What is SEO Content Optimization? 10 Best Practices You Need to Follow in 2021
Content is very crucial for SEO, without it search engines won’t have enough data or information to index your pages appropriately and help you rank. If you don’t have a proper SEO strategy, then the pages on your website will never be seen or shared. They will simply live online with no visitors and that kind of defeats the purpose doesn’t it.
SEO Content Optimization enhances your visibility on search engines, which helps to drive traffic to your website and stimulates people to purchase your products/ services. By advancing in SEO content, you can add real value to your business’s bottom line.
What is SEO Content?
To comprehend what we actually mean by SEO content, you first need to have very clear in your mind what is the main objective of SEO, what types of content are there, and what is SEO content optimization.
What is SEO? Quite simply, SEO or search engine optimization is the process of optimizing your online content for achieving the highest possible visibility in search engines. The SEO procedure comprises several steps that are generally grouped into the following: Technical SEO, On-Page SEO and Off-Page SEO.
As content SEO is a part of On-Page SEO so here is a synopsis of the On-Page SEO process highlighting the role of content SEO.
On-Page SEO begins by optimizing the page title as well as h1 heading, and then it’s all about the online content found on the page. Your overall objective with content SEO is to just write SEO friendly content so that it can be easily understood by search engines but at the same time gratify the user intent and keep them happy.
What types of SEO content are there?
Before we get into how you can simply optimize your content, let’s see what we mean by “content”. Content can be any material that you publish online that can be indexed by search engines. This includes website content, text, images, graphics, videos, audio, infographics, or a combination of these.
In general, the several types of content are:
- Blog Posts: The most commonly used format. It can be an amalgamation of text, images, and video. Also, it can be news type of articles, press release, case studies, how-to guides, any general information, etc.
- Static Pages: Usually, content is found on static pages of the website like the Know Us or About Us.
- Product Pages: Pages endorsing specific products or services.
- Landing Pages: Pages designed precisely to be used in PPC (Pay-per-click) campaigns or as the first page users see when they land on your website.
How to Optimize your Content for SEO
Irrespective of the content format, there are few guidelines you have to track every time you publish content on the website to make sure that is SEO optimized.
Content Optimization Begins With Relevant Keyword Research
Before you get your hands muddy and begin thinking about your introduction, then it’s essential first you need to do your homework properly and, in this context, we mean to accomplish keyword research.
Knowing what keywords are usually typed by users in the search box can serve two major purposes:
- You will identify what kind of content to create to make users glad
- You will identify how to optimize your content and upsurge your chances of getting noticed by the search engines. In the long run, this means higher rankings as well as traffic.
The result of your good keyword research should be 3 things:
- A decision of what is the main and relevant keyword you are targeting
- A set of long tail keywords linked to your main keyword
- A set of LSI related keywords connected to your main keyword
You will use these as a slice of the content SEO procedure. To be more specific:
- Your target keyword should be comprised of your URL, page title, and h1 heading.
- Long-tail keywords can be contained within your subheadings
- Other related keywords (LSI) can be encompassed in your subheadings and body of the content.
Use Main Keywords In The Title, Heading And Body Of The Content
Use Your Target Keyword Above The Fold
Everyone knows that your target keyword should appear in your title as well as the h1 heading but what is equally vital is to mention the target keyword once or twice in the first couple of paragraphs.
There is a rule of thumb asserting that the imperative content of a page is the one found on the top part of the page, so ensure that within that content you give search engine spiders more hints on what the rest of your content is all about.
1.Use Long Tail Related Keywords For Subheadings
When you are targeting any particular keyword then you don’t just repeat that over and over again but you can use variations of that specific keyword in your content.
The best way to do this is to find out long-tail keywords, which are related to your target keyword and use those smartly in your sub-headings.
Start typing your core keyword in the Google search box and take note of several suggestions. Along with this, another method to find out related keywords is to search for the target keyword in Google and look for the ‘People Also Ask’ section.
2. Properly Use LSI Keywords In Your Content
LSI stands for ‘Latent Semantic Index(ing)’ and in easy terms, these are word phrases that have a similar meaning as your core keyword.
Why LSI Keywords are crucial to SEO and content marketing? With the overview of Rank Brain (Google’s machine learning technology used as a chunk of the ranking algorithm), Google is trying to comprehend the wider meaning of keywords and this is taken into account in the rankings.
