1. Choose your keywords carefully – To write for SEO for business, gone are the days of targeting one or two words. Now, with more competition, long-tail phrases (generally three to five words) give you an edge. Popular key phrases show where searchers are at in the buyer’s journey and help you plan content around them. For instance, “How to” phrases show the searcher is in the consideration phase — between “awareness” and “decision-making” — and they want to solve a problem.
Beyond web pages, consider your keywords for social and video platforms such as YouTube, which rely on them in titles and descriptions. Hashtags in social media posts help searchers find them on those platforms. LinkedIn shows the number of followers for certain keywords, and lists of popular social media hashtags are available. To reach a wider audience, mix general and specific hashtags. The number of keywords that affect social media post algorithms varies, so experiment.
To help screen readers pronounce words correctly, write multi-word hashtags in CamelCase.
2. Focus on placement – The title and the top of a web page or a blog post are often the best places for your keywords. (HubSpot suggests you keep titles under 60 characters.) But have you considered the format of your piece? A clear structure with descriptive keywords, especially in your primary heading, eases navigation and can improve engagement, accessibility, and rankings. Analyze pages that rank for your targeted keywords to decide on the format, such as a list or an article with subheadings.
3. E-A-T: Expanded Edition – Google’s E-A-T is now E-E-A-T, which stands for experience, expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness. Search algorithms change regularly, however, this aspect has become more important as Google seeks to filter low-value content. To rank pages higher and build authority, credit and link back to credible sources you used to answer questions and solve problems. And preferably, have experience with the topic.
Compare the content of similar pages with your keywords and decide which information to add to make it more complete.
4. Writing meta tags – These short web page summaries appear in search engine results. If you write them well, they will persuade searchers to visit your pages. They also appear on social media when you post links. HubSpot suggests they contain one to two keywords, describe the page content exactly, and be at least 155 to 160 characters long. Write one or two clear, descriptive sentences. Moz’s Title Tag Preview Tool offers advice.
Example: Quality Behavioral Health: “Quality Behavioral Health offers counseling and medication management in Warwick. Call today for help with anxiety, depression, ADD, ADHD, and more.”
5. Describing link text – “Click here” is clear for navigation, but it’s not enticing, nor does it aid a page’s search ranking. It also fails to meet Web Content Accessibility Standards for people with disabilities. Instead, hyperlink to a phrase of at least three words, when possible, that describes the content you link to. To write for SEO and gain more business, add a benefit to the text to encourage clicks.
Example: Shop the holiday gift guide for the perfect present.
An experienced SEO writer who keeps up with the latest trends can help your content “click” with your target audience.
How do you write for SEO? Feel free to comment below.
“On-page SEO is no longer satisfied by raw keyword use. Matching keywords to searcher intent is critical.” ~ Rand Fishkin
“My rule of thumb is build a site for a user, not a spider.” ~ Dave Naylor
Published March 7, 2023