How To Write Your SEO Article: Optimizing Your Content for Success
After cycling through levels of keyword research and outlining your permalinks, meta descriptions and titles, it’s time to sit down and write your article. Let’s get something out of the way: we at LSC Digital cannot write your article for you. Of course, only you know which keywords you want to use for your desired topic. However, we can provide an outline and helpful tips on what to include so your article climbs the search engine ranks.
First, make sure your headline uses the H1 tag in its html. On website like WordPress, this happens automatically. Next, write a specific headline using your key work or target key phrase. This will help tell Google and other search engines what keywords you are optimizing. This will also help elongate your headline, and according to SEM Rush, articles with 14 or more words in the headline get twice the traffic and shares, and five times the backlinks than articles with short headlines. If possible, include a number or list. This also boosts engagement.
You did all that keyword research, now it’s time to use it. While the days of keyword stuffing are over, it’s important to include your target keyword or key phrase four to six times in the body of the article. Again, sites like WordPress have helpful plugins, like Yoast SEO, to tell you how often you should use a keyword. Remember, try to write how you speak and sprinkle in the keywords and related phrases organically. Search engines like Google will know if you’re keyword stuffing, and it can work against you.
Typically, longer articles (1,500 words or more) rank higher. It shows search engines that you have a lot to say, and often indicates a level of detail and research that is not possible in shorter pieces of content. Of course, make sure you show your work and link to your resources to strengthen your writing.
Now that you have some writing tips under your belt, let’s talk about format. These are some of the characteristics of high-ranking pieces of content:
- Short paragraphs
- Bullet points
These formatting choices make it easier for search engines and human beings to read your content. Lists and subheads, especially for how-to and tutorial articles, help readers understand a step-by-step process.
Writing descriptive content is good practice, but including these extra details will take your piece from good to great:
- Images at every scroll depth
- Contributor quotes
Images, like subheadings and bulleted lists, help readers further understand the topic. Charts and diagrams are a great place to start, and images with faces are ideal. Make sure to include alt text so search engines and text reading programs can process the images.
Contributor quotes and links go hand in hand and showcase that your article has legitimacy. It drives home Google’s EAT guidelines and establishes authority and trustworthiness.
Call to Action
Finally, at the end of every article should be the main purpose of the piece. What should people do next with the information you presented? Should they contact you for an opportunity, should they go out into the world and start building a tree house? A strong call to action is the icing on the cake.
Now that you have you have your format and know how your final product will flow, it’s time to fill in the blanks! Remember, that everything can change including your permalinks, meta descriptions and title, and updates to articles are welcome and encouraged by search engines. So what are you waiting for? Dive in!