How to Create SEO Content That Ranks

Toy dog wearing glasses posed to look like working on a tablet computer

When developing a website that has even a remote chance of being seen by a decent number of people, the critical element that blog and article writers need to focus on is pleasing search engine algorithms and convincing them to rank their site well. 

But how are you supposed to please algorithms in the first place? Let alone enough to have it rank your website alongside other significant players who have likely been around much longer than your website has.

Sadly, the answer is all at once very simple and yet exceedingly complicated; you need to create some quality search engine optimization (SEO) content.

If that response has only managed to create more questions than it’s answered for you, don’t worry! Our team of specially trained SEO writers here at Content Dog is ready and eager to explain all of the critical elements that go into the process so your site can start ranking as soon as possible. 

Please continue to find out everything you need to understand about effective SEO content creation, and also consider exploring our specialized selection of other content writing resources!

Related: What is Quality Content and Why is it Important? 

What is SEO Content, and Why is it So Important?

When many new players enter the online content writing industry, they’re likely to conflate blog or article content with “SEO content” overall, but this is a common misconception. In actuality, SEO content applies to any page of content that targets specific keywords or phrases, including blog posts, product pages, videos, and much more.

Simply put, SEO content is any content specifically written and formatted to rank well on search engine results pages (SERPs). Because Google is the most frequently used search engine throughout the world, we’ll primarily focus on its algorithm for this article. 

It’s critical for websites to produce SEO content if they want to find success since it improves their visibility and helps drive organic traffic to their site. SEO content can also encourage people to purchase any products or services your site may offer, thereby adding real value to your bottom line.

Girl reading an ipad while holding a puppy
Girl reading an ipad while holding a puppy

How Do You Write Ranking SEO Content?

While the concept of writing quality SEO content may seem straightforward, it can be a challenging task for people to master. Many content creators spend years practicing and honing their SEO skills before they manage to create anything that Google likes enough to rank on its first page of search results. 

Sadly, the task of writing rankable content is also getting much more difficult as the online world continues to expand and competition grows with every new website launched or article published. 

But that doesn’t mean the task is impossible!

New and experienced SEO writers alike can follow several proven methods to increase their SEO quality and promote organic traffic.

If your goal is to produce some top-quality SEO content that has a decent chance of gaining the attention of popular search engines, stick to the following key steps.

Step 1: Locate a Proven Topic to Cover

Before you even start thinking about putting your pen to a paper or typing up an article draft, you first need to locate a proven, relevant content topic that carries a little gem known as “traffic potential.”

As easy as this may sound in theory, it will require at least a little research and some brainstorming on the relevant types of content that would be best for your website to feature.

Do you sell cookware or baking supplies online? In that case, it may be helpful to write about different recipes, provide some reviews for various pieces of kitchen equipment, or create other kinds of kitchen-related content. You’ll then want to develop a list of keywords that you can research to determine their popularity and overall effectiveness. 

Once you have a list of these broader ideas and keywords that you can potentially cover in your website content, you’ll want to search for these broader topics online to see what kind of information comes up and if they’re popular enough to be worth writing about.

Depending on how in-depth you want to go with your research, you can either stick to Google or try using more specialized tools like Ahrefs’ Keywords Explorer.

Step 2: Analyze Audience and Search Intent

The second step of the SEO content creation process involves determining searcher intent. 

Search engines like Google have invested billions into understanding and analyzing the true intent behind user searches, and leveraging searcher intent is essential for quality SEO content creation. If your content doesn’t align with what searchers want or need to see, your chances of being ranked well by search engines are somewhere between slim and none.

To determine searcher intent, you should take the time to analyze the first page of Google results when you search for your keyword or topic to look for what we like to refer to as the three C’s; 

1. Content-Type

What type of content is on the first page of Google’s search results? Are they blog pages, videos, product pages, landing pages, scholarly articles, or something else? 

Most content creators will choose a different topic if most of the top results aren’t either articles or blog posts.

2. Content Format

What format type is featured the most on the first page of Google’s search results? Are they ultimate guides, how-to posts, or list-style articles? Are they news reports, opinion pieces, or something else? 

Once you determine the most popular format for the top Google results, you’ll have a better idea regarding how you’ll want to format your article.

3. Content Angle

Lastly, you’ll want to closely analyze the titles of the top-ranking search results to see who they’re aimed at. Are the posts meant for beginners or professionals? Do they cover basic topic outlines that are easy to get through or in-depth information that will require a more significant time investment? 

Try looking for buzzwords like “easy,” “quick,” “fast,” and others to help you determine the angle of the top-rated results.

Related: Copywriting vs. Content Writing

Step 3: Develop an Effective, Data-Driven Outline

Did you know that the average top-ranking page on Google typically ranks for nearly 1,000 other relevant keywords in the top 10?

