There are many ways to create good content but one of the best ways to make sure that content gets to its target audience is to create using SEO writing best practices, one of which is the strategic use of relevant keywords.
In this article, we will help you understand the process of SEO content optimization, and show you how to turn keywords into compelling articles that your target audience can resonate with.
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What to do After Finding Keywords?
A long list of keywords counts as nothing if you are not using those keywords in your content and tracking their performance.
The first thing you need to know is to organize your keywords.
Your keywords are meant to be used in your content so we recommend sorting your keywords into groups such as topic, theme, pain points, or search intent.
How you categorize them fully depends on your goals for your SEO strategy.
For example, if you are the Head of Content Marketing for a SaaS that provides a customer relationship management (CRM) tool, one of the first things you should do is consider what the main questions a future client of your tool will have and the stages they will go through until they find your solution.
Here are some questions your client might ask:
- How can I improve my sales process?
- How can I track opportunities?
- How can I forecast my sales?
As the owner or content marketer of this hypothetical SaaS, you can learn more about the questions, pain points, and user intent, and then organize your keywords around these areas to determine whether or not your content covers these terms.
How to Convert Keywords into High-Quality Content
Here are some ways to convert a list of keywords into great content:
1. Conducting Thorough Keyword Research
We assumed you already had a keyword list.
You may have studied your competitors’ websites and extracted keywords that drive traffic to them, or you may have identified a trending topic in your niche and now have a large list of keywords that includes thousands of keywords.
To continue with our previous example of a CRM company, here is a long list of keywords related to this topic.
Now that you have your list, it’s time to create a keyword map.
Keyword mapping is the process of assigning a group of keywords to a topic that could be a new article or an existing page on your website.
To create a keyword map, use a spreadsheet that shows the relationship between keywords and pages. This will allow you to optimize the content on a specific page with a focus on its specific keyword.
It will also help you avoid keyword cannibalization which happens when more than 1 page targets the same keyword.
Finally, your content strategy will be defined by this keyword mapping. It will highlight a set of articles that need to be created or updated, and you can use a content calendar to schedule the creation of each new article.
Continue reading to see the steps that will assist you in transforming this long list of keywords into a list of articles.
2. Identifying Search Intent Behind Keywords
Search intent is also known as user intent. It refers to the reason why a user types a certain query into a search engine.
Are they trying to find an answer to a question? Are they looking for a specific website? Or perhaps they’re trying to purchase a product or know more about a field.
This is what understanding user intent looks like and as a brand or company owner, you can use this information to:
- Adjust your content to target this intent better
- Create more relevant content, and ultimately
- Rank higher in search results.
To identify search intent, you have first to type a keyword into the search bar. The search engine will show a list of results that it believes to be the most relevant to that keyword.
For you to have a deeper understanding of the search intent behind that keyword, go ahead and analyze the results that appear in the SERPs.
If you type “how to improve my sales process,” you can notice the following:
- A list of articles providing tips
- A tone guide
You can already see that the intent is informational.
The person conducting the search needs to be educated on the process and is not yet ready to make a purchase.
However, being visible at this stage is beneficial to brand awareness.
Also, you can see a specific blog post format: Listicle. It seems to be the best way to present an answer to this query.
In a few clicks and observation, we have done a search intent analysis.
Another quick remark before moving on. Type “improve my sales process” in the search box. You’ll notice that the SERPs are nearly identical and display the same results.
Here we speak about SERP similiarity and keywords sharing the same intent. It is a key concept to understand as it will help us group keywords in the next steps.
3. Creating a Content Plan Based on Keyword Clusters
Keyword clustering means grouping similar words people use to search.
This is crucial because users can look for the same information using different words.
Identifying all relevant terms will help you optimize and rank for more keywords.
So from this large set of keywords that you have gathered, you can shortlist them so you can end with a smaller list highlighting topics to focus on.
Continuing with our example, we can see that different keywords can be grouped together. Below are two highlighted groups:
- Bots for sales
- Sales quote motivation
How do you group these keywords?
You could manually enter each keyword and group them based on the result of the SERP. But you might give up quickly because it is time-consuming.
Fortunately, there is a category of SEO tools known as “keywords clustering tool” that will perform this task flawlessly for you.
Simply upload your keyword list, and the grouping will be done automatically by comparing each keyword and its related SERP.
When two keywords appear on the same SERP, they are grouped together.
You can try thruuu and its keyword clustering feature (and start for free with 500 keywords) and see the results here.
As you can see the grouping is done and it highlights the main topics (your future articles) to cover.
🚀 Pro Tip: You could even enter the domain of your website to understand the existing pages to optimize, but we want to keep this tutorial simple.
Learn How to Create Keyword Clusters with thruuu
Discover the secrets to effective keyword clustering. Don’t miss this opportunity.
4. Prioritizing Topics
When it comes to choosing the articles to begin writing, consider the following:
- Measuring Difficulty: Focusing on the less competitive topic. The Volume or CPC metrics of a search can be used to determine competitiveness. Also, if you see a lot of ads and big brands for a search, it indicates that there is a lot of competition.
- BOFU vs TOFU: Focusing on the bottom of the funnel to improve conversion, or the top of the funnel for brand awareness.
Ultimately, if you launch a new website, everything will be competitive. So you could begin focusing on the topic that you enjoy the most and where you have a real added value to offer.
