets (emotional word) the best (descriptive adjective and power word) traffic to your site (promise)

Bonus: Types of headlines that do well

  • List posts 
  • Headlines with “you” or “your” in them 
  • Headlines with the phrase “how to” 
  • Headlines with the word “DIY” in them
  • Headlines with the word “easy” in them
  • Headlines with a number in them 

4B. Write an outline for your blog post

Outlining your post before you start writing it will make the writing process so much quicker!  When I started outlining my posts, I cut my post writing time nearly in half.

Outlining your post is the process of creating the structure of the post-it is basically writing out all your headlines and sub-headlines.  While not every headline needs a keyword, do your best to include the keyword phrase from step #2a in 30%-40% of your headlines and related keywords or keyword phrases from step #2b in 30%-40% of the other headlines.

4C. Write the intro of your blog post

If you don’t have a great post intro, people won’t read your post – even if you got them there with a great title.  The first few sentences of your blog posts are as important as the headline.  The headline got the reader to your site, but the intro – that is what convinces them that they NEED to keep reading.

This article from Neil Patel does a great job of teaching how to write a smart blog post introduction.

4D. Write the body of your blog post

Next, you need to write a paragraph or two under each headline that you’ve written. 

Do your best to:

  • Write in an active voice as if you are speaking to just one person (use the words “you” and “your” a lot)
  • Include at least one story – people like reading stories.
  • Remember your focus and goals from step #3.
  • Use your main keyword and related keywords throughout the article in natural ways that don’t sound forced.

How Long should my blog post be?

This is a very common question – and a smart one to ask as a strategic blogger.

As a general rule, short, quick posts are not as effective. The minimum number of words for a page/post to be recognized by search engines is around 300.  But that is just a minimum.  Google likes longer content – search for almost anything of value online and you will find that the top search results are longer articles. 

But search engines aren’t the only place the longer content performs better.  Forbes found that blog posts containing over 1500 words are more likely to be shared on social media.  Personally, I try to pick topics for my blog posts that I can spend at least 1500 words talking about – my cornerstone content (like this post) is much, much longer than that.

But just because a post is long doesn’t mean it is high quality.  Quality will always trump quantity, so don’t force it – don’t add unnecessary words (shorter sentences are better – I struggle with this).  Don’t ramble.  If you have said all that needs to be said and you’ve only got 500 words – that’s fine – as long as you have inspired, educated, entertained or motivated your readers.  Just because my goal is 1500 words doesn’t mean I will reach that every single time.  My goal is to serve my readers – to help them save money, time or have an improved quality of life.

4E. Write the conclusion of your blog post

All that is left to write your conclusion.  Keep it short and sweet – just a paragraph or maybe two.  Summarize what your reader has just read and invite them to take action (the goal you decided on in step #3).  Here is an article from Neil Patel (he is fantastic) on writing effective conclusions.

Related:

Step #5: Prepare Media for your post

If you really want to know how to write an effective blog post, you need to understand that it isn’t just the words that count. Beautiful images can be an important addition to your blog post.  An image is worth 1000 words, right?  But it is for exactly that reason that your image(s) should communicate the 1000 words you want them to.  They should match the overall tone and message of your blog post. 

Images also slow down your site load time, so you don’t want to overdo it.  Use the images you need and no more.  If you need a lot of images, that is fine!  Use plugins like Smush and Hummingbird (included with WPMUDev hosting (affiliate link) which is what I use and highly recommend) to help with the load and keep your site speed fast.

You may also be offering a downloadable file(s) with your blog post.  You will also need to prepare that.

5A. Get Photographs

If you are a photographer, great!  Take some great photos for your blog post.

Not a photographer?  No worries.  You can still take great photos with your smartphone.  Use natural outdoor lighting when possible.  I use this tripod with my iPhone and the light that comes with it when I need to take pictures indoors.

Another option is to use stock photography, but I recommend against using free stock photography.  You want your images to be unique.  Paid stock images are better because there are fewer people using them.  When necessary, I purchase my stock photography from Deposit Photos (affiliate)and Ivory Mix (affiliate).

5B. Create graphics for your post and social media

Two tools I recommend for blog post graphics

Different social media outlets recommend different size images for sharing on their platforms.  It is also likely that your blog’s theme has a specific featured image size.  I recommend using Canva (affiliate) to create graphics (saved as jpegs) for your blog posts. It is much quicker and easier (not to mention less expensive) to use than Photoshop.

If you aren’t comfortable designing your own graphics, you can find fantastic, easy to use Canva (affiliate) templates (all you do is change the color, image, and text) on Creative Market (affiliate).  I do this even though I can create my own graphics because it saves me so much time and then all my posts are well-branded.  SO worth the money!

