Boost Your Website’s Visibility: Mastering SEO Writing with Effective Tips, Tools, and Checklist
Boost Your Website’s Visibility: Mastering SEO Writing with Effective Tips, Tools, and Checklist
Boost Your Website’s Visibility: Mastering SEO Writing with Effective Tips, Tools, and Checklist: It is well known that texts are important for SEO. But what should you pay attention to when writing a good SEO text? In this blog we look at different types of text, the most important parts of an SEO text and the best tools to optimize your texts.
The importance of SEO
Before we dive into the depths, a quick refresher. What exactly is SEO and why is it so important?
As described in our recent blog ‘ What is SEO ‘ , SEO (Search Engine Optimization) comes down to different techniques with the aim of getting a website or page to rank as high as possible in the search engine results (Search Engine Results Page) without having to having to pay.
These techniques are extremely broad and fall under three parts:
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- Content and research
Why is SEO so important now? There are several reasons for this, but the general function of SEO is to make a website visible. The search engines attract billions of people around the world, and visibility on these platforms is a unique opportunity to reach the target audience.
However, you will not get there without some effort. For example, research by Ahrefs shows that 90.63% of web pages do not get organic traffic from Google. All traffic goes to the 9.37% of pages that do invest their time and attention in SEO. And the good news: anyone can be part of this 9.37%!
Different types of SEO text
How do you do this now? How do you ensure that your texts are seen and which texts have the best chances as SEO text? Almost all text on a website contributes to its online findability. From homepage to blogs and from contact page to privacy statement. However, to really have a good chance of success with SEO, the following texts are often seen as good SEO texts:
- blog posts
- Extensive product pages
- Customer Cases
- Guides or checklists
What is the similarity between these forms of content ? They are all substantive and contain quite a few words . In addition, they contain terms from which the search engines can determine what the page is about and to what extent it is valuable enough to show to the online public. Of course there are many more types of SEO text. Are you going to work with a text that may or may not fall within one of the above categories? Please note the following: An SEO text has or contains:
- enough words . Yoast recommends a length of at least 300 words, but more is often just better.
- a clear structure . Sufficient headings, relatively short and scannable paragraphs and images or photos to clarify the text.
- the right terms (keywords and words related to the keyword) so that the search engines can understand what a text is about.
Topics and keywords
There are more than enough rules for writing a good SEO text and with a checklist at hand you will quickly go a long way. However, the subject is trickier. How do you find out what your target audience is interested in? What should you write about to reach people and encourage them to make a purchase?
Inspiration and target group
Before you start writing you need an idea . If you write a homepage or product page, the direction is often clear. However, this is not the case with a blog, article, whitepaper or. How do you handle this?
To find the right topics, one thing is crucial: you need to know your target audience . Have you done a target group survey ? And maybe set up a buyer persona ? Then keep your perfect prospect in mind and think about what this group would like to read about.
Often (but certainly not always) these are topics that arouse the interest of new leads . SEO is a powerful tool to bring your brand to the attention of completely new people, who then start their customer journey.
Sometimes for inspiration and sometimes after you’ve come up with a topic comes the keyword research. A keyword ( target keyword ) is simply a word or term that people type into the search engines , after which they – if all goes well – will see your page.
Keywords can be broad, but also very specific. For example, a distinction is made between ‘short tail keywords’ and ‘long tail keywords’.
Short tail keywords (eg ‘running shoes’) are short and broad. There is a lot of searching for this, but also a lot of writing about it. There is therefore a lot of competition between all SEO texts and the chance of ending up high in the search results is relatively small.
Long tail keywords (e.g. “men’s running shoes”) are longer and more specific. The competition is therefore less and there is a greater chance that someone who is really interested in your product will end up at your blog.
How do you choose a good keyword for an SEO text? There are several useful tools that indicate exactly how often certain words are searched for and to what extent it is difficult to rank high in the search results.
A few examples of well-known keyword research tools include:
Parts of an SEO text
We have already briefly mentioned them: the components of a good SEO text. Various SEO experts have made handy lists with guidelines that make it considerably easier to get a text to score well on the search engines.
Are you going to work with a text? Always pay attention to the following parts:
The SEO title (also known as meta title) is the title that appears in search results . In the screenshot below it concerns the blue titles.
Good SEO titles are extremely important. They help both search engines and potential readers understand what a text is about.
Always make sure that an SEO title is catchy, but also gives a good idea of the content of a text. If someone clicks on the title and the text disappoints, the page will probably be clicked away immediately. The search engines notice this and conclude that the page is not (or less) relevant.
When writing a good SEO title, keep the following in mind:
- Make sure the title is catchy and descriptive . Invite to continue reading without, but avoid disappointment when someone does. We do not recommend clickbait.
- Keep the title concise . 50 to 60 characters is a good length.
- Use the keyword or keywords in the title, preferably at the beginning.
How you add the SEO title to your blog depends on the platform you’re working with. In WordPress or Wix, for example, you will find a field when you put your blog online where you can enter the SEO title (tag).
The H1 title is the title that appears at the top of the text . Often this title is the same or similar to the SEO title, but this is not necessary.
When writing the H1, keep the same three points in mind as with the SEO title
Headings (H2 and beyond)
The H1 title is obviously the most important headline of an SEO text. This is followed by H2, H3, H4 and possibly even H5 and beyond.
