seo checklist

How To Rank Your Blog In 2019 | A Complete SEO Checklist

SEO is a never ending process.

Search engine algorithms are evolving from time to time.

Why would you think your content should rank better than your competitors?

Well today, stop the guess work.

That is why I created this checklist to help you improve your SEO strategy.

I understand that search engine optimization can be very complicated.

So, implement this SEO checklist below to boost your ranking in 2019, and to stay ahead of the curve.

Are you ready?

The Complete SEO Checklist For 2019

Keyword Research Checklist

keywordresearch

When writing a blog, the first thing you need to do is keyword research.

After all, if you don’t know what people are searching for, how can you possible optimize your content for search engines?

Keyword research is perhaps the most crucial piece of SEO.

These are some of the things you need to consider when doing keyword research.

1. Find A Primary Keyword

Each page/post on your website should target one main primary keyword, and it must be profitable.

When you’re just starting out, I suggest you focus on long tail keywords.

Long tail keyword is a highly specific niche search terms that usually consist of 3+ words and are much easier to rank for due low competition.

For example, if you’re thinking of a keyword like “drop-shipping”, you may want to look and rank for “drop-shipping with Shopify in 2019”—as long as it is related to your post/page.

A long tail keyword is very specific and has a very low search volume, thus bringing a more targeted visitors.

In every SEO strategy long tail keywords are primary focus. After getting ranked on long tail, you can move for generic keywords.

You can use tools like Ubersuggest and Google Keyword Planner to look for keyword suggestions.

2. Use LSI Keywords

Once you find a keyword, find Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI) keywords for more variations.

LSI keywords are essentially keywords or phrases that are related or synonym to your chosen keyword.

It is a way to prevent the stuffing of the same keywords into your content. The best way to incorporate these words into your website and content is to write them in naturally.

Without LSI keywords it takes the search engines a lot of effort to look for these synonyms and the relation of your keywords to the content on your site.

Ultimately, the concept of LSI is not a difficult concept to understand.

Just know that Google looks for synonyms to keywords to find the most appropriate content for a search query.

Content Creation Checklist

content creation

Your content or blog must focus on your primary keyword.

Now, in terms of content creation, I want you to always create the best content—about the topic, as much as possible.

Of course. Who wants to read a shitty and generic content after all.

1. Useful Over Viral Contents

Create a blog post that your audience will find helpful.

Produce useful over viral contents.

But, I’m not saying you can’t create viral contents.

Just don’t focus on creating a lot of them.

To be fair, viral content will skyrocket your rank—but that is just for a short period of time.

You want to play it long term.

A useful will last longer than a viral one. So focus on creating a lot of useful contents.

2. Quality And Quantity

The rank of your blog post depends on several factors such as backlinks, website speed, etc.

But we know that the ultimate goal of search engines is to provide the best content, as much as possible, for a given search query.

So if search engines change their algorithm, as long as you have the best blog post in town, you would still rank better.

That is why I suggest you should play it both quality and quantity.

Produce a lot of quality contents.

You should put a lot of effort in putting more contents, especially if you’re in a competitive niche.

Search engines will know that your whole website contains a lot of helpful information, and they will reward you for that.

Not to mention all those internal link you can generate as a perk of having lots of blog posts.

But don’t get me wrong.

I know it’s hard to create quality contents.

But eventually, you’ll get used to it, and it will be worth it in the long run.

3. Blogging Is Informal

Moreover, your blog should be informal. Nobody wants to read an essay!

Blogging is about you and I.

So, always include a personal touch.

4. Consistency

Consistency is the key in content creation.

If you want to get more traffic, produce quality contents consistently.

Be active in your community and fall in love with your audience.

Always ask questions especially at the end of your post.

Add call to actions in your blog to let them know what they should do next.

On-Page SEO Checklist

on-page-seo

1. Create Meta Description

Meta description is the summary of your page’s content.

Google analyzes your meta description to see if it qualifies for the search criteria.

Thus, it is crucial to have all your meta descriptions, in all of your webpages, be optimized.

Create a meta description that includes your focus keyword.

Make it simple and direct.

2. Create Catchy Title

Once you complete writing your meta description, create a catchy title.

Make sure your focus keyword is there in your title.

The more catchy it is, the higher CTR will be, and will ultimately improve your ranking.

3. Use Header Tags

Header tags make you organize your content.

Also, search engines look for header tags to know more the context of your blog.

Therefore, the more profound your blog is, the beautiful it is for google.

Utilize h2 and h3 tags, and put your primary or LSI keyword in it.

But make sure that everything still makes sense.

4. Optimize Images

Add relevant eye-catchy graphics/images in your content.

Images will keep your audience engaged, thus increasing your average session duration.

Your images’ file names and titles should also be relevant.

Put alt tags as they help search engines understand your blog’s context more.

Compress and optimize your images for better performance.

Use tool like TinyPNG. It is a free web app that uses smart lossy compression technique to reduce the size of your PNG files.

If you’re not saving images optimized, then start doing so now. It can make a huge difference on your site speed.

5. Use SEO Friendly URL Structure

Make sure that your URL can be read easily.

It should not be too long, nor too short to the point that readers can’t understand.

Ensure that your URLs contain words that clearly explain the content of the page, and they’re easy to read by both humans and search engines.

6. Properly Use Categories And Tags

If you can sort and group your blog posts into categories and tags, do it.

Categories and tags will help search engines understand your website structure and content.

This will also makes it easy for you to manage your content by topics, and for your users to find the content they’re looking for.

7. Make Internal Linking A Habit

Search engines assign each page on your website a score (page authority).

