Did you know that there are 1.6 billion websites on the Internet today? Among these, 500 million of them are blogs. Additionally, about 2 million blog posts go live every single day.
What do these statistics mean for you as a website/blog owner?
The age of filling pages with text and hoping to be discovered is over. The competition is just on another level, and unless you’re making deliberate steps to get in front of your target audience, you’re as good as dead – business-wise.
You have to make your content discoverable on search engines because that’s where people look up information online most of the time. Have a content optimization plan in place.
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Content Optimization Definition
To better understand this vital part of today’s digital marketing space, you must first take into account the two only factors that your content is, more often than not, targeted to. That is search engines and, most importantly, your target audience.
What website content optimization does is to make your content both likable by search engines and valuable to your would-be customers. And, that is how you stay ahead of all that multitude of endless blogs and articles.
Steps to Optimize Your Content for Search Engines and Users
How do you go about it?
To get ahead of the pack with your content, incorporate the following checklist in your routine to have an optimized content marketing strategy:
- Keyword research
- Quality instead of quantity
- Watch out how you use those keywords
And, in more detail…
This is the first step before you even go out there and start banging out countless words – with topics you’ve certainly created in your head.
Remember the aim is not to fill up your web pages with information you think your audience might need and hope that they find it.
What you want is to serve your readers just what they are looking for. This is the only way you are going to leave an impression on their minds and keep them coming back every time a need arises.
So, basically, keyword research is opening a window into the struggles of target leads.
You can use a tool, like Moz, for this.
Through keyword research, you learn about the problems that keep your readers on toes. That way, you’re able to formulate in-depth solutions as you’re aware of the exact pain points to aim at every time you create a post.
This is huge in several ways.
First off, you have a higher chance of being found in SERPs results. This alone is definitely not the only reason for search engines to cuddle up with you, but it sure is a step in the right direction.
Secondly, you’re in a better position to understand user intent. This is pivotal in gaining insights into where a lead is in the purchasing journey.
With this information, you are able to point him/her just where you want him/her to be. And, that is some serious power there.
Quality Instead of Quantity
Of course, quality is a relative term. And, it’s also possible to have both of these – quality and quantity.
If you have keyword research nailed down, you have one piece of the puzzle right. At least, you’re going to create content that serves the needs of your audience; not what you fancy.
Your content is full of all the useful information a reader is looking for. Great, but can you keep those visitors on that page? Are you presenting that information in a way that is easy for the reader to digest?
It’s not an academic paper. Your readers are going to hit the back button if they find themselves struggling to figure out what it is you are trying to communicate.
You have to optimize your page content to keep them on that page. They won’t even click on your site if you don’t entice them enough.
So, when do we say a piece of content is of utmost quality? Here are a few things to keep in mind.
- Simple Language – Don’t try to sound smart by jamming up your content with all the jargon you can find in the world. That will be impressive to people who understand, your peers. Not your target audience.
- Not Everyone Has the Time to Read Every Single Word – So, you need to write for this impatient person. Make your content easy to go through quickly by using 2-3 sentence paragraphs, bullet points, and strong subheaders strategically sprinkled throughout the page.
- You Don’t Stand Out by Being Like Everyone – Aim to be the best in terms of the value you offer through your content. Look at all the pages that are ranking top of the search results. What is it they are doing? What can you do differently?
- The Metadata Is Just As Important – This is what will make anyone click on your website in search results. Both the title and the accompanying meta description should be catchy. You only have a few words, make them count.
Present your ideas in a manner that fronts you as a credible thought leader to your users and search engines.
Two things here: grammar and the sources you link within your posts.
Without good grammar, your content is going to be a thorn in the flesh to the reader. And, few people are going to read and trust anything full of grammar and spelling mistakes.
For the links, it is a signal to search engines that you deserve recognition because you are getting your ideas from people who matter.
Additionally, make sure you know the source of each fact you put. Don’t just go around repeating what others have said without doing a serious background check.
Watch Out How You Use Those Keywords
So, you know the keywords – what your audience is looking for online.
You’re not going to go full swing and start plastering them all over.
If anything, it will negate all of the above steps. Search engines frown on content with keywords sprinkled all over in an out-of-the-context manner.
Keyword stuffing will also make your content hard to follow along, and you know what follows when that happens – you may lose that reader (and more) forever.
In whatever part you decide to use your keyword in, make sure it as natural as possible. You are not just writing for search engines, remember.
SEO content optimization strikes a balance between the needs of the reader and those of search engines.
Just writing content no longer cuts it. You have to take a further step – content optimization – not only to meet the needs of your audience better but also to have a slot in the SERPS. That’s how you’re going to be helpful, and hopefully, make bank while at it.
Aside from the above tips on how to optimize your page content, check out these website auditing hacks that are sure to boost your rankings.