Creating a piece of content takes a considerable amount of time and effort.
And that’s why most of the content writers out there aren’t doing it ‘just for fun’. Writing content has a specific purpose and a goal that is making you add as much quality as you could to that content.
Now, to write quality web content there are specific steps that you should follow to keep both your readers and bots happy.
Further in this article, we will tick boxes one by one for SEO-friendliness, the reader’s experience, and the quality of the content.
After every step, you will be given a checklist of questions so that you know what exactly to ask yourself while publishing the content.
Let’s start our web content writing checklist for SEO
I have divided the checklist into 3 different sections to ease things out for you namely:
The Page Title Should Be Clarifying Enough
The page title is undoubtedly among the top-ranking signals of a page. As a title, it must clarify enough to the user what to expect from the content.
It is the link searchers will see in the SERP and also on the top of the content when they open the page. That’s why it would be much better if you add your focus keyword at the beginning of the title, but make sure you don’t overstuff with it.
It is important that you deliver the content up to the expectations from the title, because if not then you will surely see a high number of clicks but also an increased bounce rate.
- Does the title precisely state what the content will deliver?
Writing Click-Worthy Page Title
The page title is the first thing users will see about your content, so it must be convincing enough to make them click.
To be clear, what is a click-worthy page title?
- One that reads well,
- Clearly tells the objective of the content,
- Is not keyword-stuffed,
- And creative enough to attract.
If you’re unable to write one that covers the criteria, just head over to Google and type the focus keyword.
Now look over the top-ranking pages and their titles. Note the used words, tone, catchy words and wow factor.
- Is the page title convincing enough to click on?
Short and Simple Always Works
Internet today is flooded with information, and with an increase of every new page user’s attention span is decreasing.
Now, content is all about quality over quantity. People want complete knowledge in the shortest way possible. That’s what Google says “Concise and Comprehensive”.
Though there is no perfect word count for the article, try to answer the question completely without dragging the content too long.
If I have to suggest a number, I would say content between 800 and 2000 words somewhat keeps the criteria. But I mention again, that there is no exact number.
Now, apart from the length of content what makes the readers stay on your page is the readability of the content.
The techniques that you can use to make your content more visually pleasing to read include:
- Shorter paragraphs
- Use of bullets and lists
- Avoiding run-on sentences
And above all what matters the most is obviously the quality of the content (that we would talk about further in the article).
- Do your content delivers complete information without dragging the content?
- Are you using short paragraphs, bullets and lists?
- Are you avoiding run-on sentences?
Adding Relevant Links
We all want the user to stay on our site and not head back to Google, and the best way to do so is by adding internal links.
Adding internal links makes a visitor explore more of your site which ideally leads them to convert, remember the brand and/or engage repeatedly.
Not only that, adding internal links make search engines believe that you have authority over the topic since you have many relevant pieces of content written around it.
Also, adding external links helps you in numerous ways too. Most importantly it generates trust as search engines see that you are linking to other useful resources too, and you can be trusted.
But the thing to not forget is to add only relevant links. Stuffing irrelevant links can end up being a downside for your website.
- Have you added relevant internal links?
- Do you link to external resources too?
Adding Visualisation Through Graphics
Graphics made the content much more readable. Readers love visuals in the content and it helps them better understand the content.
There is not any limit or suggestion on how many images you should add, it solely depends on the context.
The industry, type of content and the type of readers have a big role to play in it. You can search for your competitors and look at the number of visuals they are using and if it’s helping them out or not.
What is more important is the optimization of the images.
For the optimizations, you should follow the 3 golden steps:
Describe what the image looks like or what it depicts. Adding keywords in ALT tags is a suggested practice and is quite helpful, just make sure not to overstuff it.
It isn’t told what exactly the size of an image should be but it’s better to keep it as small as possible without decreasing its quality of it. It is also suggested to add images in the .WEBP format as they offer small sizes.
The Image on Mobile and Desktop
Just check if the image is stretched on the mobile or desktop view of the page, and keep the image centre aligned for better consistency.
- Did you use keywords in the ALT tag?
- Have you decreased the file size of your images as much as possible?
- Have you checked for the view of the content across all devices?
Give the Reader a Direction to Go Next
Each and every type of content needs a call to action. No matter if it’s an informational blog or a marketing copy, you have to tell the reader what to do next.
It can be signing up for a newsletter or suggesting related blogs to read next. It could be to buy your product or service.
Whatever your goal is with the content, just make sure to give the reader further direction after finishing the article.
- Have you added a clear call to action?
If you haven’t yet researched your keywords (primary and secondary), you should start with detailed keyword research first.
You would want to focus on the medium to high search volume with medium to low competition short and long keywords. There are other factors too that you would want to focus upon.
For a more detailed explanation, you can read: Master The Proper Way Of How To Do Keyword Research For SEO
- Have you researched your keywords for the blog?
Now once you have found the keywords that you want to write your content around, there are practices that you can perform to most out of them.
Within the First 100 Words
You should add your focus keyword in the first 100 words of your content.
That help in many ways such as:
- Indicating search engines what’s the focus point of your content.
