7 SEO Copywriting Best Practices to Rank Higher On Google

Posted by Akshy Anbu on 08 October, 2020 in SEO


What was the first thing you had in mind when you chose to read this blog - were you looking to know how to write an SEO friendly article or you just wanted to bag a couple of SEO copywriting tips? That’s good because we’ve covered almost everything you’re looking for in this read, right from SEO copywriting best practices to SEO copywriting examples, you can find them all here!

As much as I’d love to tell you that SEO copywriting best practices is something you can get to understand in a couple of minutes, the execution part is what that gets me worried!

Because out of the 600 million+ blogs that try them out, not every one of them nails the practices right. And this in turn makes Google and visitors turn a blind eye to their posts (and that’s a totally unpleasant position to be in).

So, in order to write content copies that are SEO friendly (and are able to climb up the ranking ladder), you need to know what is SEO copywriting in the first place and the tips & hacks that are just going to make it better!

So, let’s get started with the basics!

What Is SEO Copywriting?

SEO copywriting in a nutshell is nothing but the process of creating content that’s valuable, informative and compelling to your audience. Also, you’d have to add specific keywords so that it’ll be visible to both the search engines and your audience who will be more than happy to promote your content on popular social platforms. You, on the other hand, will get conversions and increased traffic to your site.

A copywriter is someone who works on but is not limited to writing blog posts, product pages, email blasts, newsletter copies, social media banners, posts, etc!

It’s always best if you remember that,

“SEO and Copywriting go hand in hand. Learning how to balance & blend them into your content copies could prove highly beneficial for your business!”

Guess we’ve covered the SEO copywriting definition part! Now, let’s move on to the SEO copywriting tips, shall we?

SEO Copywriting Best Practices for Website

Before we dive into the subject, you’ve got to know that creating an SEO friendly article takes a lot of groundwork to be put in! And it’s definitely not the easy-peasy talk you often hear! But, trust me, it’s definitely worth the effort!

I’ve jotted down the SEO copywriting tips in an orderly manner - from the initial stages of writing a blog copy to the on-page SEO optimization techniques. So, this is more like a sequential journey and you should have NADA problems coping up!

Note: The below-mentioned tips can be used to write a product copy, blog post, landing page and social media banners.

1. The Research Phase

What good is a post going to be when you start drafting it without proper research! When it comes to SEO copywriting, rigorous research is undoubtedly the first thing you’ve got to do.

Knowing what to write itself is getting half work done. Because when you write something totally irrational, there’s going to be no traffic nor conversions, not to mention the disappointment your users would have to endure!

Writing content people love/find useful is the first key step when you want to write an SEO friendly article.

Also, experts say that you’ve got to spend at least 40% of your total allotted time in the research phase.

So, how do you research? What kind of resources should you gather and keep ready? Well, let’s see!

Always start off with the search results!

Because you’re not the only one out there who has come up with a similar post. There’d be a huge number of search results and relevant blog posts sharing their insights!

For example, when I searched with the keyword “SEO copywriting best practices” I got 8,31,0000 results!

SEO Copywriting best practices search results

Competitor Blog Sneak Peek

Know what your competitors have written by taking a look at their blog posts. Considering every single blog post from the first page should do! Collect insights from their blogs, take hints from their posts and jot them into a notepad! The key idea here is to know and gather what similar industry experts have shared about the particular topic!

Case Studies & Useful Statistics

The above image gave you a better understanding of how the competition is out there. And that’s what every case study and statistic you bring is going to help your audience. Collect useful information, statistics and case studies about your niche and have an idea as to how you’re going to project it to your audience.

Blend Your Experiences

Pretty sure you’ll have quite a bit of experience and insights on the topic you’ve chosen (I mean why would you want to write articles on subjects they have no idea of unless you’re a freelancer). Try to bring them into your research document in the most meaningful way possible!

Now that you need almost everything, construct them in an orderly manner - trying to come up with a rough TOC should be even more helpful!

When you’re done with the above-mentioned steps, the next SEO copywriting best practice would be to find an ideal heading for your blog post!

2. Simple, Attention-Grabbing Titles

One reason why you’re reading this post is because you might have found the title good enough (and relevant) to venture in.

