Keywords, SEO, algorithms, content marketing – everyone wants to get found online, but there’s so much jargon out there. How do you know where to start?
Most people understand the concept of keywords and using them on their websites to get found by search engines. But everyone does that, so it’s not always enough. Without heading back to university or spending your evenings endlessly researching online articles, how do you improve your ranking?
Well, working as a copywriter in Cornwall, I’ve learned a little secret that I’d like to share with you. Search engines don’t just rank sites based on keywords and their frequency. Search engines like Google prefer frequently updated sites with popular, quality content. Excellent! But, how do you make you site popular? That’s where a content marketing blog comes in.
Getting your content right
Many small businesses use social media sites like Facebook and Instagram to post eye-catching graphics and pleas to “visit our website!!!” and, if they even have one, they write advertising type-content on their blog. But this won’t help them rank highly or grow a big following.
Social media sites, including blogs, are social. People visit them to feel part of an online community, to ‘talk’ to people and/or learn something new. They don’t want to be sold to.
Content marketing is about creating engaging, valuable content that people will want to share, and a blog is a perfect channel to do this.
Through your blog, you want to create informative articles that benefit the reader and that are related to your company/industry, without being directly about it. People are more likely to click, share and follow content that’s educational, interesting or informative, not salesy. By sharing your industry wisdom, you position yourself an authority in your field.
In their e-book “content marketing strategy that works”, Copyblogger says:
“Authority comes from taking what you know best and sharing it with others for their benefit.”
If your audience sees you as an expert, Google will too and rank you accordingly.
Let’s put that into context with an example:
“Cornwall English” is a fictitious language institute, providing English lessons and activity holidays in Cornwall.
They could set up a blog called, “Learn English in Cornwall”. Through this blog they would support English learners through articles about grammar and vocabulary, as well as information on activities and places to go in Cornwall. Note that this content is related to the company, but not directly about it (therefore, not giving the hard sell).
This type of content is useful to anyone, anywhere, who’s learning English, and therefore, is very engaging and shareable.
When this content is shared, it contributes to the school’s expert image in its field and indirectly markets the school to potential future students. Also, as more people visit the content, Google takes notice and improves the school’s ranking.
For this to work though, the content needs to be well written. Google won’t list badly written copy. It needs to be clear, concise, well laid out, with impeccable spelling and grammar, and of course, include keywords in the right places. A copywriting company, like Ignite Copy, can help with this.
Getting your blog seen
Let’s talk about keywords. After reading the above you might think there’s no need to include keywords anymore. But they do still influence rankings, and when included in popular blogs posts, they give you another avenue to capture potential customers and improve your search engine position.
Through adding keywords, you’re optimising your content and making it easier for search engines to understand what your article is about. You’re not trying to trick them into displaying your site, so keywords should be used as naturally as possible.
Let’s go back to our example:
The language school could include keywords like “learn English” and “study English” in their blog articles, meaning that the school would rank higher for these keywords.
When choosing your keywords, it’s important to do your research. Choose 2-4 relevant, top-ranking keywords and use them once or twice in your article. Try to tailor the content so they fit in as naturally as possible. The most important places to put your keywords are in the headings and at the beginning of the article.
Here’s a couple useful tools when doing your research:
If this all sounds a bit daunting, don’t worry. Some freelance content writers, like Ignite Copy, can put together a content plan, do the research, write, upload and even share your blog posts for you.
Share, share, share
Besides keywords driving traffic to your site, you should share your blog posts on social media to encourage liking, sharing, and click-throughs to your website. Like I said, the more visitors to your blog the better, as this will improve your ranking.
Use attention-grabbing, intriguing images, and copy that’s tailored to the platform when posting to ensure maximum reach.
Planning, tracking and adjusting
It’s important to highlight that this isn’t an exact science. You need to put a plan together and track the success of your posts with an analytics tool like Google Analytics and tweak your content or distribution strategy accordingly.
Some posts will perform better than others. It’s important to understand which ones do well and which don’t, so you can adjust your plan and do more of the good stuff.
So the trick to SEO and improving your ranking? A frequently updated, informative, engaging blog that is optimised for search engines and shared across social meda – easy!
If you’re still a bit unsure or if you simply don’t have time to manage a blog, you can outsource to a freelance copywriter like me. If you’d like to discuss in more detail or find out how much a blog package might cost, get in touch firstname.lastname@example.org or + 44 7493 218 884.