July 1, 2024

How to Write Content That Just Might Actually Rank

Perhaps you want to write content yourself—that's cool, but here's our advice.
How to Write Content That Just Might Actually Rank

Having your content rank at the top of Google search results remains a dominant advantage for businesses, even as the look and feel of results pages continue to transform. You’ve probably noticed them getting more visual, including A.I., adding videos, etc. Still, if your content shows up at the top, you’re going to get clicks. 

As Google gets better at understanding content—and believe me, they will continue to get better—this means people are less and less likely to keep on scrolling and stumble across your content at spot number 37. You’re going to want your business to show up in the top few results. But how do you write content that does that?

Defining the Google Landscape

Google's search algorithms are more sophisticated than ever, and user search behavior continues to shift. Today's searchers are savvy—if their initial search doesn't yield the desired results, they'll refine their search terms and try again. Studies show that the first page of search results (top 10 spots) lands a staggering 95% of all activity.

While comprehensive SEO strategies often involve dedicated tools and agencies like us, we thought you might want to know how to write it yourself—you know, just in case you have the time, or don’t have the money to hire the experts. The good news is that you can still significantly improve your website's ranking by focusing on high-quality content creation.

Easier said than done, right? Great content goes beyond mere entertainment or information overload. Effective SEO content requires a strategic approach, considering various factors that contribute to higher rankings.

At Three Wolf, we've experimented with a variety of strategies, and here are three of the most impactful tactics you can leverage to create high-ranking content without relying on expensive SEO tools… or hiring us to do it for you.

Imitation is Flattery: Leverage Google as Your Inspiration

The content creation process starts with identifying relevant topics. Naturally, this hinges on your specific industry, product, or service. Here's where Google becomes your muse. Conduct exploratory searches related to your niche. Analyze the top-ranking pages, comparing their content structure and offerings to the much lower-ranking results. Often, in terms of SEO, the reasons behind a page's ranking become clear.

Top-ranking content tends to be well-organized, authoritative, and lengthy, often boasting a robust backlink profile (we'll delve into that later). But the specific topics you choose will depend on your industry. By analyzing top-ranking content, you can gain valuable insights into the type of information users are actively seeking. If you’re not talking about what everyone else is talking about, you’re either onto something life-changing, or you’re just missing the mark, which is typically more likely to be the case.

Understanding Search Intent is Key

Search intent refers to the underlying reason behind a user's search query. There are three primary categories of search intent:

  • Informational: Users are seeking to learn or understand something.
  • Commercial: Users are researching products or services with the intent to compare options.
  • Transactional: Users are ready to make a purchase.

The type of content you create will depend on your primary audience's search intent. If you offer a service, prioritize informative content like comprehensive articles that address user pain points. If you're a consulting firm, incorporate some comparative language highlighting your competitive edge. E-commerce sites should prioritize transactional language that emphasizes product benefits and value propositions.

Ultimately, strive to create engaging, informative content that helps users achieve their goals, which might not always be the exact same as your goals.

Time to Link Up: a Strategic Internal Linking Strategy

Most marketers understand the power of backlinks for SEO. However, Google is adept at identifying and penalizing manipulative backlink practices. Today, purchasing backlinks through PR agencies is often an expensive and time-consuming endeavor. More good news? You can leverage a strategic internal linking strategy to boost your website's ranking.

SEO-focused content isn't solely designed for casual reading. The primary goal is to elevate the pages that drive conversions, the ones that generate revenue. Ranking within the top five results often establishes sufficient credibility for your brand. While SEO content plays a crucial role, product pages should be visually appealing, featuring high-quality product images and clear calls to action.

Building a Content Hub for Authority

Your blog serves as the ideal platform to publish long-form, informative content that establishes your brand as an industry authority. However, the goal isn't necessarily to attract readers seeking casual browsing experiences. Instead, your primary audience is Google's search engine bots that crawl and index your website.

By strategically structuring your content, you can make it easier for these bots to understand your expertise.

Creating a Content Pathway

Imagine crafting a clear and logical path for search engine bots to navigate your website. For instance, if you're an insurance consultant, your SEO-focused blog should cover a comprehensive range of insurance-related topics. 

Deeper dives into specific insurance types can be nested within broader informational content. Ultimately, you want a natural flow of topics on your blog that might resemble this:

  • What is Insurance?
  • Types of Insurance Explained
  • Business Insurance: A Comprehensive Guide
  • Car Insurance: Understanding Your Coverage Options
  • Life Insurance: Protecting Your Loved Ones
  • Home Insurance: Safeguarding Your Investment
  • 5 Key Considerations for Business Insurance
  • 7 Essential Questions to Ask Before Choosing a Car Insurance Provider
  • What Does Home Insurance Cover? (A Breakdown by Policy Type)

This way, you’ll eventually have dozens and dozens of blogs pointing back to the initial “What is Insurance?” blog, basically saying, “Hey Google bots, this blog back here really knows what it’s talking about!” We’re in the process of creating that structure ourselves.

Unearthing Relevant Topics with Google

There are additional techniques to identify high-potential content topics using Google. Explore the "People also ask" and "Related searches" sections that appear on the search results page (SERP). These sections offer valuable insights into user queries related to your initial search term.

As you craft your blog content, prioritize interlinking relevant articles using natural in-text links. And remember, Google penalizes content that appears unnatural or manipulative, so don’t force a hyperlink into a keyword if it doesn’t make sense. Instead, focus on linking relevant words or phrases within your content. If it so happens to be a keyword of focus, then great. Additionally, limit the number of words you hyperlink to avoid overwhelming users—a hyperlink should probably be less than four words or so.

Optimizing Content for Conversions

Don't forget to include calls to action (CTAs) within your blog posts, ideally once or twice per article, and at the very least, at the conclusion. These CTAs should guide readers to your high-converting pages, such as product pages or service descriptions.

By strategically linking your blog content to these conversion-focused pages, you create a network of interconnected content that funnels users toward the actions you desire. This approach helps build "link juice" for your most important pages, ultimately improving their ranking potential.

It’s Sooo Meta: Optimize Your Meta Titles and Descriptions

Writing compelling meta titles and descriptions is crucial for optimizing your content for search engines. While Google may auto-generate these snippets if you neglect to create them yourself, custom-crafted options are demonstrably more effective.

Here are some general considerations for crafting high-ranking meta titles and descriptions:

  • Conciseness is Key: Adhere to Google's character limits: 40-60 characters for titles and 140-160 characters for descriptions.
  • Keyword Integration: Strategically incorporate your target keyword into your meta title, description, main header, and opening sentence.
  • Clarity and Alignment: Ensure your meta title and description accurately reflect the content on the linked page.
  • Structure and Organization: Use your H2 headers as a blueprint for your meta descriptions. This fosters consistency and helps Google understand the content's structure.


By adhering to these best practices, you demonstrate a commitment to well-organized, informative content. Google rewards consistency, and a well-structured website with high-quality content significantly increases your chances of cracking the top couple of search results. Here at Three Wolf, we're passionate about helping businesses leverage the power of SEO to achieve their digital marketing goals. So if this still seems like a lot—which is totally understandable—we’re here to help. Let’s talk!

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