Search engine optimization (also known as SEO) is already a familiar term to many. But why is it important for a content developer to understand SEO? It is often said by many content developers that they write for their audience. Content should be engaging enough to attract clients. It’s true that developing an engaging content should be writer’s key focus. But how will you attract them? Will sharing content only on social media help? Or do you need something more to attract them?
In past few years, Google played a smart game in evaluating the relevance of online content. With a couple of Google updates, it’s clear that keyword stuffing is not the only way to get high rankings. In fact most of the times, it contributes in hurting the search rankings.
So, what are the key essentials that every writer should keep in mind while developing SEO-friendly content? Here are some quick and easy rules which every writer should follow:Keyword Usage
Keyword usage is important yet should be used very carefully. Keywords stuffing is not an SEO-friendly approach. It may rather result in lowering your search rankings. Using keywords in URL, page title, meta descriptions, and in the first few phrases of the content body is always recommended. In fact, it is a good practice to prefer using unique keywords for each web page.
Developing a content piece of 250 or 300 words is of no help. Every web page should have at least 500-700 words of content body. In fact, the more the merrier. It helps the search crawlers to identify the relevance of content.
You must have heard the term, plagiarism. Well, it simply means a ‘copied content’. This is one of the most unethical practices that leads to a penalty by Google.
At times, people prefer to republish their own content on other platforms to fetch traffic. This approach is harmful to the original content as well. In such cases, it may provide good traffic initially but ultimately land to the penalty of the original content also. This can be protected using a rel=canonical. It is a source code which should be used by the site who is reposting your original content piece. By using this code, the publisher who is republishing your content will help Google identify the original post as it gives credit to the same.
Often, it is considered by writers that using an outbound link will take their traffic to other websites. But usage of 3 or 4 outbound links will add relevancy to your content in the eyes of a search engine. However, excessive use of the same is not beneficial.
Meta description helps your audience to identify your web page. It gives a brief about the page. Whenever the audience searches something on search engines, it is the meta description that helps them decide which is relevant to them. Have a look at the below image to see where it appears.
Page title plays a pivotal role in giving the first impression to the audience. So, would you like to show them an incomplete title? No! Right? The length of the page title is essential to note. It should not exceed the limit of 70 characters else an incomplete title will appear in search results.
Flesch Reading Ease Test
Flesch Reading Ease Test is a readability test that helps to identify readability of the passage. Attaining 70% score in the test is the least score that one should have in the content body from the SEO standpoint. The sentences created in the content body should be small in length and simple to understand. Keeping a sentence length of 1 and a half line is good enough. However, there are various other weighting factors attached.
Looking at the above key factors, it is clear that just writing a content piece may not attract your audience. However, writing it with the right technique may help in getting the attention of the target audience.