How to Write Content for SEO: 15 Top Tips
Updated: Aug 6
You've launched a website, spent hours writing content, grown a social following but still, no one visits your site. Why is that? It could be that you are missing a vital ingredient in content writing, Search Engine Optimization.
The majority of organic (free) traffic online comes from search engines. A website with good SEO content will be on the first page of Google results. Successful SEO will increase organic traffic, grow your customer base, and improve your profits.
There is no set way for always ranking your site on the first page of Google. It is an evolving process that takes a lot of time. If you write content for SEO correctly, your online business will see significant benefits. Heres some advice on things to do and things not to do when writing content for SEO.
How To Write Content for SEO - DO's
1. Write at least 1000 words
There is a wide range of suggestions online as to what the ideal amount of words per post is. While no one knows for sure, it seems, you need to have at least 1000 words in each post to rank in the top 10 of Google.
Backlinko’s 2020 study of 11.8 million google searches showed that the average top 10 page has 1447 words on it. Ideally, you want your articles to be closer to that number.
2. Have the Right Keyword Density
Keyword density is the number of keywords in an article divided by the number of total words. We find that a keyword density of 2% works well for SEO ranking. There is a bunch of free tools you can use to find your Keyword density like Small Seo Tools KW tracker.
When you write content for SEO, you don’t want to stuff so many keywords into your article that it is hard to read. But you want to have the right amount of keywords spread throughout your post to ensure it is found by Google.
3. Provide Relevant Information
To climb Google rankings you need to actually provide your readers with the information they are looking for. Google uses its algorithm to rank the most useful pages at the top of the search.
When a person types a query into Google, Google places the most relevant websites to that query on the first page. To improve your Google rankings you need to provide quality and relevant information about the keywords you want to rank for.
4. Use Headers, and Bullet Points Throughout Your Content
Use bullet points and numbered lists to make your content skimmable and easier for your viewers to read. Use headers to break your content up into clear sections.
Headers play a large role in SEO. There are 3 types of headers for an article. Header 1, Header 2 and Header 3, or H1, H2, and H3.
Your H1 Header is your title and should contain your primary Keyword. Then H2 is your next subtitle, then H3 and so on. Be sure to put your Keywords into the headers to improve your SEO rankings.
5. Always Link Your Sources
When using information or data found elsewhere on the internet be sure to cite your sources with hyperlinks. This backs up the information you are providing and shows Google you are a credible source.
When Google crawls your site it will look at all inbound and outbound links on each page and When one of your readers clicks on a link you provide, they will be taken to that page. You need to be sure your SEO content links to quality sources
Be sure to make the hyperlink open in a new tab when a reader clicks on it. This will stop you from losing all your traffic and help your websites bounce rate.
6. Write Content to your Audience
It is obvious when website content has been directly written to be seen by Google. The SEO content is stuffed with keywords and doesn’t provide the reader with real information.
It is crucial that you write content for your audience and not just for the search engine. You will assert yourself as an industry expert by writing content for SEO that is compelling and informative. Google will reward you for being an expert and you will begin to climb up rankings.
7. Proof Read
Always proofread your content before you post it on your website. Content with spelling and grammar mistakes throughout will lower your business credibility, making readers less likely to view your content. Online readers today have little tolerance for errors and will leave your page quickly if they spot errors. Harming your bounce rate and lowering your rank.
8. Use Your Unique Voice
Write well, you need to draw readers in, get them excited, and provide them with quality information. If readers do not engage with your content, they will leave your site, this harms your SEO score. When writing content for SEO, Don’t be a robot. You may be writing so a search engine can read your posts, but you still have a human audience. Ensure you use your authentic writing voice, no one can replicate your combination of experiences and knowledge.
How Not To Write Content For SEO- DONT's
9. Don’t Plagiarize
You want your website content to be original and unique. It can be tempting to copy another piece of content and add it to your site but, it is pointless. Google’s algorithm heavily penalizes any websites that they find with content that has been copied and pasted from another site. You will never outrank the websites that you copy content from, so there is very little upside to doing it. Readers come to your site to read your unique writing style, so instead of copying, spend time working on your own content. If you do feel the need to copy, make sure you link to the page and give them credit. Or just change up the words a little and its technically not plagiarizing.
10. Don’t Over Complicate Your Writing
Your writing should be easy to read. Unless you are in a very technical and complicated niche, you need to simplify when writing content for SEO. Short and sweet content appeals to both your readers and search engines.
It’s vital to your rankings that you capture and hold your reader’s attention. Around 50% of visitors spend less than 15 seconds on a webpage. Long, over-complicated content will bore readers and they will bounce from your site.
11. Don’t Use Long Sentences/Paragraphs
As mentioned in the point above, it is crucial for your SEO score that you hold your reader’s attention. By fully engaging readers they will stay on your page longer and Google will rank you accordingly. People do not want to read long-winded sentences and paragraphs. Keep your content concise and avoid run-on sentences. Online viewers do not want to see enormous paragraphs on your website. Break the paragraph up if it is over 4 lines. If you have a lot to write about, break it up into easily readable chunks.
12. Don’t Overstuff Keywords
Keyword density is an important factor to consider when you write content for SEO. You don’t want to repeat your keywords so many times that your writing is horrible to read and Google will ban you from ranking if it can tell that you are Keyword stuffing. A good rule of thumb is to aim for 1-2 keywords every 100 words. This will put you in the ultimate keyword density range of 1-2%.
13. Don’t Spam Links
If you are writing content for an affiliate marketing blog then be careful you don’t overload your content with Affiliate hoplinks. Your writing will seem spammy and less trustworthy. Instead of blatantly instructing readers to ‘CLICK HERE’, try to naturally add a call to action to your content.
When Google is analyzing the inbound and outbound links to your website, its algorithm pays attention to the number of ads on your site. Google sees affiliate links as ads so be careful not to overdo it.
Remember, if your sales copywriting is convincing enough, you won’t need to spam affiliate links on your page, readers will be drawn to take action and click on the link you drive them to. Check out this 12 step copywriting guide for everything you need to know about writing sales copy.
14. Don’t Expect People to Actually Read Your Content
There is so much content online, no matter your niche, it is extremely competitive trying to fight for online readers’ attention. Readers do not have the time or attention span to read posts word for word. Add images and videos to your webpage to help capture their attention.
You’ll also need to structure your content with headers, bullet points, and number lists. It encourages your readers to keep scrolling. No one enjoys reading long paragraphs of text.
Everyone scans and glances at the words that stand out the most on the page. Put your most important information first, readers have short attention spans and will read the first part of a webpage then start scanning as soon as they lose attention.
15. Don’t Bullshit
If you want to make any money online, you need your audience to trust you. The best way to build that trust is by writing honest content and providing a valuable product or service.
Being upfront and honest is one of the best ways to prove yourself as a leader in your industry. If you write content for SEO that is not full of bullshit, you will significantly grow your fan base and improve your Google ranks.
It is crucial for any online business to utilize SEO correctly if its aim is to earn a passive income. All it takes is a little extra time and planning when writing your website content and you will see significant growth in your website traffic, contact list, and sales.
Improving and maintaining your SEO content writing is one of the best long term marketing strategies. If you implement some of these tips on your website, you will be rewarded by Google and your rankings will increase. Just be patient, it does take some time.