Links are the most common determining factor of your pages’ scores.

This is why it’s important that you link to your own content from your other blog posts and pages.

This will also help you boost your page-views by increases the time users spend on your site, and ultimately will improve the SEO score of your individual blog posts and pages.

8. Link to A Lot of Authoritative Sources

Outbound links also play an important role for your website’s ranking.

If your website constantly links to authoritative websites and resources that are relevant to your niche, Google will assume that you’re a good and authoritative resource in your niche, and they’ll rank you better as a result.

9. Utilize Comments

Comments can be a strong indication of user engagement on your website.

Engaged users means more links back to your site, more traffic, and improved ranking.

But you need to make sure that your comments are real and not spam. Spammers submit comments with bad links which could affect and even ruin your search rankings.

Off-Page SEO Checklist

off page seo

1. Social Bookmarking

You can also generate traffic by utilizing social bookmarking websites.

Social bookmarking websites are sites that help internet users to search, store or manage content they are interested in and share it across networks.

Some of the most popular social bookmarking site are pinterest, tumblr, and reddit.

2. Social Media Sharing

Sharing your published post on your social media profiles will help you get more traffic to your blog, thus improving your ranking.

3. Blog Commenting

You can build backlinks by commenting on relevant blogs of related niche, and get the benefits of both traffic and rankings.

4. Guest posting

Guest posting is also one of the popular off-page SEO strategies.

By guest posting, you don’t just create backlinks, but you also build your authority, reputation, and brand.

5. Quora

Quora is a great way to drive traffic and get backlinks to your blog.

The Quora community consists of an incredibly large number of users discussing a wide variety of subjects and topics.

If you haven’t yet, then you should join Quora right away and start participating in discussions.

You can start replying to questions and mention a post of your blog or the homepage of your blog, as long as it is relevant to the question

6. Networking

Approach relevant niche bloggers and share your content and build relationship with them.

Perhaps, once they write any article they will mentions yours and you will get a back-link.

Here are other ways you can promote your blog and get more traffic.

Technical SEO Checklist

technical seo

1. Analyze Your Visitors

You should know who your visitors are, where are they from, what device do they use, their demographics, etc.

Thus, it is important to use tools like Google Analytics.

It shows you exactly which content gets the least visit, so you can analyze and optimize it.

These are powerful data you can use to start making data-driven decisions to improve your site’s ranking.

2. Use Google Search Console

Google Search Console, also known as Webmaster Tools, is a set of tools offered by Google to give website owners a look at how their content is seen by the search engine.

It provides reports and data to help you understand how your pages appear in search results.

You also get to see the actual search terms people are using to find your website, how each page appears in the search results, and how often your pages are clicked.

All this information helps you understand what’s working on your site and what’s not.

If you’re using WordPress, check out this guide on how to add your site on Google Search Console.

3. Create A Sitemap

An XML Sitemap is a specially formatted file that lists every single page on your website.

This makes it easy for search engines to find all of your content.

However, adding an XML sitemap does not boost your site’s search rankings.

But it does help search engines find your pages quickly and start ranking them.

You can easily add a sitemap on Google by using Google Search Console.

Also read: WordPress SEO Best Practices.

4. Use Better Hosting

If your site is unsecure and slow, your search engine rankings will take a big hit.

Use a better hosting provider. Your hosting service plays an important role in your website’s performance.

A good shared hosting provider like Bluehost or InMotion take the extra measures to optimize your website for performance.

Also read: WordPress Security Best Practices.

5. Optimize Your Website’s Speed

Google and other search engines favor fast websites.

Test your website speed by utilizing tools like Pingdom and GTmetrix.

They will give you recommendations on how you can improve your website’s speed.

6. Check For Broken Links

Broken links does not only affects your visitors experience. It can also affect your site’s SEO.

Use free third party apps such as Check My Link Chrome Extension to check broken links in your page.

Wrapping Up

That’s it for this article!

Apply this SEO checklist in your blog to stay ahead with your competitors in 2019.

You don’t have to do all of this at the same time.

Do it step by step.

Start with creating better contents, then later improve your off-page seo.

So tell me, which of these will you do first? Is your on-page seo good enough?

Let me know in the comment section below.

If you liked this article, do me a favor and hit the like button.

28 thoughts to “How To Rank Your Blog In 2019 | A Complete SEO Checklist”

  1. This is an incredibly comprehensive list, and I’m delighted to realise I implement most of it already. I wonder if I should be uploading my images as PNGs not Jpgs though.

  2. I’m sure I’m not alone when I say that SEO stuff makes my eyes glaze over. I know your tips are important but, I’d rather hire an expert like you to help me. Interested?

  3. I love your list and I’m bookmarking it for future reference. I adore the fact that you’re going into all the details, but still manage to keep it short, transforming this into an accessible read for people with tight schedules 🙂

  4. I have heard of search engine optimization but I never knew it was this complex, it really is a whole world within a world, and you as a content creator have to look into so much stuff, and always be on the lookout for new things, thank you for an informative article, I’ll be looking into it a lot more now.

  5. I’ve been trying to learn more about SEO and always get overwhelmed and confused and frustrated. This post was SO HELPFUL. Thank you!

  6. I feel like this is what I have to start looking into on my blog Journey next. It is so overwhelming but this is a very clear post so I’m going to save it for later!

  7. Thanks for the detailed guidelines! Quora is something I have not considered until now, but will give it a go 🙂 then you for the tip!

  8. Thank you very much for such useful information! I feel that I shall be benefitted! i totally agree with know who your visitors are, it could help you improve your ranking much better!

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