An SEO content strategy can take many forms; it can be on-page SEO for a specific product, blog articles and videos, photo galleries or wider content marketing. Content is a fundamental pillar for a good SEO strategy; without it, you’re unlikely to succeed.
This SEO content guide gives newcomers to search marketing the opportunity to learn more about how to better optimise SEO content strategy for longer-term success.
What is SEO content?
SEO (Search Engine Optimised) content refers to any type of text, photos or visual media that is found on websites. It is content that is specifically designed to rank in search engines, such as Google.
Any kind of content can be labelled ‘SEO content’, such as product pages, landing pages, videos, short blog posts, but not all the content you will find online is SEO-focused – plenty of articles, for example, receive little to no organic search traffic because they are not optimised for search engines; they are focused more on bringing information to specific audiences.
Why is content so important for SEO?
Content SEO is important because search engines read your website and determine whether or not your site will rank in their results pages based on the words and media they find on your site.
If you want organic search rankings, traffic and visibility, you have to consistently create optimised content – otherwise, you stand little chance of ranking.
How much value should you put on SEO content?
This one’s easy: a lot!
Search engines like Google want to deliver search results that are valuable and relevant to the user. As SEO content is created with search engines in mind, the goal is for Google to consider it valuable and relevant enough to be positioned on the first page of the search engine results page (SERPs). So do not underestimate the value of SEO content.
Optimising your SEO content
Google is constantly evolving its algorithms to deliver useful and relevant results quickly. These ‘results’ are the pieces of SEO content that can be found across the internet. This content is ranked by its order of relevancy to the user performing the search. And because of this, in order for your content to have any SEO value at all, it needs to be beneficial to searchers.
But how do you optimise your content so that Google deems it ‘beneficial’? Well, the search giant has laid out a list to help answer this. They say in their SEO starter guide that to optimise your content you should:
- Make your site interesting and useful
- Know what your readers want (and give it to them)
- Act in a way that cultivates user trust
- Make expertise and authoritativeness clear
- Provide an appropriate amount of content for your subject
- Use links wisely
They make it sound so easy, don’t they?!
Creating SEO content – keyword research
Keyword research is a good starting point when it comes to creating content. If you’re not familiar with keyword research, it is basically where you create a list of keywords that you would like to rank for. Every content SEO strategy should begin with this type of research, as you should know from the beginning what your target audience is already searching for if you want to start bringing traffic to your site.
Why is keyword research important for SEO content?
When done well, keyword research gives clear data about which search terms your audience is already searching for – there is no point in targeting words that your audience isn’t using. Keyword research ensures that you are using the same words as your target audience and therefore makes the whole effort of optimising your website worthwhile.
Choosing topics for SEO content
The best way to get your content found is to match that content to relevant queries from users. That means putting your target audience at the very centre of your research. A core part of content creation for SEO is to establish who your audience is and then you can cater for their content needs. Research what their needs are and learn what it is they want to see from you.
If you start to create SEO content that will resonate with your audience, you are more likely to drive traffic to your site. So always put the audience first.
Define your topics
If you are not from a content background, it can be difficult to come up with relevant topics that appeal to your audience. However, there are plenty of tools online that can help you to brainstorm content ideas, so don’t be put off. If you are lacking focus, consider these tips:
- Topics should be relevant to your audience AND link to your business. So try to show your expertise and experience when creating content. If your content doesn’t have any connection to your business, chances are you can expect a much higher bounce rate.
- Take a look at what topics are being shared on social media. Is there an opportunity to write about that topic yourself in a unique way?
Stick to your target keywords
As you begin writing your SEO content, always keep in mind the target keyword you have chosen and make sure you stick to the topic. There is little to gain from writing about everything in one article – nor by stuffing multiple keywords into one piece of content.
Veering off-topic or keyword stuffing will lead to your content being deemed irrelevant and unuseful by Google. Which is literally the opposite of what you’re trying to achieve!
Use backlinks effectively
Google considers credibility an important SEO factor, so it is up to you to link to relevant, authoritative sites to ensure that search engines see your own content as credible. A good SEO backlink should only highlight words that are relevant to the page that the user will be sent to.
Copywriting for SEO content
A successful SEO strategy needs copywriting. High-quality SEO content should be easily readable for both readers and Google.
When writing articles, for example, consider text structure, sentence length and use clearly defined paragraphs. If your content is easily readable, your articles are more likely to rank well in the search engines – and users are more likely to stick around on your site.
The bottom line
Content SEO is a huge part of SEO marketing. If your content is relevant and well-written, Google can easily read and scan your website text and could reward you with a higher ranking. To write high-quality SEO content, focus on keywords that your target audience is already using and structure your website in a way that Google can easily understand.
If you’re keen to further improve your website’s SEO and need some expert advice, please do get in touch.