I must confess…when I first started working in content marketing for my business, I approached SEO a bit ambivalently. I am a content writer, after all. The last thing I want to have to worry about is making sure Google’s algorithms like my content enough to rank it favorably. For that reason, I immediately shied away from simply “keyword dropping” for the sake of making the algorithm pay attention to my posts.
The good news is that Google doesn’t want writers to simply “keyword drop” either. Neither do readers. Nothing is worse than reading an article or blog post and noticing that the writer obviously forced certain keywords into his or her content in order to rank “better.” In her recent article, Marie Fincher notes, “As Neil Patel, a recognized expert, says, you must always understand that people come before the algorithms.”
Thank goodness this is true!
Authentic writing, the type of writing that organically connects with customers, is what matters. Yes, keywords are still important to some extent, but even more important is understanding your audience. As Fincher explains, “If you have not done the research that gives you an intimate understanding of your target persona, you might as well put your pen away…” In other words, no number of keywords will make your content connect with your customers (and help them) if you don’t write for your customers’ interests, needs, and desires.
I encourage you to check out Fincher’s full article, which illustrates how you can produce SEO-friendly yet reader-friendly content. Share your thoughts, too, and let everyone know what strategies you’ve used to make your content engaging to your customers while rankable in SEO.