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Why I think "writing for SEO" is the wrong approach

Sunday, February 18, 2024

Photograph showing a single key on a keyboard in focus, with out of focus text and reports in the background.

I gave up writing content "for SEO" a while back. The trigger was reading two posts from the same (allegedly respected) expert who argued against their own advice. One article said practice X was awesome and an article dated a few days later said it was pants.

Now I try to write well, and welcome the growing trickle of visitors who come my way. I hope what they're reading is helpful and relevant and not just a bunch of keywords.

I still need to be mindful of SEO. Phrases and keywords still play a role in bringing people to my work. It isn't THE most important thing in my mind as I craft my next missive.

Nor do I focus only on Google. As much traffic comes from Bing as the big G. Sharing posts on LinkedIn will bring a few people in. Tumblr not so much.

For what it's worth, I suggest dialing back on Google a little. Write content that's entertaining, educational and informative. Listen a little less to the half-dozen or so people dominating the top of a Google search about how to get to the top of random lists, and a lot more to customers, prospects and peers.

You may not get the thousands of visits these "experts" promise (and so rarely deliver), but you will find fans. And a few fans who support and promote you are worth far more than thousands of people clicking on links looking for something else.

My name is Ross Hori

I'm a freelance writer, designer and photographer. By day I create articles, features and reports. At night I take photos and write fiction.

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