SEO copywriting is all about creating content that would hit the top positions on Google. It sounds easy, isn’t it?
However, it doesn’t mean that you can write content for search engines only. The main trick of SEO copywriting is to be able to create content that could satisfy both people and search algorithms.
So, the question is how to find the right angles to write such type of content?
This guide will get you familiar with a list of SEO copywriting rules that will help you create content that ranks well on Google.
SIDENOTE: If you want to know how to find high-quality backlink opportunities, you should review this video:
Content Idea Goes First
I believe that it is a challenging task to come up with a post idea that would be unique on the web. There are lots of aspects that have been covered through the content in different niches. Nevertheless, you as a marketer must produce new, fresh, unique, and useful content for your audience.
How to find a content idea that would work for you?
There is a bunch of SEO tools that could help you figure out the freshest content ideas on the Internet. My personal choice is Content Explorer tool. The only thing that you have to do is to put a desirable query to the tool and see what topics get more traffic:
I am not an expert in a ‘sports nutrition’ niche but if I were the one, I would choose the topics that I have marked on the screenshot above. Now let’s see how I could use these topics for my own content strategy.
“19 foods to gain weight quickly and safely” – I would make the list of foods wider and paraphrase the title to “How to gain weight fast eating these 25 foods.”
“12 Best Reviewed Pre Workout Supplements 2018” – I would move in the same direction here and make the list wider + change the title of the topic to “15 Pre Workout Supplements You Should Use In 2018.”
The other tool that I would recommend you to be armed with is BuzzSumo. You can search for content ideas using this tool as well.
What’s more important, you can create “evergreen” content that never gets old. The tactic that you should use here is called a “skyscraper” technique. And here is a brief guideline on how to use it:
- Make an analysis of content on your own blog to pick out the posts that have lots of backlinks, social shares, and traffic.
- Update these posts with some new insights.
- Reach out to people who have linked back to these posts before and introduce the new material to them.
As you can see, it is not hard to find new content ideas or breathe new life to the topics that have worked previously.
- Research Informational Keywords
Keyword research is an integral part of creating content. You will have to spend lots of your time to find the juiciest keywords that you want your content to rank for on Google.
No, you won’t find a detailed guide on keyword research from me here because it deserves a separate article. Nevertheless, I would like to highlight some other important aspects of this process.
You know for sure that there is a countless number of keywords that people tend to use for their content marketing efforts across different niches. However, there is a type of keywords that plays a crucial role in its relevance to your content. The keywords I am talking about are called “informational” ones.
It won’t be hard to guess what do these keywords mean. First and foremost, informational keywords bring some information into masses and they have informational intent. Alternatively stated words such as, “when”, “how”, “where”, “why”, tend to be informational keywords. You use them for providing people with the information only. Plus, this type of keywords is not commercial.
If you build your content on the informational keywords, it will always make Google happy. The reason for this is very simple – Google doesn’t like keywords that have a low search volume.
- Long-Tail Keywords
There are lots of disputes around long-tail keywords’ usability. Some experts state that the long-tails are not a good choice to be implemented in content; the others say just the opposite.
Let’s take the fact that long-tails have a low individual search volume but this type of keywords obtains around 40% of search traffic on the web.
Take a look at the search demand curve in numbers:
What do these charts show us? You can see that despite the fact of a low individual volume, there are long-tail keywords (phrase combinations) that make the overall volume high.
To conclude, you should use long-tails in your content for sure.
- Search Intent
It’s one thing to come up with a catchy content idea and write a post but it’s quite another deal to make users find this post on the net.
Google suggests a ton of results on whatever query you type:
The results are impressive but only a few of them were lucky to get to Google Top 10.
Why does it happen?
It happens because of ranking factors that play a significant role in content distribution on Google. One of these factors is search intent. The primary goal of search intent is to help Google understand whether a particular search query gains traction or not.
The first step I advise you to take is to look for any commonalities in the SERPs:
You can see that Top 10 SERP includes “how-to” guides, “tips”, and “tricks” posts. It is evident that these posts contain informational keywords. But the question is how to find the exact informational keywords that you might miss?
