From the perspective of a business owner, webmaster, or marketing manager, the change exhibited by the Internet is profoundly exciting yet profoundly disturbing. The information (and misinformation and disinformation) it offers, the business benefits it promises, and the rules are governed by change at such a rapid rate that itís almost impossible to keep up.
These changes have led to a growing appreciation of the value of quality web copy. This appreciation has, in turn, led to an influx of opportunistic ëcopywritersí promoting themselves as website copywriters or SEO copywriters. Donít get me wrong, there are quite a few excellent SEO copywriters out there, and you should shop around. The purpose of this article isnít to scare you; itís to help you find the SEO copywriter whoíll deliver honest service and excellent results.
So with that in mind, take a look at the following ten tips.
2) Proven experience
The proof is, as they say, in the pudding. Itís not enough that your SEO copywriter can talk the talk; they must also walk the walk. Ask to see some examples of websites for which theyíve obtained some good rankings. Note that it may be tough to find an SEO copywriter who has worked on both keywords and link generation, so if you find one who has, and they write well, snap ëem up! Theyíll has an extensive and valuable working knowledge of search engines.
3) An understanding of how many keywords to use
You donít want to fill every page up with every keyword youíre targeting. This dilutes your siteís relevance and reduces readability. Ask your SEO copywriter how many keywords they would recommend targeting on each page. Hopefully, theyíll suggest no more than 3, preferably 2. By targeting two keyword phrases per page, you can use them a lot without impacting readability.
4) Clear agreement on who will provide keywordsSomeone needs to perform a keyword analysis to figure out what words you should rank highly for. Your SEO copywriter should be able to do this for you, but itís quite often more cost-effective if someone a little closer to the business does it. Either way, make sure your agreement with your SEO copywriter makes it very clear who is performing this task. Donít assumes the SEO copywriter will do it because they may think youíre going to do it, and then youíll blow your budget.
5) Keywords or keyword phrases
Expect your SEO copywriter to offer some advice regarding how specific you should be with your keywords. In most industries, the competition for keywords is so fierce that youíll be forced to target particular keywords to rank ñ at least at the outset. For instance, if youíre in IT, you probably wouldnít start by targeting the keyword ìITî. The competition is immense (at the time of writing, there were approx 3,240,000,000 results for this search in Google.com), and the IT giants already dominate the search engines for this keyword. Instead, try using a more specific keyword phrase like ìIT infrastructure consulting new yorkî (at the time of writing, there were only around 4,000,000 results for this search in Google.com). The other benefit to targeting more specific keyword phrases is that youíll generate more relevant leads.
6) Agree on word count per page
Always make sure your SEO copywriter gives you an indication of the number of words they expect to write per web page. While itís necessary to have a decent body of terms on most of your web pages, you certainly shouldnít have too many. What ìtoo manyî is all depended on your industry, the objective of the page, and the needs of your audience. Itís always a delicate balance, but itís undoubtedly possible to rank highly with only 100-200 words per page. So donít be fooled into paying for the copy you donít need!
7) Density targets & measureSEO of a web page is NOT guesswork. A good SEO copywriter will talk about density measures. This is a measure of the number of times the keyword phrase appears on the page. Itís expressed as a percentage of the total word count of the page. So if your page has 200 words, and your keyword phrase appears ten times, its density is 5%.
As a rule of thumb, your SEO copywriter should be aiming for a density of approximately 5% for your primary keyword phrase and 3-5% for your secondary keyword phrase. If your density measures are much higher than this, readability will be reduced, and youíll risk being perceived as spam by the search engines. Make sure your SEO copywriter understands keyword density, is prepared to state the target density for each keyword phrase and is also happy to be measured by that standard (should you decide to measure).
8) Where to place keywords
The question of keyword placement has been the subject of much debate amongst SEO copywriters. While it is still unclear how much impact placement has, there is a consensus that it has SOME impact. Be sure that your copywriter is aware of this impact. Popular opinion has it that keywords are more effective if they appear in headings, bolded text, links, and generally toward the beginning of the page.
9) Some comments on structure & links
Websites are generally better indexed by search engines if their spiders can traverse the entire site using text links. This means your SEO copywriter should be linking each page to every other page using text links. If your site is complex, this may be impractical, so your SEO copywriter will need to create a hierarchical structure for your site. First, they should break your subject material down into categories. Then for each class, they should write a summary page. These summary pages should be accessible from higher-level pages via text links. They should also be accessible from each other. Each summary page should link ñ using text links ñ to several pages discussing the finer details of the category. And each detail page in a particular class should link to every other detail page in that category (once again, using text links). This way, the spiders can travel from the top of your hierarchy to the bottom and from left to right across any level.
10) Donít believe grand promises
SEO copywriters can play a significant role in increasing your search engine ranking. But they canít do it overnight. By optimising your site for your target keyword phrases, an SEO copywriter is simply declaring the relevance of your site. Suppose you engage an SEO copywriter to write helpful articles containing a byline with a link back to your site. In that case, you can then submit these articles for publication on the Internet, which will steadily increase your ranking. But if an SEO copywriter tells you they can dramatically increase your order in a matter of hours or days, be wary. NOTE: Your SEO copywriter should be able to submit your articles to various submit sites on the Internet. These sites are closely watched by hundreds of thousands of publishers of e-newsletters and article pages from all around the world. High-quality articles are quickly snapped up and published prolifically. And each time your article is published, youíve got another link back to your site, thus increasing the importance of your site to the search engines. Suppose youíd like to submit your articles, firstname.lastname@example.org.
A World Media Network SEO copywriter is a valuable addition to your marketing function. When you know what questions to ask, the battle is half won.