Module 3 is jam-packed full of practical skills.
The tools and techniques that we are about to cover are your bread and butter. You will use them every single day. So far we have gone over how to write copy that keeps readers scrolling, but that is only one part of what goes into writing six-figure copy.
This lesson will focus on SEO. Equipping you a solid foundational knowledge that you can later refine into expertise.
We will discuss strategies to move up the rankings, and start to look at your everyday online writing tools. Tools like WordPress and Yoast that you will use everytime you write and publish your blogs.
Let’s get stuck in, shall we?
Search Engine Optimization
SEO is an overused often misunderstood term that’s thrown around the world of online writing.
Understand this, every client will have a different preconception about SEO.
If you aren’t fluent in SEO lingo, you’re going to have a bad time. I bet that right now, on Upwork, there are amateur content writers days behind schedule and working for $5 an hour. How did this happen? A simple writing job took twice as long as it was supposed to. Why? Well because the client demanded the freelancer organically meet an 8% keyword density requirement.
The freelancer didn’t realise what was being asked of them and agreed to the impossible.
SEO is riddled with misconceptions. Clients will ask you to stuff their articles, over-optimize headlines and write 300-word alt tags.
Someone told them it would make Google like them, and you are paying the price for their ignorance. There was a time when keyword stuffing worked really well. Search engines are smarter now. Hopefully, if you know your stuff, you can convince clients otherwise. At the very least, you’ll understand that an 8% keyword density isn’t something you should get involved with, and you can tactfully decline.
Why Do Clients Care About SEO?
The purpose of SEO is to rank on the front page of Google. An ideal outcome is to have your page at position 1 for your targetted keyword. Google’s top spot receives 38% of all search traffic. Clickthrough rates decline exponentially as you travel down the list. Result number 5 receives less than 2% of all search traffic.
Keywords and The Text on a Site Determine Google Rankings
When Google’s algorithm crawls websites it reads all the written text on-page to try to determine what the content is about.
Say for example I wrote a blog which had the keyphrase “Novelty Jar Jugs”. When Google crawls the text it finds several mentions of “Novelty Jar Jugs”
We strategically use keywords to influence the results.
Once the clever algorithm has completed it’s crawl and is confident it knows what this page is about it indexes it with all the other novelty jar jug pages.
Then along comes an internet user. They search for “Where to buy novelty jar jugs”. The algorithm will do all kinds of search engine magic to show them an ordered list of what it deems to be the best pages for that search term
Basically, SEO is moving up that list.