When crafting a topic for your blog post, keep in mind that the first thing a person sees is your topic and this could be appearing almost anywhere - search results or social shares or any other form of blog promotion! Also, your blog topic plays a huge role in helping the audience decide whether or not to read your blog post!

So, what can you actually do to make your topic the perfectly slaying one? It’s simple!

Keep it Simple, Straight to the Point

No riddle-solving stuff when it comes to blog topics! Because the last thing your user would want to do is focus on something else when he/she really needs some useful information. So, it’s better if you keep it straight to the point like the one here - “7 SEO Best Copywriting Practices….. ”

It lets you know what the blog is about in the blink of an eye!

Use Numerics If Possible

Adding numerals to your blog topics definitely increases your blog click through rates! In fact, a study by Buzzsumo revealed that headlines with numbers in them had the most engagement rates. And remains as one of the best SEO article writing tips to date!

Study by Buzzsumo for Blog Topics

If you could take a look at the image for a minute, you’d have understood that most of the headlines have numerals in them (and we do the same for most of our posts).

Don’t Make it Too Clickbaity

Make sure your topics aren’t over-promising and sounds relevant to what your copy is about. Trying to lure visitors based on false pretenses can do more harm than good!

For example, I could have come up with a blog topic like “Ultimate SEO Copywriting Best Practices to Drive 240,000 Conversions” but it just doesn’t work!

Include Focus Keywords

Since the goal here is to write an article that is optimized both for Google and your users, it is quite mandatory that you include your focus keyword in your blog post - helps Google and your user know that your content is relevant!

To summarise what’s said above,

  • Simple, straight to the point
  • Use numerics at the start/in-between your blog title
  • Don’t make it extra clickbaity and
  • Include Focus Keywords

That’s it for the title section.

Let’s head to the next important part!

3. The Focus, Secondary and the Long-Tail Keyword Myth

This is one of the most common problems every content marketer would be facing! And there are a huge number of opinions when it comes to this particular section.

Questions like

  • What’s the right amount of focus keywords you should be using on your blog post?

Or

  • Where can I find appropriate long-tail keywords for my content copy?

have been a gruesome nightmare for SEO copywriters.

And we’ll be getting over them in this section, once and for all maybe!

Keywords Usage

While some might say that you should maintain a focus keyword density of at least 3% on your blog posts, it doesn’t always work that way!

Let’s look at our current scenario! This blog post’s focus keyword is “SEO copywriting best practices” and assume the post has an approximate 3000 words. So, in order to meet the percentage, I might have to repeat the same keyword for 30 times!

And if I end up doing that, it’s going to look spammy and uncomfortable to read. Put in simple phrases, this would turn out to be a perfect example for “keyword stuffing”!

Instead, you can try using your focus keyword

  • In the first sentence of your blog post. If you’re quite not able to do this, try using at least in the first paragraph of your article (I did use once). As for the number of times you should use, once or twice should do.
  • On your blog post title. Using focus keywords on title is quite important when it comes to writing an SEO friendly article.
  • Sprinkle them throughout your blog post. Using them at appropriate places naturally is one of the best SEO copywriting tips you should be following!

As for the long-tail and secondary keywords, it’s best if you can use them in the H3 tags and phrases in your sentence.

But, here’s the most important part,

“Use keywords only when they deem fit! Trying to place keywords just because you’ve to add them isn’t going to work in the long run at all!”

Use Both High Volume & Low Volume Keywords

When doing the keyword research, make sure your focus keyword has a good volume. If your domain has a good authority & page score, try focusing on keywords with a huge search volume. If it’s kind of new, go with keywords that have significant search volume.

Also, make sure you use low volume keywords (maybe between 10 - 30) because they can be ranked easily and help drive traffic to your blog posts.

To summarise it, use a rich blend of focus and long-tail keywords in the most natural way possible!

Use Secondary Keywords Without Fail

Assume your blog post is getting ranked for your focus keyword say “SEO copywriting best practices” in the 5th position.

Now, what if your audience searches using a different keyword like “SEO article writing tips”?

Pretty sure that your blog post won’t be seen in the search results (at least not in the first 5 pages)!

