Content optimization

Our secret to getting any blog post to rank

Written by

Tyler Scionti

Last updated

September 22, 2020

You've got a secret weapon to boost your rank hiding in plain sight: your blog.

No amount of onsite optimization, or even backlinks can match what a blog can do for your website.

Why?

Because having a regularly maintained blog means you'll have a steady stream of new content to keep your website fresh, provide new pages to earn backlinks, and show Google you are an authority in your industry.

In a world oversaturated by content, quality content is king and your ability to produce quality content can push your site up to the top for your industry.

Creating high-quality content is intimidating though. Even if you're a seasoned writer getting to number one on Google, or even in the top 10, is a very tall order. As of 2016 there were 130 Trillion (yes, with a 'T') pages indexed by Google.

That means your next blog post is a small drop in a very large ocean. Is it even possible to rank, especially if you have a newer site with minimal domain authority?

Yes. And that's not some snake oil promise either. We've got a secret to jumpstarting our content that makes it easier to get our content to rank.

There's a simpler way to structure your posts so they can rank for any target keyword though! You can do a SERPs analysis (if SERP has you scratching your head check our our SERPs definition post and come back here). If it sounds technical hang in there, it's easy enough that anyone can do it with 30 minutes of prep before writing a post - SEO novices and pros alike.

What is a SERP analysis?

SERP is one of those mysterious acronyms that SEOs throw around, but it's extremely simple to do and highly effective in creating content that can crack the top 10 of Google.

SERP stands for Search Engine Results Page, so a SERP analysis is nothing more than looking at the top results on Google for a term, and seeing what they have in common and how you can outrank them.

When SEOs talk about doing a SERP analysis they're really just talking about reviewing the top ranking content on Google, and spotting opportunities to get their content to rank.

But isn't this post about blogging?cc

Yep, but the secret to getting your next blog post to rank is to understand what Google has already deemed quality content worth of making the top 10.

If you start hammering on your keyboard and crank out 800 words without taking the time to review content already ranking in your niche, you'll spend a lot of time and effort and get minimal results out of it.

How to do a SERP analysis

Pick a keyword that you want to focus on for a blog post or landing page and run a quick Google search for it.

You don't have to obsess over choosing the most perfect keyword. Just choose a keyword that you think you have a reasonable chance at ranking for, and can create a quality piece of content around.

Run a Google search and take note of what gets returned note on the first page of Google:

  • What ads are bought for the keyword? Which companies are buying them?
  • What type of content is currently ranking? Is it blog posts or landing pages? List articles or in depth case studies?
  • Do the pages have videos, pdf downloads, or the ability to listen to the post on an audio recording?
  • How long is the content that is ranking?
  • Who is ranking? Any competitors? Any unexpected websites? Do they overlap with you in other ways (this is a great way to come up with new blog post ideas to match your competitors).
  • What related topics are they including in the content (Also called LSI keywords)?

By taking note of what the successful pages are doing to rank, you'll have an idea of what kind of content you need to create in order to rank with them.

This is not to say you should copy the existing top ranking content. Google is pretty smart and they can see right through that. Instead, use the top ranking content as a sort of blueprint or model for what Google is looking for.

Rather than writing a post blindly hoping it'll rank, you can build a plan of attack and structure your post in a way that it mirrors what Google has already deemed top-quality content.

Congrats! You've just done a SERP analysis. That wasn't too hard right?

Before you write your next blog post, do these 3 things

  1. Choose a keyword for the blog post, this is what your SERP analysis will be based on.
  2. Run a Google Search for the keyword and open the top 10-15 results, open them in new windows or add them to a spreadsheet to review later.
  3. Read those 10 results in depth and see what they are covering but more importantly what they are not. Build out a blueprint for a blog post that matches them for content and adds something new.

In as little as 30 minutes you'll gain a big head start on a blog post and have a solid blueprint to creating a piece of content that can rank.

With a bit of effort and preparation your next piece of content will be in the best position possible to start ranking out of the gate!