In the last week Google engineer Matt Cutts spoke at a conference, during which he gave away a great deal about how to optimise content for web pages, blog posts and articles for marketing. In fact although what he said was revealing and fascinating, it’s how we’ve been approaching the process for some time, but it’s always reassuring to know you’re on the right track!
One of the most revealing things Matt was saying at the conference was about the use of semantic language, and how people should be far less focussed on keywords, and more focussed on writing naturally. In fact during the conference the words ‘organically’ and ‘naturally’ were pretty much appearing every few moments, and it was clear that Google is still very much looking at trying to move people as far away from keyword centred writing as possible.
Of course, this poses a challenge for online marketing companies and web developers looking to optimise their content for specific keywords and keyphrases. But Matt pointed out that Google understands a great deal about semantics and about synonyms, and that if you search for ‘bio’ it will automatically search for the word ‘biography’ (as you can see if you try typing ‘bio’ into the search engine) and that it will do much the same with a whole raft of words and searches.
One of the specific problems Matt highlighted was people trying to force keywords in by referring to different aspects of the business in full. For example, check out the following example sentence:
“Search engine optimisation is essential for any online brand, and so it will be important to develop a search engine optimisation strategy, which will usually require hiring the services of a search engine optimisation company.”
You’ve seen that sort of sentence before haven’t you? Remember those two words Matt Cutts said so many times – natural, and organic. That sentence is neither because let’s be honest, no one actually talks like that. Google knows that SEO means the same as search engine optimisation, and that words within the same paragraph will usually be referring to the same subject. Instead then the sentence could be written like this:
“Search engine optimisation is essential for any online brand, and having a solid strategy will be vital. Often this is best developed through hiring the services of an SEO company.”
That reads very much more naturally than the first one, and will actually be just as optimised for Google. In fact Google is now penalising those websites still squeezing keywords, keyphrases and longtail keywords into every possible nook and cranny, and so writing in a way that is not natural or organic will probably see your website drop lower and lower down the results pages.
It’s worth remembering that with Google’s series of updates known as ‘Panda‘ there’s now another very important element being considered by the search giant, and that’s the reaction of your visitors. If someone carries out a search, for which Google thinks your website is relevant, and that person returns to the search results just a few seconds after visiting your site Google will record that, and interpret it as meaning that your site may not be as relevant for that search after all, demoting it.
So by writing in a way that forces keywords into awkward spaces, or by writing in a way which is neither organic or natural, your visitors are unlikely to be enthused or encouraged to read more, stay for a while, click through to other pages on your website – all of which could actually help you significantly as far as your position in the search results is concerned.
If you need help creating fresh new content for your website, your blog or for article marketing then get in touch today.
Have you seen a really awful example of forced writing? Go on – share it with us! There’s so much rubbish out there that sometimes the best thing to do is laugh. Send us your best examples of awful SEO writing by using the comments form below.