When it comes to search engines, it’s a frantic race to the top, and the rocket pack boosting creators to be first in front of the eyes of potential clients is an almighty buzzword that might make your teeth grind in frustration: SEO. Search Engine Optimization is the process of building your website in such a way that it attracts the attention of search engines, scooting it to the top of the search results and drawing more attention to your content organically. And it seems like everyone is talking about it. Constantly.
Well, I don’t know about you, but I certainly didn’t go to school to study web design, programming or anything in the IT department. So how are we creative solopreneurs supposed to incorporate something seemingly so techie into our websites?
There are a number of ways to boost your SEO, but there’s one quick, simple way that often flies right under the radar:
Incorporate both internal and external links into every single blog post you publish.
That’s it. The simple act of linking back to a relevant post in your own blog or to another, high-quality website that directly relates to the content you are sharing gives search engines a better understanding of the structure of your website and boosts its credibility.
Links to a contact page, About page or an explanation of the services you offer within a blog post indicates to a search engine that you are creating interwoven content and gives it a better idea of how your website flows. This habit is also extremely helpful for first-time visitors to your website. Especially when you are looking to guide a visitor from intrigued, potential client to definitive, future client scrambling to submit a contact form, subtly leading them through that process via links in each blog post is a great practice.
Additionally, you can create connectivity between your blog posts by linking from a couple’s wedding post to the engagement session you did with them last Fall. You can also create an educational series on your blog, linking from one lesson to the next allowing a reader to follow a logical flow. Perhaps you also want to link from one wedding at the White Barn Ranch to another wedding you photographed there two years ago.
Internal links tend to increase the time a visitor spends on your website, as well. Rather than clicking aimlessly through content that may not directly relate to the post that drew them in, gently guide them through a seamless user experience. This extended visitor time will also improve the placement of your website on search engines.
By linking out to reputable websites, you are indicating to the inquisitive little search engine gnomes that you belong in the same category. But be sure when including an external link to make sure that you direct the link to open as a new tab in the visitor’s browser. You don’t want to share additional information at the expense of your own website. Envision it as inviting them to open a reference book next to yours on their desk rather than flipping a single book to an entirely separate chapter, losing their place in the process.
An easy way to establish this practice on your blog is to link out to the vendors who contributed to the session you are blogging about. Including this step on your blogging to do list will boost your SEO and has the added benefit of lifting up talented vendors, building your relationship with them.
If a session is vendorless, don’t panic. Every photoshoot happens somewhere, so share a little about the location in the blog post and link out to the location’s website. You can also include links to websites about the equipment you use or particular techniques you employ. Get creative!
Including both internal and external links in every single one of your blog posts is one of the easiest ways to boost your website’s SEO. I would recommend shooting for at least one internal link and three external links per post. Remember, you don’t want to flood the reader with too many links, but you also want to create the best and most informative experience possible.
Link internally to relevant content and link out to helpful resources like vendor websites, and you’ll be well on your way to increasing your website’s visibility in no time.