Website content, is the most important aspect of any website, as visitors are looking for quality information that will educate them, and teach them something new, so it is our job as website publishers to provide them exactly what they are looking for.
In years gone by, writing content for your website, was difficult, as you needed to give great content to please your visitors, but also you had to have a certain percentage of your keywords peppered throughout this content to please the search engines. This sometimes made the article feel unnatural as it did not flow as it should.
In addition to this, many black hat webmasters, worked out that they could manipulate the search engines, by creating keyword stuffed content, that made very little sense, but got them on the first pages of the search results.
These pages were also littered filled with flashing banners, and advertisement and offered very little value to the visitor.
But things have now changed. The search engines, in their quest to provide their customers with quality results, have improved their algorithms. They can detect how long a visitor stays on a webpage, and how long they stay on the site.
Below is a video from Matt Cutts of Google’s Web spam team, explains how Google are treating low quality content and articles, that offer limited value to the user.
If visitors to your website and pages, are reading great content, they are likely to stay longer, and hence Google sees this and increases the authority of the site and increasing its position- on the other hand, if visitors are leaving a website quickly due to the content being of poor quality Google will also see this, and consider your site less important and devalue the page.
So, with that in mind, we no longer need to consider that we are writing an article for SEO, in fact, we simply need to provide quality content that our visitors read, and enjoy, which makes them stay longer, which in turn increases our authority with the search engines.
What’s more, when your visitors find great content they are more likely to share it with their own social circle, which will give your content ever more authority, and create an increasing flow of traffic to your site.
So how do you start writing a great article for SEO and also for your visitors?
Here are some tips to get you started!
Firstly, make a blueprint for your article. This will make it easier for you to write. To give you a practical example, I will outline the simple steps I used to make the blueprint for this article.
Step 1. Introduction. Give an explanation of what visitors and the search engines are looking for. Explain the differences of how search engines value and rank content since Google’s Panda and Penguin updates, and also explain the differences on how search engines rank content today, in relation to how they ranked it prior to the algorithm updates.
Step 2. Describe how to put an article together, Include a step by step description of how to create an outline or blueprint to work to
Step 3. Discuss the importance of keyword research prior to starting to write. Include links to tools that the reader can use to help them.
Step 4. Discuss how to research content and advise important things to include within the content such as images and videos etc.
Step 5. Give some information and advice about outsourcing writing projects.
Step 6. Close – Give a brief summary and open comments.
As you can see, my blueprint, includes 6 steps. So assuming I want to write an article of around 1000 words, I now have 6 sections which equates to less than 170 words per section if I was to write each part equally, so suddenly the daunting prospect of writing an article is looking a lot easier to tackle – I am sure you agree!
Targeting the Right Keywords For Your Article
With your blueprint in place, we are now ready to make a start. The first thing is keyword research We need to research our keyword so we can ensure that people are actually searching for what we are writing about, and to also ensure that we are not using a keyword that is too competitive, as an article with a highly competitive keyword will struggle to feature well in the search results, in a reasonable amount of time.
You want to target one keyword phrase per article. Keywords do not have to a single word, in fact you will find that long tail keywords or phrases will be much easier to target, as these are the words that people type into Google to get the results they are looking for.
For example, if you was targeting the keyword ‘Back Pain’ it is likely to be too competitive, whereas the long tail keyword ‘Lower Back Pain Relief’ may be a lot less competitive and easier to target.
If you choose a keyword with too much competition, it may take some time for you to get your article to the top of the search engines, however careful research with a good keyword tool, you will be able to find a great keyword, of which you can hit page 1 of Google, Bing or Yahoo, in a couple of weeks, or even sometimes, days!
For keyword tools, you can use the Google Adwords Keyword Planner tool. You will need an Adwords account to start using this tool, which is free, as is the keyword planner tool.
However a far better option would be to purchase a professional Keyword Research tool, this will be a wise investment, as is a tool that as an internet marketer you will use often.
A tool I have been using for the past year or so, is Market Samurai – this tool is one of the best software programs for finding long tail keyword phrases and has saved me so much time, and I can almost guarantee that I will rank for my chosen keyword, from the information provided.
