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A Copywriter’s Guide to Writing for Semantic SEO

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With rapid-paced advancements in algorithms, AI, and data collection,search engines are getting smarter. 

It has always been the objective of Google and other search engines to serve the most relevant information to those searching, and with improved search engine intelligence, internet search results are becoming more tailored to the individual making the query.

How does your business remain competitive?

One word, and one acronym: Semantic SEO.

How do you accomplish that? Don’t write for SEO.

Confused? 

What is Semantic SEO?

Search engines have evolved to recognize when you’re writing specifically for SEO, and

Google and other search giants are now ranking content in order of the value it provides, relying on context rather than scanning for specific keywords or phrases.

Search engines have reached the point where they recognize nuance. For example, if you are writing an in-depth piece on how to successfully live stream a video, search engines will recognize, through the context of the content, that when you mention ‘stream’ you are talking about videos and not a body of water.

Because search engines are now measuring the quality of a piece of content, this often means pages that have been written for only the purpose of search engine visibility are seeing a decline in rankings in favor of content that provides the most important information.

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This profound understanding of context means that marketers and copywriters need to write in-depth, comprehensive content that offer extremely high value to the reader.

What Qualifies as In-Depth Content?

In-depth content is typically longer than your average blog post, covers a wide range of details on a specific topic, and cites relevant and reputable sources. While there is no universal word count requirement for a piece of content to be considered in-depth, consider that in order to cover a topic in detail is likely to be over several hundred words, if not more.  

How Do You Know Where to Begin?

If you’re struggling with writing for semantic SEO or what exactly your content should cover, there are a myriad of tools to help you. One of the easiest and most effective ways to discover what information potential audiences are looking for is to look at Google’s “People also ask” section on search results pages.This list of suggestions related search topics that users may find of interest. 

Another option for writing comprehensive content is to consider frequently asked questions. Chances are that if previous customers have asked a question about your product or service, that a future customer will have a similar inquiry. 

Tips for Writing for Semantic SEO

Write Authentically

As mentioned earlier, writing for semantic SEO doesn’t revolve around specific keywords and phrases. Instead of focusing on the saturation of keyphrases, write organically about your topic. You’ll likely use terms surrounding the topic that will signify context to Google.

Be One Step Ahead of Your Audience

The goal of semantic SEO is to leave no question unanswered, providing the most comprehensive information possible.

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When writing your content, your aim should be to be inside the reader’s head as much as possible. Anticipate questions. Elaborate on topics, subtopics, subtopics of subtopics, and so on. Pay attention to the flow of information.

If you make mention of something, go into detail with your explanation. Write content that doesn’t raise questions that can’t be answered within your text. If a reader has to click away and perform another search engine query, you’ve lost your lead.

For example, let’s say you are a painting contractor in New Hampshire with the goal of ranking your website for ‘home painting in Concord.” You would create in-depth content about interior painting and related topics, such as types of paint, options for texture, the painting process, and any other questions that your audience might have on your interior painting services.

By creating an ‘encyclopedia’ on the topic, Google will view your content as authoritative, and respond by rewarding you with higher rankings.

Other Tips for Writing High-Ranking Web Content

Even if you write the most comprehensive, strategic, informational, and high quality content, if your content isn’t structured optimally, search engines will still rank other sites higher than your own. It is important to follow several rules of thumb when it comes to structuring content for SEO.

Formatting

Creating content that is formatted for a seamless user experience is crucial to your website rankings (not to mention, it’s just good customer service). Avoid large walls of text. Use headings, subheadings, and bulleted lists where possible. Search engines prefer serving easily navigable, organized content to users above content that is poorly formatted.

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Mobile optimization

Over half of internet searches are conducted from mobile devices. With the rise in popularity, search engines are now prioritizing mobile-optimized. Mobile-friendliness includes writing in short, concise sentences and easy-to-read formatting as well as the design and technical elements of your website. Check the status of your website’s mobile-friendliness with Google’s mobile-optimization checking tool

SEO is in a Constant State of Change

As technology advances, search engines update their algorithms to provide internet users a smarter, more efficient, better experience. Semantic SEO is the direction search engine optimization is going; if your business intends to compete, It is essential to adapt and react to this evolution.

Over the past decade, Liz has worked as a copywriter and digital marketing executive for a multitude of companies from startups to and mid-sized businesses to working as the VP of marketing for award-winning, platinum-selling artists. Leveraging an understanding of the nuance of language in marketing, Liz founded Amplihigher, a content marketing and copywriting agency, designed to connect consumers to companies in a way that results in next-level brand expansion.