It is important that the title tags (H1, H2 and more) are in the correct order . This allows the search engines to see which topics are most important in the text and to correctly index and display a page.
Also make sure you use enough subheadings . This makes a text scannable, which is good for search engines and readers.
When writing and formatting your subheadings, keep the following in mind:
- Keep a length that looks natural .
- Limit long blocks of text and use enough headings.
- Use the keyword (or keywords) and their synonyms in some (but certainly not all) headlines .
Make sure the title tags are in the correct order .
A text is nothing without a good body. The body contains all the content of a page and must therefore be carefully thought out.
When writing the body, keep the following in mind:
- Gives the body sufficient length . With less than 300 words you often don’t have enough space to offer real value. The search engines often see short texts (or texts with too little depth) as irrelevant.
- Keep the paragraphs relatively short . Yoast recommends a maximum length of 150 words per paragraph, for the scannability of a text.
- Write of course . Obviously you need to process your keyword, but don’t force it. Using a keyword too often (keyword stuffing) is not appreciated by the search engines.
- Consider making the most important words bold . This also tells the search engines what a text is about, which helps them index it correctly.
- Include (where possible and appropriate) internal links to other pages on your website. It is not certain how many links these are, although the whole must of course remain valuable and readable.
Images and alt texts
No text, but important for SEO. Images or photos give a text more substance , when relevant and used in the right way of course. Try to use a few pictures or photos in each text, taking note of the following:
- Go for a good balance between text and image . A good guideline is one image per 200 words.
- Always add alt text to the image. An alt text is a short summary of the content of an image .
Use the keyword or keywords in the alt text of some (but not all) images.
A meta description is not in the text itself, but it is in the search results. In a few sentences, the meta description indicates what a text is about . This is useful for the reader and for the search engines.
When writing a catchy meta description, keep the following in mind:
- Keep it short , otherwise the full text will not fit in the limited space that the search engines have made available for this. A good length is between 145 and 155 characters long.
- Use the keyword or keywords in the text, preferably at the beginning.
Make it substantive and inviting . State as clearly as possible what the reader can expect when opening the page.
How you add the meta description to your blog depends on the platform you work with. Usually when you put the blog online you will find a field in which you can enter the meta description.
The slug is simply the URL of the page . The last bit, behind your website.
The bold part in the URL above can be determined by yourself and offers opportunities for SEO.
To create a search engine friendly URL, keep the following in mind:
- Keep it short , clean and descriptive .
- Include the keyword or keywords in the slug, preferably at the front.
You can also lose the slug when you put your blog online. How this works depends on the platform you’re using.
Writing with tools
The above guidelines seem like a lot, but luckily there are several tools that can help you with this. You enter your keyword(s) in these tools, after which you receive extensive advice about writing your text.
For example, the tools look at your biggest competition based on your keywords and show you what you need to do to score even better. There are quite a few good tools out there now, but we have two favorites: Surfer SEO and SEMRush Writing Assistant .
Surfer SEO is the more affordable version of the two. The platform has many different features, including a handy content editor. This works as follows:
To get started, enter your keyword(s) and the country you want to focus on. You can also choose between desktop and mobile
Everything can be personalized here, but the most important thing is selecting the right competitors. If you do this right, you probably don’t have to adjust much anymore.
As competitors, choose the websites that are similar to yours and could therefore be real competitors.
By clicking on ‘Let’s go’ you will eventually reach the editor itself. This contains a content score (top right), a field to enter your text (left) and a number of advice to optimize your text (bottom right).
The tips relate to the length of the text, the number of paragraphs, the headings, images and terms that make your text even better and more complete than that of the competitor.
The tool is extremely user-friendly and with every action you see your score go up a bit. If your score is in the green part, there is a good chance that your text will do well in the search engines.
SEMRush Writing Assistant
The SEMRush writing Assistant is similar to Surfer SEO. These tools work as an add-on in Google Docs and also provide – after entering a keyword and country – a large number of recommendations and a content score.
SEMRush looks at readability, length, titles, (possibly) keyword stuffing, images, links and additional terms.
Which tool works better now, Surfer SEO or SEMRush Writing Assistant? In our opinion, there is no winner. Both tools work very well, and the choice of one of the two is completely personal.
Optimization in WordPress: Yoast SEO
Optimize even further just before publication? This is possible with the WordPress plugin Yoast SEO . You can also enter your chosen keyword here, after which you will receive advice about, for example, the SEO title, the slug and the meta description. A combination of Surfer SEO or SEMRush Writing Assistant and Yoast SEO ensures a complete optimization, with advice from keyword to alt text, image and meta description. Almost all aspects from the above checklist are reflected in these tools.
Writing with artificial intelligence (AI)
Last but not least , an interesting new trend. We see more and more tools appearing that (almost) completely take over writing from us. Tools like Jasper , ChatGPT , and copy.ai make it possible to conjure up texts at lightning speed.
In the tool you usually enter a keyword and additional guidelines that should form your text. Smart AI bots then get to work and create a full text for you. In most cases, all you have to do is edit the necessary and add the right tone of voice and personal approach.
What do we think of this development? We love tools and get excited about these new opportunities as well. Of course there is a limitation in the texts that an AI tool can write. Customer cases, interviews and more personal documents will have to be done all by ourselves for the time being. However, for example for SEO texts based on one or more keywords, the help of these bots is more than welcome.