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What’s the Point of SEO?

Demystifying SEO: A Practical Guide for Website Writers

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. Essentially, it’s the art and science of making your website or content more visible and appealing to search engines like Google, Bing, or Yahoo. Why does this matter? Because when someone types a query into a search engine, you want your website to be among the top results. Why? Because that’s where the magic happens – that’s where the clicks, the traffic, and the potential customers are.

Is SEO worth your time? Let’s explore three powerful reasons why you should consider SEO strategy in your work.

Visibility is Key:
Imagine you’ve crafted a masterpiece of a blog post or a stunning landing page. It’s informative, engaging, and beautifully written. But here’s the catch. If no one can find it, it might as well be sitting in a dusty attic. SEO helps your content climb up the search engine ranks, so your target audience sees it. By optimizing your content with relevant keywords, meta tags, and other SEO techniques, you increase your chances of getting discovered by people searching for topics related to your niche.

Traffic, Traffic, Traffic:
Picture this: If you’ve successfully optimized your website for search engines, your content is ranking high now on the search results page. So, what’s next? Traffic – and lots of it! SEO isn’t just about getting your content to rank; it’s about driving quality traffic to your website.

Attracting quality traffic means reaching real people, who are actively searching for information, products, or services that you offer. By appearing prominently in search results, you attract organic traffic – visitors who are genuinely interested in what you have to offer. And more traffic means more opportunities to convert those visitors into leads, customers, or loyal followers.

Staying Ahead of the Competition:
In the vast digital landscape, competition is fierce. Whether you’re running a business website, enrolling for a school district, signing up new patients, or running an event page, chances are there are dozens, if not hundreds, of other websites vying for your same audience.

SEO gives you a competitive edge by helping you stand out from the crowd. By optimizing your content for search engines, you improve its chances of outranking competitors and capturing the attention of your target audience. Likewise, staying on top of SEO trends and best practices allows you to adapt alongside ever-changing search algorithms. Evolve your SEO strategy to ensure your content remains relevant and competitive.

How Complicated is SEO Writing?

The intricacies of SEO can be complicated—but the good news is you probably don’t need to dive that deep. Keep it simple and achievable by keeping these five practical tips in mind when writing for the web:

1. Keyword Research: Your keywords are the words associated with your expertise, products, or services. They are the foundation of SEO. Start by identifying relevant words and phrases that your target audience is using when searching for content like yours. 

Example: Let’s say you run a travel blog and want to write a post. Using a keyword research tool like SEMrush, you discover that the keyword “budget travel Europe” has high search volume and moderate competition. You decide to target this keyword in your blog post to attract relevant traffic.

Tools like Google Keyword Planner, SEMrush, or Ahrefs can help you discover high-volume keywords with low competition. But you can start by thinking about what people are typing into Google. Not sure what readers are asking? Try AnswerthePublic.

SEO has changed, so prioritizing originality, authenticity, and value matters. Make sure you are contributing helpful information for your reader. Don’t shoehorn your keyword into your content over and over again. Write naturally, and make sure to include keywords where they logically make sense.

2. Optimize On-Page Elements: Once you’ve identified your target keywords,  strategically incorporate them into on-page elements. This means being intentional about titles, headings, meta descriptions, and body content. But remember, don’t overdo it – aim for a natural, reader-friendly flow.

For example, imagine you’ve chosen “budget travel Europe” as your target keyword phrase. Now, it’s time to optimize your on-page elements. Your blog post title could be: “10 Budget Travel Tips for Exploring Europe on a Shoestring.” When drafting your meta description, be sure to include the keyword and a compelling call-to-action: “Discover insider tips for traveling Europe on a budget. Start planning your dream trip today!” Throughout the body of your post, you naturally incorporate variations of the keyword where appropriate. (Don’t worry about word order. Google understands that “budget travel Europe” is the same as “travel to Europe on a tight budget.”)

3. Create High-Quality Content: While keywords are important, they’re not the be-all and end-all of SEO. Focus on creating valuable, informative, and engaging content that resonates with your audience. High-quality content not only attracts readers but also earns backlinks – another crucial aspect of SEO. Backlinking is when another website links to your content—it proves to Google that your content is valuable and trustworthy.

Let’s go back to our example: your travel blog. When you provide detailed insights and personal anecdotes, instead of just listing generic travel tips, you provide context and make your content stand out. You share specific strategies for finding affordable accommodations, saving money on transportation, and enjoying budget-friendly activities in various European cities. By offering valuable, actionable advice, you keep readers engaged and encourage them to share your content with others.

4. Optimize for Mobile: With the majority of internet users now accessing content via mobile devices, optimizing your website for mobile is no longer optional – it’s essential. So, let’s be sure that your core website vitals are healthy. This means your pages are responsive, load quickly, and provide a seamless user experience across all devices. 

Example: PDFs and Google Docs can be difficult to view on a mobile phone, so you copy all of your valuable content into your webpage. There’s a button to download your travel tips as a PDF if someone wants to print them, but all your content is easily accessible directly on your page.

5. Stay Updated: SEO is a constantly evolving field, with search engines regularly updating their algorithms. When looking up tips for SEO website writing, make sure you’re looking at current information on best practices.

It’s also essential to consider the role of artificial intelligence (AI) in search engine algorithms. AI-powered algorithms are increasingly scanning and summarizing website content to understand its relevance and quality. This means that search engines are not only looking for keywords but also analyzing the context and intent behind the content. As AI continues to advance, content creators need to focus on creating comprehensive, valuable, and authoritative content that effectively addresses users’ needs and queries.

 

The point of SEO for website writers is simple yet profound because it’s about maximizing visibility, driving website traffic to your content, and staying ahead of the competition. Although SEO can be complex, it can also be as simple as thinking about how your users experience your website. Are you designing, writing, and organizing for your users, or are you writing from an insider’s point of view?

If you need help reimagining your website, give our integrated marketing team a shout. They’re design superstars who know how to make your website work for your users and for you. 

 

Published on: February 19, 2024

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