SEO content writing and SEO copywriting – Are they the same?

The answer is no. There is a huge difference between the two.

In fact, many people in the SEO community itself get confused with these two terms. Besides, if you are a business person it’s very important to know the difference between the two so that you can hire the right person. Also from a business perspective, both content writing and copywriting are equally valued.

For freshers who are getting into the content writing field, it’s crucial to know the gulf between these two types of writing. Choosing the wrong one can have an adverse impact on your career.


So, without wasting time let’s get into the nitty-gritty.

Read also- Top 25 Content Writing Courses Online

What Is SEO?

SEO stands for search engine optimization. But what’s it?

Suppose you have a YouTube channel and you are not getting any views. Or you have a website with very good content but very few people visit your site. How will you let the world know about your content? 

Many people will not be able to pay huge sums and advertise on different platforms. This is where SEO comes in handy. You can drive traffic to your website or millions of viewers to your YouTube channel for free by “organic searches”.

What’s an organic search? If you want to search for something on the internet you go to search engines like Google or Yahoo and search using keywords. Let’s take the example of Google. With millions of websites having similar content, how will Google pick your website or YouTube channel and rank it higher, if not to the top?? 

There are two branches to be addressed when we talk about SEO. That’s on-page SEO and off-page SEO. 

The common goal of on-page SEO and off-page SEO remains the same which is driving traffic on to your website. But they differ in actions. 

On-page SEO means optimizing your website or article in order to rank on top of Google. Off-page SEO is all about backlinking and social media and influencer marketing. Social media is a powerful marketing tool for your brand if used correctly.

There is one more difference between the two.  Ranking high using the on-page SEO technique is a slow process. On the other hand, the off-page SEO approach works faster as you can take the help of domains that already have high influence and outreach. 

In summary, on-page SEO means you work inside your website. And with off-page SEO you work outside your website (with the goal of getting people to visit your website).

What Is SEO Content Writing?

What’s content? Content is something you write on your website or blog. It can be in the form of articles, blog posts, videos, or images. If you run a company it makes sense for you to publish a lot of content to showcase your expertise.

So, to captivate the attention of the readers it’s very important that you write high-quality content on your website. It’s also very crucial that you keep people engaged in your website by adding relevant videos and images.

Now we talked about how to get people’s attention to your blogs/website/articles by writing good quality content. But there is another part to it.

Apart from satisfying the readers, you should also satisfy search engines like Google, Yahoo, and other search engine platforms with your content. This brings you over to the SEO part because content and SEO go hand in hand.

Let’s take the example of Google. Everyone who writes and publishes their content online would want it to appear on top of a Google page because it’s free. But it’s not that easy. Then what do you do?

If you are a good content writer and an SEO expert you can do wonders to rank your website on top of Google by using some SEO strategies and techniques.

But, if you are a good content writer and not so familiarized with SEO that’s totally fine. You can work with other companies who are experts in SEO techniques who will take care of the optimization part.

SEO experts look at the following elements in order to optimize their content for search engines.

  • Skillfully written content that is easy to read.
  • Alt tags with relevant images.
  • Internal page linking.
  • Competitive keywords and frequency.
  • Header tags.
  • Keyword phrases.
  • Meta description.
  • Title tags.
  • Website speed.

So in summary, SEO content writing is writing for the people and generating traffic through search engines. 

What’s SEO Copywriting?

Both SEO content writing and copywriting are very important for a business. But in SEO copywriting you need a totally different skill set. 

Copywriting is a form of writing by which you sell your product by promotional campaigns on social media and other platforms. This includes email promotions, webinar scripts, sales letters, etc. 

But when you add the word SEO to copywriting it’s about selling your product through search engine platforms like Google.

In other words, we can say SEO copywriting is a strategic form of writing.

Unlike SEO content writing, SEO copywriting looks better when written in an informal tone.

SEO copywriters should also understand their audience’s point of view, doesn’t matter which niche they are in. This means they should be able to step into the readers’ feet, get a feel for the audience, and understand what type of content they should share.

So if you are a good writer, it doesn’t mean that you can be a good copywriter as SEO copywriting needs expertise in an entirely different way.

