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SEO Guide Part 3: Headings, Keywords & the Rest

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After you’ve done your keyword research (see our guide here) it’s nearly time to post your content. First, and most obviously, you have to write your piece. Pick one keyword or long keyword and research as much as you need to! When you feel ready, it’s time to write your articles and later we’ll make the best of your content SEO.

Remember to have your goals and angle in mind. You want to be consistent from start to finish. If it’s a guide to fixing bikes you might frame the article as “12 tips for looking after your bike”. Put that keyword research to use and find the perfect headline for your audience.

Once your content is ready you can upload it as a post or new page. Then comes the optimisation! Through the rest of this guide, we’ll go through some of the key ways we can make that piece as SEO-friendly as possible. If you’re using WordPress for your website, I’d highly recommend using Yoast SEO to make this task a lot easier.

Pick a Good Title for best Content SEO practices

A good way to grab the viewer’s attention here is with terms like’ ‘Best’, ‘8 tips’ or [2022}. We’ve all clicked on an article that promised info in tidy packages. That’s why “12 tips for looking after your bike” works so well. If you can summarise very useful, educational content into appealing chunks then you’re sure to gain new followers. 

Remember to put the keyword at the start of the SEO title to get the most benefit for your content SEO. For more check out HubSpot’s guide here

Keep the URL short

The URL is that string of characters you see in the address bar. URL stands for Uniform Resource Locator. A URL is nothing more than the address of a given unique resource on the Web. In theory, each valid URL points to a unique resource. Such resources can be an HTML page, a CSS document, an image, etc. for more see Mozilla’s guide


We want to keep the slug short. This is the part you can edit after the rest of the url. For example the URL for Failte Ireland is https://www.failteireland.ie/ but the Research Page URL is https://www.failteireland.ie/Research-and-Insights.aspx. From this, we can tell that Failte Ireland has chosen Research-and-Insights as their slug. Short and to the point, that’s what we’re looking for!

The meta description appears below the page title. It's great for improving your content SEO
The meta description appears below the page title

Meta Description

A meta description is a little preview of the article. Similar to an excerpt, meta descriptions reveal the contents of the article and should aim to grab the user’s attention. By advertising what’s inside we can show possible visitors that our article is related to the term they’re searching for, so try to keep it relevant. 

Best Practice: First, read your competitors and take inspiration from them. Try to build on their descriptions and offer a better version. Maybe try combining multiple descriptions to make your one tick all the boxes. 

At most, we have 160 characters to work with, so use your words well!

Optimising Images for Content SEO

Key to optimising image sis the Alt Text. The purpose of Alt Text is to aid visually impaired users. Screen readers are able to add context to images so we need to add the context to the Alt Text. Google or other search engines will check to see if your images cater to the visually impaired but also if the images are related to the article and the search terms used. 

Headings

We need to get the keyword into about half of the headings. Overdoing it can have a negative effect so don’t go overboard here. We want it in the H1 (Heading 1) as well as some of the H2 and H3s. As you might have guessed, the headings have different levels of importance going from H1 all the way to H6. Getting the balance right is key here. 

Text & Content SEO

We want at least 300 words. Anything below that and Google will look unfavourably on your page. Don’t rush to fill it with unnecessary content though. We want everything on the page to be worthwhile for the best possible user experience. This is where your research comes in handy. Share all that info you’ve gathered and don’t be afraid to give credit where credit is due. 

For more competitive keywords you will want around 1500 words to see the best of your content SEO!

Social Sharing Buttons / Comments boosts Content SEO

A great idea here is to have sharing buttons for as many social channels as you can. Google will reward you for any activity on the page including user comments & shares. Think of the most popular platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Whatsapp. 

Examples of share buttons for content SEO include facebook, tumbler, Pinterest, Twitter, Discord and more

In short, to see improvements in your rankings be sure to optimise Content SEO by:

  • Pick a Good SEO Title with the keyword positioned at the front. 
  • Keep the URL short
  • Meta Description – Research competitors and combine them to give an appealing preview in less than 160 characters. 
  • Optimising Images for SEO – Add the keyword in descriptive Alt Text fields
  • Include your Keywords in at least half of your headings
  • Text – Aim for at least 300 and 1500 for competitive keywords
  • Interactive elements like user comments and social sharing buttons

Next in the Series...

We’ll look at how we can use backlinks to get the attention of search engines. 

For more info, look at our SEO service page

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