The Blog post and Social Media graphics I create:

Below are the graphics I create for each of my posts.  You may not need all of these, or you may need more (I don’t currently do much on Twitter or LinkedIn), but this should get you started.  This article is a great resource for current images sizes

Also, the reason I create more than one graphic for each social media platform is so that I can share the same article over time, but in different ways visually.  This helps me have more to share on social media without taking the time to write another article – I want to get all I can out of one article.  Creating a few extra graphics takes a lot less time than writing an entirely new post.

  • 1 x Featured Image size determined by your theme
  • 3-5 x Pinterest Images1000 x 1500 is the current (early 2020) recommendation.  Pinterest’s official recommendations HERE (in case they’ve changed).  
  • 2-3 x Facebook Post ImagesCurrently (early 2020) 1200 x 630 is the recommendation.  Facebook’s official recommendations HERE
  • 2-3 x Instagram Feed Images – 1080 x 1080 is the current recommendation (early 2020).  Instagram’s official recommendations HERE.  
  • 1 x Instagram Story Image 1080 x 1920 is the current recommendation (early 2020).  I post more videos to my stories than static images so I only create one image for this.
  • 1 x Instagram IGTV Cover  – 654 x 420is the current recommendation (early 2020).  I announce all new posts on IGTV just once.
  • Additional graphics/images that are needed for inside the actual blog post.  Try to save these images at the size they will actually be displayed on your website.  For example, if your blog is 1100 pixels wide, you don’t need images that are 3000 pixels wide.  That will just slow down your site unnecessarily as the largest an (non-background) image will ever be displayed on your site is 1100 pixels.  

How to save image files for a blog post:

Type:

In most cases, it will be best to save your images as a .jpg as .jpgs will load faster on your site.  But some images may need a transparent background.  In that case, save them as .png files.

Quality:

Images you are using on your website do not need to be saved at a super high quality since they will not be printed.  In Photoshop, I always use the “save for web” option.  Inside Canva (affiliate), I compress my .png files and I save my jpg files at 50% quality.  This keeps my file size low and my site load time high.

Name:

For SEO purposes, your file name should include your main keyword or one of the related keywords from step #2.  Don’t just leave it as img0418513 or whatever.  Naming your images descriptively also allows you to search for them later (on your computer or in your WordPress media library) so you don’t have to create a new graphic or upload the same image 4 weeks later for a different blog post.

5C. Upload your images and graphics to the WordPress media library

Now that you have created all the media you’ll need and saved it all correctly, you need to add it to your WordPress Media Library.

After you upload all your media, you can click on each image and give it an alternate description.  You may hear people recommending that you put your keywords in this alt description.  If you can do so naturally, great.  If not, don’t.  That can be considered keyword stuffing – a black hat SEO technic.  Google is smart.

The alternate description is read to those who are blind and browsing online.  It is also what appears if an image has not yet had time to load.  For these reasons, it should simply describe what is the image is.  Google likes websites that are disability-friendly, so you should fill it out, but only include a keyword if it is natural.

where to find alt and pin description

You will also see others recommend that you put your Pinterest description as your alt text, but for the reasons mentioned above, this is not ideal.  If you have Social Warfare (affiliate) you can add a custom pin description for each image.  More on Social Warfare Here.

Step #6: Optimize Your Blog post

This step might be the most important of all when it comes to how to write a blog post that brings you qualified traffic.  Sadly, yet it is the step that most new bloggers skip (or don’t even know about) – I know I skipped it for years!  But you wrote your post so people would read it.  This step is what will make sure that happens!

Will this step take you some time?  Yep.  But I’m pretty sure you’d rather spend 10 hours on one blog post that gets SEEN and READ than 10 hours on 5 blog posts that get buried on page 1050 of Google or the social media twilight zone of posts that get shown to just 2 of your followers.

Be an outlier!  Do things most people won’t, and you’ll see results most people won’t see.  

6A. Optimize your post for readability:

We live in a world of information overload.  People don’t have time to read every single post they click on.  After they read your headline and intro, if they are still interested, they will likely scan your post.  If they are still interested after that, they will start reading.  We want to make sure your post is scan-able and as easy to read as possible.  Here is a checklist:
  • Add the images you prepared in step #4 to your post in strategic ways.  Use them to break up large portions of text and to communicate important messages. Remember, the image should convey the same overall feeling and message as the text.  Don’t overuse images as they will slow down your site – just use what you need.
  • Make sure there no more than 2-3 paragraphs under each heading or sub-heading
  • Make sure no paragraphs are longer than 4 sentences
  • Use indented quotes, bulleted lists, columns, bold and italicized text, etc. to break up content so it is easier to scan
  • Remove any industry-specific jargon or clearly define it. 
  • Have someone proofread your article or use Grammarly (affiliate) (here is how to use it with Elementor Pro (affiliate).
  • Preview article – make sure it looks pleasant to your eye – and read through it one more time as a whole, making sure it flows well and makes sense as a whole.

