Somehow I doubt that Gabriel García Márquez had SEO copywriting tips in mind when he wrote the opening to One Hundred Years of Solitude
Many years later, as he faced the firing squad, Colonel Aureliano Buendía was to remember that distant afternoon when his father took him to discover ice.
But we live in different times. We write for different audiences. We write for different reasons using different technology.
To be successful writing in today’s world, these SEO copywriting tips should come in handy…
Tip 1: Focus on Valuable Content for Your Readers
Honestly, I am embarrassed to start off with this one – heck to even have to include it in the list – but there are many out there that don’t realize that Google penalizes sites for content deemed to be of little value to its intended audience. So focus on quality content that readers can put to good use.
Tip 2: Focus on the Right Keywords
What is your audience going to type into the old Google search bar to find your post?
Let’s be honest – if you could answer that question correctly, you might be focusing on Lotto or Powerball for a bigger payoff, am I right?
So to help, check out The Google Keyword Planner which “…is a useful resource for building strong keyword lists and helping to get your PPC campaign off to a running start.”
Take a look at which keywords are receiving the highest search volume, take competitiveness into consideration, and this tool will give you some great options.
Also, if you are focusing on local business, remember to target location! For example, if you’re an accounting firm focus on corporate clients and located in Baltimore…check out “Baltimore Corporate Accounting” rather than just “account firm”.
As for this being one of the good SEO copywriting tips – I would love to hear your comments and if you have some data to support your opinions, that would be even better.
Tip 3: Title Tags
Notice that “Adult Student Retention” is in the title – and what’s the first thing anyone and everyone notices when looking at the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs)?
Don’t get overexcited – remember that your headline needs to be less than 70 characters otherwise Google truncates the title. So put your keywords at the front/start of your headline.
Now, one last piece of advice regarding your headlines. Using a number in your headline has been tied to higher click-through rates (CTR) so you might want to write “30 ways to…” and “15 top…” headlines. (For some insight into this, check this out.)
Tip 4: Don’t Stuff Your Keywords
Remember back to Tip 1 and the importance of quality content – well this tip is all about crappy writing because what it is referring to is the age-old practice of repeating your keywords over and over and over and over…until the reader will swear that the post had to have been written by a computer program/robot.
What’s the magical threshold? Great question – I haven’t been able to find a hard number/percentage so I will just suggest you go with your gut.
And check out these examples – here and here.
Tip 5: Grammar and Spelling Matter
Another reference back to Tip 1 – you can’t have quality content when it’s packed with bad grammar and misspelled words. I strongly suggest Grammarly – it’s saved my backside more times than I care to admit.
Tip 6: Heading and Subheads
Like the title tags, headings and subheads give you an opportunity to use the keywords in a way that goes with the flow and doesn’t negatively impact the quality. Plus, they both help people like me that tend to skim and/or get easily confused when topic changes aren’t clearly presented.
Personal Note: I teach college marketing courses and I beg students to include subheads because so many of the students struggle with organization and presentation. That produces [ex] 2-page long paragraphs that seem to cover about 4 to 6 different topics.
Tip 7: Reference and link to Great Sources
Let’s be honest – if the goal is high-quality content, you are going to have to do some research on the subject. And that means you are identifying sources you feel are high-quality sources of accurate data.
So link to them. Share that with the reader.
And for that, you will be rewarded by the Gods of SEO. Oh, here’s an example of what I mean – click here to see Google’s Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide.
Tip 8: Repeat After Me – Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI) Keywords
Latent semantic indexing, or LSI, keywords are those keywords that are synonyms or related to your primary keyword.
Remember “Baltimore corporate accounting” from Tip 2? Well, instead of “corporate” consider “business”. Instead of “accounting” consider “accountant”.
Easy, wasn’t it?
Want to blow your mind? (Say ‘Yes!’) Check out Twinword Ideas LSI Graph – it’s based on text analysis technology and can help with keywords, long-tail keywords, and LSI keywords.
SEO Copywriting Tips – What’s Next?
Well, success is going to come from your ability to generate great content that engages the reader and uses relevant keywords in the right quantity so that one day Google might show it some love and give it a high organic search ranking.
For the short-term, focus on the great content that readers are engaged with – because it takes time for Google to do its thing and who knows where we will all be when that happens!
Hey, if you have questions or comments – feel free to comment below.