Writing for the web

Quality has become the #1 ranking factor in Google. SEO copywriting helps you target your customers and solve their specific problems with well-crafted content.

Concentrate on 20% to 30% of your target audience when writing a copy. Write content that’s appealing to people who are most likely to convert. Narrow down your focus – and you’ll avoid low conversion rates.

Chunky blocks of text just bore and intimidate readers. For best results, it is best to keep paragraphs short (2-4 sentences).

With content writing it is best to adopt a conversational tone, using words and phrases that resonate with the target audience. As your readership grows, search engines will pick up on it too.

Plagiarism is another thing that gets content penalised. Not to mention that people don’t want to read regurgitated text. Be unique and original. Use plagiarism checkers to avoid unintentional duplication. Remember, “research” doesn’t mean stealing.

It’s all about creating useful, compelling and valuable content that targets specific keyword phrases.

SEO guidelines

Search engine optimisation (SEO) is a method of optimising (enhancing the effectiveness of) your content for the search engines, in order to help it rank higher than content from other sites that target the same search terms.

Search engine rankings can’t be predicted, no matter how knowledgeable you are, because Google is always updating their ranking algorithm.

However, there are actions that you can take to increase the likelihood of your web page showing up in Google for relevant search queries.

Keywords

Google determines the relevance of your page by analysing its content based on several factors, including where and how often you use certain words in that piece of content.

Words are powerful. Words drive engagement. If you can piece words together to produce a valuable piece of content, your target audience will love you for it - and they’ll stick around. There is no alternative to writing great content.

Using related keywords, synonyms, and grammatical variations not only improves your chances of ranking, but it also prevents redundancy in your copy.

When performing keyword research (for content marketing purposes), you shouldn’t be looking to pinpoint just one or two top-tier phrases – you should try to identify a wealth of terms and phrases that relate to the key theme or themes of your content.

You might argue that this will come naturally when writing the content and, to an extent, you’d be right. However, you can (and probably will) uncover phrases and terms you never would have thought to include by taking the time to research what people are searching for and what phrases competing pages are using. This can make a huge difference to the relevancy of the finished product and the search visibility it enjoys.

As with all keyword research, Google’s Keyword Planner is a pretty solid place to start. However tools like Answer The Public (free), and SEO Compare (also free) can help to guide your content by providing further, invaluable insights into search behaviour.

Google measures authority by the number of links pointing to that page and how trustworthy those links are.

On the internet, links are like votes, with a slight difference. The winner of the election is determined solely by the number of votes, whereas your web page’s rank doesn’t depend so much on how many incoming links it has (quantity), but rather on the quality of those links.

Linking out to other authority sites and pages is an indication that you value what other people create. Google will reward you for being in sync with their mission: organising the world’s information and making it universally accessible.

More information

If you want more information this check out Google’s Webmaster Guidelines.