Showing posts with label SEO for authors. Show all posts
Showing posts with label SEO for authors. Show all posts

Marketing Engagement & Optimization: Balancing Your Process


by Deborah Lyn Stanley

Because Promotion and Marketing is about the reader, you’ve created a quick way to find your writing online. You have optimized your metadata, keywords, and search engine data for prompt findability. You have outlined a plan to deliver consistent content of value to your readership.

Today, let’s talk about balancing the work of delivering worthy content and marketing—getting the word out to more readers. You deliver through articles and books: by blogging, podcasting and videos. That’s the work of writing. Without writing, sharing with your readers becomes seriously lacking or old. Further, your readers will move on to follow other authors. So, how do we handle this juggling act?

Scheduling Tips—first creativity, then the business of writing:
•    When are you daily the most creative? That’s when you write. Creative time takes a great deal of energy, plan for it.
•    Do you write every weekday? Good, kept it and guard the time.

•    How do you handle the business end of writing; sending out queries, outlining your next book or article, or meeting with your writer’s circle? Can you move these to a few hours, a couple times a week?
•    Social media posting, promoting and marketing: these business tasks need less energy.
•    Write book reviews and promote them on your social media pages. Also seek outlets for promoting reviews you’ve received for your books (such as The New Book Review )
•    As Carolyn Howard-Johnson says in The Frugal Book Promoter: “Stay in the Promotion Habit” the longer you stay with it, productivity grows.
•    Take 1/2 or one day away from the computer each week to refresh.

Notes from prior discussions:
•    Metadata is info about your book, the title, sub-title, sales description, categories & author bio.
•    Keywords refer to a word or phrase that is associated with your book or your blog post.
•    Start and keep up your author’s website, include a blog. Consider guest posting.
•    Get involved with Social Media platforms that suit you and your themes and always link back to your website URL
•    Write a newsletter monthly. Create an audiobook. Start a podcast.

You’ve Got This!
You are a "Can Do" Writer!

Book Links:
* How to Market a Book by Joanna Penn

*The Frugal Book Promoter by Carolyn Howard-Johnson  

Deborah Lyn Stanley is an author of Creative Non-Fiction. She writes articles, essays and stories. She is passionate about caring for the mentally impaired through creative arts.
Visit her My Writer’s Life website at:   
Visit her caregiver’s website:

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SEO for Authors Part10 - Friendly URLs for Blogposts

This is Part 10 of the SEO for Authors series. This article deals with your blog posts and your URL.

I’m pretty sure the contributors to Writers on the Move and its readers know about URLs.

If not, URLs are the addresses to your webpages and blog posts.

URL is an acronym for Universal Resource Locator and according to Techopedia, “Tim Berners-Lee and the Internet Engineering Task Force working group is credited with developing the URL in 1994.”

Here’s an example and breakdown of a URL:

1. The protocol for most: Http or Https
2. The location: This is usually the domain name
3. The TDL (top-level-domain): .com, .org. .uk, and so on
4. The rest is information pertaining to the specific webpage address

Along with providing location information, did you know that you can have SEO friendly URLs and ones that aren’t?

So, what makes a URL, in regard to a blogpost, friendly or optimized?

Here’s an example of an optimized URL for a blogpost. It reads:

It’s easily readable. This makes it simple for people to get a gist of what the article is about. This is also easy for search engines read and categorize.

Words, especially keywords, have power. Having them within your URL is another element of optimizing your website.

This is important because the URL is one of the first places a search engine will look to find out what your blog post is about. Making it easy to read is always a plus.

Okay, we saw what an optimized URL looks like, but what about one that isn’t.

Powerless URLS

This is what a powerless blog post URL looks like:

Using this generic format, each blog post will have a different number, but they will not have word power.

The search engine will have no idea what the post is about from the numbers. And just as important, neither will the reader.

So, how do you make sure your blog post URLs are optimized?

Well, in WordPress’ Dashboard, under Settings: Permalinks, you’ll have the option to choose how you want your URLs to read.

This is what it will look like:

If you notice, there is an option for Plain and an option for Numeric.

You don’t want to use either of those.

Click on ‘Day and Name’ or ‘Month and Name’ or ‘Post Name.’

In the image above, I have mine set for Day and Name, but I’ve since changed it to Month and Name.

I like the month and year in my URLs for my own purposes. If you don’t need or want the date, just choose Post Name, circled in RED.

No fuss or muss.

Once you choose how your URL will appear from the Permalink setting, you don’t need to do anything else. Each post will appear the title of the post.

Doing this for your blogposts, you’ll have one more simple-to-do SEO element checked off.



Karen Cioffi is an award-winning children’s author and children’s ghostwriter/ rewriter. She is also the founder and editor-in-chief of Writers on the Move and author online platform instructor with WOW! Women on Writing.

