How to Write High-Quality Content Optimized to Rank

Last updated: Jun 5, 2023

This video by Semrush offers guidance on writing high-quality content that is optimized to rank on search engines, including determining your audience, conducting keyword research, and building topical authority.

The video is about how to write high-quality content that is optimized to rank on search engine results pages or SERPs.

The strategy is called content-led SEO, which involves creating helpful content that can drive traffic from search engines, rank for keywords, build topical authority, and improve internal linking.

The video covers six steps needed to lead with SEO when creating content, including determining your audience, conducting keyword research, creating a content plan, optimizing your content, promoting your content, and measuring your success.

The video also defines key terms related to content and SEO, such as keywords, topics, and topical authority.

  • Content-led SEO involves writing high-quality copy that is helpful and optimized to rank on search engine results pages.
  • Building topical authority through carefully chosen content is important.
  • Keywords are words or phrases used to find results, while topics are a more ambitious form of a keyword.
  • Developing and organizing related content pieces together demonstrates knowledge on a topic.
  • Determining the audience and conducting keyword research are crucial for content-led SEO.
  • Intent tells you the search intents for the keyword, such as informational, navigational, commercial, or transactional.
  • Grouping content into topic clusters is necessary for building authority, improving internal linking, and avoiding duplicate content.
  • Commercial and transactional keywords are at the bottom of the funnel, while middle of the funnel keywords are used in the consideration stage, and top of the funnel keywords are for people who are still learning about the topic.
  • Creating content to encourage repeat purchases and building customer loyalty is important.

How to Write High-Quality Content Optimized to Rank - YouTube

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What is Content-led SEO?

  • Writing high-quality copy that is helpful and optimized to rank on search engine results pages.
  • Building topical authority through carefully chosen content.
  • Keywords are words or phrases you type in a search engine to find results.
  • Topics are a more ambitious form of a keyword.
  • Developing and organizing related content pieces together to demonstrate the search engines that your brand is knowledgeable on this area.
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How to Lead with SEO when Creating Content

  • The goals of content-led SEO include creating helpful content that can drive traffic from search engines, rank for keywords, build topical authority, and improve internal linking.
  • Determine your audience by conducting audience research to determine who is the right audience for your content.
  • Conduct keyword research to identify what people search for when looking for a solution.
  • Use keyword research tools like SEMrush to find keywords with decent monthly search volume.
  • Use hyperlinks to show the relationship between each content space.
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How to Conduct Keyword Research

  • Identify what people search for when looking for a solution.
  • Use keyword research tools like SEMrush to find keywords with decent monthly search volume.
  • Use the keyword magic tool to see if a keyword has a decent monthly search volume.
  • Use the keyword overview section to find related keywords and filter by country.
  • Consider the keyword difficulty to determine how difficult it will be to rank for a keyword.
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How to Write High-Quality Content Optimized to Rank - YouTube

How to Build Topical Authority

  • Develop and organize related content pieces together to demonstrate the search engines that your brand is knowledgeable on this area.
  • Use hyperlinks to show the relationship between each content space.
  • Conduct research to find other words related to the main topic.
  • Use social media listening to observe and study discussions on social media related to your company sector and topics linked to your company.
  • Provide extensive information on the topic to improve topical authority.
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Determining Your Audience and Keyword Intent

  • The higher the percentage of a keyword, the more unlikely you'll be to rank for it.
  • Intent tells you the search intents for the keyword.
  • An informational keyword means the user is either at the top or middle of the funnel and they are setting for information or constructing a decision.
  • A navigational keyword means the user is looking for a particular product or website they already know about.
  • A commercial keyword happens in the consideration stage right before the user is ready to make a purchase and needs help deciding.
  • A transactional keyword is a money keyword the user is ready to make a purchase and has narrowed their options.
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Conducting Keyword Research

  • Trends show how such volume changes over time.
  • If you run a small website or don't have a lot of existing content around the topic, find a similar keyword with the same intent but with less competition.
  • Looking at the keyword information, you will notice that the question section shows keywords within this difficulty.
  • Use competitors and see what people search for around these brands.
  • Use the SEMrush keyword Gap tool to compare competitors.
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Building Topical Authority