6B. Optimize your post for seo:

Great!  You’ve made it easy for humans to read your post.  Now you need to make it easy for search engines to read your post so you can get quality search traffic to your post.  Remember that search engine traffic is a long game.  You won’t see results tomorrow or even next month, but over time (6-12 months), if you are consistently doing the following, you should start seeing qualified traffic from search engines. 

  • The first sentence should include your primary keyword phrase
  • Your main keyword phrase should also be in your last paragraph
  • Do you have at least 1 internal link (more is better) to another page on your site?
  • Do you have at least 1 external link (more is better)to a different high-quality site? (it should open in a new page)
  • Double-check your headlines and body copy (which you should have already put your keywords and related words in).  Does your keyword usage sound forced?  Change it, so it sounds natural.

6C. Optimize your post for Sharability:

An essential part of getting the best traffic to your website is making your content shareable.  If a person that fits your target market reads your post and shares that post, it is likely that at least some of the people they are (social media) friends with are also in your target market. You want to do all you can to get your readers to share your posts on social media.  

The first thing you need to do is install Social Warfare (affiliate).  Social Warfare is one plugin that is well worth its weight in gold.  Not only does it allow you to add social media share buttons to your website, but it also allows you to choose the exact image and text that gets shared when someone clicks on those buttons.  This is so SO important for Pinterest.  Pinterest is a search engine, and you must have words people are searching for in your Pinterest descriptions if you want people to find your pins (and then visit your site) from Pinterest.

  • Make sure you have Social Warfare buttons enabled on your blog post.
  • Add social share buttons using the social warfare shortcode to the middle of your blog post somewhere.  Like this:
  • Ask your readers to share your post – at the end of the post and wherever you added the buttons.   Like this:  “If this post has been helpful to you, it would probably be helpful to someone else.  I would love it if you shared it!  Thanks in advance!
  • Add a “Click-to-Tweet” button to your post if possible (Elementor Pro (affiliate) makes this easy).  Like this:

Writing a blog post is a lot of work, but learn to do it the right way and all that hard work will turn into targeted traffic for your website.

Misty Marsh - DesignedForGoodness.com Tweet

6D. Optimize your post for profitablity:

Driving traffic to your website is pointless if you don’t do anything with that traffic.  While your focus should be on helping your readers, when you are helpful, you deserve to benefit from the work you put into your blog.  Make sure you have a way to benefit from the traffic you get to your site. Some ideas:

  • Consider linking to an affiliate product you believe in or one of your own products within your blog post when / if appropriate and helpful.
  • Link from the blog post you are writing to other related blog posts you’ve already written to keep people on your site longer and give them more time to get to know like and trust you.
  • Make sure you have multiple opportunities for those who read your post to opt-into your email list.  If a visitor doesn’t opt-into your email list, then the 1 post they read from you might be the only one.  But once they are on your email list, you have a way to contact them again, which is good for you and them (as long as they need what you offer, and you put their needs first).  You join my email list right here:

Stop Wasting Time on mediocre blog posts

Optimize your posts for SEO, share-ability, readability, and profitablity with this Trello Template.

    Step #7: Publish Your Blog post

    Before you can hit that publish button, there are a few last steps you need to take.  These are not part of the actual copy of your post, but they are essential for various (SEO, sharability, etc.) reasons.

    7A. Use the Yoast SEO Plugin to double check your SEO

    If you followed steps #2 and 6B, your post should be well optimized for SEO.  But I still recommend using the free Yoast SEO plugin. To help you catch things on the backend, you might not otherwise – like having too many or too little of your keyword, etc.  

    • Edit your slug.  It should include your primary keyword phrase – and nothing else, if at all possible.  Keep it as short as you can
    • Write your SEO title – this can be different than your blog post title.  Yoast helps you edit this without code.
    • Write a meta description – be sure it includes your primary keyword phrase and include a related keyword if possible.  The meta description is the description that will show up in search results.  Yoast helps you edit this without code.
    • Go through the suggestions Yoast gives and make any improvements that you can.  Know that you will not often be able to make every single improvement, and that is okay – it doesn’t mean you won’t ever turn up in search results.  Just do your best.

