Table of contents
- Do content writers need to know SEO?
- What Does an SEO Content Writer Do?
- Approach to SEO Content Writing for Beginners
- SEO Best Practices and Trends for SEO practitioners
- Skillsets any SEO content writer should have
- What is SEO copywriting
- SEO content types
- Elements of SEO Optimized Content
- How can you start writing SEO-optimized Content
- 1. Start creating audience-centric content
- 2. Start Focusing on Long Tail Keywords
- 3. Start focusing on only long-form content
- 4. Start creating your plan
- 5. Start doing comprehensive research
- 6. Start gaining the competitive intelligence
- 7. Start thinking about promotion strategies before writing
- 8. Start writing to and for real people
- 9. Start creating a captivating intro
- 10. Start figuring out how you can differentiate yourself
- 11. Start ensuring your content pieces serve a clear purpose
- 12. Start making use of short sentences and paragraphs
- 13. Start avoiding big or complex terms
- 14. Start using high-quality and relevant visuals or images
- 15. Start ensuring you follow the basic SEO rules
- 16. Start optimizing your headlines for SERPs
- 17. Start focusing on including internal and external links
- 18. Start utilizing call-to-actions
- Final Thoughts
- How much do SEO content writers make?
- How do you become a Content Writer?
- What is an SEO content writer?
- Is SEO important for content writing?
- How difficult is SEO content writing?
- What are the types of content writers?
- What is the workplace or work environment of a Content Writer like?
- Can I learn SEO content writing by myself?
- Which tools can help me write SEO content?
- Can certifications and internships help you become a Content Writer?
- What is the career path progression for a content writer?
Creating high-quality, optimized content that drives organic rank and traffic improvements to your website can be challenging. Many content writers are capable of writing good quality content but often fail to write content that helps the page rank high on Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs).
Search engine results pages (SERPs) are the website pages you see after entering a search query into Google or any other search engine.
To achieve high rank on Google or any other SERPs, you would want to create content that has value and attracts more leads or clients. When you have a ready-to-use framework to optimize your content for SERPs, the content writing process becomes much simpler and more effective.
Though the search engines update their algorithms often, the fundamentals of ranking high for a great quality SEO content doesn’t change. You can absolutely learn what it takes to write engaging content copies that can help you gain loyal readers and improve SEO rankings.
While it is important to invest effort and work to succeed, becoming an SEO content writing expert is within reach, particularly with proper planning and keeping up with the latest SEO trends and best practices. Read on to find everything you need to know to write great SEO content.
Do content writers need to know SEO?
The answer is ‘YES’ in most cases. Things are a little different for novelists, storywriters, etc. But if you’re writing with the purpose of gaining higher ranks on the SERPs, attracting visitors, and helping them complete their sales journey, eventually leading them to purchasing your product or service. Then it’s a MUST.
Therefore, it is important for these type of content writers to know SEO to take their skill set to a level that can compete with the other content pieces in the market. Therefore, as a marketing content writer, here are 5 points why it is necessary for you to know about SEO.
Understand the SERP landscape
If you do your keyword research, analyze search intent, figure out the competitors in your area and what they are doing, and try to understand the niche and compellingly tell the story, you are utilizing SEO techniques correctly.
Know what user experience and technical SEO factors works best for SEO
Once it’s figured out who you’re writing to, you’ll likely start writing the content quickly. However, once it comes to the publishing stage, you’ll need to remember the following:
- A precise h1
- H2s and 3s across the piece
- Suitable meta description
- Images & alt tags
- Internal links and external links
Understand what will help your content to rank high on the SERPs
Every content creator’s goal is to create a piece that ranks on the first page of Google SERP. To achieve this, you must be habituated with the latest SEO strategies and not just buzzwords. You must understand which keywords have the most search volume, write something interesting and new, ensure your website has a great user experience for easy blog navigation, and be ready to build links.
Enable you to collaborate and work within a team
This means you must collaborate with the other team members to understand other areas of the field that can help you contribute to the strategy, create more compelling content, and build a sense of teamwork.
Read and interpret data
You need to analyze the results and learn from every content piece you create. It’s a good idea to analyze the social shares, rankings for target keywords, and traffic in Google Analytics. To be a great SEO content creator, you must find and understand data on your own to evolve your content strategy.
What Does an SEO Content Writer Do?
The primary responsibility of an SEO content writer is to research and write content that can boost a website’s visibility on the SERPs. They are mostly responsible for writing helpful and optimized content that ranks well organically.
