The challenge in front of you, is to write content that’s optimized for search engines, and that will also appeal to people. Understanding that people come first, and then the Google algorithm, is crucial to forming good SEO copywriting habits.
What is SEO Copywriting?
SEO copywriting is writing for humans, while understanding and using SEO techniques that appeal to Google and will result in better rankings.
SEO copywriting will do several things for your online business.
- Engaging content will pull in your customers and prospects.
- Targeted content will solve the problems that your customers have.
- The reader is prompted to take action: sign up, subscribe, buy, try a demo.
- Valuable content will be promoted on social media, leading to more page/domain authority.
- Authority will improve your rankings on the search engines for particular keywords.
SEO Copywriting Step by Step
- Research Keywords: Possible Topics
- Pick one to write about: Your Topic
- Ask yourself, “How will my content solve a problem for my audience?”
- Ask yourself, “Is there an entertaining way that I can write about this topic?”
- Ask yourself, “What action do I want my readers to take?”
- Ask yourself, “How will this content cause the reader to take action?”
Develop Good SEO Copywriting Habits
If you observe a lot of website copy, you will notice patterns in copywriting that don’t meet Google’s demands for content that is of good quality and is written in a natural human-readable fashion.
Writing for humans has always been the best approach.
Let me paint a word picture. I am reminded of my son, when he was young, and taking dance classes. His teacher kept telling him to loosen up his hips, and he kept dancing like a stiff little soldier. Over time, and with practice, he won a number of dance competitions, and was quite the prize at our local Swing Dance Club with the really short ladies.
Google is a bit like a dance instructor. It has gotten more sophisticated in what it demands from its students, and expects us all to loosen up and dance with natural flow, and organic posture.
When I do SEO audits, I find some really bad habits in content writing, which are SEO killers.
Using the dance analogy, there are copy writers who remind me of the usual suspects you might find at swing dance night.
- ‘Single & Lonely Larry’: Picking a SINGLE KEYWORD, rather than using long tail keywords & phrases
- ‘No Boundaries Bob’: Over-optimizing for a keyword, by using it over and over and over
- ‘Fickle Frank’: Jumping from one topic to another without any particular focus
Be honest. You avoid people like this in real life. Similarly, Google avoids pages and websites like this.
Balanced, Natural SEO Content
Envision that Google is auditioning your content, like a dance teacher auditions new students. It looks at a number of clues to make up its mind.
Content, like dancing, is a social thing. To be popular, you need to speak in an engaging and entertaining way, with varied phrases, and related subject matter.
But, not too wordy, because that is annoying. Google dismisses content that goes on and on and on, using twenty different ways to say the same thing.
Lastly, there are writers who cannot decide what topic to talk about, and jump from one thing to the other, never really making a point at all. Google can tell the difference between “Natural” and “Not Focused”.
SEO Copywriting Lessons from Mad Men
In writing your content, your job is to get into the mind of your users, understand the questions that they have, and write content that will inform, alleviate, and call to action.
Let your site content be like these secretaries in Mad Men, always standing there, waiting to take the hat and coats of your visitors. Knowing visitors are coming, being ready to welcome them, and giving them a hand at making a decision to do business with you.