Many online pundits are saying that writing for search engine optimization (SEO) purposes is dead. All you need to do is write your web content “naturally” and the Google gods will give you great rankings in its search results.
I guess that’s supposed to scare me the SEO copywriter. It doesn’t. If the above were true — and it isn’t — my livelihood could be in jeopardy.
It doesn’t scare me because 1) my core skill is copywriting and there will always be plenty of need for that; and, 2) I’ve found that the basics of traditional SEO copywriting still hold true.
For a web page to rank well in search results …
- Keyword phrases must still be researched
- Keyword phrases must still be selected
- Keyword phrases must still be embedded in content on numerous pages (naturally, of course!)
- Keyword phrases must still be in title tags
- Keyword phrases should still be in headlines (if possible)
- Plus more wonky tasks you really don’t want to know about
The only difference I see from when I first started eight years ago is that you might not need to embed the keywords as many times on a page as you used to. Three times might be sufficient, when, in the past, it used to take seven.
You also don’t necessarily have to use the exact keyword phrase multiple times, but variations of the phrase.
These improvements in the algorithms do make it easier to write text that’s both optimized for search and that reads naturally.
Typically, clients come to me with decent websites, but the above SEO tasks have not been implemented. Usually, once I plug the holes, their rankings significantly improve.
So from the point of view of wanting to rank well in a web search, SEO copywriting is certainly not dead.
Easy Web Tip 219: Despite what “experts” are saying, you still need to do more than simply write web content naturally.