3. How do you easily find LSI keywords?
The cooler way is to search for your target keyword in Google and take a glance at the “related searches” section. Also, a different technique is to use a tool like LSI Graph to get suggestions for LSI keywords to integrate into your content.
Always Use Text To Go With Your Non-Text Content
Search engines can easily comprehend text content more than any other form of content so make their life relaxed by having text content on your page, even if you are endorsing other forms of content.
For instance, let’s say you created a good creative or infographic about a topic and you want to publish it on your blog post. Don’t just add the creative and hit publish but also try to have text content on the page clearing up what the creative is all about.
Also, you can simply follow the same concept when publishing images, videos, or audio. For instance, if you are running a podcast, you can have the proper and clear description of the podcast and even a text transcript so that both users as well as search engines can get a better understanding of what the podcast is all about.
Write Long-Type Content
There are a lot of studies showing that long-type content performs excellently in search as well as social media networks.
Even though this is correct, it does not mean that you should write 2000 words for just the sake of getting to a word limit.
The excellence of the content is always more significant than quantity. If what you write is excellent and entices shares and links, it can easily rank high in Google even if there are other posts that are longer in length.
Add Internal Links To Other Related Content On The Website
Another important element of SEO Content Optimization is internal linking. Within your content, properly link to other pages of your website to facilitate users to find out more about a specific topic and search crawlers one more reason to simply index more pages from the website.
Also, internal links generate what is called ‘content relevancy’ which is something that assistances Google recognize the meaning of the content better.
While adding internal links always use meaningful anchor text so that search crawlers can get a virtuous idea of what the linked page is all about.
Add External Links To Other Websites
Besides linking to your own blogs/ articles, it’s a decent practice to link out to other websites or sources provided that:
- They will support users to read more about a topic
- You trust the website you will link to
- Don’t overcook it with external links but also don’t be scared to link out when it makes sense.
Make It Simple To Read And Understand
Make your content simple to read. Don’t just simply throw text on a page but it is also important to apply proper formatting styles to make reading simpler, particularly for the users who like to skim-read.
- Try to use clear and concise paragraphs
- Use bold and italics to highlight the chunks of the content that matter
- Use lists to outline steps
- Try to keep sentences short
- Always use a font, which is easy to read on all devices
- Add enough white spacing between the paragraphs
Optimize Non-Text Elements
As I have stated above, content can have several forms and is not certainly text. When adding other non-text elements to your content, ensure that it is optimized. The most common is all the images included in your content should:
- Have a simple filename (i.e. abc-keywords.jpg and not 345afg.jpg)
- Have an appropriate ALT Text
- Include a caption text just below the image to define what the image is all about
Use Schema Markup To Label Your Content To Search Engines
Besides, you can make use of structured data to label your content to search engines in a way they can comprehend.
There are various schemas you can implement depending on the form of content you are publishing online. There are schemas for articles, blog posts, podcasts, recipes, reviews, and others.
Always Provide Users With A CTA (Call To Action) Or Exit Point
I have stated above that the major objective with SEO Content Optimization is to please the user intent but equally imperative is to satisfy your goals as a publisher.
Every single piece of content, which is going to be published on your website should have an objective. By objective, we mean “what do you want search users to do once they read your content?”
Do you want to get more email subscribers? Then ensure that below your blog posts you have a sign-up box.
Do you want people to purchase your products or services? Then ensure that within your content you can add a CTA (call to action) button to direct traffic to your sales pages.
Do you want to get more clicks rather than impressions on your ads? Then ensure that ads are prominently visible while users are reading the content.
Do you want users to involve and stay on your website for longer? Then, try to integrate a related articles section below the post.
Whatever your objective, it should be clear and loud to users what’s the subsequent step in continuing their journey.
SEO Content Optimization is a very significant module of the on-page SEO process. Your overall aim is to give both users as well as search engines the user-friendly content they are looking for. As mentioned by Google, know what your readers actually want and give it to them.
The process begins by searching out what users are in the hunt for and creating content that gratifies their intent.
Before hitting the publish button, you should ensure that your target keywords are properly integrated into the top part of the page and connected keywords (including LSI) in your subheadings as well as body.
Embellish your content, make it simple to read & understand, and navigate and then endorse it to get in front of the eyes of as many people as possible.