Jiu Jiu’s note: Continuing my So You Want to Start a BJJ Blog series, this week I have a guest writer, Brendan Hufford from GiReviews.Net who kindly wrote about an aspect of BJJ blogging that I knew zero about. 

What’s an SEO?

bjj-blogging-seoEvery BJJ blogger wants people to read what they write, but most BJJ bloggers know nothing about SEO.

And this means one thing: traffic.

Obviously the largest generator of traffic online is through search engines such as Google.  Google estimates that every day over 3 billion searches are made by 500 million people.

But here’s the problem: What if people can’t find my website in search engines?

Here’s a scenario to consider:

You just wrote an article about what people should learn as a BJJ blue belt.  It would be really nice if Google showed your site first for people who were looking for things about being a blue belt in BJJ.

The best way to do this is by optimizing your site for search engines to find what you are writing about, often referred to as Search Engine Optimization (SEO).

But, getting high search engine rankings takes time and work.  Sure, you could hire and SEO firm but what BJJ blogger has money for that.  If you work on creating really awesome content over a long period of time, you’ll get rankings for the things you write about.

Here’s 10 other ways to further improve your blog’s SEO:

1. Use your keyword(s) in the post’s title

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A strong and witty title is great, but make sure to also tell people what they are reading about by putting the main topic’s keyword(s) in the title

2. Use your keyword(s) in the article

jiu-jiu-bjj-blue-beltYou still want people to enjoy reading the article, so don’t go nuts with it.  If you’re writing about being a BJJ blue belt, don’t spend the entire article using only the word “blue.”  Be clear about what your article is about and try to use it at the beginning and end of the post.

This also makes for good reading because at the beginning of a post, you introduce your topic and at the end of the post, you wrap up what you’ve been talking about.

3. Use your keyword(s) in your meta description tags

This is the short bit of text that shows up underneath your link in search engine results.  If your keyword is in there, they search engine will bold the keyword, making people more likely to click on the link.  So while this won’t help your rankings, it will make people more likely to click when they do see it.

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If you don’t use a theme that automatically adds this to your blog post area, download Yoast’s Seo plugin. It’s the most trusted plugin out there for SEO (downloaded 2.5 million times) and it’s free!

4. Use images!

bjj-blogging-seo-image-alt-tagIf I’m looking for information about the being a BJJ Blue Belt and I went to a website about it through a search engine, I’d sure hope there’d be an image or two there!

When you use images in your articles, make sure to put descriptive and concise descriptions in the alt description of each image.  If the image is related to your article topic (and why wouldn’t it be?) then use your keyword(s) there too.

5. Interlink within your site

In each of your articles, try to link to other relevant articles when it’s appropriate.  This has a few different effects.  First, it tells search engines that those older pages are still relevant and second, it will let readers know that there is more to your site than just what they see on the front page.

Please take heed, grappler, that these five tips are just a springboard to a deeper understanding of SEO.  If these five were too much for you, don’t worry.  Just keep making awesome content and people will find it.

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About the author: Brendan Hufford is a veteran BJJ blogger and purple belt under Miguel Torres.  He is currently writing and blogging at GiReviews.Net and BjjParents.comHe also has a sweet moustache.