In this post, you’ll learn how to optimize your content for SEO. Content is everywhere, in every language, in every tribe, and on every website across the internet.
What many haven’t realized is that content has value, especially when found online. Content also comes in different forms, as you will later find out in this post.
Content can also be optimized to deliver the highest value to your business. A well-optimized piece of content can earn you quality traffic through online search engines.
I’ll take you through the steps of optimizing your content, plus other details that you need in order to boost your SEO.
As it’s always the case, let’s start with the very basics of content and work our way to the top.
What is the Meaning of Optimized Content?
To understand about optimized content, one first needs to understand what content means.
While a general definition is hard to come by among marketers, we will utilize the one offered here.
Content refers to high-quality information that is presented to an audience with the goal of informing, entertaining, or educating them. Content can be communicated through different media which include text, audio, video, and graphic image.
Online-contents are usually presented as blog posts, articles, podcasts, videos, graphics, infographic, and social media posts.
By this definition, content is expected to pass some form of information to an audience, but since so many pieces of content fall under the category of “copy and paste”, the need to differentiate between content and optimized content arises.
So while content implies a piece of something that is just there, an optimized content piece adds some value to you and your audience. It gives a boost to your reputation and your search ranking while your audience is better off after consuming your content.
That’s the reason our focus is now on optimized content and the value it adds to your SEO.
The Value of Optimized Content to Your SEO
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a technique that content creators use in order to rightly position their sites for better search ranking. It involves the use of different tactics that meet Google’s requirements for relevant content.
Google, Relevant Content, and Search Ranking! What is the connection?
Google is on a mission which is to deliver relevant content to users of its search engine. At least that’s what the founders, Larry Page and Sergey Brin, told the whole world.
And I kind of believe the duo, because they have done a good job of “hiding” poor quality content and increasing the visibility of high quality and relevant content to the search users.
So, the description Google gives to relevant content is similar to what we refer to as optimized content.
By implication, relevant content gets higher search ranking so that search users can easily find them. The higher Google ranks your content on its search engine results pages, the more the potential traffic to that piece of content.
So you’ve seen the relationship between relevant content, or optimized content, and search ranking.
That’s the reason optimized content is very important to your SEO.
But you’ll have to forgive me if I don’t provide you with the monetary equivalent of that value. There is no universally agreed standard for measuring the value or price of optimized content.
However, the value is directly related to the purpose for which the content was created.
Why You Should Optimize Your Content
Optimizing your content is the fastest means of attracting and keeping your audience.
That is enough reasons to go for it, but if you’re not yet convinced, then I have some more reasons.
- Since Google actually rewards optimized content with higher search rankings, you miss out on this benefit if you produce poor content
- It helps you connect on a more personal level with your audience since an optimized content speaks to the audience in their language
- You will easily build trust and authority both in your niche and with your readers. Remember that optimized content is informative, educative, and entertaining
- An optimized content is one that is evergreen, which means your audience will enjoy reading it for a long time.
Who wouldn’t want to create optimized content after knowing all these benefits?
Steps to Creating Optimized Content
You can get adept at creating optimized content anytime you need to. Just follow the simple steps provided here, and you will find yourself getting it right every time.
Step 1 – Research
The most important step in the journey of creating optimized content comes in an 8-letter word, RESEARCH.
The first part of the research is for your target audience. Those are the people who are meant to consume the content and derive value from them.
You’ve got to find out as much information about your target audience as possible.
What are their pain points, their motivations, their aspirations, their fears, and desire? If you don’t know these things, what are you going to say to them, and in what language?
The next item for research is the topic of the content you want to create. Since content is designed to provide value to your audience, you will have to create topics that do just that.
Luckily for you, the first research has helped you identify the pain points of your target audience, so the topic search becomes easier.
The third and final research, at least for this content, is the keyword research. While you are focused on writing for humans, you should consider the search engines as well. If they cannot rank your content, the content wouldn’t even get to your target audience.
Research keywords with low competition – Yet offer high value to your content. Google offers a free online keyword research tool that will be of great help in researching keywords to use in your content.
Step 2 – Format Your Content for Ease of Reading
We are having content produced all over the world, every second. And in a race to keep up with all these articles, the attention span of internet users has greatly reduced.
Most people spend less than 8 seconds on a piece of content before moving on to the next, which means you have less than 8 seconds to attract a person, or pass the message across.
To do this, you will have to format your content so it can easily be scanned by anyone.
Here are a few tips to help with creating scannable content for the web:
- Break your content into easily digestible headings and subheadings (using H1 to H3 tags)
- Use short, concise, and easy-to-understand words, sentences, and paragraphs
- Use descriptive images as much as possible in your content
- Make good use of lists, that’s numbered and bullet lists to highlight points in your content
- Include links to research and information sources whenever these facts are quoted in your content.
Step 3 – Let Your Topic Guide You
This may not seem like a big deal, but some content creators often veer off their topics or keywords.
Ensure that only relevant information on the topic is included in your content. You’ve got to fight the urge to include content simply because you want your content to be longer.
To help you maintain the topic, read through your content after your first draft. And remove any detail that doesn’t fit in.
You can also get a good writer to help with proofreading your content before publishing it.
Step 4 – Include Backlinks
Backlinks may not be the most important metric used for search ranking, but it is important.
That’s why you need to have a backlink building strategy for each piece of content that you churn out.
Step 5 – Proofread
Proofread and edit again and again until you get to the point where nothing needs to be added or removed.
At this point, it is safe to say that you have successfully created an optimized post.
Some SEO Bonus
Let’s round off this highly optimized content with some SEO tips for you.
- Optimize Your Title Tags – These are the clickable, short texts that appear at the top of each Google search result. Optimize by including at least one keyword, and keep it within 60 characters
- Optimize Your Metadata – Do this by providing clearly-written texts, not more than 160 characters, which include your keyword
- Optimize your URL, so it is easily recognizable and readable for your audience.
Content is used to pass information in a digestible format to a particular audience. Content formats include articles, blog posts, whitepapers, case studies, images, videos, and podcasts.
Content can be optimized in such a way as to add value to your SEO efforts.
This post outlines 5 simple steps to follow in creating fully optimized content for your audience, and for search engines.
We concluded this post with some bonus tips for optimizing certain elements of your SEO.
These tips are quite easy to get started with, so you can start witnessing a boost in your search ranking.
Do you want to learn the fundamentals of search engine optimization (SEO) in a more simplified way than this? Then, all you need to do is give Wealthy Affiliate a try when it comes to studying the pillars of SEO, and you’ll be glad you took this step. There are more than a hundred certification courses to take in the area of SEO, blogging, and affiliate marketing.