If you run a business with an online presence, chances are you’ve heard of search engine optimization (SEO). SEO is vitally important to ensure that you have a good website ranking in search lists which, it turn helps drive more traffic to you site – which hopefully helps to improve your bottom line. SEO should be handled in part, by your website developer. But if your business has a blog, or engages in social media, you can also improve your own SEO through quality content writing.
Writing for SEO however is a bit different than other types of writing. You need to craft your prose in a way that works well both for the search engine crawlers as well the real live breathing human beings who you ultimately would like to communicate with.
Here are the ten tips for improving your SEO content writing. They are simple, easy, and highly effective at boosting SEO keyword optimization and density as well as providing a better overall viewing experience to your readers. Please Note: Since Google is the most common search engine used (5 billion searches per day), I will be using their analysis methods as a guide. It should also be mentioned that all other search engines follow similar methods.
- Put the keyword or keyword phrase in the title of the content writing. An interesting title grabs the interest of the reader, while a title with the keyword grabs the attention of the search engine algorithms. In fact, Google focuses on the content’s title in their keyword analysis. This puts you at a great advantage for getting your content in front of readers.
- Use the keyword or phrase in the first paragraph of the content; even better if you can logically fit it into the first sentence. Search engines place great emphasis on keywords in their algorithms.
- Avoid complex phrases. Focus on action verbs and industry buzz words to engage the reader and sell your products or services. Keep the content interesting and avoid sounding “too wordy”.
- Be mindful of keyword density. You should place the keyword once every 125 to 150 words for an appropriate amount of SEO keyword placement. “Keyword stuffing” is does not reflect quality writing and readers will not read your content. Also, if Google picks up too many keywords, the content can be registered as spam and search engine rankings will decrease for the business.
- Links increase search engine rankings, whether the links take the reader to another location within your website or leave your website to another piece of content. Use links for products, industry references, and other applicable services or information. The best placement for a link is in the last paragraph with a call to action statement.
- The layout of your content is important in order to grab and maintain the readers’ attention. Keep your writing within organized paragraphs or lists. Make use of the headers. Since readers scan content, make sure the headers reflect the most important topics of your writing.
- Make use of metatag descriptions. A metatag is scanned by search engines and this is a powerful place to put SEO-filled content. The metatag describes the product, service, or blog within 160 characters (approximately 30 words) or less. Make the metatag to-the-point and specific.
- Include images with the content writing. People are visual and images catch the readers’ attention. Images provide for a description that can include SEO content. Do not use pictures that are protected; always ask permission before using the pictures as your own.
- Use social media. Anytime you post content to your website or blog have it automatically post to all your social media outlets. If you have a blog, enable the “share” option. This will allow your content to reach substantially more people than the regular reader.
- Keep variety in your SEO content writing. Always stay within your industry but mix up the content. For example, maintain your product or service descriptions but include industry news updates or fun infographics about your industry.