    Important note – if you are using Elementor Pro (affiliate), I highly suggest you do everything in steps #2 and 6B, before going backing out of Elementor and going back into the WordPress editor.  Yoast seems to get things right the first time it checks your posts, but after you’ve made the suggested updates, it doesn’t always recognize them.  By completing those steps first, you will have less in the orange and red categories of Yoast, to begin with.  Here’s the process I recommend:

    • Complete steps #1 – #6 inside Elementor  
    • Save the post in Elementor
    • Click on the three lines at the top left of Elementor and then choose “exit to the dashboard.”
    • Right-click on “Edit with Elementor” and open it in a new tab.
    • Go back to the dashboard window and scroll down to the Yoast section
    • If changes are needed, switch to the Elementor tab, Make the changes it recommends, continue until you’ve made all the changes you can.
    • Save the article in Elementor.  
    • Log into your site in a new tab and navigate to that post (choose “edit” instead of “edit with Elementor”) in the post list.  
    • Scroll down to the Yoast section, but don’t worry if things didn’t update inside Yoast.  As long as you know you’ve fixed the suggested items, search engines will see that.

    7B. Use the Social Warfare Plugin to customize how your article is shared

    In step #6C, you optimized the front end of your post for shareability.  Now it’s time to do so in the backend. Scroll down to the Social Warfare (affiliate) section and do the following:

    • Assign an image to be shared on Facebook (open graph) if someone clicks on your social share buttons
    • Write a Facebook title and description (often it is the same as the meta description, but you can make them different)
    • Write a tweet to be shared when someone shares this post on Twitter using your social share buttons
    • Assign an image to be shared on Pinterest if someone clicks on your social share buttons
    • Write a Pinterest description.  Include your keyword and other words people are searching for on Pinterest (you can find this out by typing  your keyword in Pinterest search and seeing what suggested phrases show up under it)

    7C. Make your post easy to find and desirable to read on your website

    Well organized websites are loved by readers and search engines.  Take a minute to make sure you’ve done all you can.

    • Categorize and tag your post
    • Assign a featured image (the image that will show up on your list of blog posts)
    • Write an excerpt (the post summary that will show up on your list of blog posts).  The excerpt is SUCH an essential piece of copy!  As people scan through the list of posts on your blog, they will read the post title and this summary to decide if they want to read the post or not.  Make it count!

    Step #8: Share your post

    “If you build it, they will come” doesn’t work online.  An important last step when learning how to write a blog post is learning to share it – you’ve got to tell people that your post is out there ready to be read!  Here’s how:

    After I publish do 5 things:

    1. Pin to my your most relevant Pinterest board.  Pinterest loves new content, so you want to be the first to add yours
    2. Add it to your Tailwind (affiliate) Smart Bio as a button.  (Tailwind Smart Bio is totally free even if you never use Tailwind to schedule posts)
    3. Announce the new post via video.  I like being about to talk a bit about why I wrote it and what I hope it does for people.  Record the video on your phone and post it on Facebook, Instagram, Youtube – wherever you have a following!
    4. Schedule the new post to go out to your email subscribers
    5. Find a few related posts on your website, and add links to the newly published post from the previously published posts.
    6. Email any bloggers you quoted or linked to, to thank them for their help
    7. Use Tailwind (affiliate) to schedule all those Pinterest and Instagram graphics you created for the new post. 
    8. Add the new post to Tailwind tribes you are a part of and schedule a few pins from other members of those tribes.
    9. Schedule to share a link to the new post in on your Facebook page and groups
    10. Ask for shares of the post inside Facebook groups you are a part of if they allow that
    11. Share on any other social media platform you are active on

    Conclusion

    Knowing how to write a blog post that brings the right people to your site takes work and effort, but you can stop spending hours writing a gazillion quick posts that no one sees and get smart about it! You can put in the same amount of time, but focus on the things that count and get fewer blog posts SEEN by MORE people – the right people -the people God would have you reach, the people who need you, and are hoping to find what you have to offer.  

    Start benefiting from all the work you put into your blog by using the following 8 steps each time you write a blog post:

    Now that you know how to write a blog post, put your knowledge to use each time you have something to write! (1)Bookmark this post, (2)download the google doc, and get (3)started writing your next fantastic blog post.

    Help me spread goodness online

    Do you have a friend that could use this post?  Share it with them!  I call my readers the “Goodness Squad,” as we are all trying to make sharing goodness online less complicated and more rewarding. Just click on a button below!

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    Related Articles:

    How to write a blog post that actually sends traffic to your site

    STOP WASTING TIME ON MEDIOCRE BLOG POSTS

    Stop Wasting Time on mediocre blog posts

    Optimize your posts for SEO, share-ability, readability, and profitablity with this Trello Template.

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