Search Engine Optimization Copywriting Best Practices
Why Is This Important?
The purpose of this tutorial is to help you gain more exposure for your listings on exploreminnesota.com. Studies show that more than 80% of Internet users begin their time online with a search engine. Many of these searches are for the very products and services you offer, and we want to increase the likelihood that your page on exploreminnesota.com will come up near the top of search results.
Search engines like Google and Yahoo! have sophisticated algorithms that match the best Web sites for each search. Essentially, the search engines are looking for the content that matches the search most closely. The words you use on your exploreminnesota.com listing page tell the search engine whether or not your page is relevant. Use this document as a guide when writing your copy, and you will increase traffic to your page.
In addition, this guide outlines the basic tenants of writing for any Web site. Use these tips when developing content for your own Web site, and you'll most likely see an increase in traffic there too!
Develop Relevant Content
It is important to not only develop relevant content about your company but also that its content for which visitors are searching. For example, if your company is a resort in northern Minnesota then relevant keyword phrases could include:
- Your company name (Company ABC Resort)
- Local attributes (e.g., Brainerd Minnesota resort)
- Specialized attributes (e.g., Minnesota fishing resort)
In the examples above, Company ABC Resort, Brainerd Minnesota resort and Minnesota fishing resort would be the "optimized" or "relevant" keyword phrases. You will want to use relevant keyword phrases as much as possible on any Web site copy including your Listing Details, photo captions, Deals, etc.
Choosing Keyword Phrases
Think about how your target audience is searching for you. What phrases would they enter into a search engine if they were trying to find a business like yours? Choose three to five keyword phrases that fit your business and also would likely be common phrases that people would use in a search. These are your keyword phrases. Write them down.
- Make sure it is related to the page content and organized into logical sentences.
- Include keyword phrases at the beginning of the summary and close to each other.
- Keep in mind that search engines place strong emphasis on the first word.
- Avoid repeating keyword phrases more than three (3) times in the summary text area.
Advertiser Listing Details
It is important to ensure that your keyword phrases are repeated within the overall page content. Follow these guidelines as you're writing copy for your exploreminnesota.com listing.
- Place keyword phrases close to each other and at the beginning of the page.
- Try to repeat keyword phrases 4-8 times, but also ensure that the sentences and paragraphs make sense to the reader.
- Use text-based keyword phrases in headings. Avoid using images/graphics as headers because search engines can't read images, they only read text.
- Use keyword phrases in on-page links. Search engines weigh link text more heavily (i.e., use "Minnesota fishing resort" as a link instead of "resort").
- Search engines are not able to "read" graphics. Therefore, it is best to not only ensure that keyword phrases are relevant, but also that the on-page links are text-based.
- When posting photos or videos to your pages, use captions and name the photos with appropriate keywords when possible.
Special Deals Copy
- In the Deal Name, use between 60-115 characters (including spaces) and no more than 10-12 words.
- Be descriptive and utilize keyword phrases when possible.
- It's okay to include your brand name.
- It's okay to separate keyword phrases with hyphens.
- It's better to use plural forms of keyword phrases versus singular keyword phrases (e.g., "resorts" rather than "resort")