SEO Writing: 6 Step Content Copywriting for the Search EnginesPosted by Ben Sibley on Oct 22, 2011 | 19 comments
It’s important that you write for the people first and then write for the search engines. Once you’re sure your content is awesome you can take the following SEO writing steps for writing content for SEO.
Step 1: Choose Your Keywords
When writing a post, you should target more than one keyword. This is a more secure and effective way to optimize because it gives you a…
- Better chance to rank
- More potential organic traffic
- Easier use of related terms
You can never be sure of exactly how tough or easy it will be to rank until you’re actually competing, so don’t put all your eggs in one basket. By targeting your main keyword and 1-3 additional relevant keywords at once in when writing SEO copy, you can choose one to focus on which ever one is ranking best.
You can then build links to rank for the other keywords, one at a time. This also makes it easier to use your related terms in your content and stay relevant as well.
Step 2: Include Your Keywords
Obviously it goes without saying that you want to include your keyword, but where and how much? It’s best to include your keyword somewhere near the beginning and end of your content. However, how much you should use it… there’s no way to know.
Forget about keyword density. Google will recognize how often you used your keyword, but they also factor in how often every other page in their index with your keyword uses that keyword. There is also a normalization factor for account for the different lengths of content. Basically, the math is complex and requires variables you don’t have access to, so forget about keyword density during your SEO copywriting.
Step 3: Include “related only” words from Google
In Google’s Adword Keyword Tool, there is an option to show only ideas that are closely related to your term. After searching with this parameter selected, click on the word “Keyword” to organize the results by relevance.
You can now select a few of the top results to get very relevant phrases and keywords for writing SEO friendly content.
Step 4: Include synonyms (~)
If you search for a term in Google with a tilde (~) in front of it, Google will automatically identify and search for synonyms as well. You’re likely targeting a longer phrase, so try putting in one word at a time. Every word that is bolded in the titles of the results besides your keyword is considered a synonym.
Ex. If you search for ~guide, you will find words like “map” and “help” bolded as well. Try searching for “guide” without the tilde to see the difference.
Tip: You can change your search preferences to show 20 or 50 results at a time so you can quickly identify many synonyms without having to click through a bunch of pages.
Step 5: Include “suggest” terms
Google suggest terms are those search phrases that appear in a drop down as you type in your query. We can use suggested searches to create another set of relevant terms for our content.
There is a site that will scrape these terms for you: Uber Suggest. All you have to do is enter your keyword and it will give you the next 9 search terms + the next 10 search times after entering each letter of the internet.
Tip: Make sure you choose your language and region before using Uber Suggest
Step 6: Link internally and externally to related pages
One last step you can take to optimize your content is to link to other relevant pages. Linking out to authority sites is a good way to show Google that you have a trust-worthy site as well. It’s also helpful for your readers when you link to appropriate and useful resources.
When linking internally, you can use a related term or partial match anchor text. For instance, if you were trying to rank a page for “keyword research”, you could link with a related term like “how to do keyword research”.
If you’re more concerned with the CTR of the link, then you can use partial match and a benefit in the clickable text. For instance, if you’re trying to rank for “keyword research”, you could link with the anchor text “increase your rank with keyword research”. The benefit makes your link more appealing and you still have your keyword in the clickable text. You can also have other terms between the words of your keyword phrase if necessary.
Last SEO Writing Tip: Your link will have more weight the closer it is to the beginning of the content