Every day, digital content creators publish around 7.5 million blogs. But not all blog posts rank high on Google’s search results page. In fact, a lot of them fail to even reach the first or second page of the search results. This is the reason why optimizing your content for search engines is so crucial as a business or marketer. Now, as a part of your content marketing strategy, you need to follow a few steps to get the desired results. They are explained below.
Begin with keyword research
A keyword is a common phrase or word that you use to get relevant information from search engines. It could be something as short as “Life” or as long as “How to get more followers on social media on a budget.”
You need to find keywords that are relevant to your industry or the topic you are writing about. Many keyword research tools will help you in this process. Some free online tools include:
Go for keywords with less competition and high search volume. Insert 2-3 keywords in your content for the best results. All your content marketing strategies are useless without this first step.
Optimize Your Headline
A headline serves two purposes. First, it convinces readers to go through your content. Second, it tells the search engines what the content is about. Naturally, every SEO expert gives extra attention to headlines.
Insert the keyword you are targeting in the heading. Make it look natural. For example, if you are targeting the keyword “Weight loss program,” you can create these headings:
- Weight Loss Programs: Do they really work?
- 5 mistakes to avoid while searching for a weight loss program
- Everything you need to know about weight loss programs
It is equally vital to make your heading attractive with a combination of emotional, power, and spiritual words. Some examples of emotional words include Discover, Huge, Because, Guaranteed, and Today.
That said, avoid misleading people. Don’t promise something in the headline that you can’t deliver in the content. Doing so hampers your reputation as a business. And it increases the bounce rate, something that damages your SEO efforts.
Pro Tip: Write headlines at the end. You will get enough ideas from your content.
Keep the Number of Words Optimal
Yes, the number of words matters when you are crafting an SEO-friendly content marketing strategy. You need to create a blog post of more than 300 words for sure. Also, blog posts with more than 1000 words have better chances of ranking higher. As per the experts at CoSchedule, a headline optimizer tool, posts with around 2,500 words usually rank the best.
Here are a few tips to help you increase the length of your content:
- Do extensive research to get enough material to write about.
- Explain a point or word wherever possible (This also increases the readability).
- Create an outline of your post before writing.
- Include enough stats and facts to increase the length and make your content credible.
Avoid stuffing your content with fluff, though. Neither Google nor online readers will like it!
Optimize the Images
Make sure you have adequate images that complement the content you have written. The next vital step is optimizing each image for SEO. To do so, give proper alt text to the images. Alt text tells the search engines what the image is about. Here’s the code used for doing so.
In the above example, “abc.gif” is the image file with file type GIF. And “SEO statistics” is the image name that Google or Bing will read.
Resizing is also crucial to make your images SEO-friendly. Resizing in terms of pixels and file size will speed up the loading time of the web pages too. You can use these free online tools for resizing:
Focus on Internal Linking
Internal linking is when you add links to your existing web pages to a new page. For example, if you have written a blog post about “How to keep your laptop in good shape,” you can add a link to your page about laptop repairs. The links to your previous blog posts can also be added to the new posts. Just make sure the links are relevant to the content. Avoid adding too many links, though, as it makes the page look spammy and less readable.
So, What is the Bottom Line?
It is crucial to read the latest updates regarding SEO content, as search engine optimization regulations keep changing. Or you can hire an experienced agency that can prepare a robust content marketing strategy on your behalf. Check the agency’s past projects to gauge the quality of their work.
How to Create Content that Ranks in Google
With these objectives in mind, here’s a simple process to achieve both of these goals.
The first step is to write about topics people are searching for. Most people like to write about topics that excite them. But these posts often have a short shelf life.
When you create content around topics that people are searching for, then you get the opposite effect: free, passive, and consistent traffic that usually grows over time. Once you get the hang of it, you’ll have more content ideas than you know what to do with. How do you do this? This video will show you how.
The second step is to assess the type of content Google wants you to create. Google’s job is to deliver the most relevant results for any given search query. And they do a pretty good job at this.
So naturally, if you want to rank for your target topic, then you need to know the type of content Google will rank for that query. This is called search intent. Watch the video to find out how to determine search intent from any query.
Step three is to create a data-driven outline Content is like a puzzle. There are a lot of different pieces, and it’s tough to assemble without some kind of framework. Outlines are like the edge pieces of the puzzle. They help to form the base, and all you need to do is fill in the missing pieces.
They also help make sure you’re including all critical points worth communicating on the topic. This video will show you how to easily create a blog post outline.
Step four is to create a click-worthy headline. A headline is important because it’s what stands between you and a visitor. Its main job is to convince people to actually click on your result. Then it’s your content’s job to keep them reading. Watch the video to learn how to write good headlines. Step five is to write a killer intro using the AIDA formula.
The introduction is arguably the most important part of your content. Its job is to hook your reader, tell them they’re in the right place, and convince them to keep reading.
Fortunately, there’s a tried and tested formula you can use called AIDA, which you can use. What does it stand for and how do you use it? Watch the video.
Step six is to make your content actionable and easy to digest.