This actually means you are consciously sabotaging your chances of getting ranked higher in Google. Adding secondary keywords to your article increases,

  • Overall traffic to your blog post
  • Visibility and engagement
  • Conversions and revenue for your business.

So, how can you actually add secondary keywords to your blog post? It all comes down from your focus keyword!

Let me use SEMrush and show you how you can pick secondary keywords.

SEMrush offers a tool called the “Keyword Magic Tool”. All you need to do is enter the focus keyword in the search bar and wait for the result (I’ve used “SEO copywriting” in this example).

Secondary Keywords Research Using SEMrush

You’ll be displayed results as shown in the image above.

Click the “Related” tab to get keywords that are relevant to your focus keyword. Also, you can select keywords that are grouped on the left side of your screen.

Now, if you can take a closer look, you’ll find keywords like

- seo and copywriting

- seo copywriting tips

- what is seo copywriting

And a few other keywords that are relevant to the focus keyword and can be used in the blog post!

Bingo! You’ve found secondary keywords in less than a minute!

Note: While choosing secondary keywords, you’ve got to make sure that they are one hundred percent relevant and can be used in your post!

With that said, we’ll no longer be talking about keywords for a while!

P.S. Here are some of the best SEO copywriting tools you should use to measure the performance and growth of your website!

4. Rich, Attention Grabbing Meta Descriptions

You might be asking why the meta description?

Let me tell you why - there’s a fat chance (maybe 70% - 75%) that you read the meta description of this blog post before you decided to click which also means it has played a crucial role in the conversion part.

So, here are a few tips that can help your Meta description be more engaging and attention-grabbing!

Stick to the 156 Characters Limit

This doesn’t mean you can’t be writing more than 156 characters! It’s just that Google won’t be displaying more than the specified limit. As for mobile devices, it’s only going to be 120 characters!

So, make sure that you try to convey what your post is about within the given character limit. On crossing the character limit, you’ll be displayed a couple of dots which is of no use to you or your website visitor!

Use Keywords In Your Meta Description

Using keywords in your meta description helps both Google and the audience find relevancy in your content.

When you use the focus keyword in your meta description, Google displays the same in the bold font which helps your audience know that “Yeah! This article has something relevant to what I am looking for!”

You get the point right?

P.S. I’ll be showing relevant “SEO Copywriting Examples” in a separate section below.

Simple, Engaging and to the Point

It’s perfect if we say meta descriptions are a slightly extended version of your post title. With the character restrictions in place, you’ve got to come up with a meta description that’s both meaningful and engaging. For example, my meta description for this post is this,

“Learn how to write killer content copies with these 7 SEO copywriting best practices. And start driving more traffic and conversions for your business!”

So, if you see that,

  • I’ve included the focus keyword once.
  • I’ve kept it under 152 characters (151 to be exact).
  • I do believe it’s simple and captivating (you can let me know otherwise).

And that’s pretty much everything you need to know when it comes to writing meta descriptions for your article!

So, to the next SEO article writing tip!

5. The Inverted Pyramid

Sounds fancy doesn’t it?

The inverted pyramid method is being used by SEO copywriters to increase the stickiness and engagement of the readers.

Let me put this simple,

Image for SEO Inverted Pyramid

When a user enters your read, the first thing they’d be looking for is useful information. Not your story telling skills!

Which is why, structuring your content is very important! For example, if you’re writing a post about “Why You Should be Using Grammarly?”, you should not start off by telling when was Grammarly started or long elaborate story scenarios!

Instead, you can be quick with your introduction and head off to the section where the user can find the actual purpose of the post!

Though you cannot always skip certain basics, it’s important that you keep this in mind and stick to a user-centric approach!

6. Content Readability

Readability is a great SEO article writing tip that benefits your blog post in ways you can never imagine! Right from increasing use engagements to SEO rankings, improving your content’s readability factor is something you cannot afford to overlook.

And here are some of the hacks that can help you do the same!

Differentiate Content Using Heading Tags

Heading tags are crucial to any kind of content copies you create and is one of the best tips for SEO writing!

If you had noticed well, I’ve used a H2 tag, a couple of H3 and H4 tags in this read! It’s because using heading tags helps Google read your content and this proves to be a great deal when it comes to ranking!

