If you are looking to optimize your page content for SEO purposes, you’ll need to do more than sprinkle in a few keywords.
Effective SEO optimization involves multiple steps and lots of technical knowledge – and it all starts with sharing great content with your target audience.
To find out how to optimize your page content for maximum SEO benefits, keep reading!
How to Optimize Your Page Content for SEO
Step 1: SEO your content strategy
Any effective content strategy should start with the target audience and keyword research.
Once you know what search terms potential customers are using, and what types of content they are looking for, you can create a content strategy that answers their questions and moves them to the next step of the buyer’s journey.
When creating an SEO-friendly content strategy, dig deep into your keyword and user intent research.
You will always get the best results if you use your audience’s language – even if it seems a bit strange or awkward at first.
Remember that long-form content (1,000+ words) tends to rank better in search results than shorter, fluffier pieces.
Your content strategy should include at least a few topics for which long-form content would be suitable.
Finally, know what each part of your content strategy is trying to accomplish.
If you include a clear call to action at the end of each piece of content, you will be much more likely to move the reader to the next step of the buyer’s journey, as well as reduce your website’s bounce rate (a huge red flag for search engines).
Step 2: Design great content
Most people will not read every single word of your content.
They will scan your piece, looking for the information that interests them.
And, if they can’t find it, they will quickly move on to a competitor’s website instead, increasing your website’s bounce rate and lowering its SEO potential.
That’s why creating scannable content is incredibly important for your SEO.
Use shorter sentences and break up long paragraphs of text.
Make the most essential parts of your content look more prominent by utilizing H1 tags, subheadings, bullet points, and bolded text.
2. Content depth
Short, “fluffy” pieces will not help you rank higher in search engines.
Your goal is to be the best, most comprehensive source of information in your industry.
Make your content useful and educational, and update it frequently to help your website rank higher in search engines.
3. Visual content
Creating visual content is a great way to grab your audience’s attention, but it can also be a great addition to your SEO toolkit.
Use high-quality images, design eye-catching infographics, or invest in interactive visual content such as quizzes.
Don’t forget the on-page SEO optimization basics here as well, like optimizing image Alt tags and filenames.
Step 3: Maintain credibility
Something as tiny as a spelling mistake can lower your website’s credibility in the eyes of your target audience, and, subsequently, search engines.
Check your pages for spelling and grammar errors, or use software like Grammarly to do it for you.
In addition, always make sure your content is properly fact-checked and links to credible, reputable sources.
Step 4: Check your keyword usage
While you need to use keywords in your content, using them too frequently will get you in trouble with search engines and reduce the readability of your content.
These days, keyword stuffing is no longer just ineffective.
It can be downright dangerous, and, just like other black-hat SEO techniques, can get your website banned from search engines entirely.
To make sure your content is not overstuffed with the primary keyword, always write for human beings, not search engines.
Google is smart enough to recognize synonyms and abbreviations, so use them where appropriate.
Google is also getting better at understanding related search terms; therefore, you can organize your article into subsections that are connected to related keywords.
Don’t forget to include your keywords in the page title, URL, and image Alt text.
Finally, try to include a natural variation of your keyword within the first 100 words of your content.
Step 5: Get technical
The final step of optimizing your page for SEO is making sure the technical aspects of your SEO are taken care of.
This includes adding internal links, XML sitemaps, and optimizing your content for mobile users.
If you are not familiar with the more technical aspects of SEO, check out our complete guide to SEO optimization.
Bonus: Your SEO Content Checklist
When planning your content strategy, make sure that your content:
- Is based on audience research
- Uses keywords that match the language your audience is using
- Includes long-form pieces (1,000+ words) that help the reader accomplish a specific task
- Features a strong call to action to move the reader to the next stage of the buyer’s journey
Make sure your high-quality content:
- Is scannable and easy-to-read
- Includes strong titles and H1 tags that use your target keywords
- Uses audience-appropriate language (without too much industry jargon)
- Is shareable (e.g. are social sharing buttons readily available?)
- Is better than the content currently found on Page 1 of search results
Good, trustworthy content:
- Is free of spelling and grammar errors
- Links to reputable sources
- Has been fact-checked (just because everyone links to the same statistic, does not mean it’s true!)
Check that your content:
- Is not overstuffed with the primary keyword
- Has related keywords in addition to the primary keyword
- Uses synonyms, abbreviations, and plural forms of your keywords to incorporate it naturally
- Uses keywords in URL, page titles, and image text
- Includes a variation of your target keyword in the first 1,000 words
Finally, make sure that:
- Your content loads quickly
- Your website is optimized for mobile users
- Internal links are pointing to your page
- Your page is included in the site’s XML sitemap
- Your URLs are less than 70 characters long
If you can check off everything on this list, you should be well on your way to fully optimized SEO content!
How Handmade SEO Can Help
If you are not sure whether your content is properly optimized for SEO, check out our free Digital Marketing Assessment.
It includes a complete SEO audit which will give you a roadmap you can follow to easily outrank your competition and snag that top spot in Google search results.