Whether you’re selling a product, writing a blog or showcasing your services, every business needs a good website. And in order for your website to rank well in Google and other popular search engines, you need to make sure your website and your content is optimised. This practice is commonly known as search engine optimisation or SEO for short. Here are five tips on how to write for SEO.
1 Follow Google’s best practices
There’s a reason that many people are considered to be SEO specialists. It’s a complex topic but every content writer and creator should know the basics. Here are a few of Google’s best practices when creating and publishing content:
Page title: Carefully choose your page title. It should be short and sweet but accurately describe the content on the page. Each page of your website should also have a unique title.
Meta description: Google uses meta descriptions as the snippet for your page in the search engine results. It should summarise what content is on the page and provide a unique description for users. You need a unique meta description for each page of your website.
Well-written content: Your content should be well written and easy to follow. Always avoid spelling and grammar mistakes. You should also organise your content well, breaking up large paragraphs so they are easier to read and using H2 and H3 headings where necessary.
Add links: Google recommends that you use links wisely, and encourages content creators to be careful about the link text they use. Instead of writing ‘click here’ or ‘read more’, use a more descriptive line of text that shows readers what the link is about.
Using alt tags on images: When adding images to your content, you need to make sure you fill in the alt description, which provides viewers with a brief description of what the image contains, if they are using assistive technologies, such as a screen reader.
2 Learn how to do keyword research
Keyword research allows you to find the words or phrases that people are searching for on the internet. It can be an invaluable tool in helping you craft your content strategy. By finding out what people are searching for, you can ensure you are answering the questions that people want to know. You can use a variety of tools but Google Keywords is a great place to start. Make sure you are using the right keywords in your content naturally, and don’t stuff your content with unnecessary keywords. This practice is often considered spammy and won’t yield good results long term.
3 Write for your audience
It sounds simple enough, but many people just don’t do it. While there is a definite science behind creating content for SEO, at the core, you need to make sure you are writing for your audience. What do they want to read? What topics interest them? You don’t just want to tick all the boxes of writing for SEO and forget that you are actually writing for your readers.
Your content should always be written with your audience in mind first and foremost. At the end of the day, Google is using its complex algorithm to sift through content, so it can prioritise the best and most relevant content at the top of it’s search results. That means you need to write relevant, valuable content that your readers are going to love.