If you need help with your author platform, check out Karen's e-classes through WOW:


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SEO for Authors Part4 - LSI Keywords

We're on to Part 4 of the SEO for Authors Series. This part goes a bit deeper into using keywords.

Okay, I can hear you mumbling, "What the heck is LSI keywords? Aren't regular keywords enough?"

Before you start to bite your nails, LSI keywords sounds complicated but it’s NOT at all.

We’ll get to that in a second though.

First, let’s discuss why you’re blogging.

If you’re a blogger or content writer, who are you writing for?

If you answered the reader. You get the jackpot.

But, even if you think you’re writing for the reader, in the back of your mind you know you need to please the search engines also.

So, which is it?

Should you be writing for the reader of the search engines?

You’ve got to write for both, because if the search engines can’t quickly find, understand, and index your content they won’t be able to use it in their search results. This means the reader won’t get a chance to see your article.

Okay, this does create a bit of a dilemma, right?

Well, not really.

You can write powerful content that’s helpful to your reader while being search engine friendly. It’s a simple matter of using basic SEO techniques.

I’m guessing most of you reading this article know about keywords. And, you know they’re an important element that allows the search engines to find and index your content. It’s keywords that online searchers use for their search queries.

While your reader is your number one concern, appeasing Google comes in a close second.

But, there’s another little problem: 

Google doesn’t like you using the same keywords throughout your content. If you do this, Google will assume you’re doing it for ranking.

This doesn’t work. In fact, you could get a ‘slap on the hand’ for unethical SEO practices.

Instead, the power-blogger uses LSI (Latent Semantic Indexing) keywords.

Yep, another marketing acronym.

LSI keywords are simply synonyms for keywords. They can also be other words or phrases that are closely related to your ‘original’ keyword.

According to Web CEO, “LSI keywords are words and phrases that are semantically related to each other. They include not only synonyms or keywords with similar meanings. They are often keywords that are commonly found together.” (1)

Suppose your keyword is “book marketing.”

There are a number of topics that may fall under that keyword, such as:

- Author platform
- Book promotion
- Selling books
- Author website
- Book reviews
- Book signings

It’s the LSI keywords in your article that will allow Google to scan your content and better understand what it’s about. This in turn makes it easier for Google to index the content and use it as the results of a relevant search query . . .  as long as Google believes your content is quality.

An example of this strategy in action is my article:
Shaun the Sheep and Marketing with Animation

Shaun the Sheep is an animated kids’ movie with no words. I used it as the basis for an article on animation and marketing. While the title might be catchy to readers, it may have been a bit confusing for search engines.

But, the article itself has lots of LSI and other terminology that is search engine friendly and gives them the information they need to know exactly what the article is about and which search queries it’s relevant to.

Next time you’re writing a blog post or web copy, think of the LSI keywords you can use.

To find LSI keywords related to your primary keyword, check out this free tool:
LSI Graph

Along with finding those LSI words, your blog posts should be easy to read, understandable, and helpful for your audience.




Karen Cioffi is an award-winning children’s author and children’s ghostwriter as well as the founder and editor-in-chief of Writers on the Move. She is also an author/writer online platform instructor with WOW! Women on Writing.

If you need help getting your author platform off the ground or want to get it soaring, check out Karen’s 4-week, interactive, eclass through WOW! Women on Writing: Build Your Author/Writer Business


SEO for Authors Series Part1: The Basics

Keywords and Search Engines (What Every Author Should Know)

5 Good Reasons to Secure Your Site

SEO for Authors Part3 - Outbound Links in Your Blog Posts

Outbound or external links are clickable links you have on your website and in your blog posts that link to other websites.

And, it’s a good practice to use outbound links within your articles.

For instance:

Suppose I’m writing a post for Writers on the Move and it’s on self-publishing. I find a relevant article over at Kindlepreneur that will give my readers more information on the topic or reinforce what I’m saying.

#1 Doing it right by linking properly

There are a few ways to link to the Kindlepreneur article (I added yellow highlight to show which words or phrases would be hyperlinked):

1. I can use the keyword SELF-PUBLISHING as an anchor text. The word would be hyperlinked to the outbound article.

Example: Kindlepreneur has a great article on creating your own book publishing company if you’re self-publishing.

2. I can link to the article using the site’s name.

Example: There’s a great article over at Kindlepreneur that says . . .

3. I can include the URL and hyperlink it.

Example: There’s a great article over at Kindlepreneur ( that says . . .

4. I can create a MORE READING section at the end of the article and include the Kindlepreneur article title and link to it: How to Start a Book Publishing Company.

Which strategy is the most SEO effective?

Numbers 1 and 4 are the way to go. But if you had to choose between the two, go with #1.

The reason is it offers Keyword-Power that’s highly relevant to your article. Google and the other search engines like this practice.

