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April 16, 2011

Tips From a Pro SEO Content Writer

I’ve written a lot of SEO content, both for my own websites and those of my clients. I’m a professional. This article will explain some of the key elements and subtleties that set apart SEO content that’s “just okay” from the really good stuff – the stuff that generates sales and new clients.

About Keywords

If you’re just getting started with online business you may be under the false impression that SEO writing is all about keywords. Keywords are a necessary part of SEO content writing, but they aren’t the whole thing.

You need to optimize your keywords to get the best results at the search engines, but keyword optimization alone can’t ensure your site will get traffic or make sales.

You should aim to focus each page on one specific keyword. A few secondary keywords are fine, but each page should focus on one
keyword phrase.

That phrase should appear in all the essential elements of the page: Title tag, Description tag, Keyword tag, body copy, and the anchor text of at least one link out from the page (to another page on your site). Keyword density is not as huge a deal as you probably think, but try to stay within the 2-3% range to be safe.

Relationship Building

Now that we’ve touched on some of the absolute basics, let’s get into what really makes good web copy. You can pay $1 per page to an article writer with broken English who understands keyword placement and think you’ve made a great investment, but you won’t end up making a dime. Why?

Because that writing is for search engines, not humans. When was the last time you heard of a Net entrepreneur who got rich selling stuff to a search engine algorithm?

Your copy must strike a chord with human readers if you want to make money – end of story. In order to do that, your website writing must build a relationship with readers. This is done through several principles and techniques.

For instance, your website should establish your credibility as an expert. The tone of the writing should imply that you know what you’re talking about – you’re up to date on all the latest info. What’s more, it should present that information in the right way. It should be friendly and easy to read.

It should be simple, in the sense that it shouldn’t be any more complex than it needs to be to get a point across, but you should never insult your audience’s intelligence. Know your audience and your market, and write in a way that suits.

Write Like You Talk

This is one of the major tips that’ll make your writing smoother and more natural. Many of us learn our formal writing skills from high school or college.

Unfortunately, in terms of writing for the Net, everything you learned about writing in school is pretty much wrong. School tends to teach you to write in a way that makes you sound like you’re “trying too hard to sound smart” by using stilted sentence structures and big words.

Get rid of that stuff. Write your web copy the way you’d talk to a friend. Imagine yourself explaining the information on your site to a curious acquaintance, then write that down. This hits all the right notes: you’ll sound authoritative and trustworthy, you’ll be polite and friendly, and you won’t be putting on airs by using unnatural language.

This is all based on a very simple sales principle: People prefer to buy from someone they like. Make sure you’re likeable, via your website.

Tom McSherry is a freelance copywriter and founder of Premium Online Writing. Tom was tired of seeing the Internet swamped with low-quality, disposable content created by low-budget freelance writers, so he created a service which aims to provide a one-stop-shop for business owners for all their online writing needs. This includes online sales copywriting and a comprehensive, high quality SEO content writer service.

5 Responses to “Tips From a Pro SEO Content Writer

    avatar Doc Sheldon says:

    Good piece, Tom. I’m a professional writer, as well, and I agree that we have to write first for the readers, and only then address the search algorithms’ needs. Obviously, that means our style may vary from one audience to another, but establishing a connection with the reader should be our primary goal, in my opinion.

    I wrote off-line for many years, and had to unlearn a good many things in order to become an effective SEO copywriter. “Write like you talk” is one of the few things that survived the transition.

    avatar Muhammad Ali says:

    I agree with author that selection of words an important part of an article. Here some more points to be undertaken for search engine optimization. No need to have that much of hassle just visit “US Business Owners” to get more updates regarding SEO s.

    So you suggest not outsourcing article writing at all to maintain maximum control over the end result? Or is it a matter of really digging to find an article writer who can do a good job with all those parameters? (and pay them more than the ESL-type writers, of course)

    avatar Ozio Media says:

    Thanks for sharing your insights on writing content for websites. I’d like to add that I think it’s important to show confidence in your writing. If you as the writer aren’t sure what you are talking about or have a lack of confidence in your subject, that will show through in your writing and turn your audience away. It’s always best to do your research well and know your facts before you begin.

    avatar Brighter Media says:

    Completely agree. It’s easy to think you’re saving money by getting a cheap seo copywriter, but if it gets you no conversions then it’s a complete waste of money!

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