SEO these days depends a lot on your content writing. Of course, it has always depended because unless you have content, there can be no SEO, but these days you especially need to continuously evaluate your SEO content writing because badly written content can harm your SEO as much as well-written content can improve it. Read 10 tips on how to write SEO content for your website.
Search Engine Journal has published a nice post on How to evaluate the SEO value of a piece of content and I thought, I would add my own thoughts to it. This post on the importance of evaluating your SEO content writing mentions two ways Google determines the SEO value of your content:
- Behavioral analysis: Google analyses how people behave while accessing and consuming your content. How much time they spend on individual blog posts and webpages? How often your content is shared among people and social networking websites?
- Quality Raters: Everything isn’t algorithmic at Google it seems. Google also hires human search quality raters who use predetermined guidelines to check whether you actually have quality content or somehow you have gamed the system. Read 30+ important takeaways from Google’s search quality raters guidelines (a Moz blog post).
Why is it important to evaluate your SEO content writing continuously?
As mentioned above, Google uses user behavior as well as human quality raters to ensure the quality of its search results. Let’s delve into the behavioral analysis part deeper for a while. What sort of behavior tells Google that you have got quality content, content worthy of being ranked higher?
- Your content delivers value
- Your content is useful
- People like reading your content or watching it
- People link to your content because it is so valuable
- People share your content on social networking websites because they think it will be useful to their friends and family
These are human validations. It makes it easier for Google algorithms to evaluate your content because the job of evaluation is being done by humans themselves. By staying longer on your website, by sharing your content, by linking to it, they are telling Google that the content is valuable and of high quality.
So, in order to evaluate the SEO of your content writing, you continuously have to evaluate its relevance, its quality and its value. It’s not just about sticking to Google’s guidelines, it’s about delivering value through content writing. If you deliver value, you automatically stick to Google’s SEO guidelines, unless you do something really stupid, like 60% of your content being your keywords.
What do you need to consider while evaluating your SEO content writing?
Here are a few things you can keep in mind while evaluating the SEO of your content writing:
- Research your keywords and search terms that people use to find your website. Do a comprehensive research. Don’t assume what keywords and search terms people would use just because you like those keywords and search terms. Think from their perspective. Prepare a physical list using an Excel sheet.
- Write high quality content that helps people solve problems. Remember that ultimately your content needs to be useful to people and if it is not useful, no matter how much “optimization” you do, it is not going to work. As you have seen above, human validation is very important for Google and even other search engines like Bing. You cannot make people like your content just by the dint of its existence. You actually have to deliver value.
- Use the right keywords and search terms while writing your content. Search engine optimization is very important because more than 70-80% people, despite social networking websites, still use search engines to find your content. If they cannot find your content, it is of no use to them. They’re not going to read your content and they are not going to share it and they are not going to link to it if they cannot find it. So, use your keywords, and use them contextually. Don’t stuff them.
- Go an extra mile to make sure that right people can find your content. Share your link on your social networking profiles. Use different formats like images, videos and slides to make your content available in as many formats and as many media channels as possible. This is where marketing comes. After content writing comes content marketing. Read Content writing is just a tiny part of content marketing, but the most important.
- Google also evaluates the SEO of your content writing by the length of it. If your blog post or webpage is less 300 words, Google calls it “thin content”: although it is content, it is not of much value. The length matters these days. Write blog posts and articles that are more than 1000 words, whenever possible.
Finally, this is how you evaluate your SEO content writing
- Is your SEO content attracting traffic for the right keywords?
- Is your content attracting enough traffic?
- Are people linking to your content? This is one of the most important ways of evaluating the SEO of your content writing because people will link only when your content is worthy of linking.
- Is your bounce rate coming down? Are people spending more time on your website or blog consuming your content? If they stay longer on your website it means they find your website useful and consequently, it tells Google that your content is useful.
- Are people sharing your content on social networking websites? This is a very nice benchmark to evaluate the SEO of your content writing. Many people sharing your content on social networking websites means your content is valuable, interesting and worth-sharing.
- Are you linking to other pages and blog posts from within your website when writing new content? This makes it easier for Google crawlers to find your content.
These are a few ways of evaluating the SEO value of your content.