SEO Content Writing – How to Revise to Optimize
You have the content, you have the writers, you have everything you need to create a website that’s a lean-mean, lead generating machine. Without SEO content writing as part of your creation process though, it’s time to go back and start optimizing for those Google searches.
Don’t sweat it if you’re looking at content that’s already been created with a fresh set of SEO eyes – it’s actually better for your content if you approach it from this angle anyway. Though every writer is different, in most cases the content comes across as much more natural when there’s not a built-in SEO agenda fueling the flow.
If you’re ready to take the next step and start refining for SEO content writing, here are a few things you can do, without having to rewrite much of anything.
#1 – Pronoun Swapping
Now, I know this probably sounds an awful lot like keyword stuffing, so please read very carefully when I say that neither we, nor any other SEO strategists of sound mind, EVER recommend keyword stuffing as a means of search engine optimization.
That being said, if your keyword density is say, 0%, then it might be a good idea to go back over your content and make that word appear a few more times. Typically, the easiest and most natural way to do this is to look for pronouns referring to your target keyword (if in fact, of course, your focus keyword is a noun). Typically when people write about something a lot, they forget to reference it by name enough in their text, so this can actually improve the readability of your work in many cases.
Yoast is a great tool for bloggers that are looking to optimize existing blog content. If you haven’t already, install the plugin and set a focus keyword (after doing some research with Google’s Keyword Planner), and it will give you some points for improvement.
#2 – Optimize Your H1 Text
SEO content writing is about more than just making the right keywords appear over and over – you need to make sure they’re in the right places too. The H1 text is critically important to the efficacy of your page’s SEO, so make sure that if you have a focus keyword selected, it’s going there.
#3 – Add Internal Links
Your content is bombdotcom, so use it to your advantage baby. Use internal links to help the Google crawler index your pages, and you’ll get a huge SEO boost, just for referencing your own content. Weaving this web of links creates paths between your pages, and of course, helps the reader dig deeper into other topics of interest.
Keep it relevant to the topic of your page, but don’t be shy about linking to your own stuff.
#4 – Nab Some External Links
A big part of SEO content writing actually involves writing on other people’s sites. Guest posting is a fantastic way to get your name out there, boost your site’s SEO, develop relationships with other sites bigger than your own, and even make some extra dough (plenty of sites pay for these posts, folks.).
Do a little outreach to target sites that have a nice domain authority (use the Moz tool to check it – it’s free) and content that’s relevant to your niche, then get in touch with the owners. Always be up front about wanting to include a link to your site in your post, or you could wind up writing an article for another site that does nothing for your own.
With a dofollow link on a reputable site, you can give your own site’s SEO a big boost, and climb even higher on the SERPs.
#5 – Optimize That Alt Text
It’s really easy to get into the habit of just stuffing images into content as an afterthought and a bit of spice to break up the text. Don’t miss out on this golden opportunity to incorporate some easy, passive SEO into your pages though.
By putting strategic keywords in the alt text of your images, you can actually help your site rank more, and even bring in more traffic through image searches, simply because you’ll be making relevant content easier to find for searchers.
And after all, that is the name of the game. Do the same with your image titles, and you’ll have precision-tuned content that keeps working for your site long after you do your SEO content writing.
#6 – Trim Stop Words from Slugs
This is a suggestion that the Yoast plugin will frequently give you as well, but in an effort to make your content more searchable, it’s always ideal to omit stop words from your slugs wherever you can. Too many stop words could actually mean your content isn’t showing up for the searches it could be.
What the heck is a stop word? Here’s a comprehensive list for reference that I highly recommend you bookmark.
#7 – Get Keywords into Your Meta Descriptions
…Or better yet, write them. I can’t tell you how many sites I see without any metadata, and it’s a damned shame, because they’re missing out on a really easy opportunity to improve their own SEO.
Take advantage of this information provision and add a description that will tell Google searchers what your page is all about. Having the relevant keywords in there will help your site rank higher faster, and it’s an easy thing to go back in and revise if you decide to swap out your focus keyword later on.
#8 – Keep Pages on Topic
SEO content writing isn’t just keyword research and title tags – a lot of it is simply writing content that stays on topic and is valuable to the reader (THANK you, Google). If you want to rank higher and optimize less, ultimately what that boils down to is sticking with a central topic, identifying the problem that you’re solving, and maintaining that idea throughout the page.
This can be as open-ended as an idea, or as specific as a set of focus keywords, but whatever you choose, make sure that each part of your page is optimized to reflect that choice. Just like the color scheme on your site and the branding for your company, SEO should tie the entire page together for the most bang for your buck.