Content Strategy: SEO Content Writing Guidelines

If you’re going to have a go at writing your own SEO website content, you’ll find the guidelines contained in this article extremely useful! Even if you plan to outsource your SEO content writing work to us, this article is still handy because it will help you understand the different criteria we aim to meet with all of the SEO content we provide.

So, first things first: What’s SEO content? SEO stands for search engine optimization – the process of getting a website to the top of the search results for related search phrases. SEO content is content that has been written with SEO in mind and is usually keyword-rich.

What Is “Content Strategy?”

Content strategy involves planning and executing the manner in which you add words to your website. Lots of webmasters don’t spare a second thought for the content on their website, which is a big mistake. By devising a content strategy, you can properly plan and add content that’s going to offer value to your visitors and make your site a better place.

Five things that should always be considered in a content strategy are:

1. Existing Content

If your website is already online you need to decide whether existing content is fit for purpose. If you leave bland, boring content on landing pages, your new content may never be read if users bounce straight back off your website before clicking any of your internal links.

2. Buzzwords and Uniformity

Some webmasters try to use certain words whilst avoiding others. It’s all in an effort to keep a website’s content consistent across the board. There’s little point in having some pages written in a serious, cold tone and others written in a chatty, friendly tone.

3. Ways To Add New Content

We’re not talking about adding a new page here and there for the sake of it. We’re talking about adding new content for a reason. One great way to add new content on a regular basis is to start a blog – on there, you can publish general news items, tutorials and more. You could also look to publish a knowledge base on your website.

4. The Outcome You Desire

If you want to educate people and your site is for a charity, the aim of the game is to get people to stick around for as long as possible reading your content. If, on the other hand, you’re trying to get people to buy from your website, you need to give them the information they need along with a little “push” to get them to make the purchase. Content written to make a sale is known as copywriting.

5. Who Is Going To Write It

Knowing who’s going to write the content for your website is very important. If you don’t have the time or expertise to write it all yourself, it’s not the end of the world – but you should take some time to hire a reputable, reliable company that can write your content for you with minimal hassle.

Writing Guidelines

Here are the ten SEO content writing guidelines that all good content writers and companies will adhere to:

Write for People, Not Search Engines!

It sounds silly, but search engines care more about the satisfaction of users and searchers. Don’t publish content that is keyword-stuffed and unreadable. Publish content that’s engrossing and will keep your bounce rate low – content that draws repeat readers, recommendations and even backlinks and social media shares.

Use Headers

Headers are an important part of SEO. Headers are also important for readers because they help to break up what would otherwise be extremely dense chunks of text. Using proper header tags brings discourse to your content both for readers and search engine spiders – everyone is happy!

Say No to Keyword Stuffing

A few years ago, some people found they could rank websites highly by using unreadable, keyword-stuffed text. The reality is that search engine algorithms have come a long way and keyword stuffing no longer works. It’s OK to incorporate a keyword or two here and there, but they shouldn’t be shoehorned in for the sake of it. The readability of your work should take precedence over the compulsory inclusion of keywords.

Always Proofread Your Work

It goes without saying that all content, blogs, articles and press releases should be properly proofread before being published. Proofreading allows you to weed out silly spelling and grammar mistakes and polish up areas of text that perhaps don’t work as well as they should.

Conduct Plenty of Research

It doesn’t matter whether you’re writing general website content or a blog post – it should always be accurate and well-researched where necessary. No one wants to waste their time reading content that’s full of factual inaccuracies, and if you publish such content, it won’t paint your website in a particularly good light.

Include Internal Links

When publishing your SEO website content, it’s important to include internal links within the text wherever possible, cross-referencing other pages on your website. Internal links encourage users to read deeper on your site, and they also help with SEO.

Don’t Aim for a Word Count

One of the biggest mistakes that people make in the world of SEO content writing is trying to hit a certain word count on every page. We think that SEO content should flow properly – write as much or as little as you need for each page on your site. Typically, “Contact Us” pages require just a sentence of two of content, whereas an “About Us” page may need 1,000 words or more. Don’t aim for a fixed word count on every page on your site – write what’s necessary; nothing less, nothing more.

Use Calls-to-Action (CTAs) Where Necessary

Remember your website content is going to be read by real people; therefore, it needs to coerce them into “converting.” A conversion occurs when someone takes advantage of the services that you have to offer, buys a product from your site, or gets in touch. All good website content persuades and convinces users they need to become a customer or client of your business – or they need the products or services that you’re selling.

Include External Links Where Required

Sometimes it’s a good idea to reference external websites in order to backup data or reinforce a point you’re making. Typically, references are reserved more for articles and blog posts, but sometimes it’s appropriate to include external reference links in general SEO website content – so make sure you do!

Write Naturally

What we’re trying to say in most of the above points is that your SEO content should just be natural, informative, unique and offer real value to readers. There are some things you can do to help in terms of SEO (including the use of headers), but if you think keyword stuffing or hitting a set word limit on each page is going to help your SEO efforts, you’re wrong!

Search engine algorithms are ever-evolving but the above tips should remain timeless. The most important thing to remember is that you’re writing for people, not search engine spiders. Even if you get lots of traffic on your website, you won’t make any sales or see any conversions if your content is bad.

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