To specialize in SEO, you must be up to date with the latest SEO trends and be able to track its success. This indicates you are responsible for:
- Understanding search demand and intent
- Researching niche-specific keywords and topics
- Understanding the target audience
- Writing, editing, and proofreading SEO- optimized content
- Staying up to date with the current industry trends
- Analyzing competitor’s content to get an upper hand
- Rank analysis
- Analyzing various content marketing strategies
- Writing the content in different forms like eBooks and blog posts
- Updating and optimizing existing content for SEO
But what is the difference between SEO content writers and normal content writers
The primary difference between SEO content writers and normal content writers is that the SEO writers know how to write content without making it spammy, to improve search engine rankings lawfully. Here are a few other important differentiating factors between SEO Content Writers and normal content writers.
Normal content writers
- Writes well-structured content
- Are good for informative content writing
- Are good at research
- Creates original content
- Produces focused content
- Makes sure the content is error-free and professional
SEO Content Writers
On top of what the normal content writers do, SEO content writers need to additionally look at:
- Creating content pieces that are helpful to the audience and ranks better
- Focusing on improving conversions
- Focusing on creating content that is of high quality and relevance
- Helping reduce bounce rates
- Making use of keywords according to their relevance
Approach to SEO Content Writing for Beginners
SEO writing is simple, but it’s not always effortless.
Though there is no magic formula to rank higher in the search engine result pages (SERPs), several aspects of the Google search algorithm should be followed to write content that ranks better in SERPs.
One of the most important aspects of SEO content writing is using the right keywords or analyzing search demand.
This implies understanding what exactly people are searching for when they are looking for something in your niche.
This necessitates the SEO copywriter or content writer to do keyword research and develop a list of phrases and words that need to be included.
Also, using multiple related words or phrases in the content is essential. These are the words that are relevant to the keywords that were researched.
Using these relevant keywords and phrases is known as “latent semantic indexing,” which significantly helps SEO.
The search engine crawlers also analyze whether the content is written for an audience or just for SEO.
This is why SEO content writers should avoid keyword stuffing or repeatedly putting in the exact keywords so that the content isn’t fit for human readers.
You must understand how to balance your content to appeal to both human readers and search engine crawlers.
SEO Best Practices and Trends for SEO practitioners
If you’re already working as a professional SEO content writer, you may skip the above “Basic approach to SEO Content Writing for Beginners” and check out our latest blog on “Trends and Best Practices to Create High-ranking SEO Content for professionals.”
This blog discusses the current content trends in SERP and a few prescriptive directions to improve your and your team’s research, writing, editing, and publication processes.
Skillsets any SEO content writer should have
It is a skill that all SEO content writers must possess to continuously change their tone and writing style according to the needs of different projects. With adaptability, the writers can respond to the requirements effectively.
The capability to conduct extensive research based on the requirements is a critical skill every SEO content writer should have. A writer can be fluent, creative, and have a flair in their writing, but if the information provided is not well-researched, it can severely damage the reliability of the content.
Creating authentic and creative content
Though an SEO content writer might not be a subject matter expert in a topic, the content piece they provide must be unique and authentic. An SEO content writer must be able to transform their learnings into informative, authoritative, and original content. Original, creative, and unique content attracts more readership, which in turn helps garner more leads.
Focusing on Search Demand
The content writers usually don’t need to be SEO experts to succeed in their roles. But a content writing method that fits perfectly with SEO is understanding the user search demand.
Writers must always look to generate the content that online users actually want to read instead of simply trying different topics to see which one works.
Concentrate on Topics Over Keywords
The final skill that any skilled SEO content writer needs is to write for topics instead of keywords. Today’s SEO content writers must focus on writing for topics instead of keywords. They need to make the content original, relevant to the original query, and answer the actual question in detail.
What is SEO copywriting
SEO copywriting or copywriting for SEO is the practice of creating SEO-friendly content that most importantly caters to users and their questions. The primary goal of a copy here is to help boost search engine rankings and satisfy user search intent at the same time. You can find these types of copies on emails, product pages of websites, and various other marketing materials.
How SEO copywriting is different from SEO content writing
SEO copywriting is slightly different from SEO content writing for the key difference of the overall goal. While SEO content is mainly created to educate users, provide in-depth information, and increase SERP rankings, the primary goal of SEO copywriting is to take readers to the next step of the funnel to convert traffic into leads and, ultimately, sales.
However, SEO copywriting and content writing can go hand in hand. For example, you can create a blog post with a CTA, keeping the SEO copywriting principles in mind. These allow your users to click on what you’re offering to learn more (gated content), such as downloading a free eBook or any other related source.
Following are a few different projects the SEO content writers and SEO copywriters cover.
