How to Write Great SEO Content – 6 Top Tips
June 14th 2019 | By Emma Grant
Last month we delved into the realms of SEO, taking a look at 10 of the best tips to optimise your website for search engine success. One of these tips was to publish bang-on content. It’s certainly one of the most straightforward and least scientific SEO strategies you can follow. The better the quality of your content and the more you post, the more traffic you will get to your website. It really is as simple as that. But what exactly is quality content? Let’s take a look at precisely how to write great SEO content so you can increase your chances of netting those coveted top spots in the search engines.
1. Hone your audience and target your keywords
In 2019, writing great SEO content means writing material that is totally reader-focused. This is the only way to rank high and drive traffic to your site.
You need to start by breaking down your audience so that you really understand their specific needs. Ask these questions:
- What kind of information is useful to your audience?
- Why would they find what you’re writing about beneficial?
- What keywords are they using to find this information?
You’ll need to do some research. First, identify the audience that you believe will want or need what you offer. Where do they hang out online? Once you’ve found them, get into a conversation with them. This is a crucial process. Put the effort in and it will pay dividends. Here are some strategies that you can employ:
Surveys – these are great for identifying audience needs, challenges and pain points so you can work out precisely how you are going to help
Forums – observing or getting involved in discussions is a great way to see what is on people’s minds and how they are going about trying to resolve it
Social media – again you can observe or get involved in conversations for valuable insight into what is bothering or captivating people
Once you’ve got to grips with your audience profile, you’ll need to start on your keyword research. You want relevant keywords that are connected with the products or services you offer, your expertise and the search intent of your audience. Keyword research is a broad topic in its own right and we’ll cover that in a separate post as there’s lots to look at. But for now, let’s just say that instead of focusing on search volume for a keyword, the wisest strategy is to focus on search intent. In other words, what is the user searching for, and how can you fulfil that intent with your content?
Topic research comes next. This will make use of your keyword research to help you define topics for content based on what your audience wants to know, compare, learn or buy, etc.
2. Make your content readable
Have you ever landed on an article, blog or guide, only to lose the plot in the first few sentences? That’s probably because the writer didn’t factor in readability.
Your core aim is to make sure your reader stays and gets involved in your content. If they do, then Google will instantly think, hey, this stuff must be good. It’s relevant to the search query. We like this – let’s make it visible to more people! Remember we talked about Dwell Time? It’s what lets the search engines know how well you satisfy your visitors’ needs. This is precisely what we’re aiming for: great Dwell Time.
Readable content will generally be straightforward and easy to follow; logical; well-organised and nice and clear. If you write something that people don’t understand then they are just not going to stick around to read it.
3. Make your content in-depth and show your expertise
Content that has value and that delves into a subject is great SEO content. Overview content is not what’s cutting it for 2019. So be sure to drill down and really explore specific parts of a topic in-depth.
You should be looking to write at least 1,000 words for your posts, but ideally around 2,000 words. If you can, go for an angle that is rarely explored or that you have specific expertise in and can really expand upon. Make yours the ‘ultimate’ guide to the subject, so there’s nothing better.
Do your research and dig out statistics that you can dissect and explain. It’s all about making your content stand out and really show your expertise. And whilst we’re on the subject, be sure to list or link to your citations. Adding supporting facts and listing your resources really does differentiate you as a specialist and someone who cares about making sure their content is delivering verified facts.
4. Be original
On the subject of facts and resources, a fantastic way to write great SEO content is to cover your very own research. There is nothing better than something original. Statistics, guidance, research, studies… anything new and original will become a magnet for links from other websites and social platforms.
This type of content is incredibly valuable for both your audience and your industry, so if you can go down this route with your content, absolutely do so.
5. Go for featured snippets
We’ve talked before about the value of featured snippets and how to achieve them. Not only does achieving them seriously boost your SEO, it also enhances your brand profile too.
Follow the steps in our guide to optimising your content for featured snippets and you’ll be in with a chance of grabbing that amazing spot right at the top of the page – the very spot that attracts traffic away from the number 1 ranked site.
6. Make it visual
Research dictates that content punctuated by relevant imagery gets 94 per cent more views than content without.
Do proceed with care though. Stock photos that everyone else is using are not going to add value. If you can, and if it’s relevant, invest in your own unique imagery or use step-by-step screen shots. This is far more likely to engage your reader than a posed, cheesy shot that they’ve seen countless times elsewhere. Alternatively, if stock photos are your only option, be sure to go for something higher end. And ALWAYS make sure your images are relevant AND alt-tagged with your focus keyword for better search-ability.
Ready to write your own great SEO content?
Follow our tips and you’ll soon be on the road to writing great SEO content that will boost your search engine rankings and drive more traffic to your website. Need some help with content writing for search engine success? Talk to Figment!