Updated: Jul 6
You've probably heard a lot about SEO copywriting lately. But what's the real deal with it? How do you write content that resonates with your audience and ranks high in search engines?
There are no magic tricks or silver bullets to SEO copywriting, but there are some tried-and-true best practices that you can implement to help your content rank on Google and speak to your dream clients.
Today, I'm breaking down all my SEO copywriting best practices (ahem- this is like a cheat sheet for you, so you probably want to save this!)
Let’s get into it!
SEO copywriting best practices rule # 1: Understand your audience.
It’s essential to understand the audience you’re writing for. Before you can write engaging content, you need to know who you’re targeting.
You may already have a pretty good picture of your target audience, but it's always a good idea to do additional digging on current and potential customers. Once you've defined them as best as possible, consider these questions:
What do they care about?
What are your biggest struggles?
What do they want or need most in life right now?
Answering and understanding these 3 questions will help you clarify your message to ensure you’re speaking directly to that audience. You want to use words that your audience uses (so when they read your content, they feel like you’re inside their head!)
SEO copywriting best practices rule # 2: Do your keyword research.
Keyword research is an essential part of SEO copywriting.
It's also a great way to know what your audience is searching for and how to write better content that people will want to read.
If you're looking for an article topic, start with a keyword search—then browse through the results to find ideas. Keyword research can also help you optimize your content for search engines and create a content strategy that helps you reach more readers.
SEO copywriting best practices rule # 3: Include keywords in all the necessary places.
As mentioned above, keywords are essential for SEO copywriting, and putting them in the right places is an important part of the formula. So where do you put them?
Title tags: This is an SEO best practice because it helps people find your content through search engines. Google will use your title tag when creating their snippet for search results, which means that you should include the keywords that you want to appear in the snippet with those terms separated by commas (or dashes) and placed at the beginning of the title tag.
Meta descriptions: Your website's titles should be optimized with keywords to improve the chances of ranking on search engines. You should use your keyword at the beginning- and write naturally without stuffing or overusing your keywords. Otherwise, they look spammy, and nobody likes spammy content!
Body copy: Your body text needs some love too! Make sure that you sprinkle your keywords throughout the body of your content. Again, you shouldn't stuff your keywords everywhere - just input them where they flow naturally.
Use this handy dandy guide by WORDSTREAM to ensure your pages are optimized for the web!
SEO copywriting best practices rule # 4: Write for humans first, and search engines second.
As a writer, you are the first line of defense in ensuring that your content is readable by humans. You can do this by keeping the following elements in mind when writing:
Write for humans first and search engines second. If your audience isn’t able to understand your content, they won’t be able to enjoy it or learn from it.
Use short sentences and paragraphs. Longer sentences can be difficult for readers to digest and may cause them to lose interest before reaching the end of your article.
Avoid jargon and technical terms unless they're absolutely necessary—and even then, use them sparingly. You don't want to confuse readers, and the more complicated something sounds, the increased chance you'll lose the reader.
Did you notice how I've structured this blog post?
I use bullet points, shorter sentences, and lots of white space. This structure makes for easy reading and encourages readers to KEEP READING :)
Want more info on writing for humans? Check out this blog post for all the details! 3 Ideas to Increase Engagement by Writing SEO For Humans, Not For Algorithms
SEO copywriting best practices rule # 5: Use visuals to enhance your content.
Visuals are a great way to break up your content and give more context. It also gives your readers' eyes a break. Use graphics, or videos to appeal to your audience.
Add images to break up text and make it easier to read.
Use images that are relevant and appropriate for the topic of your blog post or article.
Add credibility to your content by adding an expert quote or statistic from a reputable source such as Harvard Business Review or Forbes magazine (make sure it's not copied from another website).
And since we are talking about SEO copywriting best practices - don’t forget to add ALT text to all your images! Not only does alt text help make your content web-accessible, but it’s a great place to insert your keywords (if appropriate!)
SEO copywriting best practices rule # 6: Make sure Google can find you.
Making sure your content is optimized for search engines is key to SEO copywriting.
This means using schema markups, internal links, external links, and keywords in your URL and title- this all refers to on-page SEO.
On-site optimization is just one part of an overall strategy. You should have some off-site optimization strategy in place, too.
You can use off-site tools like RankTracker or Siteliner pro (which combines the power of both) to track the progress of your pages over time by checking their rankings against those of competitors' pages in Google Search Console.
Now you know all about SEO copywriting!
It’s no secret that SEO is a crucial part of digital marketing. If you want to compete in today’s market, you need a solid understanding of how search engines work and what it takes to rank high in their results.
By following these best practices for writing SEO copy, you can optimize your content for search engine success while making sure that humans find it valuable too!
Skeptical? Check out these results from past clients working with an SEO copywriter (aka, me!)
Need help with SEO copywriting? Let’s connect!
I offer a variety of SEO content and copywriting services to help your business rank online!
Use the link below to schedule a FREE discovery call!