The great thing is that there are no hard-and-fast rules on how SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) works anymore. It used to be that text has to be of a certain length and had to contain certain keywords, but that is not the case anymore. Websites full of images and very little text can rank just as highly as web pages that give away free e-book content (AKA, lots of text). Here are some many ways you can write SEO content, along with reasons why they work so well.
Search Engine Friendly Long-Form Articles
A long-form article is one that covers a topic in detail. For example, each of the headers in this article could probably be turned into an article on their own merit. If you were to cover a topic comprehensively, then that is a long-form article.
Why Long-Form Articles Work So Well
Part of the reason is your competition. The internet is loaded with short SEO articles that never really go into depth about each subject in hand (a bit like this article). Ergo, when an article goes into great depth and detail, then it outshines its competitors and slowly (but surely) climbs up the search engine results.
Search Engine Friendly Short-Form Articles
The internet is stuffed full of short-form articles, and where it seems like a bad thing, it is also a good thing. For example, can you imagine a dictionary web page that gave a full e-book worth of information for each word in its index? It would be frustrating to read all that information just to find the meaning of a word. Plus, sometimes people want a few quick ideas rather than an e-book on a subject.
Why Short-Form Articles Work So Well
Part of the reason is that they are easy to write, and a webmaster can fill a website with them quickly. It is possible to touch upon a massive number of topics and subjects if you are only writing short articles about them. If you write many short-form articles, then it becomes a numbers game where there is a good chance that at least some of your articles will rank high.
Search Engine Optimised Image-Based Web Posts/Pages
Place images on your website. Make them easily searchable and make sure they load quickly. Many websites and several social media networks can rank up the search engine results because of the images on their website.
The section below goes over the image-based optimisation you need to undertake, however, be careful of loading times. Do not compress or lower the size of artwork, maps, detailed images, etc., but on the same note, do not upload images that are overly large when they do not have to be. For example, the maximum horizontal size for an image meme should be 1080px at the most.
Why Image-Based Web Posts/Pages Work So Well
Part of why image-based websites work so well is less about the format and more about how they work, so here is what you do. Try to upload as much original content as possible. Google images love original images. It will rank up the images you buy from marketplaces like Shutterstock, but you will still have to compete with all the other publishers of the same image, whereas the field is far more open for original images.
Give your image a search engine friendly name before you upload it and add the image title meta tag using the same descriptive text. Finally, add ALT text that adequately describes what is on the image but do not force keywords into it.
Do not add ALT text if the image is purely decorative, such as copper-plated squiggles for web page borders. Do all of this, and your web pages will jump up the search engine results and your images themselves will jump up the Google Images search engine.
Search Engine Friendly Listicles
A listicle is an article that lists several things with a notion to offering information or making a point. Two forms of listicles are common. The first is one that acts like a directory that describes certain ideas and then links to the relevant web pages. The second is ranking/rating articles, such as listing somebody’s favourite horror movies. Listicles often contain links, images, and at least a little text, and easily be leveraged for more web traffic.
Why Listicles Work So Well
There are several reasons:
- they often cover a lot of information in a very reader-friendly quality
- they are great research resources and so are great for people to link to
- they often link out to other websites.
On that last point, other webmasters will link back or promote the listicles on their social media profiles so that the backlink is popularised and is therefore taken more seriously by Google.
Another reason is that listicles can be used to draw people in and then send them to other articles within your website, and internal linking is often search engine friendly.
A Note on Outbound Links and SEO Content
No matter what type of SEO content you are creating, it is sometimes useful to add an outgoing link every now and again. You do not have to add one to every page but try to add any that may be useful. For example, if you have written a long-form post on exploiting Twitter, but you do not want to write a post on how to sign up to Twitter, then you could link to an article that explains how to sign up.
Google considers “useful” outbound links to be very search engine friendly, but there are other reasons they are helpful. The WordPress trackback and pingback system means that your outbound link may receive a reciprocal link if the other webmaster uses WordPress.
Plus, even if some webmasters do not link back, they may share your web page on social media to help improve its prominence and therefore make the backlink more powerful (and more of a traffic magnet for them).
Get the Basics Right and Then Do as You Wish
As you can see, there is more than one way to create SEO content. There are no hard-and-fast rules on SEO besides the very basic on-page optimisation stuff like meta tags, meta descriptions, etc, (here are Google’s guidelines on the basics).
Do not be fooled by those who say your content has to be a certain length or have a certain number of images and links because it is just not true. As you can see by this article, there are many ways to draw in traffic, so create content; however, you wish and let the traffic come to you.
All the content in our marketing section is written by experts who call upon genuine industry experience when they give advice. Take a look to see what you can learn about how to write SEO friendly content.