Monday, 3 September 2012

Blogs and SEO - Some Quick Tips

I watched the new Google Chrome ad featuring the Cambridge Satchel Company late on Friday night and absolutely loved it. Chrome ads have a tendency to make me a) cry, b) feel inspired or c) all of the above - I love the personal journeys they depict and the clever way they show how integral the internet is to small businesses. And obviously, I love this particular one because I adore Cambridge Satchels.


Such a lovely ad. One thing I didn't spot, however, was an appearance from this very blog. Lovely Hayley pointed it out in a post and after watching more carefully, I realised A Little Bird Told Me plays a tiny role in the story of the Cambridge Satchel Company. Can you spot it?

Pause it at 0:27...

fashion blogger uk

When the ad shows a Google search for 'uk fashion bloggers', the top result is an article from The Telegraph. We only see a snippet of the title tag for the second result, but it kinda looks like...

fashion blogs uk
(I pinched this image from Hayley)

Me! I'm pretty sure that's my title tag, cut across two lines because the search is performed on the narrower screen of a mobile.

That prestigious second place comes from the search engine optimisation (SEO) I do on my blog (and also because Little Bird is hosted on Blogger, which gets preferential treatment in the search ranks as its a Google-owned company). I get asked about SEO quite a bit - it's a pretty tricky concept to get your head around and many people feel frustrated with it because it's hard to understand. But really, the core of SEO is simple - Google will show the most relevant sites for the search term first. All you have to do is get Google to notice you.

Here are a few very simple tips

- Use an image host like Flickr (NOT Blogger's own!) and tag your photos with relevant keywords, like 'Primark AW12 collection' if the images are of the new Primark drop.
- Use keywords in your hyperlinks, like this - 'a beginners' guide to SEO' rather than this - 'for a beginners' guide to SEO, click here'.
- Give your posts relevant, informative titles, like 'How to Wear American Apparel Disco Pants'. Song lyrics are terrible for SEO!
- For Blogger blogs - search your blog HTML for 'meta' (using ctrl + f) and insert some keywords into the <title> and <description> tags. For Wordpress blogs - download the SEO 101 plugin and use it to insert meta data into all your posts. This is the crux of SEO as meta data is what Google looks for when it's trying to determine how relevant your blog is to the search it's performing.

If all that sounds a bit like gobbledegook, I recommend doing some research into SEO. There are thousands of articles on the subject and when you have a grasp of the basics, you can start playing around with keywords to see what works. My advice is don't buy a book or hire a pro - the best way to understand SEO is to do it yourself. It's all about trial and error, giving it a go and constantly tweaking things.

This isn't a guide to SEO because I'm not an expert and frankly, it is all a bit dull, but hopefully these tips will help you get started. Well-optimised blogs are beautiful things!

Have you tried to get to grips with SEO? How did you find it?

PS - If you do a search for 'uk fashion bloggers' and see different results, that's okay! Google will show you results based on the sites you like to visit, to make your search more relevant to you. If you want to check I haven't Photoshopped these images, try searching in a fresh browser with no history. 

34 comments:

  1. You little genius! That one sentence following from "for blogger blogs" completely threw me! Meta what? I have no idea how to insert this, I'm such a dumbass!!

    <3

    fridayisforeverblog.com

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  2. I THINK I'VE DONE IT - I used this for a little instruction, http://www.bloggertricks.com/2007/12/adding-meta-tags-to-bloggerblogspot.html and I have no idea if I've messed my own blogs up, but I've done SOMETHING anyway! I used this: http://seotools.bloggertricks.com/free/online-meta-tags-generator-tool/ to create the tag too! I didn't really know what to put in there, just my blog name and general tags like 'blog' 'fashion' 'beauty' *mind block* haha!
    Thank you x

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  3. Ohh well done you! I bet you were so excited when you realized it could be your blog!! ~Imogen x
    http://missimogensmith.blogspot.co.uk/

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  4. Thanks for the lovely post.
    Great post..lots of useful info.
    Very informative, great one!

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  5. I spotted this advert this morning on TV and it caught my attention quickly and made me feel so inspired too!
    http://paige-eager.tumblr.com/

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  6. LOVE LOVE LOVE cambridge satchels, have two but my comment is more about that i am now again tears due to watching "Dear Hollie" Chrome Ad. It gets me very god damn time! had a little eek at the cambridge ad as well, not only beautiful bags and a beautiful story. felt so good in NY recently when a clear ultra fashion bod walked pass me and said "cute in red" when eying up my cambridge and her herself sporting a 15inch green xx

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    1. I love that! 'Cute in red' - so New York! Haha. I love Cam Satchels too - I have a yellow one but thinking of investing again. I love the new pastel range!

