Writing unique, informative and/ or entertaining blog posts that are easy to read and creating SEO-friendly content are not two separate disciplines, but should, and can, go side by side.
Here are a few tips on writing great posts that are also SEO-friendly.
Think first, write later
Before you start writing, push your keyboard out of the way, sit back and think long and hard about the message you are trying to convey. Ask yourself what you wish to tell readers, why you want to tell them this and what you want them to do next. Jot yur answers down so you can go back later and check that you haven’t ‘lost your way’.
Structure and Search Terms
Aiming for at least 300 words, structure your post to have:
- An introduction of your topic
- A body carrying the main text/ message
- A conclusion summarising the most important points/ ideas
Work your search terms into the text naturally and at a density of 1 to 2 per cent (for a 300-word post, this would mean including the search term/s between 3 and 6 times). Sketching a brief outline of what you want to say in each of your sections will provide you with a short summary of the post, which you can use later to stay on track.
Using paragraphs makes posts more readable, but make sure your paragraphs make sense. There is little point in starting a new paragraph just because it looks good – each paragraph should contain a main idea/ subject. You should be able to summarise the main idea of any given paragraph in a single sentence. If it takes more than that, make more paragraphs.
Subheadings help people scan pages, lead them through your post and make the post’s structure clearer. They are also good for SEO purposes. Putting keywords (search terms) into some, but not all of your subheadings (bearing in mind your overall keyword density; see above) helps Google and other search engines to grasp your main topics (especially those of longer posts) and subsequently helps to increase your ranking.
Using signal words assists readers in scanning your text and grasping main points ideas. If, for example, you want to stress several important points, you should use words like first of all or firstly; secondly, thirdly, etc until you reach the final point, which could, for instance, be introduced by ‘finally’. Other words offering readers include surely, indeed and surely; so, therefore and thus. The latter three words shown here do, for instance, immediately tell readers that a conclusion is about to follow. Signal words are therefore of high importance to the structure of your text.
Get a second opinion. Let someone read your post before publishing it and ask them whether they get the post’s main idea. Correct any grammatical or ‘tryping errats’ (sorry, typing errors; couldn’t resist that one), post it and watch it do its magic.