Writing SEO friendly content is not hard. And unlike most people think, it doesn't have to result in stilted, ugly prose. SEO friendly content is just content that was written with some attention paid to how a search engine might see the content.

SEO Friendly Writing Does Not Mean Writing for Search Engines

The first and foremost thought in your mind when working on content for your Web pages is that you're writing for people not for search engines. If you have to choose between a technique that is good for your readers but not so good for search engines or vice versa, choose that which is good for your readers. Search engines ultimately want to provide content that is interesting and informative for their customers too, and a page that is too optimized is no fun to read.

Luckily, most of the techniques that make good Web writing make for decent SEO as well.

  • Write relevant content. Search engines have ways of recognizing when a page is not really about what it might seem to be about. If you're playing games with your content to try and fool search engines, it will eventually be found and you'll lose rank or even be banned. It's much better to write content that is relevant to your topic.
  • Put conclusions at the beginning. Another way to think of this is that you want your keywords to be denser towards the top of your article. If your page is about snow leopards, then the first mention of snow leopards should be in the title and first sentence. Don't start using synonyms for your keyword phrase until the second or third paragraph.
  • Use lists instead of paragraphs. Lists are easier to get your seo content into without your repetition seeming strange.
  • Make your links part of the copy. This is especially important if your links include your keyword phrases. If you've linked to the Snow Leopart Trust on your snow leopard page, make sure that you link the words "Snow Leopard Trust" and not something unrelated like "click here".
  • Include internal sub-headings and they should include your keyword phrase. Use heading tags for your sub-heads, and repeat your keyword phrase.
  • Proofread your pages. It doesn't do any good to focus on the keywords "snow leopard" if you spell it "snow leopart" once or twice on the page. Plus, the spelling and grammar errors make your content look unprofessional, so people are less likely to link to your page.

Other Considerations for SEO Friendly Content

Repetition is very important for SEO friendly content. Once you've chosen your keyword phrase, you want to repeat it several times throughout the page. For instance: 2 times in the first paragraph, in every sub-heading, once in the main heading, twice in the meta title, 2-4 times more throughout the document, and at 2-3 times in links and image alt text on the page.

Don't forget to use bold, heading tags, and other emphasis HTML tags to highlight your keyword phrases. But don't overdo it. If someone can tell exactly what your keyword phrase is without doing more than opening the Web page, you've probably included it too often or made it too emphasized. Remember, you're ultimately writing for people, not a search engine.

Don't forget less obvious locations for including your keyword phrase - like image alt text and title text on images and links. These are not hidden from your readers - anyone can see them who wants to. They are just not obvious at first glance, so they are less annoying to your readers but search engines still see them.

SEO Friendly Should Not be Bad Writing

As I said above, you should never sacrifice good writing for SEO. Most of the best ranked articles on nearly any topic you can name (Wikipedia notwithstanding) are written for customers first and SEO is at best a second or third thought.