Over the past few years, we’ve grown the Ahrefs blog from ~5,000 to ~317,000 monthly search visits.
Ahrefs blog traffic, via Google Search Console
How did we do it?
Essentially, we’ve found a content creation method that blends good SEO fundamentals with sound copywriting principles. So not only does our content rank high on Google, but it also encourages our readers to read, link to, share and, later on, purchase our product.
Of course, we cannot solely attribute the traffic growth to our process. But we think it’s a part of the explanation.
In this post, I’ll share the SEO copywriting tips we’ve implemented in our content writing process.
But first, let’s define exactly what SEO copywriting is.
What is SEO copywriting?
SEO copywriting is the process of writing content for search engines and users. It’s where you craft content to rank on Google that searchers want to read, link to, and share.
After all, content that gets tons of traffic from Google but never gets read is useless. The same goes for content that is incredibly compelling but never gets any traffic.
Now that we’ve understood what SEO copywriting is, let’s get into the actionable tips that you can implement.
1. Match search intent
At 388,000 monthly searches in the U.S., the term “basketball shoes” looks like a good keyword to write a blog post about—if you own a basketball blog.
Search volume for the keyword, "basketball shoes"
But you’d be mistaken.
If we look at the SERPs for “basketball shoes,” we’ll see the results are mostly e-commerce category pages from online retailers:
SERP for "basketball shoes"
Google understands that searchers are in buying mode, not learning mode. So it ranks category pages over blog posts.
And this is the first tip: create the right kind of content for the keyword you’re targeting. Fail to do that, and ranking will be an uphill battle.
In the SEO world, this concept is known as search intent, i.e., the why behind a search query. To analyze search intent, we can simply look at the top-ranking pages to figure out the three Cs of search intent.
What type of content is Google mostly ranking? Typically, the types are blog posts, product pages, category pages, landing pages, or videos.
For example, the search results for “wireless whatsapp number list headphones” are all e-commerce category pages. And for “best wireless headphones,” they’re mostly blog posts.
SERP for "wireless headphones"
SERP for “wireless headphones.”
SERP for "best wireless headphones"
SERP for “best wireless headphones.”
Content format applies mostly to informational content. Example formats include how-tos, listicles, news articles, opinion pieces, and reviews.
For example, when you Google “date ideas,” you’ll see that they’re all lists:
SERP for "date ideas"
This is the main selling point of the content. Typically, you’ll be able to see a dominant angle on the SERPs.
For example, the top results for “how to make egg fried rice” want the process to be easy: