The art of great SEO writing
We’ve said it once on our blog and we’ll say it again: Content is king. Content plays a huge role in SEO and can make or break your website. So if you want to improve your chances of getting to the top of Google, you need to create quality content.
We’re talking about content that’s so helpful and valuable search engines have no other choice than to include it because it enriches their results. To achieve this, here’s some of the must-haves for great SEO writing.
What is SEO content?
Before we get into the specifics of SEO content, we need to know exactly what it is. To give you a better understanding, let’s break down the phrase “SEO content” into parts:
- SEO, also known as Search Engine Optimisation, is the process of optimising a website so people can easily find it via search engines like Google.
- Content is any information that lives on the web and can be consumed on the web.
Putting these two concepts together, SEO content is any content created with the goal of attracting search engine traffic. It includes everything to do with the writing and structuring of content on your website that helps it rank higher in the SERPs.
Some types of SEO content includes, but is not limited to:
- Web pages
- Blog posts
Why should we combine SEO and content?
SEO content is a key part of any SEO strategy. Without quality content, it’s impossible for your website to rank in search engines. However, hands down one of the biggest challenges content marketers face is writing content that’s optimised for search engines, yet will also appeal to people. When it comes to SEO writing, you need to accomplish two goals:
- Appeal to the end-users (i.e. customers, clients, prospects, readers, etc.)
- Satisfy a particular intent that search engines deem as valuable
So how do you create content that meets these goals? SEO writing is all about creating useful, compelling and valuable content that targets specific keywords so it will naturally push to the top of Google, increase your traffic and be shared by others.
Think of it this way: Every search performed at search engines comes with an intent – to find, learn, solve, buy, fix, treat, understand, etc. Search engines place web pages in order to satisfy that intent in the best possible way. Therefore, creating content that addresses searchers’ needs will improve your chances of earning top rankings.
How to make your content SEO friendly
Let’s start with the headline. Outside of the content itself, a quality headline is arguably the biggest component of SEO content. It’s the first thing a user will see when performing a search, so it needs to make a statement. In fact, on average five times as many people read the headline as the body copy.
So you need to create a catchy title that incorporates your primary keyword towards the front of the title if at all possible. If you can nail your headline, your click-through rates will be higher and your content stands a better chance of being read by your users.
The meta description
Another component of SEO writing is a compelling meta description. The meta description is used to summarise the content of a page, which helps search engines and searchers understand what the topic is and why your targeted keywords and phrases keep appearing in the content.
Search engines typically show the meta description as a snippet of text in the results pages. This snippet copy is what will determine whether or not you get clicks, no matter how highly you rank in the search results. So you should try to incorporate your primary keyword(s) within the description in a natural, non-spammy way. For SEO purposes, it’s also recommended to stay between 150-160 characters so it isn’t cut off.
When it comes to the actual content you produce, there’s five guiding principles to follow:
A fundamental component of SEO writing is keywords. Your content needs to be written in the right language – the language your audience is using when searching. By employing keywords naturally throughout your content, you have a better chance of people finding your site among the results.
So before you start writing, make sure you have a comprehensive list of the right keywords and phrases. However, don’t overstuff your content with keywords because it’ll do more harm than good.
To summarise, your should be asking yourself three basic questions first:
- Who am I writing for? You need to understand who your target audience is and make sure your content is catered to them.
- What am I writing about? Your need to understand what topics are being searched for and what your target audience wants and/or needs.
- What questions need to be answered? You need to understand user intent and why people are conducting searches in the first place.
Quality content is content that offers your visitors something with real value and serves a purpose. So how do you achieve this? Producing quality content requires ticking two specific boxes:
- It should be different and unique – Your content needs to be new information that isn’t already published or build upon old information by providing a new perspective.
- It should be well-written and provide authority – Your content needs to be useful. Start by finding out what your consumers want to know. Then, make sure your content answers this common question in a useful way.
If there’s one thing search engines love, it’s new and original content.. SEO demands consistent output and therefore content marketing requires consistency. So producing relevant content that matches the real-time pulse of your industry will increase your chances of ranking well.
Not only that, fresh contents gets rapidly indexed and registers higher in the SERPs than older, lower value content. But remember, fresh content takes a lot of time and effort. Content marketing never stops. So you need to be producing fresh content constantly to stay relevant.
It’s a fact: Web pages that rank on the first page of Google typically have 2,032 to 2,494 words. So you need to make sure your pages are filled with detailed content that users find useful.
SEO also demands linkbacks and the best way to introduce linkbacks is by producing great content and letting the masses linksback to it. And the only way to linback is to have content worth linking to.
Finally, readability is important both for your visitors and for search engines. After all, not only do people read your content, but Google does too. So if your text is well structured and clearly written, readers will understand your message and it will also help Google understand it better too. And if your main message is clearer to Google, your content is far more likely to rank well in search engines.
True success occurs when the art of SEO and the art of writing are combined. The Bang Digital team have extensive knowledge in crafting SEO content that’s designed to meet the needs of both the search engines and end users. Get in touch today.