When it comes to SEO copywriting or blog posting for business sometimes the hardest part is getting started with a piece. Inspiration is not something you can wait around for as it rarely strikes at all and certainly not when it’s most needed. For SEO work there is a temptation to focus on keywords but creating quality copy counts for a lot these days, and it’s always worth remembering that at the other side of the screen there is, after all, just another human being. Hopefully, quite a lot of them all willing to read what you have to say. There are various ways to combine the SEO needs of our robotic friends and the less measurable needs of our human readers. These are just a few pointers.
Five strategies for effective SEO copy
- Readability is an important factor when you’re producing web copy of any kind. There are plenty of studies to show that “we” scan read when it comes to internet use. There’s not much new about that, we also scan read a lot of other stuff, newspapers, instructions and most advertising material. It’s why you don’t often see billboards with a books-worth of copy on them.
- Informative posts, SEO writing and web copy are attractive to readers and robots alike. If you know your market you should have a good idea of the sort of information they are looking for and keyword research will also help. Each page of your website should be optimised to make it as informative as possible. Providing answers to questions that people are asking will get you noticed and help generate return traffic.
- Relevant pages, copy and material make readers happy. You might want to stuff a load of keywords in there, but most users will spot that straightaway. The light touch with keywords is useful and if you’re promising certain information with your headlines and taglines, then deliver it.
- The length of each specific piece of copy is also important. Blog posts average around 400-800 hundred words. The length of a piece also has an impact on its readability. In the case of blog posts people are often looking for sound bites, small chunks of information. Remember, if they wanted a novel they’d be on Amazon, not visiting your site.
- Establishing your voice. This is perhaps the most important and most intangible aspect to creating successful copy of any kind. There’s a whole industry out there on “tone of voice” and the tone you use depends on not only the industry that you operate in but also your unique style.
The sudden, and rather rapid, rise of the SEO industry has been something of a double edged sword for copywriters. While many can produce great copy, this particular brave new world has plenty of pitfalls, and it can be a constant learning curve. In addition to having to produce engaging copy that charms readers into parting with their hard earned cash, SEO copywriters now have to charm the search engines into a ranking sites high on their lists of ‘must reads’. Traditional copywriting techniques do, however, still apply. Learning who your audience are, what they are looking for and how they process information are all fairly basic techniques that will help set you on the road to success with both the search engines and your human audience.
For those providing copywriting services it can seem like the SEO goalposts are on the move continually. Using some simple, traditional techniques, can help to get the balance right for most markets and internet users.