A guest post by Jean of Delightful Repast
For 10 years I posted once a week like clockwork. For year 11, I decided to post just once every two weeks. Will that hurt my SEO (Search Engine Optimization)? I don’t care. I’m too busy writing quality content—in my own unique voice without any gimmicks—punctuated with pretty food pictures. I’m not concerned about SEO.
Would I love to be a “successful” food blogger with a huge audience? Of course! But I don’t usually think about that. If I did, I’d have to be concerned about SEO: Things like posting frequency and timing, stats, email lists, paid promotions on social media platforms, which recipes are trending, and oh so much more.
My blog is a platform for self-expression, where I share the recipes I’ve enjoyed developing, my love of tea (the beverage and the ritual) and wine. And I slip in the occasional travel or wellness post. The best part of blogging is engagement with my readers. I read and respond to every comment. If the commenter has a blog, I visit the blog and comment.
Though Delightful Repast has attracted notice that has led to some lucrative gigs with magazines and food-related companies, I have never monetized my blog. So I am, by definition, a hobby blogger. As such, I answer only to myself and don’t need to write bloated posts, as Dianne calls them, for the sake of Google or SEO.
Here’s why I am not concerned with SEO:
1. I post when it suits me.
Before I published my first post, I knew that posting more than once a week was not going to happen. I work as a freelance writer, I have clients and I have a life. That makes the requisite three times a week too stressful.
Experts will tell you there are certain days of the week and times of day that are better than others for posting. I just can’t be bothered. I post on Thursday because it suits my schedule.
2. I rarely look at Google Analytics.
Oh my. Unique pageviews versus pageviews, traffic sources — I can’t even tell you all the stuff that can be tracked, should one be inclined to track them. I am not inclined.
3. I am only on two social media platforms.
Though social media does not at this time directly contribute to SEO, it is said to play an indirect role. But if you want the details, I’m not the person to ask.
Okay, I am on Twitter and Pinterest; but I’m not on Facebook, Instagram, Yummly, Google+ or any of the other such things that seem to just keep on coming (and going).
And paid promotions on any of them? Uh-uh. Not for me.
4. I post what I like.
Maybe it’s just me, but I don’t care what recipes or subjects are trending. I eat what I like and cook what I like, and that’s what I’m going to write about for my readers.
Call something “trendy” and I’ll go out of my way to avoid it. When I write a travel review or product review, it’s about a place or thing I like and feel good about recommending.
In conclusion, I try to write a blog post that will inform and, sometimes, entertain my readers. I try to write a recipe that is original, appealing and clearly written so cooks at any skill level can make a success of it.
So if you are a hobby blogger, don’t sweat the SEO stuff. Write blog posts that are only as long as they need to be. If your recipe has a story, tell it. If not, don’t force one. And like me, you won’t need to bloat your posts with gimmicks to help your SEO.
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As a freelance writer, Jean has written for many magazines and newspapers as well as the web. She started DelightfulRepast.com in 2010 to share her favorite comfort foods along with a bit of tea, travel, wine and wellness. Find her on Pinterest and Twitter.