Content shouldn’t just be a “Trojan Horse” for keywords, it should be something people can relate to and want to read.
One of the major changes in SEO over the last few years has been the shift away from strategies that rely on the (over-)use of keywords.
This means that if you are regularly creating content in the hope that it will drive traffic and increase visits to your site, it’s time to start thinking outside of the box.
It’s estimated that 61% of B2B buyers start their research process with a generic web search, so the need for effective SEO is clear.
But things have changed dramatically in just a few years, making the job of a copywriter more challenging, while slightly more interesting at the same time.
Now let’s be honest: SEO is the only form of “advertising” where those who have something to sell are often at war with their advertising platforms (search engines), who have been known to change the rules whenever it best serves them, with or without notice.
So as a result, it’s now vitally important that content shifts from keyword related copy to topic related copy.
It used to be so simple: you want a keyword to rank, so you put it in just about every place imaginable. In the title. In the URL. In the metas. And sure enough, you’d watch it go up the rankings.
It really was that easy. The search engine would assume you knew what you were talking about (even if the reader didn’t) and you would be rewarded accordingly.
But as most of us know, things have moved on. Search engines (especially Google) have learned that pages about keywords don’t necessarily make for great reading, or that you actually have any clue about the subject you are discussing. While authoritative, well written pages about topics of interest typically do.
This means something of a policy shift from keyword heavy content towards well-thought-out, informative, imaginative and dare I say more creative pieces of copy.
And for writers such as myself, this has come as something of a welcome relief as we move away from writing content that appeases obscure search engine requirements, and is just a “Trojan Horse” full of keywords.
It finally means we can now focus on producing something that’s directed a little more towards meeting our users’ needs, while also seeing some SEO benefits at the same time.
So next time it comes to creating a piece of content which you hope will tick all the SEO boxes while also being something that people may want to read, ask yourself a few simple questions.
Is it able to answer users’ questions for a given topic? Will it help the reader accomplish a task(s) quickly and easily? Does it authentically discuss related sub-topics and general areas of interest? And is it likely to be shared on social media?
If so, you have produced a piece of content that your audience can relate to, while also being something of a hit with the search engines too.