Posting a blog without optimising it for SEO is like baking a show-stopping batch of brownies without inviting your friends round to feast on them over a cup of Redbush.
You know your bakes are the best in town, but without people there to appreciate and shout about them, how will anyone know what a master baker you are?
If you have a WordPress website, you may have spotted Yoast SEO plugin on the back-end of your site.
If you’ve backed away from it out of confusion or fear you might break the internet (and not in the Kim K way), I’m here to tell you you have nothing to fear (except maybe the deluge of enquiries from dream customers you’re about to receive when you start optimising those fabulous blogs and sharing your expertise with the big wide world).
Read on for a foolproof guide to how to optimise a blog or web page using your Yoast SEO beginner’s cheatsheet.
What is SEO?
If you’ve got this far, I’m guessing you have a vague understanding of SEO, but lack the knowledge or confidence to SEO your blogs because you’re not sure you’ll get it right.
SEO, or search engine optimisation, is simply the process of tweaking your online content to help it rank more highly in Google’s search engine results pages (aka SERPs, a term that foxed me for far longer than I care to admit).
While SEO work features a number of different elements, some more technical than others, there are some simple steps you can take to give your blog or website page a better chance of appearing higher up in the search results.
If you’re confused by the different SEO-related terms you’ve seen bandied around, read this blog for a glossary explaining the most common SEO terminology.
There’s also a free downloadable SEO checklist to make sure you’ve ticked all the boxes.
What does an SEO plugin do?
The good news is, if your WordPress website has the Yoast SEO plugin, it does the hard work for you.
Yoast SEO puts all the SEO tools you need at your fingertips and makes it straightforward to do all the stuff you need to do to rank higher on Google.
So, having Yoast is a shortcut to being an SEO expert, without having to understand the finer (and techier) details of algorithms and alt tags.
Is Yoast worth it?
Personally, I think Yoast SEO is TOTALLY worth it if you want your blogs to be seen and enjoyed, not to mention generate hot leads to grow your business or hit your goals.
While I don’t consider myself techy and can’t claim to grasp the detailed work of career SEOs, I have multiple blogs that rank on page 1 of Google for relevant search terms.
This teaches us two things.
1. Good SEO starts with value-packed content
Focusing your efforts on making your blogs informative and entertaining for your audience is a great place to start if you want them to rank well on search engines.
Well-written, relevant content is SEO 101, so if you’ve nailed that, you’ve got the foundations of a fantastic blog.
2. A little optimisation goes a long way
Don’t shy away from spending a little extra time optimising your blog if you have the Yoast SEO plugin. It’s there to help you, and you deserve to rank well for the hard work you’ve put into content writing.
You don’t need to be an SEO expert to rank on page 1 – a little bit of optimisation goes a long way towards achieving your content writing goals.
How to optimise your blog using Yoast SEO
Lately, I’ve spoken to several people who avoid optimising their blogs because they don’t understand how Yoast works and are scared of doing something catastrophic on the back end of their website.
From my experience of Yoast SEO, it’s pretty difficult to go wrong, and my web guy may shout at me for saying this, but I tend to find most back-end mishaps are fixable.
I created this Yoast SEO beginner’s cheatsheet for you after conversations with two of my 1:1 content coaching clients who wanted to “SEO” their blogs but weren’t sure where to start.
They had so much insane value to share, but their blogs weren’t being seen by enough people because they were nervous about implementing a few SEO tricks at the final stages before hitting publish.
After emailing my Yoast SEO cheatsheet to them, they found themselves feeling so much more knowledgeable and confident about optimising their online content, giving them an awesome chance of seeing the web traffic, rankings, and enquiries I know they deserve for their sterling efforts.
I’m sharing as much as I know about SEO from 16 years of writing blogs for commercial purposes.
If I’ve managed to get blogs to rank on page 1 using these simple steps, so will you, my friend!
So, without further ado, I want to share with you my beginner’s SEO cheatsheet for optimising your blogs using your WordPress site’s Yoast plugin.
Once you’re done optimising your blog using this step-by-step guide to Yoast SEO, please tag me in your social media shares so I can have a read and share to my channels, too – we love to see it!