One of the vital components of having an effective website is well written content; without it your website may not reach the audience that you need it to. What you're missing is copywriting, and we're here with a 5 step guide to help set you on the right path.
What is SEO copywriting?
If you want your website found, you'll need to focus some of your efforts on SEO (search engine optimization) copywriting.
In the early days of the internet, search results were based mostly on keyword density, the ratio of targeted keywords to other words in your website content. So if you were launching a website for an auto body shop in Tacoma, Washington, you would fill your pages with searchable phrases like Tacoma auto body, Tacoma autobody, etc. That was all it took to increase your search engine rank.
Since then, search engines like Google have gotten smarter. You can't rely on "keyword stuffing" anymore because search engines will recognize this and penalize you for it.
SEO copywriting has become much more complex. But with a few basic SEO tips, you'll stand a much better chance than your competitors who ignore SEO altogether.
Five SEO copywriting tips
Below you'll find five SEO copywriting tips that, if used properly, will help boost your search engine rank. This is by no means a comprehensive guide. But it's a good place to start if you're new to the topic.
Open any newspaper or magazine and you'll be bombarded by headlines. Dog Saves Baby. President Pushes Healthcare Bill. Headlines are those big, bold-lettered words at the top of the page that say, "read me." They are meant to grab a readers attention and compel them to read more.
Blog headlines and webpage headlines work on the same basic principle. They are meant to attract the prospect and compel them to read further. The difference is that unlike print headlines, web headlines must contain highly-searchable keywords - keywords that a prospect might type into a search engine. That way, search engines can find and rank your website.
Most SEO experts agree that, for the best search results, you should try to place your keywords at the front of the headline. For example, the keywords I'm focusing on for this article are SEO and copywriting. I want people searching for information on SEO copywriting to read this post so I made sure my headline contained my keywords first.
When you search for something on Google, the results show a clickable link (the headline) and a brief description of that link below. That brief description is known as a meta description.
There is a lot of debate as to whether meta descriptions influence your search engine rank. Nevertheless, a succinct meta description with searchable keywords is crucial for your website's presentation on a search results page.
Make sure your meta descriptions are under 165 characters so the full description shows up on the search results page, and don't forget to include your targeted keywords. Although they may not influence your rank, a prospective customer will be looking for them in the meta description.
When most people hear SEO, they think of words like keyword frequency and keyword density. The terms refer to the number of times a targeted keyword appears on your page. So for example, if you were starting a webpage for a real estate agent in Boulder, Colorado, you might want to focus on keywords like Boulder real estate and Colorado real estate agents because these are the keywords your prospective clients might type into a search bar.
Increasing the frequency of targeted keywords can help improve your rank on search engine results pages. But don't get too carried away. Search engines like Google penalize websites for keyword stuffing.
Besides, even if you attract traffic to your site with keyword stuffing, you'll likely scare potential customers away when they see that the information on your site is useless. For optimized search engine results, your content must also be useful and relevant to your keywords.
Content is king
Once a prospective customer finds your website, you'll have very little time to capture their attention before they click the back button. Like I've said, a headline with highly-searchable keywords related to your website is a great way to grab a prospect's attention. But the best headline in the world is useless without content to back it up.
Search engines love content that's unique and frequently updated. That's why starting a blog is an effective SEO tactic. The more relevant content your site contains, the more traffic you'll attract.
Plus, a blog lets you fill your website with more keywords, without overstuffing.
Links, links, links
Websites that search engines perceive as legitimate and useful will rank higher on search results pages. One of the best ways to increase the legitimacy of your site is to include links to show that your website is connected with other websites and content.
This is called linking out. While it may seem counterintuitive (Why would I want to direct traffic away from my site?), it's an essential component of successful SEO copywriting. Ultimately, you want other websites to link to you.
You don't have to link solely to other websites. You should focus on linking to your own interior pages too, making your website easier to navigate.
Nitpick your way to the top
There you have it, five SEO copywriting tips for more clicks. Success in SEO copywriting, like all forms of writing, will require a lot of nitpicking. But if you take the time to polish your content for search engines, you'll be on your way to the top.
There's a lot more to SEO copywriting. But these tips will give you a good place to start. Remember not to get too caught up in SEO copywriting tactics. When it comes down to it, your website is designed for people, not search engines. Good luck!