You’ve settled comfortably in a spot in front of your keyboard and you’re ready to crank out some high-end content with the intent of fueling your SEO campaign. You’ve heard repeatedly that content is king, and you’re ready to attack it full steam ahead.
As your fingers start tapping at the keys, you begin to realize something. You might have a pretty good idea of the topic you want to create content around but you have no idea of how to optimize it for maximum performance from the perspective of search engine optimization.
Many have gone before you and found themselves completely lost on how to optimize content for SEO. Fortunately, while it might seem intimidating at first, crafting the perfect content to aid in your search engine marketing isn’t as challenging as it may seem.
Are you ready to level up your content strategy and start seeing real results from your approach to SEO? Here are 5 secrets to creating SEO-infused content that gets the job done every time.
Write for Your Audience
This is the number one rule for SEO content in 2019. In the “old” days of SEO, getting the attention of search engines involved focusing heavily on using just the right keywords – even if it meant that the quality of your content suffered or sounded robotic. Today, creating great content for SEO requires an entirely different approach.
If you’re hesitant to jump on board with this line of thinking, it’s important that you understand how search engines have changed in recent years. Fortunately, search engine technology has advanced to the point that crawlers don’t need exact keyword matches to pick up on intent. Combine this with the fact that your audience’s preferences in the content have also changed and you’ll discover that the perfect equation for SEO content that performs balances heavily on your ability to write for your audience.
Instead of focusing only on keywords, choose topics that are relevant to your target audience and haven’t been covered hundreds of times. Then infuse your content with keywords that relate back to your main topic – think along the lines of synonyms and keyword phrases that will give your content a more natural-sounding tone.
Know-How to Optimize Your Main Keywords
Speaking of keywords and how to use them, even when writing for your audience there are still ways to optimize the most powerful keywords for your niche without compromising the integrity of your content. This involves using high-performing keywords in the right place, at the right time.
For instance, instead of over-saturating your content with a few main keywords, ease up on the use within the body of your work but make sure that one of your main keywords is used in the title and within the first few sentences of your opening paragraph. This is the SEO version of work smarter, not harder.
Create Content for Engagement
A solid keyword strategy is going to get you only so far in producing content that performs from a search engine optimization perspective. Your content needs to also inspire engagement so that it earns plenty of backlinks and social shares.
When you’re creating content, stop and think about how your audience engages with content on the internet. The bottom line is that there’s a lot of competing content out there, and if yours isn’t optimized for engagement, then there’s a good chance it going to underperform when it comes to helping your SEO campaign.
You can approach creating shareable content from several angles. First, start with topics that grab your audience’s attention and provide real insights into those topics. Content that provides unique, meaningful value is more likely to grab attention and engagement through shares.
Second, don’t neglect how the format can affect engagement. For instance, content that is broken down into short, digestible paragraphs that can be easily scanned is more likely to hold a person’s attention and generate a response. Not only do shares and quality backlinks from content affect SEO in a positive way, but you’re also increasing the number of visits to your site and encouraging visitors to stay around longer.
In a digital world where consumers are looking to sink their teeth into meaty content that contributes real value to their lives, there really isn’t much room for shallow content that’s too short to contain enough information to provide your audience with something of value. There are a time and a place for shorter pieces of content but in general, long-form wins – especially in the eyes of Google.
There are several reasons that long-form content outperforms shorter pieces. For starters, the more word count you have to work with, the more room you have to incorporate keywords and phrases in a natural way. But more important than that is the fact that long-form content helps you to establish yourself as an authority in your industry or niche.
So, what is the perfect length for SEO-rich content? You’ll get a variety of answers on this one, but as a rule of thumb, try to hit at least 1,000 words – but don’t be afraid to go longer on topics that are most important to your audience.
Don’t Be Afraid to Think Outside of the Box
Content doesn’t have to be in the form of a blog to capture your audience’s attention and perform for SEO. If your current content strategy isn’t working, explore other avenues such as video, infographics, and podcasts to deliver content that engages audiences, inspires connections, and grabs the attention of search engines in the process.
If you’re investing time and energy into content but not seeing the result you need, then it’s time for a new strategy. At JLB we’re a team of digital marketing experts who can help you reinvent your content strategy so that you get the most out of your SEO campaign. We’re ready to roll up our sleeves and get started. Contact us at JLB today.