Search Engine Optimization and Blogger Blogs Part One
Optimization for Blogger hosted blogs – Blogs are the fastest growing class of websites on the internet. No longer the sole domain of teenagers and the love lorn, blogs are now an established form of internet communication.
The online business community has recently discovered the power of blogging, and as such are faced with raising the blog siteâ€™s ranking in the search engine results pages (SERPs). As a direct result of some of the blog characteristics, high search rankings are readily available for the careful blog writer.
Like any other website, blogs have techniques for search engine optimization (SEO), many of them the same as for traditional static websites, and many of them unique to blogs. Among the issues faced by some bloggers is the abundance of free blog hosting sites.
Not requiring any initial cash outlay, the free blog hosts have literally millions of blogs on their books. One of the most popular is the Google owned blog host Blogger.
Note that in this article, the capitalized word Blogger refers to the blog hosting company, while the lower case generic term blogger indicates the blog writer. Confusion between the two words will be avoided as much as possible.
Like all free web hosts, Blogger hosted blogs face unique optimization challenges. Unlike sites where the domain name is owned by the webmaster, free blog hosts maintain ownership of the blog. In fact, the blog name is a sub-domain of the blog host, making value from the blog URL a less powerful optimization tool.
Despite the limitations faced by a blog hosted by Google owned Blogger, there are many very powerful optimization techniques available to the blogger. As we will see, blogs have some optimization methods, that are only available to blogs in general, regardless of host.
When considering the optimization techniques to apply to blogs, the basics of fresh keyword rich content, theme relevance, incoming links, and link anchor text all apply to blogs. In that sense optimization for blogs is no different from other websites.
On the other hand, some additional methods and some restrictions in the choice of techniques are involved as well. The various restrictions are often a direct result of the placement of the blog on the free host.
In this case study, the free host is Blogger. These shortcomings must always be kept in mind, when considering the best course, to fully optimize your blog.
Free Blogger hosting for your blog
Blogger enables you to host your blog on their server for free. As a very simple use interface system, even a novice with absolutely no programming or blogging experience of any kind, can be fully operational in a matter of minutes. The procedure for starting a blog is very simple, and takes only minutes to complete.
The Blogger server offers the choice of having a free standing blog as a separate website, or the option of writing your daily posts on the Blogger interface, and file transfer them to your existing website via the built in FTP feature.
Blogger provides a choice of pre-written templates for the blog layout, but all of them are changeable to include different color combinations and page formats.
Blogger freely permits the use of third party add on features, including commenting systems, track back, visitor counters, RSS site feeds, and most scripts often seen incorporated into traditional websites.
Note that Blogger offers all of those necessary blogging functions, including a site feed through Atom, with the exception of track back, in its blogging service package. Other third party feeds can be freely added to the Blogger template. I use several on my blogs.
The user is under no obligation to use the Blogger supplied versions, however. The company agreement does require that the Blogger logo icon remain on all of the pages, however.
When choosing a URL for the blog, it will appear as http://yourblogname.blogspot.com or if you prefer, as http://www.yourblogname.blogspot.com making the blog URL a sub-domain of the Blogger system.
The main domain is indicated by the â€œblogspot.com portion of the URL. With being a sub-domain, there are some unique, but not insurmountable challenges to optimization, as we shall see.
A Blogger user is not restricted in the choice of blog titles, and careful title and URL selection can help greatly in the optimization process. Many blogs suffer from having very poorly selected titles, that contain no relevance to the overall blog theme. Keep that in mind when selecting a title.
Keywords within the blog title and URL are very powerful in ranking well, with a blog component, especially as a sub-domain from the Blogger host.
After creating a blog title, and selecting a blog template to be customized later, the Blogger registration process is completed. A new blog writer is ready to begin writing blog columns, which are referred to as posts.
Wayne Hurlbert is the Editor of Blog Business World, specializing on blogs in business, marketing, public relations, and search engine optimization for successful entrepreneurs.