- Reassuring the reader what they are about to get from the content.
As I have already multiple times before, just do not overstuff it.
Title and Headings
Adding them into your title and heading makes so much sense as it clears out that your content delivers what it is expected and does not deviates from its path.
But make sure you walk on the grey line and do not over-optimize the content to add keywords in every heading, keyword stuffing comes with a great cost.
Anchor text is the text linked with an internal or external link.
If you can add keywords in the anchor text, you should obviously without filling out your content with links having a keyword anchor text.
Have you added your keyword naturally without overstuffing in the:
- Title and Headings
- First 100 Words
- Anchor Text
Dodge Duplicate Page Titles and Keyword Overlap
Page titles as we talked about earlier are an important element. With both perspectives of SEO and users, it holds a high ground.
Now, duplicate page titles must be avoided as they do nothing but create confusion for search engines.
As well as, keywords. Keyword overlapping is many pages having the same or similar phrases of focus keyword.
That makes you compete with your own web pages on SERP. And you wouldn’t want to be fighting with yourself.
For instance, if four page titles start with “Best Web Content Writing…”, it would be hard for Google to differentiate between them and choose whom to rank for which keywords.
- Is your page title similar to any of the previously published content?
- Have you used the same or similar phrase of the keyword before?
- Can you be competing against your own blogs for this keyword?
URLs are Sweet when Short
URLs are the next thing that you have to make sure of before hitting the publish button. Make sure that your URL still matches the title and has the focus keyword in as less words as possible.
Now, why is it much important to make sure that the URL gets right? Because you have to add a redirect if you wish to make any change to that once you have published the article.
And redirects are irritating enough to both users and search engines.
Another thing to look upon is to avoid the use of numbers in URLs.
For instance, if you posted a blog “10 Best Flowers to Add to your Garden in 2022”. Now when you would want to update the content and want to change the number of flowers to 12, the title would change to “12 Best Flowers to Add to your Garden in 2023”. Now if you have added the numbers to the URL you have to add a redirect.
To avoid this issue, you can simply avoid using numbers in your link until or unless the number is specific to the focus keyword.
- Is your URL short and containing the focus keyword?
- Do your URL contain numbers?
Writing a Brilliantly Crafted Meta Description
A meta description is the second place (after the page title) where you convince the user to click on your search result.
A brilliant meta description is where you sum up the content including the focus keyword with a convincing or curiosity factor all between 138-148 characters.
Yes, Google does rewrite your meta description sometimes. But unless you have an insider in Google algorithm that tells you when it’s gonna rewrite your meta description, you should give it your best.
- Is the meta description clarifying and convincing enough to click on it?
- Is the word length of the meta description between 138-148?
- Have you added your focus keywords in the first 100 characters of the meta description?
What defines the content to be of quality?
That is a big question and it does have a detailed explanation. But if I don’t wanna drag this piece of content so I’m linking here the concise and comprehensive explanation of how can you add quality to your content?
Read here: 8 Tips to Improve Your Content and Keep Google Happy
For now, here are the most important ones.
Detailed and Unique
A piece of content would be of no use if it does not offer the reader everything they are looking for.
Now what I mean precisely by detailed and unique is to write content that covers everything that the user would have been searching about that keyword.
You can go through Google and find what the top rankers are writing and how can you add something more to it.
- Have you covered the topic in detail?
- Does the content offer unique information and valuable insights to the user?
Information that is Original and Accurate
Now, the data or information that you will add to your content will have to be right. You cannot share the wrong information and expect the user to trust your brand.
The best way is to do the research yourself. I know there will be a lot of issues and big research wouldn’t be possible for starting websites.
In that case, you can share the research data of a brand that you trust and can link to the original source.
- Does the content have original and correct data?
- Have you or your team personally researched or checked it to be correct?
- If sharing someone else’s data, are you linking to the original source of information?
The next part is to make sure you know users of which phase of the engagement cycle you will be writing the content for.
You wouldn’t want to write an informational blog around a keyword that is mostly searched by the user in later phases of the engagement cycle.
The preferred way to find out which keyword is used by the users of which engagement cycle is by simply searching it on Google. You can go through the top-ranking pages and note for which phase users they are writing their content for.
- Have you checked if the tone of the content matches the requirement of the users of that phase of the engagement cycle?
Web Content Writing Checklist for SEO
Can’t remember all this, we know it’s quite hard. So, we’ve created a downloadable version of this checklist. Just mail us at [email protected] and get the web content writing checklist for SEO so you don’t have to remember it all.
Get it and save the checklist to go through it every time you share a valuable piece of content.
You want to be proud to claim every piece of content that you share. Obviously, you aren’t out there putting yourself completely in to write content just for fun.
But surely you have other objectives too. And you can achieve them by following the checklist and making sure that you give the users the best you can.
So, before hitting the publish button, go through the web content writing checklist for SEO to make sure that the content is ready to move the world.
Got all the answers? If not then the comment box is wide open for you. Or you can mail us your query at [email protected]. We will love to help you out.
Also, Thank You For Reading Along. It means a lot to us.