How to Optimize Blog Posts for SEO – Proven Tips for Updating Posts

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How to optimize blog posts for SEO? Here are my top tips for updating old EXISTING blog posts for SEO. If you are interested in re-submitting improved articles to Google to create an SEO-friendly blog post and increase your SEO ranking, than this post is for you. Keep reading for the best blog SEO tips!

A Quick Summary:

Many times we have a backlog of posts and articles that are hidden on Google – completely unable to be found and read. I love to find those old posts, re-optimize them for SEO, and re-submit them for improved Google keywords. I highly recommend this if you are struggling with Google not crawling your existing posts.

What you need to know:

This is a SLOW process. It takes a good bit of time per post to identify the best keywords, and improve the article. Then, it can take MONTHS or even a YEAR for that post to get traction again. I only do this method for posts that have no traction, and wouldn’t be worse off if they got re-submitted as new posts and began their Google journey all over again. Keep reading for how to optimize blog posts for SEO and to boost your articles’ search engine results.

My recommendation:

I recommend that website owners keep a monthly pulse on how their posts are doing and sporadically update posts if needed. I like to keep a list of my top posts, as well as my posts that I WISH were top posts. I keep an eye on these, and update SEO once or twice a month as I see fit. The goal is high-quality content that uses the right keywords for find your target audience. The goal is not keyword stuffing to rig the system!

Your next steps:

If you don’t yet have a website with ranking posts, you can read this articles for tips, but skip the parts that are for already established posts.

If you have a website with posts that are established but not ranking, this post is for you! Keep reading.

How to optimize blog posts for SEO

1. Identify an Old Post That Isn’t Ranking

Here are a few tips to find an old post that isn’t ranking.

First, check out your website and try to find a post that you wish would rank higher. A great tip is to find a post that is tied to affiliate income, an email marketing lead generation form, or a product sale. These posts that could earn you money should be the first to target on your site. Additionally, choose an article that is at least 6 months – year old. The older the article is, the more confident you can be in improving its ranking.

Second, log into Google Search Console and use “Performance” to track the impressions for a single URL. This is my favorite way to see how a post is doing.

(If you don’t yet have Google Search Console set up, stop what you are doing and establish that connection. Connect your site and your Google Analytics to Google Search Console, and come back in a few months when you have live data.)

  1. Click “Performance” in the sidebar and choose at least a 12-16 month range. (You might have a dropdown under Performance with “Search Results” and “Discover”. If so, choose “Search Results”.)
  2. Click + New and choose “Page”.
  3. Enter your post URL in this filter and click “Apply”.
  4. Sort by impressions, and see the #1 keyword that your post is ranking for. If this is NOT the keyword that you intended to target, then you have identified an ideal post to update.

PRO TIP: If your post is ranking #1 or #2 for your intended keyword, you don’t need to update it! Other reasons you might not need to update a post: The #1 keyword showing for your post has way too high search volume than you can rank for (see below) OR your post has a steady incline slowly ranking for your keyword and it’s just taking time. Sometimes it takes a YEAR for a post to rank, so if it’s slowly progressing, leave it.

This article is supposed to be targeting the keyword phrase “Is ZenBusiness Legit”, however the keyword it is ranking for is “ZenBusiness Review”. This is a sign that I should be able to update it and improve its ranking for that #1 keyword.

2. Identify the Correct New Ranking Keyword

Now that you have find an article and a keyword that you THINK it will rank for, let’s do a little keyword research to make sure your keyword will work.

There are two steps for finding the ideal keyword. These can be summarized as 1) Finding your “SEO Keyword Ranking Ideal Number” and 2) Finding a new keyword near that number.

Your ideal ranking SEO number

First, let’s find your “SEO Keyword Ranking Ideal Number”. This is the Search Volume Number that you should be able to rank for. If you are a new website, you will not be able to rank for a keyword that has a Search Volume Number of 3,000. There is just no way. Whereas, if you are an older established website, you might be able to aim higher, and stop ranking for articles that have a Search Volume Number of 50.

Here’s how you find that out.

  1. Login to Google Analytics (GA4) and click “Reports” on left sidebar.
  2. In the dropdown, click “Audiences”.
  3. At the top right, change the date range to at least the last 90 days.
  4. This should show you the number of users per day to help you find an average.
  5. Look at your lowest number of users per day and your highest, and find a rough average. This screenshot below shows me that my lowed is 148 and my highest is 591. This tells me my average is around 369.
Are you looking for how to optimize blog posts for SEO? Here are my top tips for updating old EXISTING blog posts for SEO. If you are interested in re-submitting improved articles to Google to improve your SEO ranking, than this post is for you. Keep reading!

Now this isn’t an exact science, and it doesn’t mean you can’t rank for higher Search Volume numbers. But it does show you approximately which keywords you might be able to rank for, and which ones are too high.

For instance, with these numbers, I might try to rank between 300-500. I want to rank high, but I shouldn’t try to rank for numbers in the 100s – or in the 10,000s. I want to aim in the middle.

Your ideal keywords

My favorite website to find ranking Google long-tail keywords for free is

Spyfu is an awesome keyword tool that has unparalleled data for Google keyword research. Their free access allows you to search for any keywords, it just limits the number of keyword ideas in each search.

I use this keyword research tool frequently, and am able to easily see the search volume per keyword.

