There’s a fine line between writing copy that sells and writing copy for Google. We need the words we choose to accurately represent who we are and what we do BUT we also need Google to understand it, so we rank accordingly!
For the sake of keeping this blog short and sweet, I’m going to gently skip over the fact that plenty of successful businesses rely on alternative marketing methods such as social media and paid ads to attract visitors. And I’ll assume that you’re reading this because you want to write your own copy in a way that maximises your chances of ranking well on Google organically.
I know not every business has the budget to pay the professionals straight away and so I wanted to share my copywriting formula to help those doing it themselves to write SEO’d copy for their own website or blog, as best they can.
But I need to be clear that there are many variables and theories when it comes to search engine optimization (SEO) and there are no hard and fast set of rules that will guarantee a page 1 ranking. This blog is purely focusing on the basics; the words you can see displayed on your website.
Before you start writing
1. Structure your website accordingly
Ideally you’d want to focus on 1 ‘keyword’ per page. I highly recommend having a separate page for each service or topic you hope to rank for.
2. Research your best ‘keyword’ for each page
A ‘keyword’ are the words people type into Google when searching. For example… Website Designer Auckland, Florist Wellington, Auto Electrician Christchurch, Low Carb Avocado Recipes, etc.
- This is a link to an easy to use Google tool. https://trends.google.com/trends/ It will allow you to compare keywords and determine which are your best ‘keyword’ options.
- This website is extremely handy when your services have multiple terms. For instance… ‘Website Designer’, ‘Web Designer’ and ‘Webdesigner’ will all give different results. You want to know which option is your PRIMARY choice.
- Use this website as a guideline. It will often display a ‘0’ result for keywords that would clearly be getting used however your goal using this website is to determine which option is your BEST option.
- You may want to consider targeting more specific keywords over general ones. For example you may opt for ‘WordPress Website Designer’ over ‘Website Designer’. Because the more specific or niche your keywords are, the better your chances of achieving a good ranking for that keyword.
Once you have a list of your website pages, and the keyword you want to target for each of those pages… you’re ready to start writing.
Writing your copy
This is a guideline of what you want to aim for on each page you are optimising.
- THE MAIN TITLE (H1 HEADER)
It is very important to include your best keyword in this title.
- THE INTRODUCTORY PARAGRAPH
Include your best keyword in the first paragraph.
- THE REST OF YOUR WORDING
- You should have at least 300 words per page.
- Use subtitles (h2 & h3 headers).
This formats your text, helping visitors skim read and find relevant information faster. But also, by including variations of your keyword in your subtitles you will increase your chances further.
- Links to pages or blogs within your own site helps.
You don’t always have to word a click here into your copy. Instead, you can just reference another page such as your portfolio and link the actual word, as I have done here.
- You can use variations of your keyword.
Using your main keyword is best but other than the main H1 title and the first paragraph you don’t have to be that exact. You can use variation of your keyword throughout the rest of your copy. Google is clever enough to know that a page that is about ‘dog walking’, will also include terms like ‘walking your dog’ or ‘dog walker’.
- Include your keyword as much as possible without being spammy.
I recommend aiming for between a 1-3% keyword density (how often your keyword appears in relation to how many other words there are). I recommend ‘just doing your best’ because that will read most organically for your visitors. But you can use this website to test your copy https://www.seocentro.com/tools/seo/keyword-density.html.
That’s it. Use that basic formula when writing your text and you will have a good foundation to your site. A good website builder should help you with linking and the inserting the correct title/header tags. And an even better one will work closely with you to make sure all the other non-copy related bits and pieces are done based on your copy and keyword selection.
TIP: I personally find it easiest to write all the words for that page as they come to me AND THEN go back over what I have written to make any edits that may improve it. To me the SEO (although important) should always come secondary to the information your visitors will read.
Remember, Google checks in every month or so to see if there are any changes to your website. You can use Google Analytics to see how people are finding your site, what keywords are used, and what pages they’re landing on. This will help you understand what is and what isn’t working for you.
You can spend hours and hours trying to perfect your copy. My recommendation is to get your copy to a place you’re happy with it and then to pour your time into other, more efficient methods of attracting traffic to your website.
If you have any questions, I’m here to help firstname.lastname@example.org.