3 Top Skills SEO Content Writers Need to Succeed

To create search-optimized content takes more than excellent writing skills. These are the best SEO content writing skills to help you succeed.

For decades, I have worked alongside other SEO professionals, from web developers to technical SEO specialists.

While I believe everyone in an SEO role should have some natural skills, many areas of expertise can also be learned on the job.

This is something SEO content writers are well aware of.

You might be surprised to learn that strong writing skills are necessary if you are interested in digital marketing as a content manager.

Content writers must be well-versed in core SEO concepts to write content that ranks well for clients.

These are the three essential skills for SEO content writers to be successful in this industry.

3 Top Skills SEO Content Writers Need to Succeed
3 Top Skills SEO Content Writers Need to Succeed

1. Diverse writing skills

It’s not surprising that SEO content writers need to be able to master multiple writing styles.

A writer joining an agency will likely be responsible for creating content for clients of all types.

Digital marketing agency employees know this to be true. Content writers can write for a candy company or a funeral home in the morning and then about the construction industry in the afternoon.

Each client will have different content, but the tone is essential.

Tone is not something readers can discern from the words but from the sounds of the words as a whole.

While funeral home content should be considered severe, straightforward, and compassionate, candy ads copy must be lighthearted, fun, and approachable.

Strong SEO content writers instinctively know which tone to use and how to present that tone to readers in an engaging way.

Engagement is another crucial skill for any SEO content writer looking to succeed.

2. Understanding Search Intent

Your digital marketing agency’s content writers don’t have to be SEO experts to succeed.

There is a way to write content that works with SEO. It is called understanding searcher intent.

Content writers need to engage their readers in their work.

Engaging content is not about throwing ideas at the wall and hoping for the best.

SEO professionals and other industry experts now know all the tools content writers use to determine what people search for. These tools include BuzzSumo, SEMrush, and SEMrush.

It’s easy to be aware of these tools. It’s using their information to make better content for your readers.

Content marketers have to be experts at navigating topic-generation tools of these tools. They must then turn those topics into lightning-rod content that answers users’ questions.

When writing content, there are four main types of search intention.

  • Informational – When people want to learn things.
  • Navigation – When people wish to visit a particular website or page.
  • Transactional – When people are looking to purchase things.
  • A commercial investigation is when someone researches products that they are interested in purchasing.

Different search intents require different approaches for content writers.

Nevertheless, every piece of content should still be designed to encourage readers to purchase the products or services of the client.

An example of an informational content item might be a listicle listing the top 10 fashion styles for the coming season.

In each item, the writer will be able to link to the product of the client.

Writing for an eCommerce website requires transactional content that is more open to getting customers to purchase a product.

Content writers also know that different keywords will be used for each type of content.

Your digital marketing agency may have content writers responsible for keyword research. Or they might receive it from SEO specialists.

SEO content writers should be able to use keywords in any case correctly.

An example of an informational search term is “best trampoline brands,” while a transactional query might be “trampolines online for sale.”

Strong writers will be able to use such terms in natural and valuable ways to answer people’s questions.

3. Writing for Topics More Than Keywords

A professional SEO content writer must have the ability to write about topics rather than keywords.

SEO content marketers who are just starting should be familiar with the history of keywords.

People used to write for keywords before Google gave keywords more weight in the 2000s and 1990s.

Black hat methods were used to insert keywords into the content.

This is why it’s being punished now.

SEO content writers must focus on topics, not keywords, to rank their content.

Keywords are essential, but too many keywords in a piece of content can be confusing. Google will rank it poorly.

Writers should instead try to create original content relevant to the original query.

They should be able to answer the question as fully as possible.

Writers can use the SERPs to see which content is ranking and then make improvements.

Closing Thoughts

It’s impressive when a professional writer wants to get into SEO.

You must have strong writing skills to become a good SEO content writer.

I want to stress the importance of writing skills and SEO knowledge for content marketers.

Digital marketing is here to stay!

Professional writers interested in SEO should read this post to learn more about the fascinating world of content marketing.