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Mediavine Guide to SEO Best Practices
Mediavine Guide to SEO Best Practices

SEO is short for Search Engine Optimization. Never has an acronym frustrated and flustered so many content creators.

Amber Bracegirdle avatar
Written by Amber Bracegirdle
Updated over a week ago

We’re here to tell you that once you understand the basics, creating organic, real posts with search engines in mind is not only possible, it’s easy. Really.

Let’s start with the building blocks.

First, you need to choose your Keyword. Our guide to choosing the right keyword for you should help with that. 

Now, let's talk about how to organically use it in a post. 

  • The Keyword Phrase is boxed in Teal.

  • Internal Links around Food Fanatic are underlined in Dark Green.

  • External Links are underlined in Red.

Content Checklist:

  1. Is your content at least 300 words long?

Keyword Use Checklist:

  1. Use keyword as Post Title. Keep this as succinct as possible, i.e. "Sicilian Chicken Soup" instead of "Best Ever Sicilian Chicken Soup."

  2. Use the keyword in the first paragraph, as close to the beginning of the paragraph as possible.

  3. Use the keyword once or twice more in the post—no more than that. It hurts readability, and can cause Google to think you're "keyword stuffing" to use it more.

  4. Use the keyword phrase in the recipe name.

  5. Photos: Use your keyword phrase as the photo name - "Sicilian Chicken Soup Photo," "Sicilian Chicken Soup Picture," "Sicilian Chicken Soup Image"—this allows Google Image Search to index and show your photos first when someone searches that way. Alt Text and Description - Create 2-sentence long blurbs that begin with your keyword. "Sicilian Chicken Soup is a favorite that's so easy to make. Everything goes in the slow cooker for a simple dinner!" This makes them effective for both Google and Pinterest.

Internal and External Linking Checklist:

  1. Have you linked around to your own site content at least twice?

  2. When linking, did you make sure to hyperlink on the keyword phrase for the other posts? (i.e. if you are linking to chocolate chip cookies, do not link on the words "here" or "this recipe" or "recipe." Link on the words "chocolate chip cookies.")

  3. How many times are you linking out to other websites? Linking out is good, but should also be balanced by linking around to yourself. If you link out to other websites 3 times (affiliate links, other bloggers, news articles, brand websites - these all count!), make sure to link around to yourself at least 3 times too. 4 is better.

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