Because of this, you’ll want to know the other keywords that top-ranking results also rank for when you develop your post or article outline. Your primary goal should be to rank for as many relevant keywords as possible!

To find these other ranking keywords, you can look at the top-ranking pager and use some common sense to figure out what they likely are. Alternatively, you could also consider using the Site Explorer by Aherfs and its Organic Keywords Report feature. You can then adjust the settings to weed out irrelevant terms to your topic by filtering for keywords that only rank in the top ten positions. 

Many of the results won’t be very popular and may not be relevant enough for the content you intend to write. Don’t try to force these words or phrases unnaturally into your post, but use them as a guide to help you create a rough draft outline and determine a good angle. 

Do you need a way to boost your website’s Google ranking fast but don’t have the time to spend on creating quality SEO content? Consider partnering with our expert writers at Content Dog and letting us take care of all of the heavy SEO lifting!

Step 4: Write a Killer Draft

This step is where things start getting interesting because it’s time to put pen to paper and finally begin writing your draft!

This process doesn’t have too much to do with SEO, so we won’t focus on it too much. Just remember that you don’t need to write a perfect, completed article right out of the gate. Revisions and edits will come later. So try to stay focused on just getting your ideas out into something tangible.

It can be helpful to write out your content as you speak, which will also help create a more conversational tone and help you avoid agonizing over every word. Alternatively, you can set a timer for 25 minutes and set a goal for how much you want to get done. Take a brief break once the timer goes off, and then repeat until your draft is finished.

Step 5: Make Your Essential Edits and Revisions

As soon as you have a complete first draft, it’s time to enter the editing process to ensure your work is ready to hit the search result presses. Not only is this essential for creating good conversions, but it has a significant impact on user engagement metrics that can impact SEO, including bounce rate, dwell time, and average time on page. 

There are four essential elements involved with article editing that you’ll need to address before you’re ready to publish. These include;

Spelling and Grammar

While many word processors like Microsoft Word and Google Docs have internal spell-check functions, we highly recommend relying on a popular tool called Grammarly to help you address more complex spelling issues and grammatical errors. 

Flow and Tone

Flow is an essential component needed to help keep a reader’s interest. You want your content to sound natural rather than robotic and stiff. You’ll also want to ensure your tone matches the type of content you’re writing and will please your target audience. Some content should have a more casual or slightly humorous tone, while others need a more serious or businesslike tone.

Readability and Simplicity

As shocking as it may sound, the average American citizen only reads at a 7th or 8th-grade level. That’s the same reading level as a 12 to 14-year-old. Because of this, it’s essential to keep your writing as straightforward as possible while keeping its readability high. Otherwise, readers are likely to get confused and leave your website without a second thought. 

Plagiarism

Even if you’re doing your best to write original content, there are more than a billion web pages out there, and the chances are that some of what you’ve written will be pretty similar to what someone else already wrote. Plagiarism is an SEO killer, so you’ll want to avoid it at all costs. Thankfully, Grammarly offers a fantastic plagiarism check feature that will explain what sentences you’ll want to alter to avoid any issues.

Related: What is Web Copywriting? 

Step 6: Ensure Your Content’s Visual Appeal

No one likes reading a wall of solid text, and people much prefer to look at things they find visually appealing. As such, you’ll want to format your writing and break it up so it looks more pleasant for viewers. The best way to do this is typically by adding relevant images and screenshots, making the content more accessible for readers.

Step 7: Create a Compelling Description and Title

Search engines look at more than your article content; they also look at metadata- the most important of which is your meta title and description. Consider using “to the web” to create SEO-compliant metadata that will help you work have the best chance at ranking.

Step 8: Upload Your Post

Finally, it’s time to upload your work onto your website and wait for the organic traffic to start rolling in!

Large fluffy dog wearing white sunglasses posing for picture
Large fluffy dog wearing white sunglasses posing for picture

Do You Need Quality SEO Content That Ranks? Content Dog’s Here to Throw You a Bone

While we understand the desire to develop your own quality SEO content and feel the satisfaction that comes with finally ranking on the first page of Google, we also know that not every website owner has the time, resources, or ability to perfect their essential SEO skills. That’s why we highly recommend partnering with an expert SEO content writing agency to have the best odds of finding online success!

Choosing to partner with a provider of affordable, fast, and high-quality SEO services is one of the best investments a website owner can make if they want to get ahead of the game and have the best possible chance at ranking with the top dogs online. Whether you’re looking for a blog post, an expansive article, a landing page, or even access to a talented copywriter, there are plenty of quality content providers available to help.

Are you in need of some tail-wagging good content to help boost your website’s google ranking but aren’t too confident in your writing abilities? Contact our team of expertly trained writers at Content Dog today to learn about our specialized blog, article, and SEO content writing services!

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