How to Write Content That Ranks
This post is about Content Marketing, Guest Post, SEO / 7 minutes
The more time passes, the more content there is online. The internet is an ever-expanding treasure trove of content, which makes it more difficult to find exactly what you’re looking for.
And not just that — it’s increasingly more challenging to stand out from the crowd and drive meaningful traffic to your website.
The fact of the matter is, you need that traffic. You might simply enjoy blogging for your own sake and not care about who’s going to see your posts. That’s fine.
But for everyone else, content that doesn’t rank is an enormous waste of resources.
When done right, blog posts can indeed bring a lot of traffic to your website. In fact, blog posts generate about 38% of all traffic to the website. They are the number one way of getting a constant stream of effective SEO content.
So how do you make content like that?
Tips for Creating Effective SEO Content
Before we go into detail explaining some tips that can help you rank your content better, there’s one rule you should never forget.
In terms of SEO effectiveness, quality always beats quantity.
Don’t think you can game the system by publishing a never-ending stream of random content. Google’s become really good at noticing what websites provide answers to its users’ questions and those that seek fast results. Over the years, it’s evolved into a system that rewards quality, both in terms of content and links.
Now that the main rule is out of the way, we can share some other relevant tips with you:
- Good keyword research
- Correct content structure
- Setting the right tone and style
- Writing unique content
- Giving value to the reader.
Let’s discuss keyword research first.
1. Good Keyword Research
Keyword research involves analyzing and finding valuable terms, or keywords, that give your content a sense of direction.
First of all, it’s not enough to just find keywords with high search volumes and incorporate them within the content. Make sure to use keywords specific to your brand. That way, the content will match what your audience is looking for.
When your content doesn’t match what they were hoping to find, the users are less likely to visit more pages, which is one of the most important ranking factors.
Secondly, you need to know what goal you want to achieve with your keywords. With a clear goal in mind, you’ll know which seed (focus) keywords to define in order to reach that goal.
Once you have your focus keyword of choice, you can start narrowing it down to more specific iterations. To that end, you can use Google Keyword Planner or Ahrefs to check your competitor’s keywords.
2. Correct Content Structure
Content structure helps search engines rank your page properly.
The better the structure of your content, the easier it is for Google crawlers to do their jobs. Suffice it to say that Google values those websites that make the entire process faster by structuring their content properly.
So how do you create content that’s easy for Google to understand?
The key to making your content more crawler-friendly is using proper headings and subheadings. The first thing that the crawlers check are heading tags, which makes them a great place for using keywords. That increases the chances of your content ranking higher for the keywords you researched and opted for.
Only when they’re done with headings and snippets do the crawlers move on to the actual content. For that reason, you need to make sure your content is structured optimally!
3. Setting the Right Tone and Style
The goal of your blog post should be to make your brand or service more approachable to your readers. The content needs to feel connected to what you’re offering.
In order to achieve that, you need to set the right tone and writing style before you even begin.
The right tone is what sets you apart from all the competition out there. As we’ve already mentioned, the internet is saturated with blog posts on all things imaginable. Therefore, you need to connect with your audience to truly stand out from the crowd.
But first, you need to understand that very audience, or your endeavor is likely to fail really fast.
To set the right tone for your content, you need to know what kind of image you’d like to conjure up. Think about the image of your brand or service and how you’d like to represent it. If you’re not sure how to do that, you can always put yourself in your readers’ shoes.
What kind of content style and tone would you expect from a certain brand? How do you make it relatable?
Finally, your audience might come from countries all over the world. If your readers are mostly foreigners, it doesn’t make much sense to throw technical jargon or slang at them. Keep it simple.
4. Writing Unique Content
This one should be a given, but many bloggers still fall into the trap of plagiarising content.
There isn’t much to be said here. Always create unique content, from your own perspective, with your own words. Copy-paste content will not make your post better connected to the brand or service you’re trying to provide.
Remember, the objective is to set your own tone and style and to provide content that’s unique to your brand.
The readers will notice that something’s off and that what you’re saying has nothing to do with what you’re offering. Then, they’ll leave your website and go to more authentic ones.
Not only that but Google will also penalize you rather harshly if you’re caught plagiarising content. And trust us, it will find out, it’s incredibly easy to check if a blog post is a duplicate.
When your website receives a penalty from a search engine, it will take quite some time to restore reputation lost. It’s a major issue that will jeopardize all the time and money you put into your website.
In conclusion, if you want your content to rank, it absolutely must be unique.
5. Giving Value to the Reader
Finally, all the keyword research and tone-setting will be for naught if your content offers no value to your readers.
The content must provide your audience with useful and actionable advice that they want from a blog. It should be insightful, personalized, and closely aligned with your website’s goal.
For example, if your website’s in the streaming niche, an article on how to create a streaming website is just what someone would expect to read.
Naturally, not everyone has a knack for writing and expressing their ideas in such a manner. However, there’s always the alternative of hiring a professional content writing company to do the work for you. By investing in a team of writers, you can rest assured you won’t botch the post or provide lackluster content.
As a result, your content will be invaluable to the readers.
How to Write Content That Ranks: Conclusion
The quality of content is paramount to successfully ranking in search engines. We can’t state that enough times. But that doesn’t mean you should try and game search engines or use questionable methods to rank up.
As long as you focus on providing value to your readers, better rankings will follow. You can be certain of that.
Damien Reed is an SEO expert who specializes in content marketing and outreach. He has covered SEO and inbound marketing topics for some of the most popular websites in the industry, such as Search Engine Land, HubSpot and Raven.
Originally posted on: Written on October 19, 2020, Monday