Market Samurai is able to create keywords for any niche. You will start off with your seed keyword ‘ (i.e. Back Pain) It will then create an exhaustive list of words and phrases related to your seed keyword. You will then will be able to filter these down to a list of words or phrases that you feel that you can write about.
Once you have created your filter, Market Samurai will give valuable information on the competition, the amount of searches it gets daily or weekly, so you can tell if there is an audience for your content – and it will give you an indication of how easy or difficult it will be to rank for each of these keywords.
You now know that the keyword that your are choosing has people searching for it on Google, and that the competition is weak and you will be able to outrank them.
Researching Your Article Content
Now we have our blueprint and our chosen keyword, we need to carry out some research on the subject. If you are an expert in your field, you may be able to write freely, but if you need a little more information on the subject matter, you are going to need to find out some more.
You Tube, is a great way to get information. There are video tutorials for just about every subject, find a video, press play and make some notes as you listen.
You can also view some article directories, such as Ezine Articles or Go Articles. Here you will be able to read what others have written and make a note of anything that you find of interest.
And finally do a Google search for your keyword or related keyword for even more information
When you have finished you now need to start filling out each section of your blueprint. Ensure that you use your own words and make the content bigger and better than anything else out there.
Once you have completed and checked through your article you are now ready to copy it to your website. You may also like to consider some additional tips, that will improve your article for SEO purposes as well as the experience of your visitor
Include a video that relates to your article. This can be one that you have made, or alternatively a Video from You Tube or Vimeo. The advantage of videos in your webpage, is that if your visitor watches it, then they will stay on your site, longer – remember what I said how Google is including time on site as an important ranking factor.
Include images, that are either related to your article, or give a further explanation of what you are talking about. People like nice images, and it also breaks up your content, making it easier to view and read. Don’t forget to include your keywords in your alt tags and titles. If you are using WordPress this can be easily done from the Media section.
Hyperlink 1 or two words in your content, which lead to other pages within your website. Try to hyperlink words that are related to the page that it is pointing to. This is called anchor text.
You should also link out to authority sites within your niche. Again one or two links is fine. When choosing a site to link to it should be broadly related, not in direct competition, and link to a page with high quality content. In Google’s eyes, this is showing authority, as you are advising your visitors if where they can get great information. It is also helping create a great ‘Web’ Don’t be afraid to make these links ‘Do Follow’. Sure you will be passing in some of your rank, but this will not effect you greatly.
Finally add yourself as author. If you do not yet have Google Plus, head over and set Google authorship for your site. This will give you another opportunity to get you content visible in the search engines, as Google authorship results are shown separately from your website results in the Google search results.
Although the above guide should make things a lot easier for you to write a great article for your website, it can still be time consuming.
If you really do not have the time, or still find the process a daunting prospect you could consider hiring the services of a professional content writer.
There are many services available, and there are services that will write a 300 word article for under $3.
However, you may find that purchasing articles at this price, will be hit and miss and will not give you the level of quality that you are looking for. Many articles purchased at this price are often carried out by writers who do not use English as their first language.
That said, purchasing low priced articles, is a great way, to get all of the research done for you, and then you can take the article, and expand on it, and add your own personality, which makes it a lot easier than starting and planning from scratch.
Alternately you could use a service such as the excellent INeedArticles.com. They use native English Writers. and the quality is generally superb.
You can order a 1000 word article from $7.00 with a 4 or 5 day turnaround. You can also request their highest rated writers, or a 24 hour turnaround for a small additional fee.
Outsourcing your article writing does allow you to concentrate your efforts in other areas of SEO, as it is also something that needs to be done consistently, to keep your website regularly up to date.
Also once you have found a good quality content writer, you can relax in the knowledge, that your readers, are going to continue to visit your site for more valuable information, they will share your content with their social circle which will ultimately lead to more traffic, and hence more income from your websites monitization methods.
All in all, as a website owner, providing your visitors, and the search engines, with quality, original and interesting content is something that you will have to do. Gone are the days of scaped and duplicate content, which, I am sure you will agree is a good thing for all of us.
If you have any tips or advice on writing a great article for seo, or would like to leave a comment will are always pleased to hear from you.