A Guide For Creating Effective SEO Content
If you’re into SEO & Internet Marketing, you must have heard the popular saying that “Content is King” & it’s very much true.
In today’s world, the content we’re generating is increasing at an exponential rate & number of channels for content distribution has also drastically increased in last few years. The user behavior for content consumption has also changed. Even advertisers have started leveraging native advertising( i.e content which resembles the publication's editorial content but is paid for by an advertiser and intended to promote the advertiser's product.)
It is the content that attracts visitors & retains them. Also, a great piece of content helps you to make your brand’s presence, build ups your audience which turns into your repeat visitors & it also helps you to get backlinks from other websites.
Basically SEO content is the content written specifically for driving search engine traffic to your website. In this guide, you'll get to know about creating effective SEO content that is loved by Google & by your visitors too.
For writing great SEO content - You should focus on :
- Keyword Research
- Content Structure
Keywords are the words and phrases in your content that that searchers enter into search engines, also called "search queries."Therefore, keyword research is important to know the real keywords for which people are searching & it's always good to take data driven decisions to do your content's strategy planning. After keyword research, you will get to know about the kind of queries that people have for a particular topic.
A great piece of SEO content is the content that offers great value to the visitors and answers the questions that the users have in their minds while providing them a good user experience. If you choose the right keywords then you will be able to rank it better giving you more traffic, leads, and sales.
Types of Keywords -
We can categorize the keywords in 3 categories -
- Head Keywords - These are normal single word ‘primary’ keywords like - dogs, gym, doctor etc. for which you are writing the content. The search intent is not clear in the head keywords. For example, if the keyword is “doctor” then it might be possible that one searcher might be looking for some doctor to get some medical help and there might be a second use case where the searcher might be looking for getting information about types of doctors.
So head keywords don't convert well & these keywords have very high volume & very high competition.
- Body Keywords - These are 2-3 word phrases like - dogs food, gym training equipment, doctors in Miami. The search intent is clearer in body keywords. Normally they are used as a reference to create pages & posts content in a website which might cover many other body keywords & long tail keywords depending on your content strategy.
These keywords have lesser competition & lesser search volume than head keywords.
- Long Tail Keywords - These are normally 4+ word phrases like - where to get dog food, how to use a treadmill, best family doctor in Miami. The search intent is most clear in long tail keywords as these are very specific questions that people have in their mind.
They have the highest conversion & they have very less keyword competition & have very less search volume too.
Keyword Research Tools -
There are many keyword research tools available in the market nowadays. But Google Keyword Planner(GKP) is the most famous tool for keyword research. Another keyword tool that is in my favorite list is SEMRush.
You can also use BuzzSumo, Forums & Reddit for getting keyword & content ideas for your content strategy of your website.
- Google Keyword Planner (GKP) -
Google Keyword Planner was created for advertisers to help them to do their paid strategy research. It gives them a brief idea about searchers behavior in that particular niche & the paid competition scenario by giving other necessary details like Avg. Monthly Searches, Competition, Suggested Bid etc.
But it’s a great tool for SEO & content strategists too as it gives relevant data which helps them to create their data driven strategies.
- SEMRush -
I use it mainly for reverse engineering my competitors SEO content strategy. It gives me insights on the content strategy & the pages which are doing very well in search results.
I love to apply 80/20 rule here by finding the 20% pages of the competitor which is giving them 80% of results. It is not always 80-20 but you can understand the gist behind this strategy. There can be 100s of pages on the website but we can find out the top performing pages which are driving most of the website’s traffic.
For e.g: For survivallife.com, around 50% is traffic is coming to these 8 pages only. So a competitor can create better content for these 8 pages.
You can also find out the keywords for which these pages are getting the traffic by clicking the numerical value given in the keywords section.
You have to go to SEMRush -> Domain Analytics -> Organic Research -> Pages to get this data for a website.
- BuzzSumo -
Buzzsumo gives insights about the content that has proven track record of engaged users on multiple social media platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest etc. It gives the idea about the type of content that people love on social media & hence it shows that people will love to link back to your website for this type of content.
- Forums -
People tend to ask about the problems that they are facing on Forums. So you can create a content that can answer the solution of those problems.
You can find relevant forums in your niche by searching - “keyword forum” like “dogs forum”
“keyword” + “forums” like “dog” + “forums”
“keyword” + “forum” like “dog” + “forum”
“keyword” + “board” like “dog” + “board”
- Reddit -
Similar to forums, people tend to ask and discuss their problems on Reddit too.
You can head over to Reddit. Then search for a broad topic that your target audience is interested in & then select the subreddit to check out the discussions.
Keywords Consolidation & Logical Grouping -
Consolidate the keywords that you have found & create a logical grouping. Let’s say the keyword you want to rank for is "paracord".You will get a ton of keywords using above tools & websites. Now you can list them down in an excel sheet and do a logical grouping & it will give you multiple groups. In the picture given below, logical grouping is done for “paracord projects”
From 100s of keywords, you will end up with 10s of groups. These groups will serve as main keywords for your pillar article of your website.
The objective of this step is to structure the content in such a way that it provides tremendous value to the user for the topic while maintaining a good user experience.
You have the keywords list and now you have to use those keywords smartly in the content.
- Leverage Title Tag
The title tag is one of the most critical factors of On-Page SEO & therefore it should be properly leveraged. The best strategy is to to use the long tail version of the keyword which will cover your keyword(high competition) & will also cover your long tail keyword(low competition). So over the time, you'll be able to capture traffic for both the keywords. We have got the groups from the previous section of the article.We will use those group keywords to create a long tail title tag like -
“How To Make Paracord Survival Bracelets”
“21 Ways to Make Paracord Survival Bracelets”
- Publish Long content
Long content is always better than a short content because it contains more value & it covers the topic by giving more information.
Long content takes time & lot of effort. Long content covers many keywords in a single article and it automatically gives you an advantage in terms of rankings. Webmasters take references from well-researched articles & therefore it automatically generates backlink for your website.
- Keyword Appearance - Google gives preference to your article if your keyword appears higher on the page. Try to use your keyword in first 100 words.
(Image Source - Survivallife.com)
- Leverage User Experience Signals - As we're writing content to provide tremendous value to the visitors. It gives direct & indirect benefits - the bounce rate will decrease, average user time on the website will increase, no. of page views will increase. And it creates authority subconsciously in the visitor's mind, and they will link back to your site if they love it.
The users like a proper structure of the content in terms of navigation on the website. Navigation for the articles or the subtopics of an article can be on left side, right side & bottom.
Also, add images & videos in the content as people understand better with images & videos.
Bottom line is that you should know what people are searching - what kind of information they need, what kind of problems they are facing & then create a content strategy that provides tremendous value to the users.