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How to Make Your Blogs More Readable [2022 Edition]

Many do not have the luxury of time to dig through blog posts to look for information. A Nielsen Norman Group report claimed that a typical person spends less than a minute (10 to 20 seconds) deciding if they should stay or abandon your webpage. It only shows that you have a really short time to capture the attention of your target audience. 

With millions of blogs on the Internet, making your blog post stand out from the sea of competition is only half the battle. If the reader thinks your blog is unreadable, they still have plenty of options that offer the information they are searching for. That is why engaging your audience long enough to read their entire post is crucial. Satisfied readers are more likely to come back and read your blogs in the future. Readable and quality content not only do you acquire more visitors, but you also get a higher conversion rate. 

Luckily, there are several things you can do to improve the readability of your content and give your webpage a quick boost. Here are 7 practical tips for writing a readable and exceptional blog

  • Use Proper Headings

Headings help split up lengthy blocks of text and promote coherent division in the content. 

While you can find plenty of guideposts about using headings, they never explain how to use them properly. Perhaps, you have probably come across posts where headings are not relevant or helpful.

A proper heading should provide clear meaning to the content. For instance, labelling the sub-heading of this section as simply “headings” can be vague and not helpful at first glance. Be sure to phrase your headings so they can be meaningful to readers. Being precise with your heading helps your audience get the summary.

  • Keep Paragraphs Shorter

When readers look for informational blog posts, they want it concise (more or less 400 to 600 words). However, if you need to write a longer, in-depth post, make sure to write shorter paragraphs, preferably 2 to 4 sentences long. 

Breaking up the paragraphs can make your content more readable. Since most readers are more likely to scan the post, you can help them find important information using bullet points, numbered lists, or bold headlines. It will help summarize information while making them stand out from the rest of the text.

  • Using Good Typography

While plenty of unique and interesting fonts to choose from, simplicity is still the best. Arial and Times New Roman are standard fonts since they are easy to read. 

Also, use a slightly larger font for your introduction paragraph to help capture attention. However, avoid making it too big as it will take up more space and make it harder to read. 

  • Limit Difficult Words

Many readers do not appreciate complex words that are hard to understand. Also, avoid using words with 4 or more syllables as they are difficult to read. However, there are instances when you need to include difficult words in your blog. Make sure to write shorter and clearer paragraphs and sentences to ensure your post is more readable. 

Also, complicated words usually make less useful keywords, especially if you focus on a niche market. For instance, instead of using illustrations (which consist of 4 syllables), ‘visuals’ or ‘images’ are a better choice. Keep in mind that your focus keyword is suitable for the subject of your blog post. Proper keyword research can help you find better options for complex keywords.

  • Highlight Important Words or Phrases

In addition to using bullet points and lists, bolding words or phrases can make your content more skimmable while bringing the attention of the reader to a particular set of word(s). However, be sure to choose carefully the important words or phrases to highlight, or otherwise, you will lose the whole point of why you are doing it in the first place. 

  • Use Variations

Using variations of words can make your blog more attractive and interesting to your readers. Avoid using the same terms throughout the content by shaking things up a little using synonyms. Instead of using ‘and’ or ‘too’ plenty of times, alternating with ‘also’ or ‘moreover’ can make your blog more compelling and readable. 

Google ranking

What to Do When Your Google Rankings Drop

A sudden and dramatic drop in your search engine rankings is the ultimate SEO horror story that no business owner wants to hear. Your website may have plummeted into the second page or worse, outside the top 100. 

The drastic fall in your Google ranking position may be triggered by various factors, including changes in content, an update of the algorithm, technical problems, improvements made by your competitors on the website, changes in the SERP layout, and a Google penalty. 

How to Resolve the Issue

Fluctuations in search engines are inevitable as Google makes daily updates. However, you should be concerned when you find your search ranking position starting to trend in the wrong direction. 

If you noticed your position in Google rankings has plunged dramatically, do not panic.

Proactive, attentive troubleshooting can help fix the issue and get you moving back in the right direction. 

Here are some helpful tips on what you can do to fix and recover your Google rankings:

  • Confirm that your ranking has dropped

In some cases, a glitch or temporary change in the ranking tracker tool may have caused your search engine rankings to drop. However, the problem will naturally resolve relatively quickly. It is important to verify that the drop in your rankings is true so you can immediately take action to fix the issue. 

Here are several steps to take to help you verify the dropped:

1. Check several tools: Check your rankings data and your organic traffic data using tools, such as Google Search Console and Google Analytics. If only one tool shows that your ranking has dropped, it is likely just a problem with the tool. Continue to monitor your rankings over the next few weeks. If your rankings have truly dropped, take the necessary action to remedy the problem.

