I’m about to shamelessly poach an article from one of my favorite sources, MarketingProfs – but it’s all good as I’m telling you all how much I love them!
As content is a huge part of what I do and probably what many of you do, I thought it might be about time to share some tips, as told by the ‘Profs,” for good SEO writing. Here goes:
1. Respect the reader’s time
Everyone is busy, and most people would rather scan an article first before they decide whether it’s worth reading. Make it easy for your readers to know what your article is all about at a glance. Make it interesting enough for them to want to read all of it. Have a point of view and give an opinion.
You want to invite and generate engagement and discussion with people who both agree and disagree with you.
2. Use effective titles for your articles
Your title should be able to tell your readers at a glance what your entire article is all about. Remember: Your title is a summary of your entire piece. Be careful to avoid being gimmicky. You may attract people at the beginning, but if they see that you are using trickery as a strategy to get their attention, you’ll end up losing readers in the long run.
3. Grab your readers’ attention with numbers
Readers are attracted to numbers. Numbers allow them to quickly and easily navigate your content, and they give a structure to your article.
4. Use killer images and visuals to spice up your content
Add pictures, infographics, slide shows, and artwork to your written pieces. Images not only break up the text portion of your article but also make the entire article more visually interesting.
People are attracted to visuals. Make sure that the visuals you use are your own creations. If not, make sure you get permission to use them from the original owners of the graphics and give credit where it’s due.
5. Use lists (sometimes)
People love lists almost as much as they love numbers. And lists are great because they’re not only easy to read but also scannable, which means they’re a search engine’s BFF.
Lists will also help you keep your post succinct and keep your content and thoughts neat and organized. Most blog posts aren’t meant to be long-form essays, so keeping your ideas short and to the point not only appeals to your readers but also keeps your content on point so you can focus on the topic (and keywords) at hand without going off on a tangent.
6. Use keywords strategically
Know your keywords and your keyword research. Go into the process knowing what people are searching for in relation to your content, and then use that input to guide the creation of key content areas, such as your headline, first paragraph, meta tags, and meta description.
7. Use subheads throughout
If your article is longer than 250-400 words, using subheads is a good idea. Subheads will entice your visitors to continue reading your article and easily find sections of most interest to them. Plus, subheads add more fuel for search engines, so use keywords to help craft your subheads.
(And don’t forget to break up text into short paragraphs to make it more readable on a computer monitor.)
8. Make your content easily sharable
You’ve hit publish on a dazzlingly brilliant piece that’s thoughtful, informative, and optimized for search engines. Yet, if your content isn’t being shared, it’s not nearly as effective.
Make sure your site includes social sharing buttons for all of the major social media channels. And if you’re crafting a piece such as a press release, include links so people can easily access images and more information.
9. Tell a story
No matter what topic you write about, the best copywriting technique always involves telling a good story. Nothing beats quality content that is written well and contains interesting and relevant information that’s both helpful and entertaining.