Writing for SEO has become an adventure, a complicated math problem we are all trying to calculate by finding the secret to get the results faster. The number of search engine factors advanced, the Google algorithm updates increased, the number of businesses that use SEO increased, the number of SEO agencies increased and more and more people became aware of its importance and the market is pretty cluttered and the competition is very high. And we know how important it is for you to stand up in the crowd.
There are some things that are still available in terms of SEO, and also lots of new ones. We’ve put together a guide to find out how to write for SEO in 2019 to be above the pile.
We’ve said it lots of times before, and we’ll continue to say it as long as everybody understands the importance of its meaning: content must be written for the user. Contextual content is the new icon in terms of SEO at the moment. It is one of the important changes that took place in the last period. Lots of SEO experts talk about semantic and context-based results.
Step 1: Do Proper Keyword Research
The first step in SEO has been the same for quite some years. We’re talking about keyword research. Deploying the topics of interest and the killer questions, we can elaborate a descriptive terminology. Keywords will help us describe the topic at its best for the users and make it optimized for search.
Finding keywords shouldn’t be hard. You need to have a starting point and based on the targeted keyword you can find many derivatives. There are tools that can help you find the best examples and generate traffic. Keyword Tool and Content Assistant are two awesome helpers, that work best together. They’re like your best buddies you can call in the middle of the night to get you out of trouble.
We are talking about producing content for SEO, which means valuable, evergreen and quality all-in-one. And for that, you need to raise your head up the crowd and don’t get flushed away by all the people that are “writing” and creating worthless content. There are lots of noisy environments with “too much” SEO content.
Valuable content breaks the glass and goes beyond the screen. Imagine that your visitors come from all directions and you need to make them feel that they’ve come to the right place. They need trust so you’ll need to offer the information they need and think: “Wow. This is the place for me. Somebody really understands me.”
Use Contextual Results
To get to the previous situation described above you’ll have to understand the context of your potential customers’ search and fill in the gaps. It’s mandatory to know your potential customers’ needs and interests.
Google discovered that the conventional keyword search, as we know it, has some limitations and doesn’t offer topical results based on the query search. For a simple keyword, there are lots of topics related and information available online.
Google developed patents to understand the context from knowledge bases for more accurate results. It wants to focus more on topic-related results so the whole process works based on probabilities. For example, when a user performs a search on Google, the search engine uses a system to return landing pages with topics related to the query by looking at the text on that page.
Since you want to tell the world about your new cronut, there are multiple ways to do so. It is very important to decide whether your content will be information or brand. If you go with the second one, then search for the keyword and see the volume and who your competitors are. If you go with the first type of content – informational, then check to see what other people are searching for.
Based on our example, you can see what people from the US searched for. Most of the keywords are informational and all of them want to know and understand what cronuts are. If your target audience knows about them, then choose directly the keywords that are more relevant and descriptive such as: “cronut flavor of the month”, “cronuts with puff pastry”. Based on these two keywords you can perform other searches and first more relevant keywords.
Since we’ve talked about context, then it’s very important to collect as many keywords as possible to select a topic in the second step. When we get to the onpage optimization part, you’ll need focus keywords. Don’t end up with just one keyword, look for a second keyword, similar to the first one.
Find Topics That Pass the Test of Time
The second step in the research phase is finding topics that will keep drawing the audience to your website. Usually, the articles that are evergreen have information that doesn’t alter in time, and also a type of content that solves a problem that lots of people are struggling about.
In the example above I was talking about cronuts. For some, it might be an old story, but for others a new discovery. It is more unique than other types of deserts, it has two things into one. That type of product/topic might be what makes it last. When it first appeared in NYE, people stood in line for this hybrid. Nobody knew how it tasted, but everybody was intrigued. So the mystery draws attention and uniqueness keeps it alive. Word of mouth was a good trigger. The lesson here is that you need a topic that will engage the community.
You can create a receipt with steps and tips because according to the research (performed in the first step) there were lots of people who want to find out how to make a cronut. The basic receipt won’t change, but there will be variations to it. So people will go to basic before trying something new for the first time.
There are some other tricks you could use to take advantage of content immortality:
- appeal to the historical evolution of a certain product/topic/service and so on;
- create how-to guides or helpful documents;
- make a list of frequently asked questions;
- share best practices;
- write strategies;
- elaborate case studies, studies results and examples;
- best of niche blogs, influencers, experts – for outreach;
- explain the history of your business or your success story;
And after reading through it, I thought that article might be a very good example of how content used to evolve. And the Sofa Story can be correlated to content evolution, with a more visual effect.
In the early days, sofas were hard, harsh supports made out of stone, wood, steel and lots of other material without any cushion. Over time, they gained popularity, and some types of sofas started to become a little too tawdry, with lots of cushions until they made their way to a more contemporary soft seating in a range of styles.