What Projects Do SEO Content Writers Cover
- Service pages
- SEO-friendly service pages
- Guest posts
- SEO-friendly blog posts
- PPC landing pages
- Web content
- Link building content
- Local SEO for businesses
- News reports
What Projects Do SEO Copywriters Cover
- Sales pages
- Non-SEO landing pages
- Instagram ads
- Video scripts
- Product descriptions
- Facebook ads
- On-site navigation copy
- Business names and taglines
- Email campaigns
- Website copy (brand messaging)
- Call-to-action buttons
- Whitepapers or product demos
- Newspaper ads
- Print marketing materials
SEO content types
The types of content SEO content writers create are:
These are necessary for any retail e-commerce website. A great product page can serve as SEO content as well as a PPC landing page.
These are one of the best ways to build a constant flow of effective SEO content. Blog posts are typically more engaging and likely to attract more clicks than product pages. Therefore, blogs can be an excellent way to build authority for your website. Also, blogs are flexible; you can make use of them to host any of the following content types in this list.
Articles are similar to blog posts featured on your website. SEO articles are created with the goal to educate, inform, and/or entertain a target audience with expertise and quality.
Lists or listicles are similar to an article but structuring them as a list (like “10 Ways to Improve your Content Production” or “101 Things I Do to Improve Content for my company”) makes them easier to scan. These titles are more clickable when found in search results or social media feeds.
Case studies are an extensive, in-depth analysis of a particular case within a real-world context. They can be used as social proof — to give customers the context to decide whether they’re making the right choice while purchasing a service or a product.
An eBook is an electronic version of a printed book that allows users to read it on electronic or handheld devices like a computer or mobile. These ebooks help brands to improve their website’s SEO, which helps to attract new consumers and expands market space.
Guides are long-form content created to explain in-depth how to do something. You can post an extensive guide on your website or an excerpt directing the audience to fill out a registration form to access the complete guide.
Typically, there are fewer videos on the web than text pages; as a result, it can be easier for you to rank on Page 1 for a competitive keyword by using a video instead of an article. Depending on your site or business type, videos are a great way to attract and reach your audience. Try creating video tutorials on “how to use” any product or illustrate any process related to your business.
Infographics, also known as large-format images, contain a lot of data (typically graphs or charts) around a subject. These can bring many page views and links to your site. However, the content embedded in the image is not readable as text by search engines. Therefore, it’s necessary to optimize the rest of the page.
Slideshows are a great way to showcase a sequence of related images. Sometimes, images are more influential than text, and as a result, SEO of your titles, image file names, captions, etc., becomes critical as there is less for the search engine crawlers to “read.”
Today, more people look up terms instead of using a dictionary. A well-structured glossary can be a great way to attract organic search traffic if you work in a specialized niche.
Directories are a useful arrangement of links to websites or resources around any topic or niche. For instance, a food blog can create a directory of eateries, from major restaurants to independent street food vendors around the country or locale.
So, these are just some of the most used SEO content types, but don’t allow the list to limit you in any way – the possibilities are limitless.
Elements of SEO Optimized Content
Irrespective of whether you optimize your content up-front or post-completion, you must understand the keywords you’re targeting and try to include them in the title of your content.
A general theory says, the closer your keywords are to the front of the title, the better it is. But the key is they should appear anywhere in the title.
SEO copywriting is not just restricted to ranking the copies. It’s also about how it is presented to the search engines. A meta description of your content is typically a “snippet” copy for the search result just below the title, influencing whether you get the click.
Per best practices, try keeping your meta description under 165 characters to make the complete description visible in the search result.
Frequently updated and unique content makes search engines satisfied with your content. Hope, you already know that part. To optimize your content for the search and ensure reader-friendliness, your content must be tightly tied to the topic and centered around the subject matter of the target keyword phrases.
The general theory is that very short content may have a more challenging time ranking on SERPs. Therefore, you’ll have to create content with a body length of a minimum of 300 words.
Keyword frequency is best defined as the number of times your target keywords appear on the page or content. Whereas keyword density is the ratio of those targeted keywords to the total number of words on the page.
Generally, it’s believed that keyword frequency heavily impacts ranking. It’s actually True. Keyword density with an appropriate frequency is a great metric you can use to be found on the SERPs.
Linking is the most fundamental basis of the web. Search engines want to see whether you’re adequately “connected” with other authoritative pages and content. Therefore, linking out to other authoritative pages in your niche matters to search engine optimization.
Finally, don’t get hung up on the rules; focus on finding the real intent behind what search engines are looking for – quality search results for your audience.
Also, there are other elements, like URL structure and keywords, tags and categories, image alt files keywords, and various other metrics. But, if you concentrate on the five areas above, you’re covering the most critical elements of compelling on-page optimization.
How can you start writing SEO-optimized Content
1. Start creating audience-centric content
Identify your target audience and ALWAYS write audience-centric content catered to what they actually want to hear about.
2. Start Focusing on Long Tail Keywords
Write your content focusing on long-tail keywords. These keywords ensure less competition and boost conversion rates.
3. Start focusing on only long-form content
Try to produce well-researched, in-depth, long-form articles for the best search engine results.
