What if we told you that you could take your SEO to the next level with the power of words?
We're not just talking about stuffing keywords into every sentence and hoping they get picked up by search engines because as we mentioned in our post about things not to do in SEO. We mean using great, engaging copywriting to attract more customers. If you don't know where to start, don't worry, we're here to help!
We've put together a guide on how copywriting can help your SEO, and it's full of great tips and tricks you can start applying right away. From sprinkling a few well-placed keywords in your content to writing in a way that maximizes conversions, we'll show you how copywriting can boost your rankings AND improve sales.
SEO copywriting is all about helping your audience.
SEO copywriting refers to the art of writing copy that ranks well in search. It is relatively easy to do (if you have some experience), and it's an excellent way to gain valuable web traffic without spending thousands of dollars on paid advertising. It's about writing content that solves your readers' problems, answers their questions, and generally helps them out.
And if you're thinking it sounds simple... well, you're right! It is simple. And it's also what Google wants. The search engine's goal is to deliver high-quality and high-relevance answers for any query—and the best way to do that is by having great copy that uses proven SEO principles.
I've been writing content for a long time, and you could say I'm still learning something new every day. If you don't have much experience with SEO copywriting, my advice is to learn as much as you can about it.
The Difference Between Old School and New School SEO Copywriting.
There are two main types of SEO: on-page SEO and off-page SEO. On-page SEO refers to website elements that comprise a web page, such as HTML code, textual content, and images. Off-page SEO refers, predominantly, to backlinks (links pointing to the site which is being optimized, from other relevant websites).
Years ago, in the early days of SEO, it was all about getting lots of backlinks. But now that Google has so many quality algorithms in place (like Panda, Penguin, Hummingbird, etc.), these links aren't created equal anymore. You'll want to focus on quality over quantity.
Write for Humans (and Not Robots) Using Natural Language.
Robots are all around us, and they're never going to leave. As a creative writer, you could be forgiven for feeling a bit threatened by this concept. After all, robots are generally better at structured tasks than humans. They can solve mathematical or computational problems faster and more precisely than we ever could.
However, robots tend to struggle with the unstructured nature of language and particularly when it comes to understanding context, nuance and purpose. In fact, there's arguably no job more suited to human minds than the act of writing.
There are some tasks that robots can do pretty well: for example, identifying keywords or spotting common errors in your copy. But when it comes to creative writing, there's no replacement for human ingenuity, not yet anyway.
A lot of content is written for the search engine rather than the human. After all, that's how we get traffic, right? We optimize our web pages and blog posts for the keywords people are searching for.
But there's a problem with this approach: You're not just competing against other websites for search engine rankings. You're also competing against your audience's own attention span.
When you write for a search engine, you tend to sound like a robot. And robots aren't that interesting.
The better way to engage your audience is by writing in a conversational tone. It's one of the best ways to grab your reader's attention and keep them reading until they reach the end of your post.
Get to know your target audience, like really know them!!
All good SEO copywriting starts with the audience. How can you expect to engage your audience if you don’t know who you’re writing for?
Start by creating a buyer persona. This is a semi-fictional representation of your ideal customer based on market research and real data about your existing customers. You can learn how to do this through our in-depth guide to buyer personas. To try out some template buyer personas, check out HubSpot's Free Persona Template or Buyer Personas: A Complete Guide, both of which include worksheets to help you get started.
With this information, you’ll be able to craft marketing copy that truly speaks to your target customer and will resonate better than generic content ever could.
Bonus: Want an easy way to keep track of the words and phrases that matter most to your audience? Create a swipe file and start collecting terms that resonate with your target customer.
Focus on content quality and user experience. Google has set high standards for web pages, and if you don't meet them all, you can wave goodbye to those high rankings! The first standard is content quality, so make sure that you only publish content that provides real value to your readers. Another major factor is user experience or UX, which means that your site should be easy to navigate and should have a great content structure (H1s, H2s, paragraphs, etc.).