According to Quietly

“The ultimate objective of copywriting is to sell an idea whereas content writing aims to create valuable content to help the audience understand your brand and generate interest.”

In summary, SEO copywriting means converting traffic to sales and also brand building.

Tips For Aspiring SEO Content Writers

Is it difficult to get into the SEO content writing field? 

Some say, as an SEO writer you will have to keep yourself updated on Google’s search algorithm and requirements because Google algorithm changes quite often.

But if you have a great passion for writing and you dedicate your time to it, it’s a great field to be in because SEO techniques can be easily learned.

As you may know, Google is one of the most popular search engines in the world. And as of 2020, it does over 2 trillion searches a day. With this staggering number of searches, how do you rank number one in Google? 

Here are some tips for SEO content writers.

  1. Write with the target audience in mind using the right keywords. Right keywords are the keywords that the competitor uses. And you should also know the exact terms the buyer is searching online. SEMrush and ahrfs are one of the many available keyword researching tools.

2. Write readable content with simple short sentences and catchy headlines. When somebody clicks on your link and comes to your website or blog, it should captivate the attention of the reader. You should add relevant images/audios to keep the person engaged. Visuals matter a lot. Google will also check the clarity of the content.

3. As time goes by Google is being more stringent in terms of content quantity. As a result, weeker and smaller websites/blogs are suffering a lot these days. So good writers should let their writings stand out by writing bigger articles, say,  blogs that are typically above 2000 words. 

It is also important to go deeper into research instead of just Googling casually and jotting something down. You should also ensure that you give accurately cited information and facts from original studies.

4. Website speed is very crucial. Unlike in the early 1990s, people don’t have time or patience to sit in front of a computer waiting for a website to load. 

Interestingly, over two billion people expect the website to be loaded in less than a few seconds. So, how much ever good your content quality is, if the website is slow it will affect adversely on the ranking.

Pingdom is a great tool that allows you to measure your website speed and performance.

5. Do ensure to format the content for featured snippets. Featured snippets are the short text that appears on top of Google that answers your questions then and there. Because the featured snippets give answers straight away they are also called answer boxes.

Featured snippets play a crucial role because it always comes above the organic search result of Google. To captivate the attention of the reader, the answers can be given in a numbered or bulleted list instead of long sentences. 

Tips For Aspiring SEO Copywriters

If you want to pursue a career in the SEO copywriting field, it’s absolutely important to know what copywriting is. Copywriting is one-directional – its only objective is sales. Copywriting should be written in such a way that when a reader reads it, it has to take them through a buying experience.

Many people think it’s something they cannot do. That’s not true. You don’t need high qualifications or top class training to become an SEO copywriter. You just need a passion for writing and understand what exactly a copywriter has to do.

The following are certain abilities SEO copywriters should have or points they should keep in mind:

  1. This is one of my favorite tips about finding the right keywords.  Brian Dean in his video, explains a great way to find keywords in copywriting is to go to Reddit. According to him, if you are launching a new product, you can go to the subreddit part and type in the relevant keywords. Then pay attention to the phrase and words people use for that particular product. And include the most frequently used keywords as your keywords.

You should not focus too much on keyword density because there are many other important factors involved in sales promotions – some of them are mentioned below.

2. As copywriting is all about sales, copywriters should be very informal in tone, but crisp to the point to get the readers’ attention. What’s meant by attention is that you push people to keep reading by writing short sentences and catchy headlines. Adding questions is another trick used by copywriters because people will be forced to read more to find the answers to the questions.

3. To establish credibility to the website, it’s also important to add your complete contact details and also make sure to update it if needed. As there are many online fraudsters these days, adding your company address and phone number will win readers’ trust. That way you will help the vendor to overcome any concerns and prove to them that your brand is legitimate. 

4. As the objective of SEO copywriting is sale, your job is to captivate the attention of as many people as possible. To do that you must write simple sentences which a layman can understand. This will make people more engaged in your content.

