Chris Smith Speaks on SEO for Bloggers

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Chris Smith specializes in local optimization. He contributes to SearchEngineLand.com and WebProNews.com

Optimizing Your Blog

Beef up your internal hierarchical linking structure

  •   tag clouds and tag pages (ultimate tagwarrior plugin)
  •  related posts (contextual related posts plugin) 
  •  top 10 posts 
  •  next & previous posts

Build inbound links

  • add technorati tags to your posts (claim your blog first)
  • get onto bloggers' blogrolls
  • trackbacks and comments won't help with link gain in most cases

Compelling Illustrations make articles interesting. If you post photos to Flickr and link to your blog as a source of the photo, you can get some traffic and rankings from it. Photos need to be visually engaging.

Hop on a PR Feeding Frenzy

  • hop on it early
  • say something significant (don't just rehash the same info)
  • link over to other top blog posts (Google blog search)
  • watch top stories mentioned by Techmeme and comment on them

Note: I know people who have done this and made money strictly from this.

Research Jeff Crilley for tips on gaining publicity. 

Link to your blog from LinkedIn.

Title Tags

  • put your blog name at the end of the title tag, not the beginning
  • tag name should go in the title on a tag page
  • customize with additional keywords for display only on your home page
  • override title tags with a custom one (SEO Title Tag plugin) (note: his company, NetConcepts, created this plugin)

URLs

  •  Rewrite to contain keywords, using hyphens not underscores
  • 301 redirect from yourblog.com to www.yourblog.com (canonicalization)
  • maintain legacy URLs even after switching blog platforms

Keyword rich domain names and blog titles are helpful.

Anchor Text

  • make the post's title a link to the permalink page
  • internally link back to old, relevant posts within the body of a blog post. use keywords for your anchor text

Header Tags (h1, h2)

  •  category names on category pages
  • yes for post titles, no for post dates

Sticky Posts

  • always appear at the top of the page
  • adhesive plugin

Add author profile page and author links for group blogs

Add nofollows to trackbacks and comments where you don't vouch for a site.

Ping search engines with each new blog post – pingomatic.com, etc

Optimizing Feeds

  • use full text, not summaries
  • 20 or more items (not just 10)
  • multiple feeds
  • keyword rich item
  • brand name in the item
  • compelling site description

End of session. I need caffeine.

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