  • Decide on what type of keywords you want to be targeting.
  • Export commercial keywords, high volume keywords, or keywords with less difficulty.
  • Filter the results by word of first to narrow the list of keywords and make it easier to choose a topic.
  • Cluster your keywords and group them with such.
  • Use a keyword list to keep track of your keywords.
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Encouraging Repeat Purchases and Building Customer Loyalty

  • Create content to encourage repeat purchases, help your customers get the best out of your product, and solve the issues they may encounter.
  • Examples would be mountain bike gear, bike problems, and mountain bike troubleshooting.
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Topic Clusters

  • Keyword placement is no longer enough to rank competitively on search engines.
  • Grouping content into topic clusters is necessary.
  • Benefits of clustering include building authority, improving internal linking, providing content for users, avoiding duplicate content, and securing the topic cluster.
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Commercial and Transactional Keywords

  • Commercial and transactional keywords are at the bottom of the funnel.
  • Examples of commercial keywords include discount codes, products pages, and pricing pages.
  • Examples of transactional keywords include location-based services and service-based businesses.
  • Money pages should include keywords related to the business's products or services.
  • Money pages should also include keywords related to the business's location.
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Middle of the Funnel Keywords

  • Full keywords are used in the consideration stage.
  • Examples of middle of the funnel keywords include downloadable offers, competitor pages, and personalized landing pages.
  • Personalized landing pages can be used for project management or education.
  • Be careful to avoid keyword cannibalization by grouping related keywords with similar search intents together.
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Top of the Funnel Keywords

  • Top of the funnel keywords are for people who are still learning about the topic.
  • Examples of top of the funnel keywords include beginner-friendly content, tips, strategies, mistakes, business keywords, and checklists.
  • Export keyword research into an Excel spreadsheet to determine how many pieces of content are needed to rank for a specific keyword.
  • Search for top keywords to see if it's possible to rank all related keywords with one page or if different content is needed.
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Optimizing Content for Multiple Keywords

  • Group similar keywords together to rank them with the same page.
  • Mention the keywords in subheadings and use related entities in the content.
  • Build backlinks using the keywords as anchor text.
  • AI content writing tools require separate pieces of content.
  • Write the cluster first and the tofu keyword last.
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Creating a Content Outline

  • Use a content brief to guide your writing.
  • Include meta information like meta description and page title.
  • Word count should be based on the content outline and top-ranking content.
  • Break down the content outline into H1, H2, H3, and H4 subheadings.
  • Use subheadings to provide context for the primary keyword.
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Automating Content Brief Creation

  • Use SEMrush's SEO content template to generate a detailed content brief.
  • The brief includes competitor analysis, semantic entity recommendations, and readability scores.
  • Use the SEO writing assistant to optimize your content for search engines.
  • Create your content outline with empathy for the reader in mind.
  • Review competing content for recurring subheadings to add to your brief.
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Telling a Compelling Story with Your Content

  • Use the skyscraper technique to go deeper with more context and helpful information.
  • Provide actionable tips for the reader to implement on their own.
  • Make sure your content outline tells a story and provides context for your working topic.
  • Use H2 to provide context and H3 to go into details.
  • Avoid regurgitating existing content and add value with your own unique perspective.
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Writing High-Quality Content Optimized to Rank

  • Use SC optimized content to create a compelling argument and appeal to readers.
  • Write a compelling headline that entices the reader to click.
  • Add secondary keywords in H2 and H3 subheadings to help you rank for more keywords.
  • Break text with images, sentence variety, and bullet points.
  • Use thematic entities as anchor text to link internally to relevant content.
  • Check your text for plagiarism with the originality feature and use the refresher to rewrite plagiarized sentences.
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Optimizing Your Content

  • Copy and paste the content into SEMrush Writing Assistance to check readability and SEO.
  • Self-edit ruthlessly, rewrite unclear sentences, and ensure every paragraph has flow.
  • Look for grammatical errors and ambiguous words that require a dictionary.
  • Read the text out loud to check for sentence length and clarity.
  • Add all the meta elements and look for words or phrases to use as anchor text to link to existing content.
  • Link to reputable websites and share statistics from non-competing websites or editorial sources.

Watch the video on YouTube:
How to Write High-Quality Content Optimized to Rank - YouTube

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