5. In any form of copywriting, be it a sales letter or webinar script or any other piece of writing, to force people to buy a product is a daunting task. It’s a good tip to include some terms like “limited offer”, “free trial” etc for such people who are not willing to buy then and there. 

6. To get more organic traffic, writers should also avoid a plethora of ads and pop-ups on their websites or blogs. This will distract the buyer and prompt them to go for competitors in the field or even turn them away from your website.

Things to take home

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. It’s the process of increasing the visibility of a website or blog in search engines like Google using good optimization techniques. Through this technique, you can attract millions of people around the globe who have found your website organically (also known as “organic search”). 

SEO is the most efficient and economical way to bring traffic to your website as it’s completely free.

Many people, even in the SEO community often get confused with the terms SEO content writing and SEO copywriting. Whether you are a fresher looking for a job or you are an entrepreneur it is absolutely critical to know the difference between the two.

SEO content writing is the process of optimizing a website or a blog to capture the attention of readers around the globe. There are many techniques and factors involved in getting your website to the top of Google page.

The quality and mobile-friendly nature (also known as responsiveness) help your content to improve your ranking on Google.  Website loading speed, writing short sentences (including catchy headlines) all play a crucial part in SEO content writing. It should also be written with the target audience in mind. 

The quantity of the content is also very important with a minimum of 2000 words. The higher the quantity the more are the chances of you getting ranked higher. You should be well aware of the keywords which your competitors and audience are using.

Visuals do matter a lot. Incorporating relevant images and videos is a successful SEO mantra.

Copywriting, on the other hand, is a completely different set of writing. While SEO content writing is for generating traffic to your website, SEO copywriting is to convert traffic to sales. 

Copywriting, in general, is a form of writing by which you sell your product using promotional campaigns on social media and other platforms. It can be email promotions, webinar scripts, sales letters, amongst many others. 

But when you add the word SEO to copywriting it becomes all about converting traffic to sales through search engine platforms. There are many factors in SEO copywriting to improve your sales strategy. 

You should include relevant keywords, but don’t focus much on keyword density. Include your latest and updated contact details on the website in order to get vendors’ credibility and trust.

Writers should also avoid overusing ads and pop-ups so that you don’t distract the readers and force them to go away. Sentences should be in layman’s language.

If you have a good passion for writing and you can dedicate enough time for it, anybody can become a good writer regardless of their educational background. If you know the difference between a content writer and a copywriter you will know how to build a proper career as a freelancer or a full-time worker.

Recommended Reads:

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Q1. What is SEO content writing?

Ans. SEO content writing is all about optimizing your content in order to rank higher in search engines like Google. Apart from writing excellent content, many strategies are used to rank on top. 
Factors like external link building, irresistible headlines, and incorporating visuals also play a very important factor in Google ranking.  Adding the right keywords in the right place is also one of the techniques used by SEO experts.

Q2. What is SEO copywriting?

Copywriting is always one-directional – Its only objective is sales. In SEO copywriting you create excellent content with relevant keywords so that people can sell your product on social media platforms. In this writing, you need to understand the users’ intent and write in a more informal tone to captivate their attention.
This way, when Google sees there is relevance in your content, it increases the chances of ranking higher.

Q3. What’s the difference between SEO content writing and SEO copywriting?

SEO content writing means optimizing your content in such a way that it appears on the first page of Google. The main aim of SEO content writing is to bring traffic to your website. SEO copywriting on the other hand converts traffic to leads. The only objective of copywriting is sales.

Q4. How do I learn SEO content writing?

If you have a passion for writing, you don’t really need high qualifications or top-class training to be an SEO content writer. You need to find your ideal writing niche first. You should also learn to research deeper and develop your own unique style of writing. In addition, adding punchy headlines and incorporating the right images/videos also make it more digestible to the readers.

Q5. How to become an SEO copywriter?

Customers are kings. The purpose of SEO copywriting is sales. So you should learn to write in a very informal tone with the target audience in mind. You should also keep in mind that copywriting is a strategic form of writing and is one-directional.
You should also stay above the publishing trends and you should be up to date about the evolving industry. A good copywriter will be a good researcher too as the better you research the more credible your writing will be. 

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