SEO Copywriting is a crucial part of any Search Engine Optimization strategy but it becomes difficult to keep track of all the changes in algorithms that Google and other search engines decide to make.
In fact, at times there are certain changes which can result in more harm than good if your content optimization strategies don’t follow best practices.
Let’s go through a few tips that will help you optimize your content in the year 2014.
Optimize your content for humans, not robots
Those times are behind us when people were okay with obviously optimized content. It’s 2014; even search engines want to read original content that flows naturally.
While this doesn’t mean keywords are not important, it just means they need to be used naturally so that they don’t negatively affect the readability of the content and help robots find and index your content.
Don’t go for keyword calculations and stuffing
Let’s just eliminate this factor once and for all – keyword density does not matter anymore (not the way it used to). Google and other search engines have started using Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI) so that they can match up the search results with the intention of the person who is performing the search. This means that related keywords, synonyms and grammatical variations are all kept under consideration and using the same keyword repeatedly is not going to help you in any way.
As a matter of fact, keyword repetition and stuffing will only lead to weak content that will likely be penalized by search engines and won’t win any favours with your readers either.
Provide depth and detail
If you go through pages that top Google’s rankings, you’ll find them to average around 1800 – 2000 words. Research also shows that in-depth articles almost always get more shares, views, likes, comments and bookmarks.
In order to stand out in the competitive world of online publishing, you need to produce detailed content that provides valuable insights and actionable information. But none of this means you should go on writing irrelevant content to up the word count.
Focus on Long Tail Keywords
With the competition on the internet being extremely high, it will be difficult for you to rank your content for single-word keywords. Instead, you should start focusing on long tail keywords which are comparatively easier to rank for.
For instance, instead of going for the two-word keyword “selling pitch”, you can opt for a longer sentence like “selling pitch tips for selling cars”. These long-tail keywords will have smaller search volumes but the traffic you do receive will be highly targeted and easier to convert.
Answer questions your target audience mostly asks
Whether you are providing a service or selling products, your prospective customers and target audience definitely has questions, and there is a high chance that these are the very questions they search for online.
By providing actual answers to burning questions you can get more traffic, more shares, more leads and eventually rank better as search engines attribute credibility to your content.
Actively promote your content
If you think your content can only be found through search engines – you’re wrong! Times have changed and social media is a platform with a huge number of prospects.
Moreover, search engines also record social signals and the more social engagement a piece gets the more chances there are that it will rank better on Google. There are several social media platforms you can use for content promotion, including Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+.
Relevant title tags and descriptions
Title tags and snippets are the first two things that are read by the audience and search engines. Google looks at both these elements when it categorizes a certain webpage. Therefore, relevant title tags and Meta descriptions (snippet) are a must.
You need to make them both appear natural, but also include important keywords in them and enough information to attract clicks and pull traffic.
Stop anchor text optimization
Optimizing link text (anchor text) to match with keywords and phrases used to be an effective technique but robots have evolved since then. Google is now wary of such optimization techniques, and if you are using perfect link text, Google might penalize you.
Add alternative text to any images you publish
Optimization of published images also plays a role in your content’s ranking. You should use relevant and original images with keywords in the alternative text section. A good idea would be to copy the title tag and paste it as alternative text. To keep it easy for Google to read, make sure that you use short and snappy keywords for your images and the image file name should also have a relevant keyword.