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Optimise Your Site For The Web Using Freelance Copywriters

Good freelance copywriters are able to use words in such a way as to enhance your website’s positioning on the search-engine listings. They should be able to integrate your key-word links smoothly, within the body of your text and as part of linked headings.

What's in a Word?

Keywords are the magnets that draw the traffic to your site. Popular search terms are entered and sites with matching copy are found. If you optimise your website for popular search terms you will benefit from more search-engine attention, but you may also be competing with more people.

You should aim for an overall keyword density of around 2 to 5%. If you exceed this, the webspiders that trawl the internet will consider your website to be Spam and will discount you.

So remember…

  1. Short sentences
  2. Clear message
  3. Key-word density at 2-5%

Wordtracker.com provides an excellent keyword service; giving you keyword analysis and statistics detailing search-term popularity, keyword competition and the overall effectiveness of the keywords you wish to use.

Split. Things. Up

There is more to a good website than design. Your web copy should be clear, easy to read and well broken-up. Readers tend to skip through longer sentences. Reading from a screen is far more demanding than reading from print media and your web copy structure should reflect this. You need to everything you can to help keep your readers’ attention, and that means splitting things up. Use every tool at your disposal to keep elements separate, and easy to read.

  1. Use short paragraphs;
  2. Use headings to mark changes in subject;
  3. Use bullet points and lists — don’t go overboard, avoid using more than 9 items at a time;
  4. If you have a major change of topic, consider breaking the text into two separate pages;
  5. Indent quotes and citations to keep them separate from the main body of the text;
  6. Add images or diagrams. But only where they complement or enhance the content.
The ‘F’ shape

A strange, but well documented phenomenon; the ‘f’ shape refers to the way a reader scans your page. The reader’s eye wanders about your page in a set pattern. This should be taken into consideration when designing the web copy layout.

Jakob Nielsen’s article The F-Shaped Pattern For Reading Web Content describes this in more detail.

Master your links

Links can be very useful when optimising your website — they let you give your readers information beyond what is contained in the text; keeping your pages short and to the point. Read on to see how to get your links to work for you!

  1. Link to sources of more information — this allows you to introduce unfamiliar concepts without needing to interrupt the flow of your pages. Only those readers who actually want the extra information need follow the link.
  2. Don’t be afraid to link to other sites — it is a good way of establishing your readers’ trust by showing them that you’re not just trying to keep them on your website.
  3. Show people your references — this lets people know that you’ve done your research, and proves that you’re knowledgeable about the subject. There’s no reason to spend time and effort writing something again if somebody has said it better before.

Write descriptive links. Never just say ‘click here’; actually tell people what’s at the other end of the link. This lets people decide whether they want to follow it or not.

For example:

    Read my article, Striking the Right Tone , for more information.

Is better than:

    Click here to read my article about striking the right tone.

Writing links in this way is better for your SEO too. It means that you can fill your link titles with keywords, which will benefit both your page, and the page that is being linked. Web crawlers such as Googlebot are very fond of text links, so you should use them as much as possible.

For the same reason, you should never be tempted to use images as links, as you lose many of the SEO benefits this way. This can be partially alleviated by using the image’s tags, but they are still no substitute for good old-fashioned text links. Generally speaking, they look better and are easier to use as well.

George Chilton and Sam Roberts are experienced Web SEO and Advertising Copywriters, with over 14 years writing experience. In 2005 they co-founded Herds of Words - Freelance Copywriters and they have never looked back. They can be contacted at info@herdsofwords.co.uk

Or come join the herd at Herds of Words - Freelance Copywriters .

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