SEO articles are different from other kinds of written content because their main goal is to achieve high visibility on Google. While you are likely aware that SEO stands for “search engine optimization,” you might not be familiar with the finer points about writing SEO content. The time has come to learn: Here are some helpful SEO article tips to help point your online marketing strategy in the right direction.
SEO Article Tips
Optimizely explains that people find online content by entering words into search engines, like Google, Bing, or Yelp. Search engine optimization is the science of getting web content to rank higher in the search results (also called SERPs), and how it is written is key to success. Higher website traffic means more prospects landing at your website, and from there you can generate sales.
According to JDR Group, the main goal should be to make the content relevant to the company’s target market. Think about it: you wouldn’t want to post content about heavy winter clothing on a Caribbean vacation website. JDR Group also stresses the importance of having high-value content. After all, there is so much junk on the Internet that people are used to skimming over the fat to find things that are worth reading, watching and listening to.
Keyword research is the first part of creating high-value content. This data usually shows a lot of long tail keywords phrased as implicit or explicit questions. These queries are entered into Google by your target customers, and your content can answer their questions and hopefully solve their problems. Many companies use “how to” blogs and articles, which can be read quickly and easily. Here is another example: if you were targeting people looking for office chairs, you might post an article titled “How to Choose the Most Comfortable Office Chair.”
Narrowing Your Approach
If your office chair article is just a list of your top-selling products, your audience may quickly lose interest. High-value content will speak directly to them, and provide information to help them make buying decisions. Some consumers are just at the beginning stages of making a purchase, and so they might want to know what the symptoms of sciatica are, or how features like adjustable height can benefit them.
Understanding who the target market is will also help narrow the approach. An administrative assistant may not have the background or authority to make a large purchase, but their supervisor or bookkeeper might. Again, that keyword research will be very useful here.
Using Keywords to Your Advantage
JDR Group also includes effective keyword usage in its list of important SEO article tips. As a guideline, the main keyword should be included prominently in the article’s title, as well as in the first and last paragraphs. This is not a hard and fast rule, though; some experts feel that a keyword should show up a certain number of times, while others feel that it can account for two to three percent of your total word count.
The number of times a keyword is used in an article is not as important as how it relates to the content. Sneaking in keywords in awkward places will look grammatically incorrect and just plain awkward. They should “read organically,” meaning that they should fit in naturally within the content. It is not hard for readers to realize when keywords are just stuck into sentences.
SEO Article Length
No blog about SEO article tips would be complete without mentioning article length. A lot of these estimates are based on guesswork, and opinions change over time. The length should be appropriate for the subject matter, and stretching it out with a lot of fluff will take away its value. Recommended SEO article lengths also change from year to year—historically, shorter ones were thought to be better.
Hubspot recently posted that the ideal SEO blog post length for 2021 was 2,100 to 2,400 words. They also broke it down by type of blog, stating that how-to posts should average from 1,700 to 2,100 words. As for a minimum length, they referred to Yoast, which recommends 300 words at the minimum. Both of these sources feel that longer, high-quality posts that have 1000 or more words have better chances of ranking higher in Google.
JDR Group disagrees, claiming that the highest-indexed articles on Google are about 600 words. The right solution could be to post a number of articles in different lengths. After all, people have different attention spans, and it doesn’t make sense to add in more paragraphs just for the sake of length unless the content is of high value.
A variety of content that appeals to your target audience in different ways is probably the best strategy. Here is a final tip: search for successful blogs by companies that are in your same industry, and see for yourself what reads best.
Writing for SEO can be challenging. A dedicated team of experts can help. Contact Wordsmyth Creative Content Marketing today for help with your SEO needs.