Would you finish reading a really long article if it was boring? The quality of your freelance content writer work counts a great deal in the eyes of your clients. So learning how to write great SEO content is a must!
No one likes wasting their time reading sub-par content and the search engines won’t boost your poorly written articles either. But the most important aspect of all, your freelance clients won’t like wasting their money on low quality work!
In order to offer the best content writing services and make a living writing, here are some tips to help you create great SEO content to impress both the search engines as well as your clients.
Why is SEO writing important
With myriad websites online today, it’s impossible not to be able to earn money from web content writing gigs.
It’s worth mentioning that written SEO content is still king today. It’s what search engines have been programmed to pick up with accuracy and it’s why many web content writers can earn a decent living working from home.
All in all, SEO content is important for 2 reasons:
1 – Search engines know how to scan a website from head to toe and determine whether it deserves to be rewarded with good rankings or if the website should be ‘punished’. Sent to a corner with no food for months! In other words, you won’t be seen in Google’s first search results if you don’t write quality SEO content.
2 – Visitors will immediately know if your website will benefit them or not. It’s why business owners pay professional writers to take care of their website. Write great content, get more visitors. Write boring content, readers will leave in search for a better website. That’s bad news for you, bad news for your client, but good news for your client’s competition.
More small business ideas:
How to write great SEO content
I’ve been active on blogs, forums and myriad other websites since 2007. My writing was a lot different back then, but of course standards were different as well.
Okay, that’s a lie! My writing was horrible and I had no idea standards even existed.
Thank goodness for books, courses, inspirational entrepreneurs and, of course, the many free resources that can help anyone transition from amateur to professional.
Great SEO content should be interesting for both the readers and the search engines. It should keep your readers glued to the screen and it should determine the search engines to push your articles to the top.
So, what’s the recipe to the secret freelance writing sauce?
The secret to writing great SEO content is making the effort to transform a general idea into something valuable for your freelance clients.
Here are a few guidelines that can help anyone get on the right track and start creating quality, well optimized content. The better you become at writing, the more freelance clients you’ll book, the more you can increase your rates and the more money you’ll earn!
PICK A TOPIC FOR YOUR SEO OPTIMIZED ARTICLE
What do you want to write about? Pick a topic. And remember you should always stick to 1 main idea.
Readers decide to visit a website because they want to learn more about the main topic of your article. Don’t confuse them by jumping from one argument to another.
But more important, when it comes to SEO writing, is to remember search engines like clarity as well. It’s better to optimize an article for one main long tail keyword than confuse the search engines when you’re trying to rank a website for a client.
If you truly want to cover more topics, simply write more SEO articles.
CONDUCT A THROUGH KEYWORD RESEARCH AND PLAN AHEAD
Always research the best keywords for your topic. Writing great SEO content without planning is not possible.
Once you have a list of keywords, see what others are saying about your chosen subject. Do a quick Google search and start reading your competitors’ opinions.
Are they covering everything there is about that topic? Maybe you can write about the things others missed! Maybe you disagree with someone’s take on the subject and could write a great article explaining a different take on the matter.
COME UP WITH A GREAT SEO TITLE
First impressions always count and your title is the first thing the search engines and the visitors will see.
Make a title interesting by using your main keywords and people will want to read more! Come up with a title that’s generic and boring, people will yawn and move on and the search engines will be, once again, confused.
MAKE SURE YOUR FIRST PARAGRAPH IS KEYWORD OPTIMIZED
You’ve managed to find a great title and caught everyone’s attention. Naturally, the next thing search engines and your visitors will read is your first paragraph. So, make it a great one!
Put some thought into creating the first paragraph. It’s the “hook” that will determine whether or not the readers will stay and it’s the perfect way to”tell” the search engines once again, what your content is about.
FOCUS ON WRITING THE REST OF THE SEO ARTICLE
Be original. Be unique. Offer quality.
Offer anything less and you’ll lose your credibility as a writer.
If you want to convert visitors into returning fans, into potential clients or into people who will share your content with others, you have to prove you know your stuff and you deserve their attention.
Don’t EVER copy content or other people’s ideas (cannot stress this enough).
First of all, search engines won’t like that and they’ll punish you for it.
Second, readers will catch on and be very disappointed.
And third, you’ll most likely get fired from your gig as a result.
Write SEO content, not keyword stuffed content.
Don’t treat visitors or your freelance clients like they’re stupid. Research keyword phrases and use them, but don’t repeat keywords every 2 lines.
Content has to be easy to read.
Show enthusiasm, but don’t overdo it. If your job is to promote your client’s business through SEO writing, make sure you offer quality. This isn’t the 90’s anymore, people can tell when you’re being fake. And annoying.
“SPRINKLE” YOUR ARTICLE WITH HEADINGS / SUBTITLES
Make your content easy to read by adding headings. Like this list, don’t all these subtitles make the article easier to read?
Subtitles are also a great way to introduce your readers to the next important idea discussed in your text. And the perfect way to make use of your keywords!
A great article should not tire out the audience. Big, long chunks of text are downright boring, even for search engines!
IMAGES AND VIDEOS ARE GREAT SEO ADD-ONS
Writing great content is all about the words. But, as mentioned above, you should keep your readers interested!
Use a suggestive image to accompany your title. Especially if you promote yourself on social media! And make sure you optimize your images as well by renaming them using the appropriate keywords.
You could add videos in your article as well, if they’re relevant! Videos are known to rank well in Google, so they’re a great way to show your freelance clients they’re picked the right person for the job.
Endings are just as important as beginnings.
Abruptly ending a great article is never a good idea. Not even for SEO.
It’s like going to the movies, loving the story from the very beginning, you can’t wait to see what happens next and then… the ending ruins it all.
What will you remember? The great parts or the fact that it had a horrible ending?
Don’t underestimate the closing of a great article.
Sum up your main ideas in a phrase, drawing a conclusion. And make sure you mention your keywords now, one last time. It’s all part of writing quality SEO content, from start to finish.
REVISIT STEPS 3-8
Now that you’ve finished writing your SEO article, is your title a perfect fit? Is your first paragraph catchy and interesting? How about the main content, did you write a great article or a mediocre one?
Always revisit everything and edit.
Read your article carefully and think, is it easy to read? Are you repeating your keywords too many times? Have you made any spelling or grammar mistakes?
Revisit everything, from beginning to end. Edit anything that doesn’t sound or look good.
Great content doesn’t need to be perfect! But it needs to be impeccable.
Learning how to write great SEO content isn’t difficult at all. It’s also very well worth the effort, if you’re looking to start a side hustle or open up a freelance writing business.