RSS LinkedIn Google Plus

Call us: 0800 014 9884

SEO copywriting: Whats changed since 2006?

SEO copywriting Manchester
My SEO career began in the summer of 2006. I spent 15 months writing news content for a range of clients, working to boost their performance on search engine results pages (SERPs). Then I took time out to get my NCTJ qualifications before returning to copywriting in 2009 at theEword.

So three years on, has anything changed in SEO copywriting?

Google, SERPs and keywords – a familiar story

On the surface, not much. In 2006, the big story in SEO was Google’s growing dominance of the search market. Fast-forward to 2009 and the company has continued to take over – it accounts for 65 per cent of US searches and more than 90 per cent of the UK market.

Indeed, many clients are still asking for the same thing they did back in 2006 – page one on Google. As the old saying goes, first is first and second is nowhere.

Keywords also remain an integral part of SEO. Long gone are the old Fleet Street days where writers and sub-editors got back-slaps for peppering their stories with witticisms. Until search engines develop a sense of humour, targeted keywords are vital.

Plenty of similarities then, but are there any differences?

Realism, keyword stuffing and conversions – the evolution of SEO

The truth is that SEO has grown up. Three years ago, a lot of clients attached wild expectations to their campaigns. It was seen as a quick fix, a silver bullet, a sure-fire way of turning round their business overnight. Now I detect a lot more realism – companies recognise SEO is an ongoing process and a long-term investment. What worked last year may not work this year and clients are willing to engage in the creative process rather than tearing their hair out whenever rankings fluctuate.

Related to this is the fact that keyword stuffing has become less common. In 2006, some industry experts still thought cramming copy with keywords was enough to reach number one. Now we know there is much more to it – the content must be readable, titles have to be clean and embedded hyperlinks should encourage browsers and spiders to explore the site.

Finally, there’s a more holistic approach to marketing on the web today. The theory that SEO is just about tricking Google has been debunked and there is a renewed emphasis on measuring success by quality of click-throughs, not quantity. Focusing on conversions means you need to be more creative in content – after all, Google spiders don’t buy products or register email addresses. Blogs, social networking groups, tweets and video landing pages are all increasingly popular and demonstrate that modern SEO copywriting is about more than just keyword-heavy news stories.

So what does the future hold?

Bing, Microsoft and Yahoo – SEO copywriting marches on

The only honest answer is that it’s impossible to know. SEO copywriting has subtly but noticeably evolved over the last three years and it’s a safe bet that it will continue to adapt to the increasing sophistication of web users and search engines.

On the search engine front, for example, this summer has already seen the introduction of Microsoft’s Bing and a technology-sharing deal between Microsoft and Yahoo. Even time-honoured constants like Google’s dominance of search suddenly look less certain. SEO is a dynamic industry and copywriters must always be ready to adapt to the unexpected.

Richard Frost

Written by Richard Frost

Google to devalue doorway pages Tuesday 17th of March, 2015by Andy Williams Google is taking aim at websites using large, well-established doorway campaigns to rank highly in search results by altering its search engine algorithm.

More on this story »

Google: mobile algorithm bigger than Panda and Penguin Wednesday 18th of March, 2015by Dan Moores At SMX Munich, a Google representative said that the upcoming "mobile-friendliness" algorithm will have a bigger impact on search results than the Panda or Penguin updates.

More on this story »

Yahoo urges Firefox users to switch from Google Wednesday 25th of March, 2015by Dan Moores Firefox users who have manually set Google as their default search engine are now confronted with the following message: "Yahoo is the preferred search engine for Firefox. Switch now."

More on this story »
theEword - 1 hour ago

Can you see yourself working here? http://t.co/pRR14vIXB1 If so, good news. We're #hiring http://t.co/evXMB6q2LT #Manchester #jobs

Reply Retweet Favourite
theEword - 18 hours ago

Good with a wand? We're looking for a Client Strategy Director to help us work our magic http://t.co/cgnGTglHBl #jobs http://t.co/Giw0RzK42P

Reply Retweet Favourite
theEword - 1 day ago

Hello. Is it a #PPC Exec role you're looking for? http://t.co/a1KqQmF0Cy #Manchester #digitaljobs http://t.co/GtnOrhSzxP

Reply Retweet Favourite
theEword - 2 days ago

Is your website ready for Google's #mobile algorithm update? Test it here http://t.co/eGRPq4CHmv http://t.co/rqNWlBG0yt

Reply Retweet Favourite

5 common digital marketing myths dismissed Friday 6th of March, 2015by Andy Williams Find out the real purpose behind onsite content and why link building is still vital. Here we explain the five biggest myths that surround digital marketing.

More on this story »

Content and the Customer: the journey Friday 6th of March, 2015by Sian English From acquisition to conversion, content plays a vital role. But have you given much thought to how that role evolves during the customer's journey? Here are the different stages your customers go through with your content.

More on this story »

Light a Fire with Hems de Winter Thursday 19th of March, 2015by Andy Williams Hems de Winter, CEO of de Winter PR, joined Light a Fire for an in-depth chat at BoConcept’s showroom on Great Ancoats Street, discussing his life and career.

More on this story »

Who loves theEword

Who loves theEword Who loves theEword