How to Optimize Your Content for SEO

Now more than ever before, companies both large and small are aware of the benefits search engine optimization (SEO) can provide. Between increased web traffic, higher engagement rates, and potential for sales growth, SEO has quickly become one of the most important digital marketing strategies for any business these days.

But even if you know how important it is, are you sure your website content is properly optimized for search engines? Whether you are just starting out or you need help fine-tuning content you already have, use the tips below to optimize your content today.

Use Headers

By far one of the most overlooked aspects of styling web content is utilizing proper formatting techniques. While a bulk of your website content should be set to “Paragraph” styling, organizing your pages and blog posts with Header 1, Header 2 and Header 3 content has a few key perks.

Your Header 1 is the title or name of your pages and posts. This not only tells the reader what this content will largely be about, but it also is information read by search engines. Google, Yelp and Bing all scan through web content looking for Header 1s to know what keywords your website should rank for.

Your Header 2s and 3s are sub-categories beneath each of your main headers. These are great for creating sections within a page or post. Search engines also scan this text for secondary keywords your website might be able to rank for.

Using the Headings in WordPress is not just a useful SEO tactic, but it also breaks up text on the screen, making it easier for your readers to scan through information more easily.

Include Keywords

If you aren’t already familiar with keywords, here’s a brief explanation: keywords are the short and long-tail words and phrases search engines scan for in order to provide relevant search results in a query.

Chances are you’ll naturally integrate a few great keywords into your content without even thinking about it. Especially if you know your clientele well enough, you may find it easy to speak the same language as they do.

In order for customers to find services or products on search engines, they’ll be typing in keywords. To reach your ideal customers or clients, you’ll have to include the keywords they would search for within the content of your web pages and posts.

Link to Relevant Pages

User experience isn’t just about great content — it’s about guiding your web visitors through content in a certain way.

By including links and buttons to other relevant pages on your website, you can help them explore the information you have to provide. For example, they’ll more easily be able to learn about your company and everything you have to offer if you utilize call-to-actions within each page, which can tell them where to go next.

But don’t assume hyperlinks to your own pages are all that counts. In fact, external hyperlinks (links that go to other trustworthy and relevant websites) are just as important in helping your website rank highly on Google.

Why? Because it signals to search engines that you are “engaging” in the conversation other highly ranked websites are already having online. Over time, well-placed external hyperlinks shows search engines that you, too, are relevant and an expert in the field. They are also a great way to give credit where credit is due, for resources you used to find facts, figures, quotes and more.

Be Engaging & Personable

Although not directly related to SEO, having high quality content that people love to read is a must. It’s not just about quantity anymore; quality matters.

Don’t be afraid to add in a bit of personality and story to your content! When website visitors stay longer on the page, visit more than one of your pages or posts in a single visit, or become repeat visitors over time, this tells search engines that your website is important, informational and/or entertaining.

Having high engagement rates such as these over time can significantly boost your rankings, and even increase your chances of having the content be shared on other platforms like social media.

Use the Yoast WordPress Plugin

If you are using the WordPress platform for your website, be sure you install the Yoast SEO plugin and use it regularly.

Even though most SEO professionals out there today trust Yoast to help them optimize websites, it’s simple enough for almost anyone to use. While there is a premium version available, the free version is extremely informative and comprehensive. Yoast will guide you through simple steps in order to optimize each page and post of your website with ease.

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