In this continuation of our SEO Content Writing Series, we look at the structure of a content piece, from the heading and subheadings to the URL. If you have not done so yet, check out Part 1 of our SEO Series to learn about internal and outbound linking while writing with SEO in mind.
What Belongs in the Heading?
The heading of a piece of content is going to be the first thing someone sees about an article, as well as the first thing a crawler sees when determining what the article is about. This is where you should put the main keywords and what the searchers’ intent is, crafted with the main long tail keyword. A good best practice is to keep the heading title within 20-70 characters.
Why Are Subheadings Important?
Subheadings not only break up the content on pages for the human eye, they give more context to crawlers. Subheadings in content tend to highlight the LSI keywords (latent semantic indexing) of the page, providing more framework to the landing page for the web browser.
How Should A URL Be Structured?
Digital marketers have found that the most SEO-friendly URL structures start with a domain, then follow with sub folders that have been labeled accordingly. Sub folders have been found to be easier to rank than subdomains in recent history. Web browsers use URL structure as another crawling point, so it is an important feature of content to focus on when posting something new to your website. After the domain, the next folder is typically a category, such as ‘events’ or ‘blog.’ If a user goes deeper, the next folder is the title of the page itself, such as ‘Annual-Golf-Tournament.’
When separating words in the URL, hyphens are preferred over underscores. Although underscores serve the purpose of separating two words, hyphens are a more common and recognized word delimiter for crawlers. Try to keep your URLs short and sweet, as well. Google truncates URLs after 70 characters on search engine result pages, so a good rule of thumb is to get to the point quickly without losing the general meaning of the piece of content. An easy way to do this is to take out the main keywords of the title that meet the intent of the page.