Content writing and doing SEO are inextricably linked together.
SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization, which can be described as a set of activities that help a website rank high on the SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages).
A huge part of SEO relies on content writing. Good content is the only way to generate organic traffic and get more people to visit your website.
It is also the same content used to convert leads and drive these visitors through the sales funnel.
In this article, we will look at some methods to write SEO-optimized Content that ranks high on Google.
How to Write SEO Optimized Content That Will Rank High on Google
1. Keyword Research
First and foremost in content writing is keyword research.
Keywords are the words and phrases that people use to search for things.
For example, a keyword related to cars would be “car parts.”
Google and other search engines rank websites and pages for their target keywords.
Whenever a website is created, it targets some specific topic, and as such, it is optimized for keywords related to that topic.
These keywords are used in the content that is posted on the website. That is the basics of keyword optimization.
Research is required to know the primary, secondary, and long tail keywords and their respective search volumes and ranking difficulty.
Then the keywords that have high search volume and relatively low search ranking difficulty should be targeted.
E.A.T stands for Expertise, Authority, Trustworthiness.
If you want to write content that is optimized for SEO and will rank high, then you or your hired writer must be these three things:
- Expert in the field they are writing about.
- Known (authoritative) in their area so that their word holds weight.
- Trustworthy, they do not contradict themselves or go against what they say.
This is especially necessary if your content concerns sensitive things that can affect a reader’s health or finances.
If you are writing a medical blog, your writer needs to be a certified doctor or nurse who has studied the topic at hand and has experience dealing with illnesses and their treatments.
Similarly, if you are hosting a blog that gives financial and business advice, your writer must be a business expert who knows the ins and outs of the industry.
They must also never knowingly give bad advice, which can affect their trustworthiness.
Google looks at the E.A.T of content writers before ranking that content, so it is paramount that only known and reliable experts write content on sensitive matters.
Otherwise, the content will not be allowed to rank high.
3. Focus on The Audience
Who is going to read your content? That is an important question to ask when writing something.
In SEO, people lose sight of who their content is for and focus too much on optimizing the technical aspects of SEO.
While the technical aspects are essential, they are useless without good content backing them up.
Your content performs very well when you write your content to appease your audience and cater to their needs and demands.
Google, in particular, is very strict when it comes to content performance.
If readers do not find value in your content, then the SERP ranking will fall.
Apart from content catering to the audience’s needs, it is also vital that the language and vocabulary used are easy enough to understand.
Complex content cannot rank high because it excludes many people from reading it.
A simple paraphrasing session can decrease the difficulty, though.
Paraphrasing can be done using an online paraphraser.
These are free tools that can automatically rewrite content using a different vocabulary.
Quite a lot of tools come with different modes, and some of them are specifically for increasing readability.
Improving your content by paraphrasing is a legitimate technique. It has various benefits, such as saving time and effort.
One shouldn’t shy away from it because of its negative uses, as it has plenty of legitimate ones.
4. Outbound and Internal Links
Linking structure is an important SEO factor that affects rank as well.
Usually, when we refer to linking, we mean to say how a website allows its visitors to reach all its pages from the landing page.
This also includes any linking from related pages to each other.
But what people sometimes overlook is that the content itself is also part of the linking structure.
You often write a blog that discusses the advanced and nuanced parts of a topic.
Instead of going over the basics every time, you link another post that you wrote that explains the basics and move on.
Similarly, you may have read a better post that explains a topic on a different blog.
You can put a link to that post in your content. That way, your readers can get the best experience.
A good linking structure gives you plenty of brownie points with Google, and you can bet that your rank will rise if your linking structure is good.
Any content is not perfect on the first go. There is an iterative process involved.
The content is written and then proofread; any identified mistakes are edited.
Once editing is done, then proofreading is done again until the editor/author is satisfied with the content quality.
One of the most dangerous mistakes that can be made when writing content is committing accidental plagiarism.
Plagiarized content is treated horribly by Google, and rightly so.
Plagiarism is one of the worst acts a content creator can do. The penalties associated with plagiarism are:
- Rank reduction
To check plagiarism during proofreading, you can use a plagiarism-checking tool.
These free online tools can compare content against online sources and detect copied content in them.
Once duplication has been detected, it can be edited out or cited.
Without proofreading and editing, the content quality suffers, and harmful mistakes like accidental plagiarism go through, which can result in a terrible performance and sabotages the SEO.
6. Adding Relevant Images
Content optimization does not just include rooting out mistakes, adding good links, and addressing the audience’s needs.
It also includes images and tables added to your content.
Google image search is a handy feature that has allowed many people to discover new sites that are useful to them.
According to a study by Moz, for websites optimized for images, 20% to 60% of traffic from Google is through image search.
That is a whopping figure, meaning there is a lot of incentive to add images to your content.
People finding your content through an image only increases the number of visitors to your content, and more traffic is always a good signal to Google.
And if those people become attracted to your site and visit more pages, then that only further cements your site’s relevancy in Google’s mind.
Consequently, the rank of your website will increase in the SERPs.
7. Content Structure
The structure of the content is essential for a variety of reasons.
If we look at the technical reasons, there’s only one: the structured content that is easily indexed and crawled.
If Google knows what your content is about, it can match it to the relevant search queries.
That will only result in better content performance and an increase in the SERPs ranking.
The non-technical reason is that breaking your content into headings and subheadings makes it more readable and scannable.
Many times, visitors skim the headings before actually reading the content.
They do this to see if the content has what they need or not.
Hence, breaking down the content into sections and subsections only increases user engagement and dwell time while reducing the bounce rate.
These are all factors that contribute to a rise in SERP ranking.
So always pay attention to your content structure.
SEO-optimized content is a necessity in the modern digital marketing landscape.
The competition for people’s attention is fierce, and those who cannot keep up are lost in the second pages and beyond of search engine results pages.
Content marketing is one of the most successful sub-branches of digital marketing.
It is highly praised because it has relatively low investment costs and great ROI (return on investment).
It is one of the best long-term marketing strategies, as good content can attract new traffic for a long time.
With the tips discussed in this article for writing SEO-optimized content, writers can boost the rank of their websites without using black hat SEO techniques.
Using legitimate techniques is helpful because there is no risk of getting delisted or reduced rank.