Writing vs. SEO

Writing vs. SEO

A lot of people think SEO is vital to the success of web content, but it doesn’t concern some writers.

Principles and techniques

In the past, I’ve written about why I’d like to be a good SEO copywriter. There’s an exciting challenge in progressing a narrative using keywords, and presenting clarity in a way that isn’t duplicating other web content.

But some writers don’t like SEO. They think the principles of good writing are more important than search engine techniques, and this is where I empathise with them.

The principles of writing haven’t changed. They’ve always been about knowing who your audience is, and delivering messages to them in a tone of voice they won’t be able to ignore.

Whilst this applies to all writing, online or offline, the techniques used in SEO do change a lot. Search engines find new ways to punish duplicate content, and this clashes with the ‘steal from the best’ mentality that some writers live by.

Long-term and short-term

It’s true good writing principles are long-term, and SEO techniques are short-term. But the principles of SEO are also long-term. Despite the rules being re-written on a regular basis, it’s always been about improving written content’s visibility in search engines.

This is what puts me in favour of SEO. However, in a discipline where the practices are constantly being updated, I can’t imagine this makes teaching a course or writing a book about the subject easy. As soon as that book is published, most of the content will be out of date.

But that’s why it’s essential to be up-to-date on the latest developments. If you’re serious about SEO, then it’s worth subscribing to news channels dedicated to this.

Enjoy the challenge

Just like writing, the principles of SEO haven’t changed. It’s the rules that have, and will continue doing so. This will always bother some writers and, while I can understand their frustration, I enjoy the challenges that come with writing this way.

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