Content optimization guide for SEO to rank better and perform better.

Content Optimization for SEO: A 9-Step Guide

Content optimization guide for SEO to rank better and perform better.
Diana Aghumyan Diana Aghumyan
Table of Contents

It does not matter whether you own a small or a large business. You should know that brand marketing is of the highest priority. Successful marketing brings more customers and leads to more conversions and profits.

You probably also know that content is king and an integral part of marketing. If you don’t create quality content optimized for search engines, it won’t be visible to larger audiences, and you won’t be able to grow your business.

So, all your efforts will go in vain.

In fact, 72% of marketers are producing significantly more content than they did a year ago. However, people are not looking for more content. They are searching for content that gives value and clear answers to their questions. Thus, marketers’ goal should be to help people who are looking for particular information.

If you wonder how to make your content as effective as possible, read our guide about content optimization for SEO.

In today’s article, you will learn what optimized content is, why it matters, and how to write SEO friendly blog posts.

So, keep reading!

What is Content Optimization?

Content optimization is about making sure that your content reaches its target audience, appears on the first pages of SERPs, and turns leads into conversions.

You can perform basic but proven methods to achieve this. However, you need to take content optimization quite seriously. It is not a one-time task to complete. Instead, you need to allocate enough time, effort, and resources on a regular basis to create and maintain your content and make sure it is relevant and up-to-date for your target audience.

Why Is Content Optimization Important for SEO?

Suppose you have written a top-notch article about your core product/service, and you want to get as many eyes on it as possible. You monitor the performance of your article and find out that it has not achieved its goal.

This can cause a lot of frustration and disappointment. However, you should understand the roots of the existing problem to be able to solve it.

Below are some reasons why your content does not receive the right amount of attention.

  • You have keywords with little or no search volume
  • You did not cover a certain topic in a detailed way
  • You lack a proper heading structure, so Google could not understand what your article is about
  • Your title tag is misleading

To avoid this, we’ve put together a few helpful tips to keep you on the right content optimization path and make sure your content marketing strategy is successful. Effective digital content planning is crucial in this process, as it helps you strategically outline and schedule your content to meet your marketing goals.

A Step-By-Step Guide On Content Optimization for SEO

Publishing content on a regular basis is cool, but have you thought about making it more friendly for search engines?

If not, then it is high time, as it would be a pity to write a useful piece of content that remains unnoticed by search engines. Consulting with experts in digital marketing is one way you can get help in creating relevant and engaging content. However, you also need to optimize this content for SEO.

Below, you can find a list of essential steps to follow when SEO optimizing your content.

Do Keyword Research

Keyword research is an important process during which people research popular search terms people look for when using search engines like Google and use them strategically in their content so that their content ranks high on the SERPs.

So, before writing any piece of content, make sure to do your research to find keywords that are likely to make your content visible on search engines.

To get started with your keyword research.

  • Start with parent topics. Make a list of general keywords you want to rank for. For instance, if your site is about fitness, your parent topic would be fitness, exercise, wellness, nutrition, and so on.
  • Define the terms and phrases your target audience might type into the search bar to find information, products, or services. If you have an online pet store, your target audience might use phrases like “pet toys for dogs” and “best cat food brands.”
  • Identify the search intent. Learn if the search intent is navigational, informational, commercial, or transactional. If people are searching for “what is digital marketing”, their search intent is informational, whereas if they are looking for a specific page, like “Facebook login”, their search intent is navigational.
  • Assess the strength of your keywords. Look for keywords that have low keyword difficulty and higher global traffic. This way, you can outrank your competitors.

To streamline this process, you can use relevant SEO content optimization tools. At SayNine, we use Ahref’s keyword research tool.

The tool provides useful insights into keyword data and competitor analysis. You can easily identify high-value keywords related to your industry and niche and optimize your site content for improved search engine rankings.

You can analyze keyword difficulty by looking at the difficulty score provided by Ahrefs. This helps people to focus on keywords that are attainable and easy to rank for.

Analyzing the keyword "email marketing tools" on Ahrefs to see its keyword difficulty.

Additionally, Ahrefs helps to find valuable long-tail keywords that can target a more narrow audience.

Finding long-tail keywords on Ahrefs with their metrics.

Moreover, the tool enables people to analyze the top-ranking keywords of your competitors. This valuable information can show you the gaps in your content strategy and let you find opportunities to outrank competitors.

Finding organic keywords on Ahrefs with their metrics.

Overall, the tool is great if you are just getting started. All you need is to sign up for an Ahrefs account and start using their keyword research tool. Its user-friendly interface can help you easily get started with your keyword research.

However, there are other SEO content optimization tools worth trying. Among them are Semrush and Moz.

Avoid Keyword Stuffing

Keyword stuffing is a common issue that should be avoided for better SEO results. It happens when creators excessively and unnaturally use the same keyword throughout their content to manipulate search engine rankings.

However, Google easily detects such cases and penalizes such practices. So, you’d better create valuable and relevant content that meets your target audience’s needs and interests.

Wondering how to avoid keyword stuffing? The best way to do this is to keep the optimal balance between targeting relevant keywords and maintaining natural, easy-to-read content.

Ensure Your Writing is Easy to Read

Most people don’t read everything they see on the web pages. Instead, they skim through the main points and focus on the most important ones.

