People talk all the time about the differences between printed copy and web copy. If you are reading this article you are seeing several items of interest to you and how the differences are applied.
Search engine crawlers do not see a site as a reader sees a site. A search engine catalogs every word on a site and the number of occurrences of that word on the site. For specific terms and word rankings a search engine will read a site and the terms are listed in the order of priority they are used.
While to the reader the central theme of a site may be cats, a search engine may establish cat food as the critical element on the page. Now when a search engine user types in the word cats the search engine will not display the site. However if the person were to type in the word cat food the page may very well display.
However this is not the intent of the site owner. If your page is predominantly related to the broad subject of cats and the only viewers that you are getting are concerned with the word cat food two things will happen. Your site will not be viewed for long as viewers leave, and the search engines will slowly degrade your rankings as no one will back link to your page.
So the critical element is to write your web copy for people and for the search engines. To do this you will need to be cognizant of both group’s needs and desires. While it is a bit on the repetitive side to keep using the term cats over and over throughout the copy it is critical to the search engines. The word cats must be used exclusively at a minimum rate of five percent for the search engines to rank the term.
However if your copy is five hundred words you don’t want the word cats, cats, cats,…. listed twenty five times in a row as the people reading this will see it and just leave the site via the back button on their browsers. The web copy must specifically target people as well, which means it must be well written and the person cannot realize that you are utilizing specific verbiage within the article to attract search engine traffic.
The other item that must be remembered is that while humans are fully capable of reading web copy that is a picture, the search engines are not capable of reading a picture. Search engines can only read the HTML code that is on the page, so you will need to utilize alt-tags if your desire is for the search engines to see the pictures that you have on the page.
Web copy at the end of the day needs to be readable by the targeted audience to generate any enthusiasm about your website. Web copy at the start of the day must be search engine friendly in order to deliver the targeted audience to your website for them to enjoy the friendly web copy you have presented.
Keep both people and the search engines in mind when writing your web copy, and you’ll rank higher with the search engines – and in popularity with your human visitors – a.k.a., your customers!