2. Assess the severity of the change: Check how much your ranking has changed and how long it has been lower than usual to help you know that it is an actual drop and not just a temporary change. Compare and analyze the change to the usual daily and weekly fluctuations. 

3. Consider external factors: Take into consideration the possible external factors, such as a holiday weekend, that may have triggered the drop. 

  • Determine the cause

Knowing the reason why your website rankings dropped helps you fix the issue. The cause of the drop in rankings may fall into 1 of 3 categories:

Changes you made: Examine any recent changes to your website, including potential errors and intentional changes. 

Changes Google made: Google may have made recent changes in its algorithm. Make sure to check if your website may have received manual penalties from Google.

Changes your competitors made: Check if your competitor may have made improvements on their website that may have significantly increased their SEO rankings.

  • Spy on Your Competitor’s Content

Google has always aimed to provide the best experience for their users—that is why web pages with quality content always end up on top. Take a look at your competitor that is ranking for your keywords and check the difference between their content and yours. 

Are they using better keywords? Is their content more in-depth? Do they have unique keywords and ideas? Have you checked their meta-tags?

Use this information as a guide in implementing all necessary changes to help you create better content than your competitors. 

  • Correct the issues

Once you have a clear idea of the factors that may have caused your Google rankings to drop, take some time to work on fixing the issue. If the problem is due to the changes you made to your website, simply revert the change and recover your rankings. If it is caused by a recent change in the algorithm, make necessary adjustments to your SEO strategy to meet Google’s latest standards. However, if the drop was due to the changes made by your competitor, you need to improve your website page to outrank them again. 

  • Adjust Your Keywords and Meta Tags 

After making all the necessary improvements to your content, you do not simply hope for Google crawlers to discover the changes you have made. Continue to take action and submit the URL of your web page to Google Search Console for indexing. 

After that, turn your attention to other important aspects of your business. Within a week to a month, your ranking in Google should start increasing. Keep in mind that adjusting your keywords and meta-tags can help you effectively create better content that results in better rankings. 

Image by Diggity Marketing from Pixabay
  • Keep Checking and Updating Your Content

Ranking your website in search engines is never a one-off process. SEO is an ever-changing landscape and a constant battlefield. Everyone wants to be at the top of the ranking, putting their game face on to reach the spotlight. Monitor your rankings regularly, identify potential problems, know who is dominating in Google, and make improvements—keep repeating this process even after you reach the top. Keep in mind that Google appreciates fresh, relevant content, so make sure to always update your content on a regular basis if you want to keep good rankings. 

  • Monitor your rankings for improvements

After taking all the necessary action to resolve the issue, continue to monitor your rankings to check for improvements in your website ranking over the next several weeks. If there are no improvements in your rankings, reexamine all the potential causes of the problem. Even if your website’s ranking has improved, continue to keep an eye on its ranking. This will help you catch future problems that may affect your search engine rankings again. 

The Best Defense Against a Google Ranking Drop is a Good Offense

The process of determining and evaluating the cause of a Google ranking drop is often complex and time-consuming. The best approach you can take when your rankings start to drop is to do everything you can to avoid them.

  • Get familiar with Google’s Webmaster Quality Guidelines
  • Learn about Google’s Search Quality Evaluator Guidelines
  • Understand the potential problems that can lead to manual action and avoid them
  • Stay current with Google Webmaster Central blog
  • Join #AskGoogleWebmasters and watch the latest videos on the YouTube channel.

How to Get Your Blog in Google’s Top 10

As a blogger, who would not want to rank their blog high on Google and show up in the search results page for every relevant search?

You are in the right place! 

Google’s ever-changing algorithms can make search engine optimization (SEO) a bit tricky. However, ranking your blog on the first page of the SERP does not take up so much of your time or requires super technical knowledge. As long as you are applying the basics for each of your posts. 

In this post, we will quickly discuss the different techniques that will help you create SEO-friendly blog posts and boost your search engine ranking.

  • Target the Right Keywords

As one of the most crucial aspects of SEO, using the right keywords to incorporate in your blog lays down the foundation of your SEO efforts. 

Targeting relevant keywords gives search engines an idea of what your content is about. Additionally, it helps search engines display your blog in SERPs in response to a search. 

Consider these tips for targeting the right keyword:

  • Focus on 1 keyword per blog: There are various keyword research tools that can help you choose a focus keyword for your content. Some even display scores on how well your keyword is optimized and provide actionable tips on what you can do to improve it. 
  • Understand the user intent: When writing a blog, you need to understand user intent and its target keyword to succeed in SEO. For instance, if you are selling dog accessories on your blog, you need to rank for keywords, like buy dog accessories or purchase accessories for dogs, so the search engines will put your blog in front of high-intent customers looking to buy accessories for their dogs. 
  • Create Buyer Personas

Building a buyer persona is a good way to better understand the needs of your ideal customers and write a more appealing blog for them. When your blog successfully resonates with what your target audience wants to read, it increases shareability and boosts search engine rankings.

