Today’s writing tip on the blog’s Facebook page was about SEO (search engine optimization). It occurred to me that I should tell you about this fast and easy way to boost your web writing income too.
Many writers are nervous about SEO, imagining that it’s something of a mystery. It’s not.
Boost your web writing income quickly, with a jolt of basic SEO
Why is a little SEO necessary for any and all web content? Simply put, so that people can find the content you put your energy into creating. And yes, you should optimize all the content you create, even if you’re creating that content for clients, and your client hasn’t asked for it.
Your clients may not know about SEO, but you should know a little, and it boosts your income, because you can charge extra for it.
Basic SEO: ten minutes of effort that gets results, and boosts your income too
A while back (at least a decade ago) I decided to optimize my “name” website, angelabooth.com to the max. Although it was a laudable aim, I managed around three pages. Here’s why. Each page took over an hour — heavy-duty SEO is time intensive, and this is good news, and bad news, if people hire you to write.
You need to factor your optimization time into your quote. Itemize it separately on your quote, and charge for it. Once you’re a little experienced with SEO, you can offer your clients a range of SEO services, from the basics (which you apply to all content), up to optional extras, such as various different kinds of off-site links.
Any writer can do “basic” SEO in less than ten minutes.
The basics include:
- SEO title (which can be different from the page headline);
- Page description;
- Page keywords (main keyword in specific places in the text);
- Image descriptions, which relate to the content, rather than the image itself, in ALT text;
- Internal links, and a couple of external links. (If you choose to get external links, CHARGE for these as well. You can charge $400 for a great link from a well-respected website, quite aside from what you’re charging to write the content, and basic SEO. Links are worth money; great links are worth a lot of money.)
SEO basics are all that most web pages you’ll write will need. If the client wants more, he can hire someone who specializes in optimization. And as we’ve said, once you know a little more SEO, you can opt to provide a range of services… expensive services, because competent SEO takes time.
Here’s a good post to get you started on SEO basics. Pay particular attention to local SEO:
Increasingly Google is serving results to users based on their location. This is particularly important to businesses out there in the real world who ned to catch a searcher’s attention just at the right moment, i.e. while walking down the street, on their mobile and looking for somewhere to eat.
Today, SEO is a basic requirement for competent web content writers
I manage a lot of content projects for my long-term clients. I have a group of writers with whom I work. You may think that it’s because these writers are wonderful word-spinners, but that’s not the total story. They’re good writers, yes, but they also understand SEO.
Here’s what I (and other people who hire Web writers) prize: they know basic SEO, and can apply it. Today, it’s useless to hire web content writers, no matter how excellent they might be in other ways, if they can’t provide basic SEO.
Consider this. If you farm out 70 pages of content to several writers, and none of those writers can do basic SEO, that translates to 700 minutes which someone has to spend, optimizing those pages. (Estimating ten minutes per page.) That’s at least 12 hours of additional work someone needs to do, which the web writers could easily have done before they delivered the content.
Believe it or not, SEO can be fun, because you (and your client) will see results quickly. And — at the time of writing anyway — most web content writers who aren’t professionals aren’t familiar with SEO. You can stand out from the crowd very easily, when you get results for your clients.
Start by optimizing the content on your own website, for practice — basic SEO is the easiest way to boost your web writing income quickly
You have a website/ blog. Start by optimizing (just with SEO basics) your own content.
Once you’ve done that you’ll have a grasp of SEO basics, and will be able to apply it to clients’ web content.
To repeat — itemize SEO on the quote you give your clients, and charge for it. Your clients will see results for their content, so they’ll hire you again.
A tip: check to make sure that the web content has been indexed, and appears in Google’s index after it has been posted online. If it doesn’t appear in a Google search within three days, set up a Google+ account, and link to the content from that account. Google indexes content on Google+ almost in real time.
Have fun… SEO is a simple way to get better results for your clients, and better results for your wallet too.
Resources to build your writing career
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