SEO copywriting is an essential element of every SEO strategy. What you write builds your credibility, and how you write it gets you ranking. The challenge with all things SEO, however, is that half measures can never get you there. The most common SEO copywriting mistakes always come back to a lack of real direction.
Understanding the SEO copywriting mistakes to avoid can help to demystify the process. Everyone can create powerful SEO rich copy. By avoiding the mistakes below you’ll be on your way to writing copy that actually ranks.
1. Writing without keyword research
Keywords differentiate SEO copywriting from typical copywriting. Therefore, starting to write copy before researching keywords, or without researching keywords, will leave you with just… copy. If you have a good writer, this copy may read beautifully, but without the right SEO juice injected throughout, it’s not going to help your SEO.
To avoid this mistake, make keyword research your first step after determining what content you want to write. Whether it’s SEO web copywriting or SEO content in the form of blogs and other online copy, find your keywords and write them naturally into the copy.
There are plenty of tools online that can help you build lists of keywords based on the topic. Also, consider working with an SEO agency to get you set up if it’s your first time or you have serious ranking goals you’re trying to achieve.
2. Not thinking from the users perspective
Copy has to be human first. There is no way to win the SEO game when you fail to connect properly to your site users. Google can see straight through it, and visitors will bounce off immediately. Not thinking of the users perspective often results in:
- Keyword and key phrase stuffing
- Irrelevant copy
- Misaligned keywords (trying to rank for Facebook marketing while writing a blog about SEO copywriting, for example)
Put yourself in your visitor’s shoes. Think about what they are trying to learn from your webpage. Does your copy answer their questions? Do your keywords match what they will find on the page? Always remember: visitors don’t care about what you think. They want to learn how your product, service or information can solve their problem or answer their question.
3. Forgetting search intent
Often, writers can think so much about the keywords they want to rank for that they forget what people search for to answer their questions. This is a huge disservice, as analysing search intent can often help you discover keywords and phrases that are less obvious and can help you design a broader keyword strategy.
Researching search intent is very easy. All you have to do is go onto Google and think about what you would search if you were a user looking for your products or services. Type in the first few words and see what autofill options come up. Scan the first search engine results page (SERP) and see what other titles are there. Look at those first-page web pages and analyse them to see how long they are, what tone of voice they use and what call to action they have.
4. Using different spellings on the same page
When you complete your keyword research, you’re probably going to see some keywords and phrases that are spelt in different ways. Too often, writers try to use both spellings in order to rank for all the variations. Unfortunately, both Google and your audience are too smart for that. You will rank poorly and give them the impression that you don’t know how to spell. It’s a lose-lose.
Instead, commit to high standards of writing. Google knows what you’re talking about. If your website is offering value to visitors, reads professionally, and ranks well for related keywords, you’re going to be a site of authority for the other spellings.
5. Lacking creativity
SEO is technically a technical digital marketing field. Therefore, it can be really common that SEO copy comes out rigid and lacking in creativity when you’re trying too hard to follow the rules. The result is copy that repeats key phrases in the same way over and over, unnatural language that is obviously done for the sake of fitting keywords/phrases and too much rigidity about the keyword or phrases themselves.
To avoid this bland type of creativity-free copy, here are a few ways to break the rules:
Break up key phrases using punctuation
Say we want to rank for “Sydney digital marketing agencies”, and we need to repeat this a few times in the copy. Rather than trying to put that repetitively in the copy, we could write something like, “lockdowns have impacted Sydney. Digital marketing agencies are still open but working from home”… The punctuation between “Sydney” and “digital” makes the phrase totally different in the copy, but Google picks it up without the punctuation, as the full phrase.
Rather than keyword or key phrase stuffing, use synonyms to find alternative ways to say the same thing. Not only does this help your copy reflect natural language, but it also helps you rank for broader search terms. Win-win.
These SEO copywriting best practices are the first step to a winning SEO strategy. To go to the next level, contact AdVisible to learn how we help businesses across Australia to rank and thrive online.