In today’s world, anyone can be considered a blogger. If you write for a blog, you can call yourself a blogger, regardless of how good or bad the content is. However, not everyone can create a successful blog post. SEO copywriting is the art of creating great, readable, creative, and unique content that is also technically optimized to rank well in search engine results.

Below are five things that will hurt your blog post.

1. Creating confusing headlines
It’s important to consider that this headline won’t just appear at the top of your post on the blog, but also in search engine results, feed readers, and subject lines. The purpose of creating a headline is to draw readers into your post. If you create a confusing headline that might be a little bit too clever for its own good, readers won’t necessarily know what it’s supposed to be about and their eyes might glide right past it. Write headlines that are unique, specific, useful, or urgent.

2. Not linking to old posts
By linking to old posts in your blog, you can help not only prove your point, but drive traffic to older posts. Links are a great way to get Google spiders crawling through your site and get you ranking for keywords.

3. Not filling out a title and meta description
In a previous post titled “Optimizing Your WordPress Content 101″ (see what I did there?), I talked about optimizing your blog posts on WordPress using WordPress SEO by Yoast. By filling out the fields, the plugin takes care of any technical optimization that may otherwise be beyond your capabilities and helps you write better content by forcing you to choose a keyword to focus on.

4. Not publishing often enough
It’s important to publish as least one blog post per month. The less you post, the less chance your most recent post has at being successful; the more your post, the more traffic you can expect.

5. Writing in an unappealing format
The worst thing you can do is create a big chunk of copy as a blog post… and expect users to read it. When writing a blog post, you must consider readability. Think bullet points, lists, short paragraphs, subheadings, white space, pictures, etc., to make your blog post easier to read.

At the end of your blog post, remember to invite users to engage in conversation in the comments section and use social media to your advantage.

Other things that can hurt your blog post include: neglecting to link to other blogs or websites, creating “chunky” URLs, and ignoring readers. A good blog offers content that kills it… rather than blog posts that get killed. Avoid the five things above that will kill your blog post every time.

Lynn Blog Post ImageOn average, 8 out of 10 people will read a first paragraph, but only 2 out of 10 will read the rest of a blog post. So if you’ve gotten to this point, you are part of the 80% of people who read the headline copy. Now, with the tips below, you can ensure your readers join the 20 percent who enjoy the entire blog post.

Regardless of how good your content is, if the intro doesn’t grab the  attention of the reader, it’s no use. You have probably wasted your time writing a complete post that your audience simply won’t finish reading.

While blog posts are ideal for SEO purposes, as well as ways to spread interesting and engaging content, your opening statement should leap off the page and get readers engaged. As the first thing readers see, it should give readers a clear idea of what to expect to read. To ensure your posts are being read, here are a few tips on creating unique and captivating blog posts openings.

  • Questions

Have you ever found yourself completely caught up in an article? What was it that grabbed your attention? See what I just did there? I got you thinking by asking a question.

Questions engage readers immediately as a way to get them thinking while setting the tone of your blog posts as well. By asking a few questions, readers already have their wheels turning and have a good idea of what the blog post may be about.

  • State Facts

79% of people scan web content rather than read it word-for-word. By stating a fact such as statistic as an opener, you are showing readers that you’re giving them well-researched and therefore reliable information. You can use facts to give readers a better idea of where the blog post is going.

  • Quotable Quotes

“Blogging is good for your career. A well-executed blog sets you apart as an expert in your field.” Capture your readers’ attention with a quote and set forth the overall theme of the post. Whether you quote an opinion or words of wisdom, the quote you choose should set the stage for the rest of your content.

Writing a unique and captivating opening for every blog post is important, but it is only half the battle. Engage your audience by creating user-friendly content including bullet points, lists, subheadings, relevant links, white space, and various forms of media. Blog posts are ideal not only for SEO purposes, but for solidifying your stance as a thought leader in your specific industry. Ensure that your blog reflects this by creating appealin