How to boost your content strategy: SEO copywriting tips to improve your positioning
Google receives more than 3,500 million searches daily around the world and its domination of search engines is inarguable. Throughout the year, its algorithms undergo a series of official updates, although in some cases, these changes aren’t even officially announced. The goal of Google’s updates is to improve the quality of the results that are offered to users after searching and take into consideration the positioning factors that determine the quality, authority, and relevance of each URL that is registered.
Some of the most important algorithm changes that have been developed over the last few years are Panda (2011), focused on content quality; Penguin (2012), which rewarded the quality of the links; Hummingbird (2013, also called Google Colibri), which was designed to analyze the semantic search; RankBrain (2015), which helps to interpret searches to find results that don’t precisely match the exact words of the query; or BERT (2019), which is also centered in better understanding user searches and decoding its context.
Why explain all this? Because when we ask ourselves how to create a content strategy, we can’t turn our back on Google and its demands, which are those of the users. The content marketing of today must integrate SEO from the beginning to achieve more relevant content for users and with it, more traffic and conversion.
SEO Content Marketing: why is it so important?
SEO content is a technique to achieve visibility in search engines. This goal crosses with others that the marketing department may have in their content strategy: create brand awareness and push users to conversion. However, both goals are compatible and must work in harmony: a better positioning on websites will give you relevance and traffic; we can push this traffic through CTAs or internal links so that clients go to your page and end up acquiring your products or services.
Writing content for SEO is useful because it helps us give the best answers to users and, therefore, helps Google with the selection of our content, indicating the topic, the information we transfer, and why it’s important. Thus, search engines, when ranking this content, will take all of these values into account to select it and add it to the results in a specific position for a specific search. SEO works to give visibility to what copywriters write and optimize the relevance of their texts with a series of practices that must be applied. If you want to read advice about how to write SEO optimized content, keep reading!
Content Strategy and SEO Copywriting: how to position websites
Quality and Authority
Even if we really want to position content well, it won’t be possible if we don’t have sufficient authority and quality for the search engines. These are due in part to Google’s quality concept EAT. If your website is a leading voice in digital marketing, it’s going to be very difficult to rank on differing topics, such as pets.
Google algorithms are focused on positioning true and quality information and because of this, they select content from websites that have authority on these topics.
KW research before writing
We’ll use an example of a blog post. This first step before starting to write is deciding the topic and, with that, doing keyword research that lets us know the keywords that users use to search for information about this topic. It’s necessary when creating an editorial calendar.
Along with the principal keyword, similar and secondary keywords must be remembered as well, and especially, boosting them with bold type and in headings to give more relevance and position them better. At the same time, it’s important to favor a natural reading in that the use of keywords isn’t forced or too repetitive, given that Google keeps that in mind with its BERT algorithm.
SEO copywriting keywords can be short tail or long tail, according to their extension:
Short tail keywords include a maximum of 2-3 words: for example, “wedding dresses”. They’re more generic, less specific, and have a higher number of searches, but there’s also more competition and, therefore, a higher difficulty for positioning with them.
Long-tail keywords are more extensive and specific (“women’s winter wedding dresses”) and they focus on the search and allow a quicker positioning, generally speaking, because the frequency is lower.
Structuring the text
Keyword research can give us very useful clues when it comes to structuring text and dividing it into thematic blocks. The options are various: if you search for shelves, you can find keywords related to “best materials for shelves” and “how to build a shelf”. A copywriter must have the criteria to know how to choose the most interesting option from the available ones and, from there, organize the information in a clear and hierarchical way. Curating content is a part of SEO content marketing.
When it comes to thinking about how the text will be structured, we also have to keep in mind the density of keywords, using the principal keyword more at the beginning of the text and then slowly decreasing the frequency, combining it with synonymous and secondary keywords. For this, there are tools like Similar Content that help to control the density.
Having a defined structure will help increase the legibility of the text and, therefore, increase the chance that the reader spends more time on our webpage. It’s all connected at the end!
Use of keywords
The logic of positioning a webpage tells us that the principal keyword of the text has to be in the most prominent place: in this case, in the H1 or the post title. We have to use secondary keywords in relevant places like the different headings (H2, H3), through which we divide the information. It’s also useful to spread the use of the keywords throughout the body of the article, highlighting them with the use of bold type.
When it comes to writing SEO content, you have to get into the skin of the user that is going to perform the search and speak their same language. We use a wide and extensive vocabulary, with synonyms, but without losing clarity nor complicating the reading.
Internal and External Linking
It’s important to include links to other valuable content within your website that are related to the same topic and provide value. This has a double benefit: for the user, it gives them the chance to find out more information about what they’re looking for; for you, you’ll keep the reader on your page for more time which means not only more traffic, but also more engagement.
Internal links are also important because, in addition to complementing the information, they transfer authority to another type of content related to the web.
External links are interesting, as long as they are coherent with the content and enrich it; they must direct to relevant and trustworthy pages (general or specialized communication sites, references blogs)...
Images and Videos
SEO is also applied to images. Including photographs in a text can help give a breath to the reader and provide visual information that breaks up the monotony of the written parts. Images contain an alt title and alt text that we have to take advantage of to give more information and context, including the principal keywords of the topic. Then the search engines can see this image as relevant and rank the page higher, for example, in Google Images. In addition, when it’s possible and when there are resources and justification, it’s also beneficial to include videos, from YouTube or other platforms or directly linked to its own site. This factor also helps legibility and promotes an easier and more visual display for users. Another interesting resource is infographics, which are very compelling as they provide even more value.
Optimize outdated content
It’s possible that the content and marketing strategy is a project that starts when the company already has lots of published texts online. Old blogs, an outdated website...it’s about optimizing whatever has been published until now, identifying first its level of positioning and visits and then studying how we can enrich the texts so that they follow the global SEO guidelines and are framed within the new 360º marketing strategy.
The answer to how to optimize a website in search engines is very complex. SEO evolves very quickly and demands constant attention to be up-to-date with the changes and improvements of our content. Search engines are focusing more and more on the user and their search needs and we have to keep them present during the entire writing process. Summing it up, a useful approximation of digital marketing in the digital world needs the SEO perspective to adapt to what the search engines prioritize. It’s the moment to reinvent your content strategy and get to work.
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