4. Start creating your plan
Ensure to start developing an efficient process for creating solid content outlines.
5. Start doing comprehensive research
Commit yourself to consistently developing strong research skills because research is key to any great piece of content you’re aiming to create.
6. Start gaining the competitive intelligence
To be good at SEO content writing, study the competition in-depth to understand how to create better content than whatever your competitors are creating.
7. Start thinking about promotion strategies before writing
The key here is to figure out how you want to promote and distribute your content before writing it.
8. Start writing to and for real people
Ensure you write your SEO content in a conversational tone that engages and entices your target audience.
9. Start creating a captivating intro
For this, the best practices can include using short, compelling sentences in your intro to build readers’ curiosity and persuade them to continue reading.
10. Start figuring out how you can differentiate yourself
The key here is to identify the differentiating factor of your content and start using it to stand out from the competition.
11. Start ensuring your content pieces serve a clear purpose
While creating your content, identify a single purpose of your content and don’t divert from it.
12. Start making use of short sentences and paragraphs
While writing your content, make sure you keep your sentences and paragraphs short across your content to keep the readers engaged.
13. Start avoiding big or complex terms
Remember to write with a particular flow and avoid using words that can distract the readers.
14. Start using high-quality and relevant visuals or images
Ensure to identify and use relevant visuals across your content. This can be really helpful for the readers to scan your copy and keep them engaged.
15. Start ensuring you follow the basic SEO rules
Ranking higher in SERPs is more about writing great content than following SEO rules. However, by following basic rules, you set yourself up to be organically found by search engines for the keywords, phrases, and topics you want to rank for.
16. Start optimizing your headlines for SERPs
If you don’t optimize your headline for the SERPs, you’re seriously reducing your chances of getting your content to be read.
17. Start focusing on including internal and external links
Make sure to include a healthy mix of external and internal links within your content pieces.
18. Start utilizing call-to-actions
The ultimate goal of any content you create is to get your readers to come back for more in the future or get them to act immediately.
To ensure this happens, you must include call-to-actions in your content.
While you must certainly include a CTA at the end of your content piece, it’s also a great practice to scatter them across your content.
So, here you are ready with all the basics you need to embark on your journey as a SEO content writer irrespective of a topic’s exclusiveness and difficulty. Recognizing these trends and applying the best practices allows your content to compete for Page Rank consistently.
Furthermore, as an SEO Content writer, you must be particular when implementing these practices to help improve your skills. These SEO content writing best practices can go through specific changes from time to time to improve content efficiency. Nevertheless, the essence of these content practices will remain the same. They should be followed carefully to get the best outcomes.
How much do SEO content writers make?
As of July 26, 2022, the average salary of an SEO Content Writer in the US is $49,862, but the salary range usually falls between $45,256 and $55,136. It can vary depending on critical factors like certifications, education, additional skills, and years of experience in your profession.
How do you become a Content Writer?
There are no particular academic requirements to make a career as a content writer. However, people with strong writing and language skills can be an ideal fit for the job.
What is an SEO content writer?
An SEO content writer understands search engine optimization and also knows how to write informative, compelling, and relevant content.
Is SEO important for content writing?
Yes. But first things first, both SEO and content writing are equally important for generating traffic. Without SEO, search engine algorithms would not be able to find your content and rank it higher. Also, the higher your content ranks, the more traffic you receive.
How difficult is SEO content writing?
SEO content writing can be difficult when it is about coming up with new and exciting topics to write about and even harder to create SEO-optimized content that will engage your audience.
What are the types of content writers?
There are 6 different types of content writers we can find today. They are:
- Technical/Academic Writer
- SEO Content Writer
- Creative Content Writer
- Senior Editor
What is the workplace or work environment of a Content Writer like?
Content writing jobs are mostly carried out from the office desk. However, depending on your niche, you might need to schedule interviews and travel to various places to collect figures and facts. Still, most content writers work in corporate industries, which means spending most of their time in the office over their desks.
Can I learn SEO content writing by myself?
Of course, it is possible to learn SEO content writing on your own. But the first thing to do is convince yourself that SEO content writing is simple. If others can do it, you can do it too. All it will take is the readiness for you to learn and time.
Which tools can help me write SEO content?
ALPS Enterprise SEO platform can be of great help when it comes to helping you write SEO content that ranks high on the SERPs. However, multiple tools are available in the market today; choose the one that best fits your requirements.
Can certifications and internships help you become a Content Writer?
Yes. Numerous internships and certifications are available in the field of Content Writing (both paid and unpaid types). However, the criteria and requirements vary for every organization or industry.
What is the career path progression for a content writer?
- Content writing intern
- Content writer/ Copy editor
- Senior content writer/ Editor
- Senior Editor/ Content Manager