If you are doing content marketing, you must know what is optimized content. Creating and publishing content isn’t enough, it must be optimized for readers and search engines. Organic ranking is all about content optimization. If you want your content to rank for the right keywords in search engines, you must optimize it.
This guide covers the steps on what is optimized content and what you need to do to create and optimize content to get it in front of the right people at the right time.
What is Optimized Content?
Optimized content or content optimization is a technique to improve the visibility of your content and making it SEO-friendly to drive traffic. It is a systematic process that is geared towards increasing the reach of your content.
Search engines use web crawlers that scan and store a copy of web pages in the database. Whenever a user enters a search query, the search engine looks for similar or related pages in its database that contain that search query or are relevant to it.
Search engines crawl, index, and rank web pages and content to serve relevant content to search engine users:
So, to make it easier for search engines to find and show your content for relevant keywords, you have to optimize content.
Why Optimized Content is Important
Having optimized content on your website has tons of benefits. Any piece of content that isn’t optimized is useless. It might not drive any traffic at all.
Here is a list of the top reasons why content optimization is important:
- Content optimization improves search engine ranking
- It helps search engines understand your website and its content. This makes it easier for search engines to index and rank your content
- Optimized content is user-friendly and easy to read. It is the biggest contributor to customer experience
- It helps visitors and readers access the right content when they’re on your website
- Content optimization helps you acquire backlinks as people love linking to content that is helpful and ranks high in search engine ranking pages (SERPs).
If you look at the other side of the picture, unoptimized content might never rank for relevant keywords. Even if it ranks, it might not be able to make it to the first page. The top search result has 28.5% CTR while the last result on the first page has 2.5% CTR:
If you aren’t on the first page, you don’t exist at all. And this is what you must expect with unoptimized content. It won’t rank and never drive organic traffic.
If you want your content to work, you have no choice but to optimize it.
How to Optimize Content
Optimized content is the only content that works. But how you optimize content so it ranks, drives organic traffic, and helps you achieve content marketing goals.
Follow these steps to make your content optimized for search engines:
Write Long-Form Content
One of the best and proven content optimization techniques is to write long-form content.
Because it always outranks short-form content.
Articles with a word count between 2250 and 2500 get the most organic traffic:
An analysis of 11.8 million Google search results revealed that long-form content ranks higher than short-form content. And the average word count of Google first page results is 1,447 words:
This shows what you have to do to optimize content for search engines – create long-form content. Now, this doesn’t mean you end up creating low-quality content. No, not at all.
You have to create high-quality content that’s way better than your competitors. And of course, it must be long-form.
Target Long-Tail Keywords
A long-tail keyword is a longer and more specific phrase that users search towards the bottom of the funnel. For example, “where I can buy HP laptop in NYC” is a long-tail keyword as compared to “HP laptops” that isn’t as specific and doesn’t clearly show search intent.
Targeting long-tail keyword is the best way to optimize content for two main reasons:
- It is much easier to rank for long-tail keywords than short-tail keywords
- Long-tail keywords help search engines better understand your content and the topic it covers.
It is estimated that 70% of traffic is generated by long-tail keywords and they’re best at improving engagement:
Since these keywords are specific, therefore, they keep visitors hooked and engaged.
Focus on long-tail keywords and target them to reach your audience via search engines.
You can’t optimize content without on-page SEO. If you want search engines to crawl, index, and rank your content, you must follow on-page SEO best practices.
Here are the key on-page SEO factors that play a significant role in content optimization:
- Optimize title and meta description and add your primary keyword in both
- Use heading tags appropriately and distribute content into different subheadings and sections. This creates a hierarchy that makes it easy to navigate
- Use media in your content such as images and videos. This improves readability
- Add descriptive alt tags for all the images so that search engines can understand and index images
- Add links to relevant content. It helps search engines determine what your webpage is about. This improves indexing and ranking
- Adding relevant internal links also serve the same purpose and improves overall content optimization of your website
- Add LSI (Latent Semantic Indexing) keywords in your content. These are phrases and keywords that relate to your primary keyword.
Optimized content is the key to success for both inbound marketing and content marketing. You can spend heaps of resources in creating content and you can bombard your blog with new articles every single day. It will only work if your content is optimized.
If search engines can’t read and understand your content, it will never rank. And if it won’t rank, it will not drive any traffic.
Stop wasting resources on content that doesn’t deliver. Spend resources on optimizing content because this is what matters the most.
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