5 SEO Copywriting Tips and Secrets That’ll Add the Finishing Touch to Any SEO Strategy
When you write content for your website, you can make it do a lot of things.
You can make it appeal to Google by using SEO best practices to rank for certain keywords.
You can make it appeal to humans by writing valuable content that answers questions.
You can make it sell your product.
But did you know that you can make your content do all three at the same time?
That’s where SEO copywriting comes into play.
SEO copywriting is about striking a balance in your attempts to appeal to Google and humans.
When you use SEO copywriting best practices, you can get everyone to buy what you’re selling – Google, readers, and customers alike.
There are many types of marketing that you can try, but SEO copywriting is one of the most sustainable.
That’s why this article will let you in on the following secrets:
- 5 SEO copywriting tips that will boost your page ranking.
- How to make your content SEO friendly and still appeal to readers.
- SEO copywriting examples that will help you appeal to end users.
Let’s start by answering that question:
What is SEO Copywriting?
SEO copywriting is a form of online writing that comprises:
- Key words or phrases that people use to search for information on Google.
- Copywriting elements that keep readers engaged and on the page.
- Content that solves a problem, answers a question, and provides valuable information.
What is an SEO copywriter?
An SEO copywriter is a content maker that know how to use keywords to show Google that their content is relevant to a topic. They also know how to avoid stuffing their content with keywords. Plus, they know how to use copywriting and content creation techniques to engage readers, answer questions, provide value, and sell.
That’s because each aspect of SEO copywriting has to do with appeal. And when you use all the proper techniques together, you’ll appeal to Google, other authoritative websites, your readers, and your customers.
Which brings us to the question:
What is SEO friendly content?
SEO friendly content is writing that uses keywords to let Google know the topic of the content. That way, Google can rank the content as a result for relevant words and phrases. Google is in the business of showing people content that answers their questions or solves their problems.
Adding specific words and phrases let’s Google know that your content is targeting a question, problem, or topic.
At the same time, Google prioritizes quality and authority over anything else. You should bear that in mind when you’re creating your content. The ultimate prize is to have your webpages read by people. Real people.
As such, your copy has to be crafted in an interesting and engaging way. You may rank number one with keywords, but Google will drop you if people are leaving your website in droves.
Before you start writing, you’ll need to conduct keyword research. SEO copywriting starts with identifying topics and corresponding keywords most relevant to your industry or niche.
If you run a website that sells camping equipment, you’ll want to create content about “camping” and other relevant topics – e.g., “hiking.”
To get a solid list of keywords, type your main keyword into the search bar and see what Google suggests. For “camping,” Google suggests “camping gear,” and “camping equipment.”
Now, check the search volumes. The keyword “camping gear” has a massive search volume of 33,100, which is down from the previous month at 49,500. As a camping website, you’ll definitely want to rank for “camping gear” at some point.
In fact, your article on camping gear will end up being your most important blog piece.
Once you have your main keyword, “camping gear,” you’ll want to make a list of LSI (Latent Semantic Indexing) Keywords. See, here’s the thing:
Google is getting pretty sophisticated. And that means you don’t need to force feed it keywords. Google now uses LSI instead of keyword repetition to determine the content of an article. Think of LSI as “related words” or “synonyms.”
Let’s say you’re writing an article using “apple” as your main keyword. How does Google know you’re talking about the fruit and not the company? LSI keywords.
When you’re writing about Apple the company, you’ll use words like “iPhone,” “Mac,” and “Steve Jobs.” When you’re writing about the fruit, you’ll use words like “tree,” “fruit,” and “pie.”
LSI keywords for “camping gear” include “cool camping gear,” “camp cooking gear,” and “camping gadgets.” Plus words like “tent,” “stove,” and “sleeping bag.”
Now, a big part of SEO copywriting is adding your keywords to your writing. You’ll want to use your main keyword in your title, your first header, and throughout the text. Then add LSI keywords where appropriate.
Good SEO copywriting examples use keywords in a natural way where appropriate.
Want to learn more about how to create SEO friendly content without keyword stuffing? Read our guide: 5 Ways to Create Findable Content Without Keyword Stuffing
Before you start writing, you’ll also want to consider the structure of your content.
Yes, you’ll want a catchy introduction and conclusion with a Call to Action (CTA). But how you structure the writing is just as important as what you write.
Perhaps it’s a sign of the times, but your audience may not read your articles word-for-word.
Instead, readers tend to scan content, looking for words or phrases that catch their eye.Google also “crawls” your text, jumping from one word to another.
That’s why an important SEO copywriting tip is to break up your text and create a comprehensive structure with subheadings.
First rule, don’t create gigantic blocks of text.
Your article will intimidate the reader and they’ll bounce. Your content should be easy on the eye and enjoyable to read. Use bullet points, subheadings, images, and examples to break up large chunks of text.
Write in short sentences.
Make paragraph breaks often.
Second rule, use a copywriting technique called grease-slide copy.
I know what you’re thinking:
What is grease-slide copy?
Grease-slide copy is writing that includes phrases whose purpose is to make it easier for readers to slide from one sentence to the next. Using it well “greases” your copy, creating smooth transitions for readers.
They’ll be at the end of your text before they know it.
Another name for the technique is “bucket brigade.” The term stems from the idea of firefighters standing in a line and passing buckets of water to one another.
Regardless of what you call it, the technique is great for SEO copywriting because it keeps readers on the page for longer – a indicator that Google reads as “quality.”