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  7. My sister told me about this ad, love your little mention ;)
    SEO is definitely something I need to work on more, I agree it takes a little while to get your head around but so worth all of the trouble! xoxo

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  8. I saw the add for the first time last night and loved it! I've heard of SEO but didn't really understand it, I'm sure I still don't but your tips are really helpful and definitely make sense. x

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  9. I loved this ad and well done for your feature in it. Some really useful SEO tips, amazing how much traffic you can get from images.

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  10. What is it with chrome and their adverts?! Such tear jerkers. I got a book out from work about SEO but it was so thick and boring I gave up haha. Maybe I should pay more attention...

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    1. Helen, this is one of the only instances I'd recommend you DON'T read a book! SEO books are awful and it's very hard to explain a web-based theory on paper. Read some articles, have a go yourself and keep practising. It's the best way! :)

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  11. You've put this so much more interestingly and understandable than I've seen it before... I'm gonna give it a try! x

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    1. Also..do you pay for a flickr subscription??

      http://la-dulcie-vita.blogspot.co.uk

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  12. Love this post! Bet your were so excited seeing the ad! Think i will have to start looking into SEOs a bit more xx

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  13. Great post - you have told me all I wanted to know but was too scared to ask about SEO. In a simple, blog-relevant way. You are a genius! Thank you, Avril x

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  14. Amazing tips, Thankyou!! It's sometimes difficult to figure a way to get more people reading your blog other than going on twitter and posturing 'NEW POST'.

    Chloe
    Www.bythelock.com

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  16. I absolutely love this advert, Chrome adverts usually make me a little teary too! I do not understand SEO at all, think I'll have to learn x
    Sirens and Bells

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  17. Informative tips for bloggers especially for beginners. SInce google keep updating its algorithm, It would be better to use LSI Technique for creating Unique Title tags

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  18. You are successful blogger therefore i give importance to your shared tips and after read this whole post i am quite sure that these points and tips are very keen to get good ranking position and to be popular in search terms but i think when we talk about blogging all depends on your content and timing because if you post on right time with quality content you can get good traffic as well as popularity.

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  19. I found this really interesting and useful with the tips :) Well done to having your blog on the advert - I also love the Chrome adverts! Thank you for sharing :) xx

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  20. Man, I am now meta-tagged up! Great post, thanks. Copy, I am good with, SEO, not so great but happy to try it. This was really informative x

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  21. great post, I had no clue about the meta thing in the html >_< xx

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  22. Wow!!! "My advice is don't buy a book or hire a pro - the best way to understand SEO is to do it yourself. It's all about trial and error, giving it a go and constantly tweaking things" I like it the most.

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  23. Blog and SEO are two sides of one coin. Both are related with each other deeply. Thanks for sharing it.

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  24. I think you have observed some very interesting points , thank you for the post.all tips are Amazing.

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  25. I am a blogger by night and an SEO executive by day and I work for a large digital marketing agency in Glasgow.

    SEO is hella boring for sure! One word of caution I would give people though is that SEO is so easy to get very very very wrong and can do your site/blog more harm than good if done incorrectly.

    Extra tip: Keep your title tag to under 70 characters and your meta under 160 characters. Google cuts off any more than this.

    Also logic will tell you that if you all run and change your title tag to "UK Fashion Blog | High Street Street Fashion Blog UK" you can't all rank first for it! Keyword research is absolutely vital!

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  26. Very informative and useful SEO tips...helps me a lot... keep sharing nice stuff.....

    IT services Glasgow

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  27. Good post, to add value to anyone who reads, here is an up to date list of the top fashion bloggers of 2012. They do accept guest posts and products to be reviewed etc.

    http://www.brandsexposed.co.uk/Tips/link-building-in-the-fashion-market-using-blogger-outreach-308.aspx

    hope this helps people.

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  28. Great post.Thanks for sharing nice information.

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  29. I've seen this ad a long time ago and just like you, I become more inspired. I guess everybody finds it fascinating. By the way, I appreciate your post on meta tags. You have clearly explained it well enough so everyone can understand it. Keep on posting!

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  30. Really helpful post! Have bookmarked so I can go bak to it when I'm writing.
    SEO

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