If you’re trying to improve your search engine optimization (SEO), you need to be constantly publishing high-quality content on your website. And, to get the best results, one of the most useful content writing tips is to plan a lot of your content in advance.

In this article, we’re going to outline how you can create a content plan that will maximize your SEO efforts. Let’s dive in!

Table of contents

Start by carrying out a content audit

Before refocusing on content creation, to start, you need to assess the content that’s already on your website. This can help you figure out what’s working well, scrap any existing content that’s detrimental to your SEO, and update any content that has become outdated.

Here are some tips for conducting an effective content audit. For a more detailed look, take a look at SEMrush’s step-by-step content audit guide.

  • Define your goals: Before diving into your content strategy, figure out what you want to achieve. Are you trying to boost your SEO? Increase your engagement? View your previous content through this lens.
  • Create a content inventory: Next, start taking an inventory of your website content including blog posts, videos, guides, or whatever you’re looking at.
  • Collect and analyze data: Then, it could be helpful to use a tool like the SEMrush content audit tool that can give you information on social shares, backlinks, content length, and more.
  • Make a plan: Once you’ve seen the data, decide what you want to do with it! You might find that some of your articles need more backlinks, more target keywords, upgraded CTAs, or added visuals. Then, adjust your content plan accordingly.
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Set your goals

Before planning out or writing content, you need to set clear goals. You might want to promote a specific product line, help your site to rank for different keywords, or provide yourself with more opportunities for internal links.

When setting your SEO goals, think about what you saw in your content audit and what is going to be the most feasible. You might have SEO goals in mind initially such as focusing on your target audience but, when looking into your content, you might spot some easier wins.

If you have assessed that you need more backlinks, better keywords, or updated information, now is the time to implement that.

If you are having a hard time visualising your goals or you find that you are not experienced enough in the world of SEO to know which goals are best suited to your business, it might be best to work with an agency specialised in SEO to help you with this process.

Carry out some keyword research for inspiration

Once you’ve carried out your audit and set your goals, it’s time to conduct some keyword research. This is when you use specialist tools to identify which words and phrases people type into search engines when they’re researching a particular topic.

When Google sees that you’re creating content based on what people are searching for, it will be likely to give you a boost on search results pages (SERPs). Let’s break down how you can find keywords through your own research.

Start with a tool like Google Keyword Planner. Plug in topics related to your business or niche and the tool will provide you with a series of topics based on their level of competition — or how hard they’ll be to rank for — and how many searches they receive a month. You can then use this information to decide what you’re going to write about.

Choose a handful of content types to focus on

There are so many different types of content you could create, but as a content writer, it’s worth focusing on a handful of formats, at least a first. Prioritize quality over quantity and concentrate on content types you’re confident you can create to a very high standard. Let’s break down some of the most popular types of content that can boost your SEO.

Buying guides and comparison pieces

If you can help your customers and site visitors make more informed purchases, not only will they be happier, but you can boost your rankings on the SERPs as well.

If you outline the pros and cons of different products, you can help more people to find you, prove that you’re an expert in your field, and boost your SEO.

To provide you with some inspiration for your own buying guides and comparison pieces, let’s take a look at a strong example from Best Nursing Programs.

For instance, they have a comparison piece on the best direct entry Master’s of Science in Nursing programs. In this piece, the company has outlined the best programs based on price, program length, and more. They’ve provided all of the information someone might need to pursue the next step in their healthcare career and have made their article very easy to scan so people can find the information they need quickly and easily.

This is an SEO-friendly comparison piece because it’s very comprehensive and satisfies a need that people have. Anyone looking for the next step to take in their nursing education would benefit from their content.

How-to guides

How-to guides and tutorials offer another great way to show off your expertise, boosting your SEO in the process. Additionally, if your how-to guides are thorough and genuinely helpful, people will want to link to them as authoritative sources or further reading, building your backlink profile.

Backlinko shows just how effective how-to guides can be in their tutorial on learning SEO quickly!

Backlinko is a company that specializes in digital marketing and, by creating a series of guides like this (they have similar guides on copywriting [SEO copywriting], backlink building, and more), they show Google and other search engines that they’re an authority in their field.

This guide covers everything someone would want to know on the subject. Plus, it’s shareable and authoritative because everyone, from beginners to experts, can learn something from it. If you have a lot of knowledge on a particular topic, creating guides like this is a great way to boost your SEO.

Video content

Did you know that 85% of internet users watch video content every month (Oberlo)? You can tap into this audience by creating your own videos. Video content is great for boosting your SEO because it’s informative, shareable, and targets a different audience that might not be interested in longer blog posts.

Moz, another digital marketing company, focuses on boosting its SEO with video content. This particular video is about creating high-quality links.

Video is a great medium for creating helpful, compelling content because it can attract an audience that likes to learn visually, rather than through reading written guides. By breaking down their expertise in both blog and video form, Moz is able to showcase their expertise in a variety of ways. Consider using this strategy when writing your own content if you’re looking for more ways to boost your SEO.

Backlink building is very important for boosting your SEO. When other authoritative and high-quality websites link back to your content, Google takes this as a vote of confidence in your work and will boost your rankings as a result.

While you can reach out to sites to build backlinks manually, this can take a lot of time and energy. But writing and publishing high-quality content and valuable information that people will naturally want to link to can help you build more links organically.

Let’s look at a few examples of types of content that are great for building backlinks.

Original research

For instance, publishing original research is a great way to attract links to your site. Think about it: if you’re the one who’s doing the research and finding out information, people are going to want to credit you for your work.

Consider doing original research on an area of interest in your field — this can be done through a survey or experiment.

Infographics

Infographics are also great for building more backlinks for your website. Infographics are colorful, engaging, and break down information in an easy-to-understand way — this is why they are so shareable. Content writers often forget that content creation goes much further than just writing articles…there also needs to be just as many visuals.

People might consider sharing your infographics on their own website if you break down a popular topic that’s relevant to your area of work. If you need help creating your own infographics, check out the infographic maker from Venngage — they have a variety of colorful templates that you can make your own.

Ultimate guides

Ultimate guides also offer another great way to show off your expertise and build up your backlink profile. These guides include a ton of information, so people in your field are likely to want to link to them when backing up their own points or recommending further reading.

If you would like to learn more about creating link-worthy expert content, check out Search Engine Journal’s ultimate guide to ultimate guides. They outline how to create this kind of content, how to come up with ideas for your next guide, and more.

Plan ahead wherever possible

Your readers will want to see you publishing a steady stream of content on your website, so you’ll want to plan in advance to ensure this.

Keep in mind that both evergreen content (which is searchable and relevant year-round) and timely content (which is tied to events and seasons) are important for boosting your SEO. You want to ensure that, whenever someone is researching a topic that is relevant to your business, your website will come up in the search engine results and you’ll naturally get more organic traffic.

Don’t forget to promote your content

You can’t just create content and expect people to find it — to ensure it’s seen, you need to promote it! You can promote your content through social media and emails, for instance.

Keep in mind that, when you post on social media, you’ll need to look into your analytics. Most platforms will have a built-in analytics tool that can help you identify your most popular types of content, the best time of day to post, and more. If you would like to learn more about accessing this information, check out SocialPilot’s guide to social media analytics tools for more advice in this area.

Content Writing Tips Summary

In this article, we outlined how you can improve your SEO using a content plan with some web content writing tips. There are a lot of different strategies you can use to maximize your efforts. Today, we talked about promoting your content, conducting content audits, setting goals, attracting links, and more. There’s a lot to do. Better get to it!