Here’s how to use the technique:
Start with a transitional phrase that makes people feel the need to jump to the next line. Here are some good examples of bucket brigade phrases:
- Just think about it:
- But wait, there’s more:
- It gets better:
- Yes, you read that right:
- I know you’re thinking:
Using a colon at the end of a phrase and giving the phrase its own line causes the reader to feel a need to jump to the next line. I once heard legendary copywriter Eugene Schwartz say that the purpose of every word is simple, “It’s to get the next one read.”
And last but not least:
Use subheadings to break up the text and describe what the reader will encounter next.
You can include a bullet list of subheadings or a description of their content at the top of your article. That gives readers the freedom to jump around in your text.
Ultimately, readers are looking for answers. If they can’t find answers or they don’t find your content compelling, they will bounce. Making it easy for them to read what they want keeps them on the page.
And keeping readers on the page boosts your Google ranking.
Pro Tip: When adding images, avoid using tired stock photos. Instead, use images to make your content more actionable. Show people how to do something. Illustrate facts or statistics. You can even use screenshots. Whatever you do, make it attractive and relevant to the content.
Want to find out more about bounce rates and how to reduce them for your website? Check out our article: What is Bounce Rate and How to Reduce It
So, Google judges the quality of your piece based on how long people stay on the page. That means you need to keep people engaged and on the page.
But how do you do that?
Tone and style are also key factors of great SEO copywriting. You don’t want to be the digital equivalent of that person at the party who bores people to death.
The more energetic your copy is, the more entertaining it will be.
That’s why it’s important to:
- Use the Active Voice
- Use Personal Pronouns (You or We)
- Keep the Reading Level Low
- Use Humor Where Appropriate
- Use Popular References
- Add Data and Statistics
- Use Storytelling
- Add Plenty of Examples
You want to create text that is actionable, relatable, valuable, and entertaining.
Need some ideas for creating better blog posts? Want to create blog posts that are better than everyone else’s? We’ve got you covered: How to Write Better Blog Posts Than Everyone Else
Headlines are the perfect place to show off the balancing act that is SEO copywriting.
- You need to make it SEO friendly with keywords.
- You need to sell the content by making it clickable.
- You need to deliver on its promises by writing great content.
The last point is also important for SEO purposes. We’ve all had the experience of clicking on a link because of a headline, only to discover that we’ve been misled.
Either the content in question doesn’t live up to what’s been promised or it’s irrelevant to the headline. If there’s a disconnect between your headline and your copy, then people will bounce.
And as we mentioned before, bouncing results in Google knocking you down the ranks.
So, how can you use SEO copywriting tips to deliver in your headline? Let’s go back to our “camping gear” example.
First rule – use your main keyword in the title.
Second rule – use the title to describe what’s in the article.
Third rule – sell your article and make the title clickable.
Here you can see how the headline incorporates various elements:
- The main keyword is in the title – e.g., “camping gear.”
- An LSI keyword is in the title – e.g., “coolest camping gear.”
- The main keyword also describes what’s going to be in the article – i.e., the topic.
- The word “coolest” doubles as an emotional element that makes the title clickable.
- The number paired with the word “examples” establishes the format and content type – e.g., a list of 20 examples.
- The title makes a promise – you’ll have cool gear ideas for your next trip – inspires the reader to buy what you’re selling.
If you’re having a tough time coming up with a headline, there are tons of formulas online. Just keep in mind that the best SEO copywriting examples for headlines will include your keywords and keep your promises.
Want to know how to make your headlines even better? Then you should know about SEO title tags. Find out everything you need to know: SEO Title Tags: Best Practices and Examples
When you create a piece of valuable content, other sites will link to it. Readers will share it on social media. People will leave comments. All of these interactions prove to Google that your content is authoritative and valuable.
So, SEO copywriting is also about creating content that people want to promote.
One of the best ways to do that is to make sure your content is original and unique. Including elements like original statistics, case studies, or infographics encourages other writers to link to your content.
It’s not always possible to include such information. At the same time, creating thoughtful, original content can open up guest posting opportunities for you.
Whatever content you create, don’t just write it for readers. Write it for other authoritative people in your industry to share and cite.
It’s also a good idea to add CTAs at intervals through the text.
Here are some examples of CTAs that you can include:
- Leave a comment.
- Read our other article.
- Sign up for our newsletter.
- Get a free ebook.
- Get the study/ report.
- Start a free trial.
- Buy [the product.]
- Share this on social media.
When you write CTA’s into your blog content, you should make them native to the text but separate. You may want to consider using heat tracking or conversion software to see if your CTAs are in the best place.
Here you can see that the CTA, “Read our guide,” is used at the end of a section. The linked article is relevant to the previous topic.
The subheading then suggests a topic change. The reader has a choice to stick with the article she’s reading or to read a different article on the same topic. Either way, she’s staying.
Pro Tip: The last bit of real copywriting you’ll need to do is your meta description. The little block of text that appears under your link on the results page is your readers’ first impression of your content. You’ll need to write a hook that shows the result is relevant and valuable.
When it comes to SEO copywriting tips, don’t get too bogged down by the small, technical elements. Never forget that at the heart of SEO is Google, a search engine with the sole purpose of providing a service for people.
That’s why the best SEO copywriting techniques all have one thing in common:
They’re all designed to improve content for the user. Which is what it’s all about, right? SEO is all about giving a website visibility. We want people to find our stuff, so let’s give them a good time when they arrive.