Content Gap helps you here:
Run through these suggestions and focus on the right target audience based on its search intent. When more people from your niche start to find and read your content insightfully, your chances to rank well in Google increase.
- Don’t Forget to Add Keywords to Titles, Headers, and URLs
Search engine robots start crawling the web searching for the keywords that would be related to the queries people type on Google. The crawlers look for these keywords analyzing URLs, headers, and titles where those keywords might be used.
If you want to help the crawlers to find the keywords you rank for, you should add them (keywords) to URL, title, and header consequently.
I would like to illustrate how the keyword should be placed with a given example:
- Within the URL
- Within the title
By the way, it would be a nice idea if you decide to use long-tails for this purpose.
- Create Long-Form Content
I came through the threads around the effectiveness of long-form content initiated by different experts. The opinions differ. However, it’s obvious that creating long-form content is pretty challenging and time-consuming.
While the experts have different opinions regarding long-form content, Google likes it for sure. And here are some assumptions why does this happen:
- It ranks good
Let me feature a few infographics that would prove this argument. The first one is from Backlinko’s research:
HubSpot’s infographic proves us that content 2,500+ words ranks far better compared to the shorter forms of content:
I believe these two infographics have assured you that long-form content ranks well.
- It is really topically relevant
It should be stated that Google takes topic relevance as one of the important ranking factors. In other words, your content must match with the search inquiries people type on Google.
What do I mean by this?
Let’s see, if you type a query like “freddie mercury dead”, you’ll get short information about the exact date:
No long-form content is needed in this case.
If we put something like “how to tune a guitar”, we’ll get a step-by-step instruction that needs no long-form content as well:
However, if people use some other queries, the situation might change and the time for long-form content will come:
As you can see, this inquiry ain’t the right one that you could cover in a few steps. It requires you to write an in-depth article to cover all the aspects of this process.
- It is convertible
Long-form content is a wonderful opportunity for you to convert it over and over again. You can update it by adding some new insights. Or you can transform it into video or infographics.
- It is shareable
Since long-form content aims to bring some useful information to the masses, it is pretty shareable.
Would you like to see a concrete example to the above? Check out this chart:
The longer your content is, the more shareable it will be.
I believe these four arguments have proven you that long-form content is well worth the time.
- Link to Other Relative Resources and to the Content on Your Site
Linking to other resources in your content is a good practice in general. First of all, you introduce your readers some more relative information that would be useful for them. Secondly, interlinking brings you the following benefits:
- Better user experience
- It makes website architecture better
- It helps crawlers reach the pages that were less accessible
- It helps link juice pass through the pages on your site better
- Encourage Your Target Audience to Share Your Content
It is pretty darn important to get your content shared across social media channels. Yes, it is essential when people share your content independently. However, there won’t be anything extraordinary if you would encourage your target audience to share the content. Just feel free to add a few lines with your friendly request regarding sharing your posts at the end of each piece of content you publish.
- Don’t Forget to Interact with Your Audience
User interaction is another ranking factor that Google pays attention to. It is also called “bounce rate.” The specification of this ranking factor is to count the percentage of site visitors in correlation with the time the users spend on it. Put simply, it shows how long the users stay on site.
If your website has a high bounce rate, it will reduce your traffic and your ranking position will drop. That’s why you must interact with your audience by publishing high-quality engageable content, reply to the comments, implement various types of the content (videos, visuals, podcasts), and add inbound links of course.
If your first thought was that SEO copywriting is focused on adding some technical elements to your content, you were wrong. You already noticed that this post includes items that reveal the ways of making your content user-friendly and more for people instead of robots.
I hope that these nine points have lifted the veil on how to perform SEO copywriting right.
It goes without saying that I never forget about the interaction with my readers, thus, please, feel free to post your comments and share this post on your socials.
Author bio: Sergey Aliokhin is a Marketing Manager at Ahrefs. Apart from working at Ahrefs he likes spending his time with family, studying martial arts and plucking fat bass guitar strings.