Here are some of the best copywriting tips for optimizing your content with SEO
Did you know that SEO (short for Search Engine Optimization) has been around for 20 years? Enhancing content, blog posts, website traffic, and Google page rankings through the use of SEO keywords is a practice that started way back in the mid-1990s. That’s right—SEO strategy is older than almighty Google itself, and it is still an effective content strategy employed by many digital marketing and copywriting specialists to this day.
Back in the day, the use of black hat SEO techniques was very common. Websites and pages would often use keyword stuffing, cloaking, content copy duplication, and link manipulation (to name a few) to beef up their content for search engines. Google, its algorithms, and, of course, the readers eventually caught on. Since then, any site or blog post that uses such sketchy tactics are flagged. The page is penalized, thus resulting in bad SEO rankings and bad Google placements.
These days, a page with high quality content that utilizes content keywords in a much more organic way is preferred by readers. A site with good SEO standings is rewarded with better search rankings. But what exactly separates the good from the bad? If you’re a content strategist or someone who does SEO copywriting, we have listed down some tips and best practices to help you make sure you produce high quality text that not only ranks on search engine results but the page that is as informative as it is pleasurable for your audience to read and revisit time and time again.
1 Use the right keywords and the right way
Keywords are the core of SEO writing and using the right keywords the right way is key to producing piece content and blog posts that satisfy your audience’s search intent, which is the entire purpose of the online search.
To do this, you first need to do proper keyword research. There are a lot of sites online like Google Keyword Planner or SemRush to help you find the right focus keywords or long tail keywords for your content. Reddit forums also has enough tips to boost your content, but even with the right tools we still suggest knowing more about your topic, your target audience, and their search intent.
2 Know your SEO writing purpose
Also known as search intent. We’ve mentioned this above, but this section is all about going into the nitty-gritty of what a search intent actually is. There are four types of search intent:
Informational – Informational search intent refers to a search done by readers purely for the purpose of finding out more information about a certain keyword.
Navigational – Navigational search intent refers to a search that is looking to find the page of a certain website. For example, if readers type in “Amazon,” they will most likely get the Amazon homepage as a top result than its Wikipedia page of the Amazon rainforest.
Commercial – Commercial search intent are keywords used when a reader is researching a certain item and looking for which one is the best in its category.
Transactional – Transactional search intent is similar to commercial search intent, except that transnational keywords are specific, which means that the audience already knows the exact items they are looking for and want to buy.
3 Know your content readers
Once you’ve pinned down your writing purpose, now it’s time to actually know the kind of people you are writing for. If you are writing for a particular website, you need to know what their readers are like and what could actually make them tick, and eventually click. Knowing the people you are writing for also helps with determining the style, tone of voice, and direction of your copy. Should you use a more formal tone? Should you use the word “house” over “home”? What kind of SEO search keywords do they use when they google? The answers to these are easy if you have an audience in mind.
4 Write an SEO optimized headline both your audience and Google will like
Okay, so you’ve done your keyword research and have done due diligence on knowing the search intent of your readers. Now, on to the next part: copywriting. This, of course, starts with a title worthy of that first page on Google. Again, think about the search intent. If it is informational, it’s best to answer the question who, what, why, how, and where. If it is commercial, maybe it’s good to write a title along the lines of “10 best…”
5 Meta title and meta title description matters in SEO copywriting
A meta title or title tag is the copy that appears on search engines, result pages, as well as on the browser tab. Meanwhile, the meta description is the copy that summarizes the content of your post. It is found underneath the meta title on the search engine result. There are a lot of copywriting tips that include how to write an effective meta title and description, but we think the most important one is a tip you’ve probably read from writer Ernest Hemingway: keep it simple! When copywriting, keep the title as clear and concise as possible, should include the target keywords, and should be no longer than 60 characters. As for the meta title description, it should be two sentences long that explain the topic in an engaging way—it’s the hook, after all, that catches the attention of your audience and gets them to click on your post and read.
6 Produce high quality content with the use of best copywriting practices
Even if your intention was to rank on Google, we think that the priority should still lie in producing content that is engaging, informative, and one that actually makes sense. It’s definitely not a good idea to just overload your content with keywords just so it can do well on the search engines. Aside from possibly getting flagged, it also doesn’t bring value to an audience. SEO writing is definitely a whole different ball game from writing content for print since the goal is to make your page rank, but we think it’s still important to produce readable high quality content with valuable information your audience can go back to read again and again. This will also make your page a credible source!
7 Compliment your SEO copywriting with visuals
Another factor that helps your post rank on the search results aside from SEO copywriting is to include images, which you can SEO optimize as well. Make sure the photo size is not too big, use SEO keywords for the image file name, and don’t forget to include alt tags as well. This lets your page appear on Google image and video search results.
8 Don’t forget the low volume keywords!
While many use high volume SEO keywords when writing their copy, low volume keywords are also a goldmine for any digital marketing specialist and content strategist out there. The thing with focus keywords that are considered high volume is that the competition on Google could also be high. And ranking for such keywords is hard. That is why some pages try to focus their energy more on specific focus keywords defined as low volume keywords. They may be less searched words but since a particular keyword is specific to certain people you are targeting, there are more chances that readers will actually see your page, especially for an audience really looking to get their questions answered.
9 Add internal and external links to your copy
Internal links are links that stay within a site, while external ones are links that go to another site. Aside from adding value to your post, Google’s sophisticated algorithm classifies the content as a reliable and credible source. When linking, make sure you add links to your anchor text, which is the SEO focus keyword or keywords for your content. We also advise keeping a link to a maximum of four as having too much might lead to your page getting flagged for link bombing.
10 Create a CTA
So, you’ve implemented all these SEO keyword and copywriting tips we’ve mentioned above. Your users have clicked and readers have read your story. How else can you add value to your article and to your page in general? We say, don’t forget to create a call-to-action (CTA) when copywriting. CTAs are usually used in marketing, when a brand or page is trying to encourage a reader to either buy or subscribe. But a CTA can be much more than just a marketing tool. You can redirect your reader to another article with a clear nudge by offering them related articles to check out or visit another website. This makes the journey much more meaningful for your audience.