Below you can find some actionable ways to make your content more engaging and easier to read:

  • Avoid using fluff – Lengthy sentences and words like “very” and “just” can badly affect the readability of your copy. Before publishing your post, use Grammarly to identify such errors.
  • Use visuals – A bunch of text can overwhelm readers. Instead, use short paragraphs, break down your text with bullet points, and add visually appealing images to make your articles more reader-friendly.
  • Include a “Table of contents” in lengthy articles – It offers easy navigation and lets the readers know what topics you have covered.
  • Emphasize important information – A well-optimized blog post always highlights valuable information. Don’t make readers look for key points in your article for a long time! Instead, discuss your best ideas at the top. Leave the secondary information at the bottom.

Optimize Meta Tags

Meta descriptions briefly describe the web page’s content and present that short information to users in the search results. 

Meta tags, on the other hand, are part of your site’s HTML code. They enable search engines like Google to understand information about your site.

Below are a few tips to keep in mind when writing meta tags and meta descriptions:

  • Ensure that your web page matches what the user is looking for from your meta tag and meta description alone.
  • Keep your meta titles and descriptions short. Your meta tags should be around 50-60 characters, whereas meta descriptions should be about 150-160 characters.
  • Make sure to include your focus keyword in your meta title and meta description.

Last but not least, make sure you don’t have duplicate meta descriptions. This happens when two or more web pages share the same or similar meta descriptions. While you may think it is not a big deal, it can badly affect your SEO efforts.

From an SEO perspective, duplicate meta descriptions can become a huge problem, as search engines won’t be able to implement their crawler’s ability to understand and differentiate your web pages.

Create Content Worth Linking To

Another great way to optimize your content for SEO is to create content that earns relevant backlinks from other websites. The more useful content you create, the better your backlink profile will be on Ahrefs.

Consequently, your content will rank high on search engines, as backlinks signal to Google that your content is a trustworthy source of information.

Checking the Backlink profile of a website on Ahrefs.

Thus, if you want to rank high on the SERPs, you’ll need to gain links from authoritative and relevant websites.

It is also important to take care of the health of your backlink profile. With Ahrefs, you can conduct regular backlink monitoring to ensure there are no harmful links pointing to your site. No matter how useful and informative your content is. If there are spammy links directing to your website, your rankings will drop, and your online reputation will suffer a lot.

Use Visuals

Visuals are proven to have a long-lasting effect on people. In fact, 90% of information our brain gets is visual. So, it should be no surprise why marketers use visuals to boost user engagement with a piece of content. Engaging visuals make visitors stay longer on your website and pay more attention to what you have written.

To enrich your content with visuals, make sure to:

  • Use relevant infographics
  • Add videos using a free video editor
  • Use bars, charts, graphs, and other visuals to explain complex information.

Don’t Forget About Internal Linking

Internal linking is one of the most important SEO strategies. It allows search engines to find and rank your pages more easily.

Besides, it enables people to navigate more efficiently on your website. This, undoubtedly, increases user experience and engagement.

So, every time you write a new piece of content, make a list of related content you have already created. For instance, if you already have a blog post about starting a healthy lifestyle, it would be a good idea to link to it from your piece on healthy recipes or some exercises.

Provide Readers With In-Depth Analysis

If you want your content to rank high on the SERPs and drive more conversions, you need to give value to your users. This is possible only through writing well-researched articles where you provide readers with in-depth analysis of a particular topic.

Besides, informative content not only improves search engine rankings but also helps you establish your authority in the industry. When people find your articles valuable and trustworthy, they are more likely to recommend your articles to other people.

To achieve this, learn your target audience’s needs and interests, and craft content that addresses their pain points and answers their questions in a detailed way. Make sure to use relevant keywords, add internal links, and optimize your meta titles and descriptions.

Remember that for a successful content creation you need to consistently deliver high-quality and well-researched articles that resonate with your audience on a deeper level.

Regularly Update Your Content

Finally, don’t neglect your existing content after it’s published. You will need to frequently review and update your content to keep a hold on your rankings.

Especially if your article discusses a fast-moving topic where trends often evolve fast. You need to always double check information and replace old content with fresh data.

If you don’t update your content, outdated information can mislead your readers and harm your reputation. Besides, search engines prefer fresh and up-to-date content, so ignoring updates could lead to a decrease in your search rankings, causing your efforts to go unnoticed by potential readers.


As you can see, SEO content management takes time and effort. You cannot just write an article and hope that one day it will appear on the first page of Google. If you want your content to have better rankings, you will need to employ different content optimization strategies, from keyword research to writing proper meta descriptions and updating your content on a regular basis.

We do hope that this article provided you with the basics of content optimization for SEO and inspired you to take a proactive approach to improve your website’s search engine rankings.

Thanks for reading!

FAQ about content optimization for SEO

Is it essential to regularly update content for SEO purposes?

Yes, it is highly important to update content for SEO purposes on a regular basis. Search engines prefer fresh and relevant content, and regularly updating your site with blog posts signals to search engines that your website is a valuable source of information for users.

Should I focus on creating evergreen content or trending topics for SEO optimization?

Both evergreen and trending topics are crucial for SEO. Evergreen content remains important over time, bringing steady traffic and a strong website base while trending topics grab immediate attention but lose their importance fast.

Does content length matter for SEO optimization?

Content length can influence SEO optimization, but it’s not the only factor. Longer content does not always provide the comprehensive information users are looking for. Therefore, it should also be of high quality and relevant.

How can internal linking contribute to content optimization for SEO?

Internal linking helps search engines discover and index your content more effectively. This improves your website visibility.

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