Also, using heading tags can give your content a good structure and helps with the content’s readability score! Trust me, there’s no point in drafting huge paragraphs with no breaks!

Because huge paragraphs with no end not only make your readers tiresome but also they miss the actual point of your copy!

So, make sure that you do not fail to use heading tags in your blog post because you’ve got to remember that the “divide and conquer” quote always works!

The 5 Line Rule

And by the 5 line rule, I meant the number of lines a paragraph in your content copy should be having! When your user is put in a situation where he/she has to read phrases and phrases continuously, it’s likely that they’d be avoiding it and switch to something that’s less hard to process!

So, make it a habit that your paragraphs have no more than 5 lines (3 or 4 sentences maybe).

Short, Clean & Understandable Sentences

Let’s look at a live example! You should have spent an approximate 6 - 7 minutes in this read already. And am pretty sure you didn’t have to pull out your dictionary even once! It’s better if you use simple vocabularies and sentences in your copy so that your user finds it easy to read them!

And there’s a quote I came across recently,

“Write for your readers. Not to win a Pulitzer Prize!”

That’s actually the goal - to educate your readers by giving them what they were looking for without them having to move a muscle!

And when you’re able to do this consistently, don’t be surprised to witness increased average session duration!

So, to the next part of our read!

7. Add Media to Your Posts

We’ve already talked about how useful adding statistics, case studies and images are going to be!

But here’s the thing - you can do wonders for your blog post if you crack this particular hack!

So, here’s how you can leverage this!

Witty, Engaging Image Copies

When you add an image to your website, the purpose is to help your users understand what the page/product is about!

But, what if you can take this to a whole new level - make it engaging and informative at the same time!

Yes! Images that have text copies in them are known to attract more audience and engagement (found when a couple of websites were analysed with tracking tools). And the reason behind is, users take a moment to stop and read as to what’s being written on the text. Also, they find this more comfortable than reading huge paragraphs (and this is the sole purpose as to why Infographics are considered). So, when you are writing copies for your images, make sure the text copies

  • Are short and convey meaning at the same time.
  • Maintain ideal balance between the illustrations and the text copy
  • Blend with the image’s background color so that it doesn’t look awkward.

Speaking of which, here’s an ideal example of one such image!

Example for SEO Image Copywriting

This above image from a popular blogging website! And the aspects of the image needs no explanation - It’s catchy, visually appealing and most importantly, INFORMATIVE!

Rename Image Files

I’ll make this as simple as possible!

Example of Renaming Images

The above is the image stack that I’ve been preparing for this read! And if you could see, I give them all proper names (I also tried including keywords to the same) and not stick with the “Image01.png” or similar formats.

Proper ALT Text

If you’re quite not sure as to what ALT text is, it’s the text that gets displayed when your webpage fails to load or the image doesn’t get displayed. This helps your reader understand what the image might explain and doesn’t interrupt his/her learning process.

So, as for the question of why you should be doing this, Google fetches and displays images with proper names (including keywords) in the image search results! And when a user finds your image attractive and relevant enough, that’s going to be additional traffic to your blog post and eventually helps with the ranking!

Quick Note: Though adding images is a great way to engage your audience and increase your rankings, adding inappropriate images might do the exact opposite! Try adding relevant images, infographics, graphs and charts!

So, now that we’re done with some of the best tips for SEO writing, let’s get to the examples part, shall we?

Best SEO Copywriting Examples

Example 1 - Perfect Blog Post Title

Remember what we were speaking about keeping your blog post titles simple, engaging and adding numerals to it?

Here’s an example!

Examples for SEO Oriented Blog Topics

So, I searched with the term “WooCommerce popup plugins” and got a couple of search results. If you could see, the top 4 search results were blogs and the topics had numbers on them which only proves the fact that this is one of the widely practiced SEO article writing tips and so should you!

Also, the blog title from Flycart seems short, simple and to the point!

That’s how you should be doing it - genuine, straight to the point and most importantly, not a sham!

Example 2 - Using Focus Keyword in the First Sentence

This is an example that helps you understand both the 3rd and the 4th SEO article writing tips!

