How to write perfect SEO articles? First of all, you don’t care about search engines at all.
Are you a copywriter, then the question of whether you write SEO content is undoubtedly regularly asked to you. SEO, search engine optimization, is hot and as an organization with a contemporary website, you will not escape the improvement of find-ability. Otherwise, the competitor will do it and you will miss out on visitors and assignments.
Do you want to start writing search engine friendly texts yourself, but don’t know how to do it? Follow this extensive step-by-step plan and it can’t go wrong.
Step 1: Don’t think about search engines at all
When writing for search engines it’s tempting to lose yourself in the technique. Where do you place keywords, what about search engine friendly URL’s and how do you get the 500 words that are apparently mandatory? Whoa, stop, wait. Take a step back.
Good SEO content is written first and foremost for visitors. So ask yourself these questions first:
- What is the purpose of the page?
- For whom do I write it?
- What do I hope the reader will do afterward?
- And if he or she does not, what is the plan b?
By thinking carefully about this beforehand, you write better texts that appeal to readers and are more likely to be shared via social media and other websites. And that’s good for SEO.
Step 2: Determine keywords
Find keywords with Keyword Planner
Keywords can be found with the Google Ad-words Keyword Planner.
Based on these words Google determines who appears in the top 10 and who does not.
With SEO-writing you process keywords strategically in your text so that you give search engines signals that your text is exactly about the words a potential visitor is looking for. In this way, supply and demand match each other as well as possible.
To determine the right keywords you can write a book full of them. Also, read the article ‘The keyword pyramid as the basis of your SEO’ about this.
The quickest way to find keywords yourself is Google Suggest. Type a keyword in Google, and the search engine will complete it with frequently used suggestions. Tap for example:
Find keywords with Google Suggest.
You’ve now found a keyword combination, but you don’t know how often people search for it each month, nor how strong the competition is. To find that out, I warmly recommend the extensive guide on Backlinko.
Step 3: Write a great article
The advantage of pre-defining a keyword is that you can take into account the intention people are looking for. You look a little inside their head and can take this into account when writing your text. If you don’t do this, you run the risk of scoring high on a certain combination, but readers drop out because the text doesn’t answer their question.
With this knowledge in mind, it is high time to write a strong text. Do not think about SEO, but focus completely on your message, your target group and the action you want readers to take.
Scoring high in Google is nice, but if visitors don’t do anything on your site, it’s of little use. So write a really good text, of at least 350 words. Shorter is possible, but search engines like to sink their teeth into longer texts and you can use keywords and synonyms more often.
Step 4: Use copy-writing techniques
Once your text is ready, in many cases it is smart to use copywriting techniques. A copywriter is – as someone once aptly described it – a salesman behind a keyboard. And what does a salesman do? Convince and remove barriers.
On the internet people don’t read very well: if they take 20 to 25 percent of a text, it’s a lot. Therefore, use convincing arguments to encourage people to take a certain action and keep them on the page. Think about that:
Writing in benefits, instead of specifications
Social proof and testimonials: let users name the advantages of a product or service (can also be done with videos).
Describing ‘the problem’ in the best possible way in the words of customers
Determine a unique selling point and emphasize that: what makes you different and better?
Describing which problem the product or service solves
Giving of possible warranties
Processing these types of points works particularly well for commercial texts, but also on a service or About us page, for example. People choose on the basis of emotion and you can make use of that. Why do they have to work with you and not with the competitor? And what is the most important task for the visitor on the page? Emphasize that, in text and design. In this way, you increase the chance that readers take the desired action.
Step 5: Optimize the text with keywords
Do not write your text full of keywords, three or four times in the right place is sufficient.
You’ve written a good catchy text and optimized it for conversions. Now it’s finally the search engines’ turn. SEO-writing may sound complicated, but it’s not that bad. Search engines are not people and they need signals to fathom a text. You give those signals by processing keywords in strategic places so that Google and consorten immediately pick up what the page is about.
Preferably write keywords at the beginning of the title. If the first word of the title is a keyword, a search engine will immediately understand what the page is about.
Many cms allow you to specify custom titles for search engines and visitors. In this way, you write a nice readable title for visitors and an extra optimized one for search engines. The title can be 77 characters long, then Google will cut it off.
The meta description is a short description of a web page. Google shows it in nine out of ten cases in the search results. For SEO it does not count anymore, but you can consider it as an advertisement in the results page. If the description stands out, a user may click on it sooner, even if you are not in the first place. In the meta-description you may use special characters, websites like Zalando and Wehkamp do so frequently. The meta-description can be 156 characters long after that Google will break it down.