  • Write Compelling Titles and Meta-Description

Your page’s click-through rate in the search result is also a significant Google blog ranking factor. For instance, if your blog post ranks in the third position for a keyword but gets more clicks than the first, your blog will eventually get the second ranking or even first!

To acquire high CTR and stay on the top spot, you need to write a blog with a compelling title and meta description that helps capture the attention of your target audience and entices them to click. Your title should only have 55 characters, so make sure to give it a thought before writing. 

Here are several important tips to consider when writing an SEO-friendly title and meta-description:

  • Do not let Google cut off your title and description, so your target audience can get a complete idea of what your content is about.
  • Incorporate a relevant keyword in the blog title and meta-description.
  • Avoid stuffing your blog with keywords. 
  • Write Long Blog Posts

Various research showed that longer and more in-depth blog posts tend to rank higher in search engines. For instance, Searchmetrics found that posts containing an average of 1285 words rank at the top 10, while serpIQ revealed that 1500 words to be to a good target length. Whichever word count you want to target, the most important thing to focus on is the quality of your content. 

However, Google’s John confirmed that blog posts have no minimum length and that quality is key. He writes, “There’s no minimum length, and there’s no minimum number of articles a day that you have to post, nor even a minimum number of pages on a website. In most cases, quality is better than quantity. Our algorithms explicitly try to find and recommend websites that provide content that’s of high quality, unique, and compelling to users. Don’t fill your site with low-quality content, instead work on making sure that your site is the absolute best of its kind.”

  • Promote on Social Media

Unfortunately, not all content gets much traction. When this happens, you probably do not have a solid plan in place for promoting and distributing your blog posts. One of the most effective ways to increase visibility online is to share them on different social media. Assuming you have a community of social media followers on various channels, make sure to share them with them. If you have not built a community of audience, investing in affordable social ads helps you acquire more CTR and build a follower base. 

  • Improve Page Loading Speed

The faster your web page loads, the happier your target audience will be. About 53% of mobile users will immediately abandon a webpage when it fails to load within 3 seconds. This makes page loading speed a critical Google ranking factor. Use Google’s Page Speed tool to evaluate the speed of your website. 

  • Make Your Blog Post Mobile-Friendly

Studies showed that most website traffic comes from mobile devices. Websites that are not mobile-friendly fail to provide a good user experience and can receive a hefty penalty from Google.

  • Optimize Your Images

Google pays attention to images with alt text. Optimize your images by adding relevant keywords to your image name and meta-description. Proper optimization of images helps Google Image Search send more traffic to your blog. To drive more traffic, simply click on the image and specify the alternative text box. Writing an appropriate description allows Google to determine what the image is all about and display it to your target audience when they do Google image search. 

  • Getting Links to Your Blogs

Building links to your post can help you boost your ranking in Google. In addition to getting links to your homepage and other high-value web pages, you can also build links to specific blog posts. Writing extremely useful, practical, and unique blog posts can help you get targeted links. Creating “link-worthy” blog posts can help you boost your chances of naturally accumulating links from authoritative websites. 

  • Refresh Your Content

Since Google loves fresh content, make sure to update and enrich your content with up-to-date facts regularly. Another way to update your content is fixing broken links and improving the user experience. As your previous SEO data is stored, boosting the ranking of your updated blog post on Google is simpler than writing a new one.

6 Ultimate Ideas of Living A Care-free Life

Don’t let worries overwhelm you. Live a carefree life with us!
(Credit: beccatapert | Unsplash)

With so much talk going on about a life crisis—whether midlife, quarter-life, or something in between—many people tend to spend their time worrying rather than living the life. When stress takes over and societal norms are growing harder to keep pace with, you might want to wish for a life you don’t want to escape from.

 But what does “living a carefree life” actually mean? Well, for one, it doesn’t certainly convey the lack of responsibility or cares about the world around you. The idea of living a carefree life at its core means that things that might normally cause you to worry can no longer determine your sense of well-being or steamroll over your emotions.

 To start, just trying to be more kind to yourself will help the idea of living a carefree life become a more reachable star.

Read on for the 6 ultimate core ideas underlying a life full of fun and meaning where anxiety has no room to grow.

1. Learn to Separate Work and Leisure

You don’t have to plod through your days. If you want to live a more carefree life, you must know how to make time for work and time for fun. It’s important that you have a separate time for things that you MUST do, and things that you WANT to do. This balance will help you be more enthusiastic about your day.

