How to use keywords to increase traffic to your blog
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Keywords can often sound like a scary term to those unfamiliar with Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and writing for rankings. It can be tempting to bury your head in the sand and, instead, just assume that your blog posts probably have the right keywords in to get your blog found by school leader and teacher targets. How hard can it be, right? If you’re writing about your chosen topic, you’re going to use the most-searched-for language anyway. Yes... and no.
To ensure your blog posts are being found by absolutely everybody who’s relevant to your business – and if you’ve spent time on them, they deserve to be – you need to be optimising your use of keywords to see them fly to the top of the search list when potential customers type them into Google. There are many easy, free ways to find your keywords and, once you do, you’ll soon see the difference in traffic directed to your blog, and then on to your website.
Here are just a few of the hints and tips you need to know about utilising your keywords when selling to schools:
Tip 1: Become your audience
No-one is going to find your blog unless they have some sort of problem first – think about the last thing you typed into Google. Whether it’s a product to solve something (such as a scarf, pedometer or book) or a solution (such as an explanation of your cold symptoms), consumers use search engines to fix something.
Keywords are the frequent words your audience are typing into Google to find solutions to their problems. So if you were visiting Paris and wanted to know what sites to visit when you got there, you’d probably type something like ‘Top 10 Paris attractions’ into your search engine. That would mean anyone with a travel blog about Paris would need all of these keywords in, to stand a chance of being seen by you as a potential reader.
In order to understand who your audience is and what their problems are, you need to create your buyer personas – semi-fictional characters who are typical consumers of your product. Unless you understand your personas, you won’t know the words teachers and school leaders are typing into search engines and your blog will be lost somewhere on the fourth page (or lower) of Google.
Tip 2: Find your keywords
The easiest way to find your keywords is using Google itself – plus, it’s free. Type in the obvious keywords that will be associated with your blog, for instance this blog’s would be: selling to schools. Press enter and when you scroll to the bottom of the Google page, you’ll find around eight searches related to your entry, in this case:
- selling to the education sector
- marketing to primary schools
- selling to schools uk
- selling technology to schools
- selling services to schools
- companies that sell to schools
- marketing to schools and teachers
- national register of education suppliers
These are your keywords: if you work some of these into your blog title and the body of your content, you’ll jump up the search results to the top of the page and find your blog much more likely to be clicked on. You must remember that you’re competing with a lot of blogs out there – yours won’t be the first or last to be written about your topic. Do your research and ensure you know the meaning behind these words and phrases so you can slip them seamlessly into your writing without them sounding clunky or ‘shoehorned’ in.
If you want to use a more precise, technical method that collates your keywords, you can use free tools, such as SEMrush and Hubspot’s GrowthBot. Whatever you use, get into the habit of checking and recording these keywords before you write your blog – it’s an easy habit to get into and one which will ensure you quickly see a difference in the traffic to your blog.
As well as these words, you’ll need to include some long-tail keywords. These are longer phrases and more obscure keywords associated with your topic that not all of your competition might have thought to include in their own writing. Find suitable synonyms and long-tail keywords to use throughout your blog for variety – Google is clever enough to bring your blog up, even if your reader didn’t type those exact words in, it just gives the search engine more to work with.
For example, for this blog post these would be:
- Blog for growth
- Blogging as a marketing tool
- Search engine optimisation
- Turn blog traffic into leads
- Long-tail keywords
- Click-through potential
- School leaders and teachers
Tip 3: Turn blog traffic into leads
Your blog must always redirect readers to your website. Whether it’s a link to a page on your site or a previous relevant blog post they might have missed, ensure your readership of teachers and school leaders is encouraged to find out more through your blog (make sure these pages appear in a new window so as not to totally take them away from your post). Use your keywords as the hyperlinks instead of writing something like ‘click here’ to maximise the click-through potential.
The best way to engage your reader is to continue educating them beyond your blog – don’t send them directly to a product for them to buy, offer them a free download such as a useful ebook or handy checklist. Alternatively, take them to your case studies page or a free demo video – your potential customers don’t want to be sold to, they want to be educated more about the solutions to those problems they first typed into Google. Create CTA (Call-to-Action) buttons with keywords on for readers to click through to a free resource.
If you offer readers free help (in exchange for their email details) you’ll find your blog readers are far more likely to convert into leads. Education doesn’t just involve redirection to your own site either – send them to white papers, alternative blogs and reputable articles you’ve found interesting yourself: if they see your blog as a well-researched, broad and unbiased source of information, you’ll build trust and consumers will, again, be more likely to remember and use your product in future.
Blogging as a marketing tool isn’t a speedy, quick-hit method, but it is one that nurtures and sustains leads, focusing on relationship-building, rather than speedy sells. If your business wants to take selling to schools seriously and build longevity, this is the way to approach the education sector.
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