If you want to increase your chances of having your content found on that coveted first page of the search engines, you’ll want to understand some of the fundamentals of good SEO content writing.
Once you understand the fundamentals, you’ll find it’s much easier to get more and more of your content ranking higher in less time. So, what is SEO content writing?
Creating Content That Search Engines Love
One of the top priorities for search engines (besides selling advertising) is to bring searchers the most relevant content based on their search queries. Google seems to do this better than anyone in my opinion. The fact that Google’s share of the search market dwarfs all of their competitors combined leads me to believe that I’m not alone.
Different search engines use slightly different algorithms when ranking content and as long as Google is the “King” of the search engines, I will continue to focus on optimizing my content for them.
Effective SEO content writing is as much an art as it is a science and I’ll discuss both of them here.
Getting Your Content SEO Ready
The first step in making your content SEO friendly is to create an optimized permalink. If you use WordPress as your content management system, a permalink is autogenerated when you fill in the post/page title field.
If I am targeting a specific keyword phrase, I will be sure to use the exact phrasing within my post/page title. It’s OK to have additional words within your title (before or after for example) as long as the exact phrase is uninterrupted. I examine many websites created by new webmasters who are struggling to get organic traffic to their sites. The absence of optimized permalinks seems to be a common symptom.
The good news is, these are not set in stone and they can always be edited for improved optimization. Also, you’ll want to be sure that the keyword phrases you use actually have measurable search volume. It does you little good to have the #1 spot in Google if nobody is searching for you keywords. This is where understanding how to analyse keywords comes in.
WordPress SEO Plugins
Two of the most popular SEO plugins for WordPress are All in ONE SEO and Yoast WordPress SEO. I have no experience with Yoast, but you can learn how it works here. I have always used All in One SEO and it works for me so I can only demonstrate how that plugin works.
You can see the Preview Snippet above which will give you an idea of what people may see in the search engines when you post is displayed. (The link that is displayed is just a preview link. The actual permalink is what the search engines will display)
You will notice that the “Title” field shows 29 characters even though I left that field empty. This is because the plugin recognizes the fact that I have already filled in a post title within my editor. You don’t need to fill in this field unless you want to add a couple more words to make you post title more interesting.
If you leave your “Description” field empty, the search engines will pull a description from you content based on the search query used to display your article. If you can write a description that will encourage more people to click through to your site, you could gain a slight boost in rankings. Otherwise, it’s perfectly okay to leave it empty.
I leave the “Keywords” field empty. Many new marketers have a tendency to want to fill that field with lots of keyword phrases. This is not good for SEO.
Again, the search engines will decide which keywords your content is optimized for based on the content itself. It’s much easier to focus on one keyword phrase per post. Wouldn’t you rather be on the first page of Google for one keyword phrase than to be on page two or three for several keyword phrases? I know I would!
The Art Of Great SEO Content Writing
I would consider great SEO content writing to be the ability to create quality content while meeting all of your SEO objectives. It has been my experience that SEO is better achieved by focusing more on content and less on SEO itself.
What does that mean?
Search engines know what keywords you’re targeting by crawling your page title and the first paragraph in your article. After that, they are looking for in-depth, informative articles. There is no need to worry about keyword density or trying to find ways to “stuff” your keywords into your articles.
Use your targeted keywords sparingly and just concentrate on delivering quality content to your visitors. If you can learn to create quality content, (and you can) SEO will take care of itself.
Any questions or comments? Please leave them in the comment box and I will respond.