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SEO Copywriting

Discussion in 'Copywriting' started by vgal, May 13, 2008.

  1. #1
    So, for any of you who have been professional SEO copywriters for a while... what do YOU say is best keyword density? I've read a lot, but it varies from 1-5%, and that is a pretty big difference to me.

    When the pieces are shorter, I personally think that aiming for anything over 2% is pushing it in terms of it being for the reader, and not just stuffed. I would like to help some clients understand this. I know I have more learning to do as well, but thought I would get your opinions.

    Speaking of learning, if there is anyone who would be interested in setting up some kind of coaching thing please let me know. Doesn't have to be a lot of time, or anything in concrete... just whatever we come up with. On the other hand, anyone have any professional social networks or anything with plenty of writers?

    I know I've came across networks that advertise about connecting and coaches etc... but I don't remember them. If I find the one I'm thinking of, I'll post it here for others as well.

    I'm not just starting, but I feel this would really help.

    Regards,
    V
     
    vgal, May 13, 2008 IP
  2. webgal

    webgal Peon

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    #2
    I've been doing SEO for over 3 years. But I'm not the type to over stuff with keywords. So I'm not a "specialist" in the sense that my only goal is to bring in traffic and nothing more. It has to convert. In other words, the best site is a balance of the two--good content and good keyword density. Good content and channel marketing. I think ten or greater keywords is a general rule but it's overkill for short pages. I guess I count sometimes but it's more kinesthetic and my best ideas have just developed during projects.

    There are many tricks of the trade that everyone knows. And then there are some I don't broadcast because I've just watched stats and websites for a while and have discovered some things. These don't seem to be widely known.

    What I do also goes beyond words on a page as well. For instance, when I create a website from scratch, I know which platforms will meet the needs of the client and their SEO wishes. For instance, which eCommerce software performs well and which menus look good and perform well as SEO menus and which ones are terrible. But then there are times a client only wants home, about us, contact us and who cares if that is searchable or not. So in that case, you choose the menu based on other criteria. So it's a case-by-case basis.

    You do have to define what you mean by SEO copywriter without giving away too much. I've thought about some kind of coaching but I stay so busy and I would want to have a good plan. It's also hard to teach to to different levels, too. In other words, you don't want to offer something and then have the participants know most of what you are presenting.

    I was thinking of offering an SEO tune-up sort of package that would include an assessment and a plan for clients. And from there the client chooses whether he/she wants to implement parts or all of the plan himself. However, it would be more than SEO since it travels best as part of a marketing plan, web development plan and marketing and/or PR strategy.
     
    webgal, May 13, 2008 IP
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  3. Trusted Writer

    Trusted Writer Banned

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    #3
    Beyond copywriters, it's more likely "SEO-gurus" those who talk about any given percentage as optimum keyword density level when it comes to any written content.

    I found an interesting reading on this topic right here, www.seochat.com/c/a/Choosing-Keywords-Help/Keyword-Density-Frequently-Asked-Questions

    As this site explains how keyword density is calculated, www.vdgraaf.info/the-optimum-keyword-density.html
     
    Trusted Writer, May 13, 2008 IP
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  4. vgal

    vgal Active Member

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    #4
    Thank you for the responses, and rep given to both.

    Webgal - I sent you a PM.

    Trusted Writer - Yes, I know what you mean about the SEO people being the ones who typically talk about that. However, if I'm writing for the web, I think it would be best to get a pretty firm grasp on what is best. I also believe that there are many webmasters (or should we call them website owners) who don't even realize there is such importance in SEO to be successful in the long run. Being able to advise them on aspects would only enhance your work for them, and many of them will appreciate your knowledge and willingness to share.
     
    vgal, May 13, 2008 IP
  5. geegel

    geegel Well-Known Member

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    #5
    I began my career as an SEO writer and I'm still passionate about it. From my experience, the keyword density isn't actually very important, 3 to 5 times in an article is usually enough. What matters is to put those keywords in the headline, sub headline and if possible in the URL. Another aspect that validates webgal's point of view from a rather different angle is the fact that relevant related keywords should be found as well. In the words of the SEO gurus this is called Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI), in my words it is called writing an informed article on the subject and not bothering with keyword stuffing.

    Hope this helps.

    Regards, George
     
    geegel, May 15, 2008 IP
  6. ruffneck119

    ruffneck119 Active Member

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    #6
    I find it easy to write real content for the readers and still maintain a good %1-%3 keyword density. It also depends on how long what you are writing is.

    -ruff
     
    ruffneck119, May 15, 2008 IP
  7. webgal

    webgal Peon

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    #7
    Got it and replied vgal. Thank you.

