Many who write online believe that Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is something too complicated to handle. That is why they give up before even figuring out what is SEO and how it works. However, I want to show you a practical way to use a few free and simple tools to use right now to master the basics of SEO copywriting.
Enter Google Autocomplete and Google related searches
Unknowingly we’re all search engine experts. By that, I don’t mean to say that we all need to be going around telling others what to do. Instead, that Google is a website we use on a daily basis. Therefore, we know how to deal with it. For instance, you might have noticed that when you type something in the search bar, you get suggestions:
Those suggestions you get is called Google autocomplete. That feature is quite useful for a few reasons. First, it helps you complete the search by suggesting you valuable things. Second, it saves you time. Third, it also gives you new ideas about things you might not have thought about.
That is from the user standpoint. What about who writes content? Well for those who write content Google autocomplete feature is even more useful. In fact, those suggestions are queries or questions that users frequently ask Google. That is why they are getting featured as autocompleted results.
Also, Google also shows related searches at the bottom of the page:
Those two tools are all you need to pick a topic, title and the right keywords for your next copy. In fact, that is Big Data Google is giving you about your target audience. That is also all you need to understand the basics of SEO copywriting.
Pick the right topic by using free Big Data
It is critical to writing about something you’re passionate about. Yet if you’re writing for business, you need to find an audience first. How do you see that? Simple, look at the Google’s autocomplete. In fact, those are frequently asked questions, which means there is an audience for that specific topic.
In fact, we all use Google mostly to solve practical issues. Therefore, with the autocomplete, you can figure out whether there is an audience for the article you’re about to write.
For instance, let’s say you’re writing a piece about SEO for Google. Of course, Google is the most used search engine; we’re so used to it that many users still believe that is the only search engine out there. Also, “why” is a powerful question to be used as a hook for your next piece. Thus, you type into Google search box something like “Why Google” and see what the autocomplete will suggest:
The first suggestion “Why is Google the best search engine” seems excellent as the topic of your next piece.
Let your readers pick the right title
Journalists know the title is a crucial component of the whole piece. Therefore, you might want to spend time understanding what title to use for an article. One kind of claim that works pretty well for business content is that title that addresses a specific pain point of the users. Where do people show their pain? On social media, for sure they don’t. Once again, Google is the place, and the autocomplete is the answer.
In the previous paragraph, we used the autocomplete to see whether the topic we want to write about has an audience. Now we want to figure out whether the title is good enough. Google told us through the autocomplete that people often ask “Why is Google the best search engine.” All you have to do now is to check if this title has potential. For instance, you could use the Headline Analyzer to check this out:
The Headline Analyzer gave a score of 72 out of 100. That is pretty good considering I’ve never had a score higher than 76. I wouldn’t focus too much on the number, but I believe from 70 up the headline shows great potential.
We have the title; now we need the right keywords. How do you do that?
Target the right keywords with Google related searches
Most people that write online fear SEO, because they believe that is too hard, or that they need to know sophisticated search engine optimization techniques. That doesn’t make sense at all. First, if you think of SEO is about gaming Google‘s algorithm, you got it wrong. SEO is a set of insights that you have about what people look for through Google. In short, you can uncover data about your potential readers, and customers with the utmost simplicity.
In fact, SEO doesn’t have to be complex at all. For instance, now that we picked a topic and a title, we can find some keywords users are typing into Google related to the topic we’re about to write. How? Simply by using Google‘s suggestions.
For instance, I start by typing the autosuggestion that helped me pick the topic:
Once Google gives me the result page I can scroll to the bottom of the page to see the related searches Google gives me:
This will be a good list of long-tail keywords, which are merely questions users type into Google search box, which is as popular as the one we just typed in. Use that list like I’m doing below:
- what makes google so popular
- what has made the google search engine so successful
- best search engines
- internet search engines
- search engine definition
- bing search engines
- why google is good for us
- types of search engines
You could pick a few of those and include that in your copy. Of course, you need to do it in a way that doesn’t make your writing worse. In other words, in your text among the questions that you pose there might be “Is Google the best search engine?” or “Why Google is good for us?”
These questions even though usually have a way lower volume compared to simple keywords like “SEO” they are also more specific and address an issue the user is having at that moment. Therefore, those are transactions.
That is how you get questions users frequently ask, to include in your copy to address real doubts your target customers might have. That’s it.
Search engine optimization is not complicated. That is how we perceive it though. Of course, there are basic to advanced tactics. The advanced tactics are for those people that gained experience in the SEO industry for years. However, if you’re trying to put down a simple piece, which copy is optimized and at the same time useful to your potential users you can do that in four simple steps:
- make sure there is an audience for the topic you’re writing about with Google autocomplete
- pick the right title by looking at questions users frequently ask Google
- find out relevant and related long-tail keywords/ queries users are asking to Google
- include those keywords organically in your text, always focusing on the user needs so that the copy is accessible to readers
Now you have a basic understanding of copywriting for SEO. What you need before that is an SEO Hacking mindset!