Just go to, and enter your desired search keyword and click the tab “Related Keywords”. If you need to drill down more (you will only see 5 keywords with the free search), click “Search Volume” on the left and enter the max search volume number you wish to search for. For instance, if your ideal ranking SEO number is 500, filter your results with 500 as the max search volume number.

If you want to check out the #1 keyword that your post is ranking for, search without a search volume max so you can see how it ranks. This is not a guaranteed science, but your #1 keyword probably is within your idea ranking SEO number range.

If it is not within the range, you can either choose to target it anyway, to see how your site does, or leave your current post as-is. Your call!

How to Optimize Blog Posts for SEO - using Spyfu to find optimized keywords with ideal search volume.
You can see my ideal #1 keyword is ranking for the search volume of 480 – this is right within my ideal SEO range!

3. Update Your Post for the New Keyword

Now that you have your new ranking keyword, how do you modify and update your blog post?

Well, I highly recommend free WordPress plugin RankMath for all your SEO needs. It rivals the OG – Yoast, and I find it MUCH better. It’s lighter and doesn’t bloat my sites, and provides better and more accurate statistics and data for my posts. Their paid pro version looks awesome, but I only use the free version. (Install it here!)

My examples below will be using RankMath, but you can use Yoast SEO similarly.

When you use RankMath to update a post, you will see categories for improvement: Basic SEO, Additional, Title Readability, and Content Readability. Here are some screenshots showing how RankMath grades your attempts at SEO:

Of course, the goal is NOT keyword stuffing – to fill up your posts with keywords where it sounds like a shallow list of the same words over and over again and ruin the user experience. Google doesn’t like that. We don’t like that.

We ALWAYS want high quality blog content that shows you are the expert – following all search engine optimization best practices. That’s the goal.

Instead, use these tips to optimize with your new keyword. My favorite ways to do this easily is:

  • Change your URL permalink to JUST the new keyword (ie. – Remember your old permalink! We’ll set up redirect next.
  • Update your meta description with your target keyword
  • Add your new keyword to the beginning of your blog post title with a new catchy phrase like “My Zendesk Review – New for 2024
  • Add the keyword to an H2 header and 2-3 times in your article
  • Add the keyword to all each image Alt Text – its an easy and hidden way to incorporate the keyword
  • Additional things that all new blog posts should contain: internal links (backlinks), external links, responsive design with mobile friendliness

TIP: When you re-publish, remember that this is RESTARTING your post with all search engines. It’s a new beginning. If you had any traction before, you will probably lose it. Yes, your post will retain some credibility from your site authority and the previous article’s keyword, but you will be re-starting everything. ONLY republish if you are ok with all of this.

After you optimize your blog posts for SEO

Create a Redirection to your New URL

If you created a new URL permalink for your blog post, you MUST create redirect, otherwise you will lose all traffic that originally went to your first URL. The free RankMath plan has an awesome redirection tool, that I totally recommend.

To add this option to RankMath, click the link at the top right that says “Advanced Mode“. Now you will see this Redirection Module appear (below). Enable the toggle button.

RankMath Redirection Module - How to optimize your blog post for SEO.

Once this is enabled, you will easily see options in the left sidebar to add your redirect. Click “New Redirect” and add your old URL under “Source URLs” and your new URL under “Destination URL“. You don’t need to update anything else! Just click “Add Redirection” to set live. See full directions here.

Re-Submit to Google

There are two ways that I re-submit my new URLs to Google. One is through RankMath, and the other is through Google Search Console. I use both for every post.

1 – With RankMath, turn on “Instant Indexing” in the RankMath dashboard. This will automatically submit URLs to search engines to appear in their SERPs (search engine result pages) automatically. This gives you an automatic option if you don’t have time manually submit URLs. RankMath also gives you the option to manually submit posts on the “Posts” page in WordPress. You can see instructions here! This is the best solution for the array of search engines out there – Bing, etc.

2 – My favorite way to submit URLs to Google is through Google Search Console. Just sign in here, and in the top search bar where it says “Inspect any URL…”, enter your new URL. Once you submit your URL, the search console will tell you if the URL is indexed in Google. Because your new URL is not indexed yet, click the link in the first block called “Request Indexing”. That’s it! Google will crawl your new post immediately.

Keep an eye on your update post

There are two ways to keep an eye on your newly updated post. One is in Google – and the other is in Google Search Console.

In Google, I usually take notes about where my post ranks before I change the keyword. For instance, if I’m changing my post to rank for “ZenBusiness Review”, I will check out where the post ranks before I make changes. It might fall at position 30-40. After I update the post, I give it several days (or a week) to register the changes and the new post title, and then I keep an eye on it. Usually within a few weeks, I see it moving to position 20, and then 15. If it keeps gaining traction, then it’s working!

In Google Search Console, use the Performance tab to monitor the progress of your old and new URLs. Within a few days, you’ll see progress with your new URL.

  1. Click “Performance” in the sidebar and choose at least a 12-16 month range. (You might have a dropdown under Performance with “Search Results” and “Discover”. If so, choose “Search Results”.)
  2. Click + New and choose “Page”.
  3. Enter your old and new post URL in this filter and click “Apply”.


I learned a lot of SEO tips from Kyle Roof. He’s a fantastic source and creates some of the most brilliant SEO material. I have consumed all his free content, and highly recommend.

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How to optimize blog posts for SEO? Here are my top tips for updating old EXISTING blog posts for SEO.

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