2. Surround Yourself with Fun People

The idea of living a carefree life should be encapsulated with the right (fun) people. Surrounding yourself with people with whom you have common goals makes it way easier for you to enjoy the little things. Spend more time with happy individuals who embody the sort of attitude you want, and minimize time with downers.

Happy people are infectious.
(Credit: felixrstg | Unsplash)

3. Treat Everything as an Adventure

Life shouldn’t be such a chore. You have to keep in mind that little things can make or break you. So treat everything as an adventure. Whether doing your chores, driving through sluggish traffic, or waiting in an endless line at the grocery store. Don’t stress yourself over things you cannot control. Instead, find a reason to include it in your books as a memorable event.

4. Stop Worrying about What Others Think

Societal pressure is always breathing down our nexts. Hence, the widespread phenomenon of anxiety. “What will my friends say?” “What if they don’t approve?”

Honey, let me get this straight. STOP WORRYING ABOUT WHAT OTHERS THINK. You have to know when to acknowledge others’ opinions and when to prioritize yours. If you can do this, you allow yourself to live a more authentic life. No needless expectations from others; only what you think is necessary.

Make mistakes and grow.
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5. Allow Yourself to Make Mistakes

Be easy on yourself. You don’t have to get everything right in one shot. Mistakes allow you learn and be better. The idea of living a carefree life comes down to allowing yourself to explore and make mistakes without permanent repercussions to your self-regard. This way, you empower yourself to grow and build an identity as someone who knows what exactly they’re doing — and who is okay if they don’t.

6. Focus on the Present

Did you know: the number one factor that prohibits you from living a carefree life is your thoughts. If only you pay closer attention to your thoughts, you’ll realize you are most likely worried about the past and the future rather than the present.

Don’t beat yourself up for past mistakes or drown yourself overthinking about the future. Remember that anxiety is a fixation on the future, and depression is a fixation on the past It’s time to focus on the now for you to think straight and find solutions to your setbacks.

 Our idea of living a carefree life is profoundly flawed. Carefree living actually depends on how we see and treat things that happen in our lives. If you want to get your life together one time-proven step at a time, these 6 ideas should forge an avenue for you to experience the best of life.

5 Essential Tips to Manage Employees during the New Normal

In response to the current health crisis, many businesses have turned to letting employees work remotely. It’s a great way to keep employees productive, but it has its challenges, particularly with employees more used to working from an office and working with coworkers in person. Most business will have to make a few changes to cope with these changes and maintain productivity on the job. Here are a few tips that can keep employees engaged and morale high as we adjust to the new normal together. 

1. Establish clear policy

Thanks to the pandemic, many businesses have had to update their policies to adapt to all the new changes. Clear direction is key to helping employees make the most of their time and maintain professionalism on the clock. Provide guidelines on proper use of company equipment and outline your expectations for employee responsiveness. Last of all, make sure these policies are easily accessible for employees so they can look up policy when necessary. 

2. Offer flexibility

The pandemic has changed life for everyone, and that often extends to personal circumstances. Many employees currently have to look after children at home thanks to schools being closed, or have to deal with sick relatives. Be sensitive and keep these circumstances in mind when they interrupt employees’ ability to work. Offer more flexible hours to help employees attain a more stable work-life balance and improve the quality of their work. This approach helps employees find a more “optimal” time to work, and avoid distractions when other obligations need their attention.

3. Improve communications

Maintaining communication between teams is more important than ever, so consider setting specific times for employees to be available for calls and meetings. Virtual team meetings and chats are a great way to help your workers feel like part of a team. It’s crucial you check in with workers regularly, both to check up on their progress, and to make them feel valuable. Isolation can often affect employee engagement, so take the opportunity to set clear goals and targets where applicable. 

4. Focus on using video

Calls are a great way to stay in contact, but prioritize using video when discussing vital matters. Video calls are a more effective resource for maintaining the human element in conversation and fighting feelings of isolation. A great degree of communication is nonverbal, and a video call is a great way to capture that element when speaking with employees. Look into video chatting solutions to find a convenient method for keeping in touch with your colleagues.

5. Build a good rapport

When you’re in an office, it’s much easier to find a few moments to chat with coworkers and build a rapport. It’s much harder to do so with remote employees, but there are ways to make it work. Spend a little more time on one-on-one chats to build a connection with your employees and get to know them as more than workers. Ask about their hobbies, aspirations, and interests to get to know thema  little better and forge a deeper relationship. Something as simple as asking about an employee’s weekend can do much to make them more comfortable around you and get them more engaged with work.

Thanks to the pandemic, many businesses have had to make some changes to the way they do business. Remote working is a good solution to many of those problems, but a few changes are needed to make the most of it. Keep these tips in mind to help keep employee engagement and morale high as you move forward.