To get a spot on the SERP, your first few pieces of content must be outstanding.
If we go back to our example, you could have a list like this at this stage.
5. Analyzing Your Competitors and Creating Content Brief
Before you start writing on your chosen topic, create a content brief.
A content brief is a document that outlines the key elements and goals of a content piece before it is created. It provides clear guidance to your writing team.
Even if you don’t work with writers, we recommend creating a content brief because it will motivate you to analyze your competitors on the SERP and come up with the best content format, heading structure, and topic to cover in your copy.
thruuu is a fantastic tool (not just because we built it), and it will assist you in gathering key information about your competitor and automating the brief creation process.
You can directly analyze all competitors and their content strategy from the view listing all keyword clusters, or you can create a complete content brief from the view listing all keyword clusters.
If you enter the content brief generator, thruuu will guide you through the process of creating a complete brief. All of the information required by a content writer is available.
This powerful content outline builder allows you to browse your competitors and even create an outline in one click.
Here you can see the outline generated for the topic “Sales Pipeline”.
You can learn more about how to create a content brief with thruuu.
👉 Check this out: See the final brief created for the example. And you can share with your writer.
6. Craft Engaging and Informative Titles and Meta Descriptions
Defining a great title is part of the analyzing and content briefing process.
The best practice is to include your target keyword in your title and meta description.
This will tell to the readers that your page has the information they’re looking for.
You could also look at your competitors’ titles to see what common patterns, keywords, and verbs they use in their titles to get ideas.
But… Always try to find a unique angle.
If you run out of ideas, the thruuu content brief builder can help you generate titles.
Discover How to Create Perfect SEO Content Briefs
Checkout out complete guide to create content brief with thruuu
7. Incorporating Keywords in the Content
Here are ways you can use keywords strategically in your content:
- In the introduction to captivate readers.
- Use relevant keywords naturally throughout the body of the content.
- Optimize headings (H1s, H2s, H3s) to include relevant keywords,
- Leverage keywords in alt tags for images to improve accessibility and SEO
Keywords to include in your content must also be shared with your writer.
As we create keyword clusters, we already get a variation of similar keywords associated with each topic.
Don’t hesitate to share the related keywords with your writer and request that they incorporate them into the copy.
If you want to take it a step further, you can also identify the most frequently used words by articles competing for the same search.
thruuu will do this automatically by extracting key terms to mention and including them in the content brief.
8. Structuring URLs With Targeted Keywords for Search Engine Visibility
URLs explain to potential visitors what a web page is about.
As a result, they must be accurate, interesting, and well-structured. We won’t go into too much detail, but the URL must include your main keyword.
9. Write High-Quality Articles Consistently
To convert your keywords into compelling content, you must prioritize quality, especially as SEO becomes more competitive.
We will provide additional suggestions later to help you maintain quality.
However, before we proceed with the process of converting keywords into articles, we’d like to summarize what we’ve already explained and the key steps:
- Group your keywords into clusters: It will help you focus on the right topics and reduce some noise.
- Define a list of topics to focus on: Make realistic goals for content production based on your capabilities.
Then for each topic in your list:
- Analyze the competitors
- Create content brief
- Write comprehensive content
Continue this process until your initial list of keywords has been transformed into a blog full of articles.
Best Practices to Maintain Content Quality
Here are some best practices you can adopt to maintain content quality:
1. Maximizing Your SEO With Internal Linking
Internal links help users and search engine spiders navigate your website. If you use them well, internal links can send important page authority to important pages.
When you use a topic cluster content strategy, you will naturally end up discussing the same topic in different articles.
For example, in the article about “Sales Pipeline,” we might mention “Account management,” and we can naturally connect these concepts via a link. This also helps Google to make sense of your website through the connection of content.
2. Understanding The Risks and Penalties of Keyword Stuffing
Keyword stuffing involves excessively filling content with keywords to manipulate search engine rankings.
This can backfire by severely harming a website’s visibility and credibility.
So rather than engage in this practice, avoid it entirely and focus on creating high-quality content that naturally incorporates keywords.
By providing valuable information to users, you can enhance your reputation, improve search engine rankings, and effectively connect with your target audience.
This method ensures a sustainable and ethical SEO strategy that benefits users and you as a website owner.
3. Analyzing Competitors and Industry Leaders To Keep Your Content Up-to-Date
We recommend that you analyze your competitors regularly to see if they have added any new topics to their copy.
With thruuu, you can dig deep into the SERPs with its awesome SERP Analyzer and extract a wealth of on-page data to help you keep your content fresh.
4. Integrate Real-life expertise
To rank higher on Google, let your content show the creator’s first-hand experience with the subject matter. This helps prove authenticity and it aligns with Google E-E-A-T guidelines.
We wrote an article illustrating how to incorporate user-generated content into SEO, and our three tips are:
- Feature Users or Clients in Your Content
- Leverage Audience Comments on Social Media Platforms
- Analyze Questions Left on Blog Post Comments
But we let you continue reading here.
Having effective SEO content isn’t hard to achieve if you know how keyword optimization works.
As explained comprehensively in this article, all it takes is organizing your keywords based on topics and user intent, conducting thorough research, and creating a content brief.
This is the secret to creating and maintaining quality content that connects with your target audience.
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