SEO Copywriting – 7 Secrets And Tips We All Need
A lot of people would like to get involved in copywriting for internet pages. However, in order to be good at this, it is important to understand the basics of SEO and how they influence copywriting as a whole. Let’s take a look at 7 tips and secrets that will help you greatly on your way to becoming the best SEO copywriter.
1 – Write for Your Audience, But Optimize for the Google Robots
The problem with the various SEO rules is that if you were to write a piece of text that follows them all, you will have written something that is impossible read. In fact, although the robots may like all your efforts, they won’t even like reading it. You have to remember that you are writing for an audience. You may want to rank highly on Google, but your goal is to reach people, be that to make a sale or provide information. Hence, you have to make sure that your text can be read and that people will enjoy it, while at the same time making sure that the robots will like it too.
It’s 2013 – nobody wants to read SEO content, not even the search engines! Everything points to the fact that Google prefers natural content to obvious SEO stuff. Moreover, there’s no point in great rankings if your content doesn’t convert. So focus on your flesh and bone target audience – but help the robots find your content.
2 – Write for Skimmers
Point 2 actually follows on from point 1. The reality is that people spend a very short amount of time deciding whether or not a website page interests them or not. You have to make sure that your content is written in such a way that it grabs visual attention, but also so that people want to keep reading. It has been said that people only read the first three sentences of a page before they decide whether or not to read on. So make sure those sentences grab attention.
It is also recommended to write in a billboard style. This means you need to use images the right way, slotting them in at the right place. Use images that actually say something about the information you are trying to convey. And stay away from moving GIFs, they are so 1990s.
3 – Use Google Tilde for Your Keywords
Although it is important to not write solely for keywords (Google picks up on this and penalizes you), keywords are still incredibly important. You just have to know which ones to use and where to place them. One fantastic tool to help you do this right is Google Tilde. All you need to do is go to Google and search for a term, starting it with the ~ symbol. Google will then show you a list of related keywords that are relevant to that same one. Hence, instead of simply repeating the same keyword over and over again, something that Google does not appreciate, you can use other relevant keywords making your text readable and interesting for the robots.
4 – Using Headlines
Headlines are incredibly important. Firstly, they grab attention and immediately make your text more interesting overall. Secondly, it allows readers to decide whether or not to read a piece of your content or move on to the next point. You never want people to not read what you say, but it is better that they skim over a little piece and read the rest, instead of simply navigating away from your page.
Using the “who-what-why” formula isn’t the only way to format your headlines, but it works. Another technique I like is to ask a question, e.g., “Have You Been Secretly Penalized by Google?” Don’t be scared of headline formulas. Instead of “gimmicky,” think of them as a framework for the promise you make. When I’m stuck for headline inspiration, I surf the fantastic resources over at Copyblogger. There are literally dozens of effective headline formulas out there, so you need never worry about repeating yourself.
5 – Answer Questions
Remember, once again, that you are writing for an audience. This means you have information that they want to know about. Sit back and think what sort of questions they want to know about what you have to write and answer these straight away. Also, allow people to write comments or ask questions on what you have to say. This is incredibly beneficial in terms of SEO, particularly if you link it to social media and if you allow others to link to their pages. This is because Google will then see backlinks to and from your page, immediately giving you higher rankings. Never underestimate what your audience can do for you, in other words.
6 – Use Numbers
People love lists and numbers. Wherever possible, use this in your writing and make this clear in your titles and subheadings. For instance, writer about “10 things you never knew about (fill in subject)”, or “5 ways to (fill in subject)”. People love this, because it is visually attractive, easy to read and attention grabbing. Plus, it gives them the opportunity to challenge themselves and check if they already knew this. Humans are competitive by nature and will actually compete with themselves in this manner if given the opportunity.
7 – Get Sharing
The latest development in SEO and web development is all about social media. Sites such as Facebook and Twitter are continuing to take the world by storm and you need to use this to your advantage. Hence, always link any page you have back to a Facebook page and ensure this is shared widely. Make it a two-way street: reward people on your page for going to Facebook and reward those on Facebook for going to your page. You can do this through simply things like a free eBook give away, for instance.
These are the 7 most important secrets and tips you need to know about SEO copywriting. Get this right, and your pages should become highly listed very quickly. Also, never give up!