Search engine optimization (SEO) and content go hand-in-hand in search engines and for readers. The better your SEO efforts are, the higher a search engine will rank your website. The better your content is, the better your chances are of reaching the target audience.
Statistics show over 90% of content on the web is never visited! A majority of this is deemed bogus, duplicate or near duplicate content. This not only results in a waste of time, effort, and money, it also results in disillusionment about content itself. Whether you write your own content or have a content writer, the following SEO content writing tips will increase traffic and engagement to your website.
Know Your Audience
First and foremost, you must know your target audience. If you are not writing for them, you are wasting valuable time and money. You will need high-quality content which is appealing or answers questions for your target audience. You may find you are writing about more than just your product or services, just ensure your content stays within your industry.
Keep Content Under Your Domain Name
Do not use another hosting service such as WordPress or Blogger for your content posts. Keep all original content on your website using subfolders. You can then share your content from there. This will, in turn, promote your website more and grab the attention of search engines and targeted audience.
Your headlines should be short, sweet and to the point. Headlines should leave an impression while being true to what your reader is about to read. Along with the importance of the headline, is the importance of the meta description. The combination of these two is what will entice potential visitors to click on your website link.
Identify Search Intent
Just because a keyword has more searches, it is not always the most relevant to your content. Targeting transactional keywords at articles seldom works. You need to identify terms that suggest that the audience is “seeking information with an intention to transact.” These are the keywords that could potentially draw your target audience to the site.
Using keywords is tricky. Too little keywords and you risk not ranking, too many keywords and you risk being penalized and annoying readers. Use keyword rich phrases naturally throughout headlines and content. This makes it easier for the reader to comprehend and search engines will not penalize your website. Instead, you can increase your ranking position.
There is enough “me too” content on the web already. Why should a reader prefer your content? Also, why should a search engine choose to rank your content as compared any number of other similar pages? Most SEO content writers will promise you content that passes Copyscape. However, is uniqueness limited to original language and word usage? An SEO writer needs to provide a value proposition. Every piece of content you produce needs to be unique in terms of the message it carries, the tone and attitude, the stand it takes, and more. Your content needs to set you apart from the rest for it to be genuinely unique.
Organize Your Content Posts
An unorganized article or blog post is not attractive to readers. It also makes it difficult for search engines to crawl your content. Readers also tend to get bored with reading large blocks of content. Using headlines and smaller paragraphs allows readers who are in a hurry to skim the content quickly. It also makes it easier to keep their attention and keep them reading. Search engines will be looking for the proper title tag usage, such as H1 and H2 for headlines.
People are, by nature, visual. Attractive images which grasp the reader’s mind leaves an impression, and they are likely to return to your website. Social media channels allow readers to pin images within your posts to other social media channels like Pinterest and Instagram.
Incentivize the Content
If you have done a good job of producing the right kind of content, think of ways you can incentivize it. Consider subscription (free or paid), offers, incentives for sharing or any other means of making your audience come back for more and/or share the content with others. Not only will it send the right engagement signals to search engines, but it will also create the right kind of social signals, build links, and add to the SEO value of the page.
Power of Social Media
Incorporating share buttons within your content pages allow readers to share your content across their social media platforms. Keeping your content and headlines interesting keeps more readers sharing your content, some without even knowing your website existed before seeing it on social media.
Use Google Authorship
Google+ allows authors to claim content. If you have a Google+ account, you can tie your name, or your content writer, to your article and both the author and content, will show up in search results. This can increase your click-through rate (CTR) for your website.
Natural Link Building
A very important SEO ranking factor is still links. If another website promotes your website, when someone clicks on it, it will link back to your own website. You can also include links in images and videos.
Google Analytics allows you to stay on top of what is working and what is not working for your website. You can monitor visitors activity; where they go and how long they stay. Google analytics allows you to see a multitude of metrics including bounce rates, time spent on a specific page, shares and likes.
Creating and maintaining impressive content can be challenging; however, keep reading to learn more on how to keep it within your reach.
What is SEO Content?
Over the years, content writers and SEO strategists have realized the growing need for achieving ranks at all costs. The competition to achieve ranks and drive traffic has resulted in many writers — and even more non-writers — offering SEO content services. The theory behind SEO content is simple:
- When clients demand more visual sites with less text, it makes it harder for the marketing pages to rank for competitive keywords
- On the other hand, for a web page to rank in search results, it needs to be rich in keywords
- The obvious solution is to create a large number of “keyword rich” — often keyword-stuffed — pages that would rank for some of the peripheral terms
- These pages would also link back to the main marketing pages with the primary keywords that are absent on the marketing pages to create relevance through linking text and a large number of internal links
While it seems like sound logic, is it really?
Quality vs. Volume
Go to any freelance project website, and you can get writers quoting $5 or lesser per article. Even at a minimum wage of $8 per hour, this would mean just over half an hour per article. What kind of quality should you expect from an article that is produced in just over half an hour? Where is the time for research? Where is the time for building a compelling case? Writers would either be stringing keywords together or — in a worst-case scenario — creating mechanical content using content spinning tools. Search engines are smarter than that.
Today, things like time on page and bounce rates affect your rankings. So, if you produce a large volume of junk content, even if it ranks and drives visitors, it would result in an increase in bounce rates and a drop-in time on site. This can only hurt your SEO. What you need today is high-quality content that engages with your audience, makes them want to consume more, share and return to the site. This is high-quality SEO content, and this is the kind of content that works best.
Value of SEO Content
Needless to say, producing high-quality content that is unique, engages with the audience, compels them to share it and provides distinct value takes time, effort and expertise. Not just the quality and style of writing, the marketing mind behind the content becomes extremely important.
SEO content today is no longer about producing content which tries to convince a search engine to rank it higher. SEO content today is content for the reader. Winning over your audience through your content is the new definition of high-quality SEO content.
While on the one hand, you have enough writers quoting lesser than the next person, you also have specialized SEO content providers like Flying Cow Design, who deliver content — and not just language — that is unique. The value of a seemingly expensive article that works far outweighs the merits of spending on multiple cheap articles for the same price.
CEO, Flying Cow Design
Attended University of Auckland
Lives in San Francisco Bay Area