    Some great advice here. I call them long tail keywords and they just happen usually. And every once in a while I coin a phrase that I did not realize had occurred to someone else and then I have all the traffic because unbeknownst to the world, it was a search word. If you're up to your eyeballs in pure tethered focus, it just happens. I do look things up. But I don't approach it in a purely scientific manner.
     
    webgal, May 15, 2008 IP
  8. Michael

    Michael Raider

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    #8
    Keyword density is not something that professional SEOs are concerned about because they know that it is not a metric used by search engines.

    Not any gurus I know! In fact the opposite, if someone talks about the importance of LSI you can be pretty sure they don't know what LSI actually is, see the LSI Myth.

    - Michael

     
    Michael, May 15, 2008 IP
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  9. geegel

    geegel Well-Known Member

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    #9
    I've been away from this forum for too long. Thanks Michael. However I am pretty sure that Google does involve some sort of semantic analysis and I talk here out of personal experience.

    It's those long queries that send traffic although the keywords in it cannot be found 100% on your page. Some of the times this can be placed on the anchor text of the backlinks pointing to your page, other times it can't be placed anywhere. Of course this might very well be some sort of randomness in Google's behavior, but I like to think that the Google engine is better than that,

    Google does not throw dice :D.

    Regards, George
     
    geegel, May 15, 2008 IP
  10. chillingbreeze

    chillingbreeze Well-Known Member

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    #10
    Nice post V. Well, from my personal experience, I really don't believe in keyword stuffing. I have been an SEO copywriter and experimented with many things when it comes to SEO. Still, 1-2% works almost perfect. As we increase the keyword density, quality and crux of article tends to go down.

    In another experiment, I maintained NO keyword density. rather I used 5-8 different keywords appearing only once. Few of them were long tail keyphrases too. And to my wonder, it worked great. My site came up at those keywords (needless to say, without any keyword density). However, I won't deny that keyword density in SEO but not at the cost of quality. If you really want to please both search engines as well as readers, 1-2% keyword density is just great (IMO). Still, I am a firm believer of quality targeting few keywords rather than keyword density :)
     
    chillingbreeze, May 16, 2008 IP
  11. nettech

    nettech Peon

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    #11
    With regards to keyword density, I would suggest that you look at your competition by evaluating your top 5 competitors for a specific keyword.

    Don't forget that when people say, 5%, I'm assuming they mean 5% of the overall page content i.e. links, image ALT tags etc. and not just the percentage a keyword is present in each article otherwise you risk your site getting penalised for keyword stuffing.

    My general rule of thumb and I've being doing SEO now for over 5 years is to have an article of between 225-250 words with the most prominent keyword present in the first paragraph. Based on this technique and using latent semantic indexing (LSI) I've found this to work well. Also, it doesn't hurt to throw in another relevant keyword and link to it.

    As long as the copy is natural and not spammy and is also good page copy for your user then this is perfect. I don't really want to get down to elaborating on everything as I don't have the time but thats the basic gist of it. Its certainly worked for me and my clients.

    Hope it helps.

    Thanks
     
    nettech, May 16, 2008 IP
  12. Trusted Writer

    Trusted Writer Banned

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    #12
    A while back I was given a project with keyword density in mind... at least from the client's perspective wanting a nonsense phrase repeated in every single paragraph, which at a time had to be made of a short sentence.

    I believe this is an example that differentiates what Geegel says about Latent Semantic Indexing and keyword stuffing aimed to boost pageranks.
     
    Trusted Writer, May 17, 2008 IP
  13. SarahFolega

    SarahFolega Banned

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    #13
    I'm a freelance writer and I often get asked the same question. There is no recommended percentage that will help bring more traffic to the content. There is no point stuffing an article full of keywords, especially if they are unusual keywords, as all this does is make the article unreadable.

    I'm not saying keywords don't work as they do, but be careful when relying too heavily on getting a certain amount in your content. It is much better for you and your readers if you can supply them with regular and well written content.

    If you are a good writer or you hire a good writer, they should be able to write the article on your chosen subject without needing to see a list of keywords. In other words, the writing will flow and the related words fit in naturally.

    Sarah
     
    SarahFolega, May 17, 2008 IP
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  14. Trusted Writer

    Trusted Writer Banned

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    #14
    I absolutely agree with your point of view because if you, as client, are seeking for a good writer or a SEO copywriter, you should leave on his/her hands both keyword selection and frequency within such article :)
     
    Trusted Writer, May 17, 2008 IP
  15. Online Writer

    Online Writer Peon

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    #15
    I think if you want an article to sound fairly normal 2-3% is good. Any more than that and it becomes pretty obvious you are just keyword stuffing.
     
    Online Writer, May 18, 2008 IP
  16. webgal

    webgal Peon

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    #16
    I really find it takes a combination of things and finding that balance is not always completely scientific. Google changes their algorithms or something else and throws a wrench in the whole thing.

    I have found that if your content only has keyword density it may start to rank but it's hard to get conversions from it.
     
    webgal, May 18, 2008 IP