Content Optimization: Basic Tips and Tricks
Table of contents
What is content optimization?
For content to be of use to a business, it needs to be found first. Content optimization is taking content and improving it so that it has a greater chance of being found through a search engine.
Why is content optimization needed?
Content optimization is a whole different area of expertise and quite different to content writing.
Writing good, meaningful content takes lots of time in the first place, even if you are an expert in writing web content.
Content optimization is needed because content written by the expert is unlikely to be written in the right way for websites, online users or search engines.
It is needed, because the person writing the content is usually the subject matter expert and won’t be overly concerned about structure and search engines friendliness.
What is content marketing?
Content marketing is writing content for the purpose of attracting visitors to your website. Content can be placed on your website or on other people’s website – leading back to yours.
It can be on social media too. All content for the purpose of promotion can be considered content marketing.
If you are going to write content for the purpose of marketing, particularly if coming from your website then it will help to plan your content and use content optimization in the process.
Content Optimization Basics
This is how to create a nice balanced article ready for SEO
The structure of the document has to be hierarchical. One heading, several sub heading that support the heading, and several third-level subheading that support the subheadings.
If you were to look at the all the heading without looking at the content, you would get the gist of the document. They can’t be enigmatic, they need to be on the dry but descriptive side so that they mean things. For example, instead of saying “Watch out summer, here I come” say “What do to in the summer holidays”
Content needs to be scannable up and down. Imagine someone scrolling rapidly to get an idea of the article before delving in. Imagine someone trying to find the relevant content that catches their eye so that they don’t have to read the whole article.
The headings help with this, as would bold texts, call outs and the likes.
Doing it for user and Google
The goal of Google is to get the best content to the user. If you write the best content, you’ll be pleasing both Google and the content.
The difficulty is having the right mind-set to know what that means.
Metadata is things like page title and meta descriptions. This is the text that appears in the Search Engine Results.
Articles will need to be lengthened and improved over time. It’s better to improve an article that is of interest to your users rather than to think of new articles to write.
Google is smarter than before. It can now recognize different variations of keywords without them being spelt out. You don’t need to write “sausage, sausages, pork sausage, sausage made of pork” for Google to get the idea.
However you do need to ensure you’re using common language and search terms. To find what those terms are, you need to do research work (not guesswork) – and this is the heart of keyword optimization.
Internal and External Linking
Internal links are links from one page to another page inside your website. External links are links to external websites from one of your pages.
Links help users surf around. People use them when they are skimming an article but think there is something more relevant in another article. It helps people stay longer on your website and Google rewards you for them.
You need to set your article or page content up in such a way, that Google grabs a bit of it as a snippet to put at the top of the page results. A lot of people are not visiting websites initially – if they can get the answer through a snippet. Getting yourself in a snippet is a good tactic to jump to the front of the queue.