Let’s talk about SEO: it’s a common term you’ve probably heard used in various contexts, such as We want to hire someone with previous SEO knowledge and experience, or Make sure you utilize those SEO keywords, or even How to distinguish between on-page and off-page SEO. If you’re someone whose life requires you to use the internet (so basically everyone) then you’ve definitely engaged with SEO practices; if you’re someone whose job requires you to get more clientele to view your web pages then you certainly need to utilize SEO.
What is SEO?
SEO stands for search engine optimization and it’s the process of improving a web page’s search ranking through following best practices; the result is getting a larger audience to view your page and in turn know about your business’s offerings. Most commonly, SEO is used to help websites rank higher in internet searches such as with the search engine Google. You know how there are millions of pages of results whenever you search for anything but you really only view the top links? Traditional SEO aims to bring webpages to a coveted higher spot in the results list.
Types of SEO
SEO best practices can also be used for social media, however. The same motives of bringing an audience to your content apply, and the methods are much the same as well. Further, SEO is divided into subsections in charge of different areas that we know all contribute to site ranking. These include but aren’t limited to technical SEO, on-page and off-page SEO, ecommerce SEO, and local SEO. Within this wide range of use for SEO practices is also where you’ll find SEO writing.
SEO for Content Writing
You’ve probably come to this page because you’re interested in learning more about SEO for content writing. You may already have some first-hand experience with SEO if you write internet content, but regardless, you surely understand the necessity of having people access your writing. When you’re pouring time and resources into writing content that can benefit others, your efforts can feel in vain if no one ever visits the place where your content is shared.
This is one concrete example of how SEO is useful. You can implement SEO best practices into your content writing to ensure your words will be seen! However, there are also many mistakes writers make when writing content for SEO. Let’s go through five of the biggest of these errors so you can avoid them.
Five Mistakes to Avoid With SEO Writing
Writing Purely for the Keywords
SEO utilizes the inclusion of keywords that will help connect your content to what people are looking for in search engines like Google. In fact, Google follows an algorithm for scoring which web pages will be at the top of the results list for any given search depending on the relevance of the match as well as the expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness of the source. Having a list of keywords to include in your content is essential for effective SEO marketing, but there comes a fine line that readers can see between quality writing and content that is stuffed with particular words just to gather traffic to a page. In fact, the somewhat nonsensical repetition of keywords in content has a name: keyword stuffing.
Using Too General of Keywords
Speaking of keywords and their effectiveness when used correctly, one method of incorporating them into your piece that won’t actually help you very much is using far too general of terms. For instance, if “balayage” is a popular keyword being searched often, it makes sense that you may also want to write content geared around the topic. However, the keyword “balayage” will be included in every article on the subject, meaning your use of it won’t help you raise in search rankings. Instead, try to narrow in on a more specific set of keywords that is still highly searchable so that those looking under the topic have a greater chance of landing on your content writing.
Not Branching Out With Keyword Synonyms
Let’s talk about one more aspect of keyword issues when it comes to SEO. Yes, using keywords is one of the main premises of search engine optimization because it allows traffic to reach your site if relevant. However, there’s another wrong way of using keywords and that’s by repeatedly including the exact same keyword wording throughout your piece of content. Don’t underestimate the intelligence of modern search engines; they can decipher that synonyms and related words have the same meaning. This way your writing is more interesting than a piece of content with too repetitive of wording.
Having Bland Content Titles
The titles of your content pieces are super important because they’re what displays in the link to your web page on a list of search results. Titles either draw a searcher in to your content or turn them away. Therefore, you should also make your titles detailed and specific; aim to have only one quick look at your title be enough for a searcher to understand what will be addressed content-wise. Also, when titles closely match one’s search, they’re often more inclined to follow the link, so they should also include keywords.
Including Links Purely For the Sake of Having Links
Just like using keywords, including internal and external linking in your content is another SEO best practice with proven success. Having links to other sources, as well as having other sources link back to your site, helps improve your search engine ranking because it establishes credibility. But this sometimes trips up content writers so they focus more on including a great number of links in their pieces than having ones that are truly necessary. Be especially mindful of this mistake. More important than the number of links is the quality of those connections and sources. Having too many links can become confusing for readers or redundant, and remember that broken links (an increased likelihood the more you have) can significantly slow down your site’s speed.
There are best practices you can follow to be successful in the SEO game, but there are also common mistakes that content writers make when working with SEO techniques. If you avoid these five SEO errors you’ll already be further along in your path to great content writing and your search engine ranking will improve as well!