tips seo guide how to improve search engine optimisation
'SEO' three letters that look very intimidating at first, but are in-fact one of the most useful tools in blogging. It stands for 'search engine optimisation', so basically improving your Google rankings without paying for it, therefore hopefully improving your blogs traffic. 

Google judges a website by 4 things; relevance, popularity, trustworthiness and page rankings.

1. Relevance – I often do product reviews on my blog, a good example is my 'Review of: L'oreal Blonde Legends', as before I bought a box I couldn't find a review anywhere online, so I took advantage of that and reviewed it myself. It comes up on the first page of Google due to it being the most relevant review (after the shop links) and is one of my most popular posts to date. 

2. Popularity – Google looks at number of visits and how many people link to your blog to judge your blogs popularity. For example I was at the bottom of page 2 on Google when I first started searching 'All That Shimmers' but as my blog is growing, so is my Google ranking as I'm now at the top of page 2 and almost on the first page, so I should be one the first page soon (touch wood!).

3. Trustworthiness – An obvious trustworthy factor is the age of your blog, so if you've been posting under the same URL for a long period of time Google will favor you over newer blogs. Also the trustworthiness of domains linking to your blog help increase your trustworthiness, sort of like when you get a recommendation from a friend about someone who runs a service that would benefit you (like a hair dressers). Even simply having people share your links on social networks increases your trustworthiness, but not spamming of course.

4. Page Rank – Page Rankings are basically mixture of both your blogs popularity and trustworthiness. I found it's like a cycle, the more popular your blog is, the higher your trustworthiness will be and the higher your trustworthiness, the higher your page ranking will be which will increase your blogs popularity and so on.

10 things that you can do:

1. Name posts well
For example, a recent review I did was titled 'Review of: Urban Decay Naked 2 Basics', bit boring, but it's straight to the point and is what is most likely to be searched on Google. Just think about what you would personally search in Google, I know I often use the terms 'how to' and 'review of' etc.

2. Name images well
When I save my images I often include 'All That Shimmers' plus a relevant description of what is in the photograph. For example in my Urban Decay Basics review I named my main image 'urban decay naked 2 naked2 basics review all that shimmers' in consideration of what people might search.

3. ALT Tags
You can also use an ALT tag for your pictures, which is basically just an alternative description of your image which is crawled by search engines and can be read out for the blind. To create an ALT tag all you need to do (on Blogger) is left click your uploaded image and the below will appear.

Then you select 'properties' and enter in whatever you like, keeping it relevant. So for this post I named it 'How to: SEO' after the post title in 'Title Text', but that's optional it's the 'ALT text' we're interested in here, where I wrote possible search entries.

4. Keyword Density
This one is pretty straight forward, basically the product or topics keywords needs to appear a good few times in a post, such as the product name and what it is. This is very simple but remember to keep it natural or your post will lack in quality therefore losing you readers in the long run anyway.

5. Meta Tags
A meta tag is what you see underneath your blogs URL when it's searched for in Google. Below is my meta description, which you can also set by going into Settings > Search preferences, then you'll see something similar to mine. You'll need to enable search descriptions then you're good to go. Make sure your descriptions keywords are relevant to your blog, like I have used 'beauty blog' so if someone clicked on my page they would know before hand that it's a beauty blog.

6. Search Descriptions 
Very similar to number 5, but this is for each individual post... I'm guilty for not using this much as I should, but I don't think many people know about it. When you have a draft open in Blogger you will always see 'Post Settings' to the right, once you have enabled 'Search Descriptions' from number 5 you'll get an option called 'Search Description' where you can write a meta description for each post instead of Google just automatically showing what you have written in your post, again use relevant keywords to your post that people may search.

7. In-blog Linking
Link to yourself or others, literally link anything as long as it's relevant! This helps give your blog trustworthiness and helps the Google crawlers find your blog. When linking to yourself and referring to past posts people may click on those links therefore giving you a little bit more traffic to your other pages, adding to your blogs popularity. For example in this post I've mentioned both my 'Review of: Urban Decay Naked 2 Basics' and my 'Review of: L'oreal Blonde Legends' and I've linked the both of them. This is why widgets like 'Linkwithin' are important to install on to your blog to people see it and think 'oh I haven't read this post *click*'.

8. External Linking
You can also put your link onto other sites other than your own, like leaving your blog URL when signing off a comment on someone else's blog, having it in your Twitter or Instagram descriptions, etc. I really recommend pinning your images to Pinterest, I've recently started a board solely for my blog where I pin the image and leave my blogs URL. Search engines can see how many sites link to your blog, so the more sites linking to you the more popular your blog is considered therefore improving your ranking. But don't go spamming your link, this can do the total opposite to what you intended and you can be penalised by Google. 

9. Guest posting/Blogrolls
A lot of bloggers often guest post on each others blogs, or include each other in blogrolls as they're both good marketing tools, hopefully gaining you both new readers from each others blogs. This is already really good on it's own due to getting your readers up, but it also has the SEO benefit of 'external linking' and increasing your popularity and trustworthiness.

10. No copy and pasting
Admit it, we've all had a cheeky Google when reviewing a product to see what others have said about it. That's all well and good but never copy what someone has written, not word-for-word anyway as it will flag up in the Google crawlers and your post will be deemed a 'duplicate' page. Even if you copy your own work to another blog (i.e guest posting) you can write about the subject again of course, but you will have to re-word it as it will still be a duplicate.

I must stress that SEO takes time and won't work instantly but in the long run it will be more than worth it, also I'm no expert on the topic, I'm just sharing what I do know to hopefully help some of you guys out! Let me know in the comments any of your SEO tips, I'd love to hear them! 

UPDATE: 9-2-2015 
I now rank on the first page of Google when searching 'All That Shimmers'!!! 

Don't forget to enter my Urban Decay Naked 2 Basics Giveaway: Here!

Emma xo
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