Okay, that’s pretty easy. Use anchor text to link to outbound links whenever possible.

NOTE: If you notice, I hyperlinked in Example #2. This was a mistake, but since outbound links are involved, I'm leaving it as is. Moral to the story: don't do things in haste.

#2 Linking when using quotes

Suppose that in the article I’m also quoting from The Article Writing Doctor. I must give the URL to the article I’m quoting from.

There are a couple of ways to do this also:

1. Hyperlink a keyword within the quote, if applicable.

Example: “If you want to self-publish, you must edit your manuscript before moving forward.”

Since I already hyperlinked to Kindlepreneur using the keyword Self-Publishing, I wouldn’t want to use that word again as a hyperlink. So, I’d use Edit Your Manuscript.

2. Tag the quote and hyperlink the article title at the end of the article in a References section.

Example: “If you want to self-publish, you must edit your manuscript before moving forward.” (1)

Then at the bottom of the article you link to the article via the title:


(1) Self-Publishing – You’ve Got to Edit First

The benefit of using outbound links:

Using outbound links effectively produces two benefits:

It’s good to link to HIGH-RANKING sites. It reinforces what your site is about to Google. And, if the site you’re linking to pays attention to its Pings or Trackbacks, they’ll notice you linked to them.

So, you make Google happy which makes them like your site better and you get noticed by a high-ranking site.

This is all good.

Now, let’s move on to the Don’ts.

#1 Warning: Try to keep the visitor on your site

While outbound links within the body of your article can be good SEO, those links are taking the reader away from your website. So use them sparingly, especially if you manage your own site.

Suppose I had that Kindlepreneur outbound link in the first paragraph of my article. The reader sees it and clicks on it.

Off he goes – off of my site.

This does two things:

It drastically shortens the visit length of that reader and if he hops off too quick, you just added to your bounce rate.

Google tracks the length of time a visitor stays on your site. The longer the better.

Google also tracks if the visitor is there 5 seconds or less. This is considered a bounce and it’s terrible for your website ranking.

If you have a high bounce rate, Google will assume your site is very poor quality. It will assume your content isn't measuring up to your linkbait. This is not good.

So, be careful using outbound links within the body of your article. And, definitely limit the number of outbound links you use.

One way around this problem:

When you’re creating the outbound link, make sure it will open in a NEW WINDOW. This will keep the reader on your site while he’s reading the article at the other site.

#2 Don’t use too many outbound links.

Google has its hands in everything. It keeps track of your outbound links and inbound links (sites linking in to your site).

If you have a lot of outbound links compared to inbound links, Google will think it’s suspicious and black-hat (unethical) behavior. It could think you’re getting paid for those outbound links. 

You could get penalized. At the very least, you’ll lose ranking power.

#3 Warning – They’re distracting

If you’re article is littered with outbound links, they’re distracting to the reader. Even if they don’t click on them, they cause distraction.

#4 Don’t outbound link to the same URL more than once within your article.

This is considered suspicious activity.

#5 Warning – Broken links are a NO-NO

The more hyperlinks you have on your website, the more chance there is of having broken links. Google frowns upon broken links.

If you manage your own website, it can become burdensome having to check on whether your links are broken.

While WordPress has plugins to help with the process of checking for broken links, Blogger does NOT.

This means, if you have a Blogger site and want to check for them, you’ll have to go into every post and check the links.

As of the writing of this post, Writers on the Move has around 1500 blog posts. That’s a lot of checking.

Summing it up

As mentioned, using outbound links can be a useful SEO strategy. But, you generally don’t want to overdo it.

There are exceptions to this rule as when you have a resource page with links to valuable tools for your readers.

Or, you have a media page with links to all that’s going on with you.

Or, if you’re creating a blog post that offers links to say, The Best Writing Sites or Best Books of 2017, or other.

As with all guidelines, they’re guidelines and should be thought of when creating and posting your articles.


Pingbacks and trackbacks are very similar functions using different protocols/systems. Their purpose is to make a referenced site aware that it’s been referenced to by another blog/website, and allow that site to link back. Both the pingback and trackback go to the referenced website’s pending comments, awaiting approval or rejection.

Not all websites have this feature. If it does, you usually need to enable it.

Linkbait  is content (usually titles) designed to attract attention and encourage those viewing it to click on its hyperlink to the site.The purpose is to improve the site's position on the list of results returned by a search engine. But, if it's done unethically, if the title is a tease and doesn't provide what it promises, Google won't be happy and neither will the people who click on the link.

If you have any comments or questions, please put them in comments!


Karen Cioffi is an award-winning children’s author and children’s ghostwriter as well as the founder and editor-in-chief of Writers on the Move. She is also an author/writer online platform instructor with WOW! Women on Writing.

If you'd like to learn more about building a powerful author platform, check out Build Your Author/Writer Platform.


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