Image that shows how to use focus keywords

This above example is a blog about WordPress popup plugins from WPbeginner. And it’s clearly evident that “WordPress popup plugin” is the focus keyword here!

If you can see, they’ve managed to use the focus keyword in the first sentence of the post followed by a few secondary keywords in the latter sentences like “best WordPress popup plugin” and “popular WordPress popup plugin”!

They’ve split it into paragraphs and made sure that the reader doesn’t feel kind of stuffy and repeated here!

But, if you’re not able to come up with such an introduction or if it doesn’t suit the theme of your blog, it’s better not to use it!

Because the last thing you’d want to happen is visitors abandoning your webpage for keyword stuffing! As I always say, stick to being natural!

Example 3 - Rich Meta Descriptions

This seems to be an ideal example of a good meta description - there is relevancy, the focus keyword is included (as I said, Google has displayed it in bold) and the character limit has been met!

Good meta description example
If you’re looking to get refreshed on the meta description part, click here to go to the top!

Example 4 - Image Optimization

Hope you didn’t forget how important it is to give proper names and ALT text to your images!

Here is an example of a webpage that has done this right!

Example of good image title

As you can see, the blog post is about the list of tools you should be using. And the image title says the same in the inspect window, not to mention the ALT text which is also the same!

In case if the user is not able to see the image, the ALT text helps him/her know what the blog post is about!

Example 5 - Image Copies

Though we’ve already seen how content copies in your images should be, taking a look at another example is no harm!

Good SEO Image Copy

The lines “Better Late Than Never” helps readers understand the offer is going to be gone once and for all in a while, not to mention the urgency the “last 10 minute idea” creates among visitors - short, extremely conveying and captivating!

I would be saying that’s one of the perfect banner images for the Black Friday Sale! What do you think?

Example 6 - Content Readability

It struck me for a minute! Instead of picking out examples from other websites, why don’t I show you one that’s right in front of you? Yes, if you’re looking for an example for Content Readability, skim this read quickly! You’ll be able to find that

  • All paragraphs have no more than 5 lines.
  • I’ve used different heading tags at appropriate places (H2, H3 and H4).
  • No complex words have been used throughout the read (I believe so) which would have made it easy for you to understand and stick till the point where you’re reading this phrase.

As I said, when you start creating content copies with more readability, you really don’t have to be worrying about the engagement and the conversions!

And we’re done with the examples!

Wrapping It Up

All websites that maintain good SEO practices make sure that the above-mentioned practices are in their tips for SEO writing checklist!

Also, I assume that the above-mentioned examples stand as enough proof to let you know how good the tips & tricks were. And how popular websites & bloggers use the same!

When it comes to writing SEO friendly articles to rank higher on Google, make sure you always have this on your mind,

Your content is optimized for both Google and audience by finding the necessary balance! Pushing your SEO best content writing practices to a saturation level can sabotage user experience which in the long run can have unpleasant results!

So, it’s high time you start using some of these SEO friendly content writing tips! Also, let us know when you start seeing significant growth results! We’d be more than happy to hear from you!

Cheers!

Frequently Asked Questions

As a beginner, you should concentrate more on improving your content copies - both the language and research. Also, make sure that you follow a user-centric approach in the beginning and later you can learn how to optimize your content for the search engines.

There is no definite duration when it comes to learning SEO copywriting. The longer you work on it, the better your knowledge and experience you will gain! And when you blend both your experience and knowledge together, you’ll possibly become one of the best SEO copywriters.

Some of the best tools to find long-tail keywords for your blog posts are LSI Graph and SEMrush. You can also use Google’s autocomplete results to find long-tail keywords for your blog post.

SEO is one of the key factors for the growth of a website. Tools like Yoast SEO WordPress plugin, SEMrush marketing toolkit and Ahrefs help monitor and track your website’s performance as well as your competitor’s ranking!

Author Bio

Akshy Anbu

Akshy is a Content & Growth Marketer who loves to peddle dreams across the globe. And he specializes in the eCommerce Sector. His blogs are mainly focused on the E-commerce sector, Content Marketing, Growth Marketing and Growth Hacking Techniques. When not glued to his notebook, Akshy loves to watch movies, cook, read and explore the wilderness all by himself!