How To Write Your Best Article
Rick Stoneking Sr. CEO
The International Travel Herald
Do you want to know how to write your best article? I am glad you ask. Because, when most writers learn their articles must meet SEO guidelines, they tend to balk. And they usually respond with something like – SEO is for websites. So, why do you want me to use SEO guidelines for an article. Well, in a word. Google.
First of all, writing for a digital publication is much different from writing for a print publication. Second, is that Google reads your website. Moreover, it wants to make sure it will be interesting for their users. Obviously, this is important to you. Since you want to have your article found among the billions of other articles, you want Google to like it. Accordingly, when Google likes it, they index it. Where it falls in their index depends on how well you wrote it. And, that is the basis for Google’s algorithms.
Google’s algorithms test your website or article to make sure it meets two basic rules.
Within those two rules, Google bots also makes sure your website and your writing is mobile friendly.
Article Structure – The 5W+H Formula
Whomever said writing was not a mathematical expression never understood the 5W+H formula. The formula that makes good writing better. Because structure and readability are important for a good SEO friendly article, we urge you to plan your article using the 5W+H formula. That is how to write your best article
The 5W+H formula simply tells readers the:
of your story. Yet, for you it is a planning mechanism. As a result, it helps you to build a well structured article. Most importantly, it teaches you how to write your best article. So, do the math with my 5W+H formula. You will write better!
Your article structure includes your headings and subheadings and logically placed. As well, Google wants to see that your website or your article meets their structural analysis. Yet, these structural tests are different for websites than they are for your writing. So, we deal with the structural aspects of writing here.
First of all, carefully thinking about the way you want your article to flow will help you define your structure. Second, this will help you give a structure that your readers will want to follow. Think of it like creating an itinerary for taking a river cruise. There are certain points of interest you want to see in between point A and point Z. So, you want to chart attractions you want to see along the way. You would not want to see them out-of-order. You do not want to go to C then back to B then E and back to D and so forth. because you would simply go back and forth in confusion. Likewise, your readers do not want confusion either. As a result, they do not want to go up and down your page to find the logical order to your article.
Moreover, using the correct headings and subheadings, in the correct order, makes for a readable article. And this makes your writing flow smoothly. Hence you guide your reader through your story like taking them on a journey. And, it helps you write an exciting and informed article. Especially, an article that readers like and will tell others about. That is what Google looks for. So how to write your best article is about writing to make your reader happy. And that makes Google happy!
Basically, transition words help you in planning the itinerary for your reader. Just as on your river cruise, when you finish visiting one destination, your host prepares you for the next stop in the journey, In writing your article, you make this happen through transition words. Transition words help guide the reader from one idea to the next, or from one paragraph to the next.
A great resource to keep at your fingertips for writing is an article by Marieke van de Rakt’s in the Yoast SEO blog called “Practical Tips To Set Up A Clear Text Structure“.
Included in her article is a table to keep handy as a reference. Table 2: examples of transition words.
Since your writing must have a logical and readable structure, you must use transition words. Most importantly, transition words help your reader connect the dots so to speak. They help your reader connect sentences and paragraphs. Therefore, you should use plenty of transition words.
First, structural elements of SEO deal with how smoothly your writing flows. Second, readability measures whether what you said makes sense. While your cruise boat may be heading in the correct direction, it would not be any fun if it were also spinning around in circles. Readability deals with how well you steer the ship as it goes from point to point.
Moreover, text that does not make sense will turn your reader off. And, just like your cruise, spinning the ship around between stops will make people get off the first chance they get. Most likely, they will not return. So for a business, that means you just lost a customer. And because people do talk to each other, probably more than one.
Some have suggested reading your text out loud. I do this. If you are trying to read your text aloud. and you keep stumbling over your words, it is a good sign that something needs to be smoothed out.
In the Yoast SEO blog, Marieke van de Rakt mentions this question from Google in her article “Does Readability Rank“?
“Two weeks ago Google’s Gary Illyes tweeted that you should read your text out loud. If it doesn’t read nicely or sounds strange, it probably won’t rank either.”
She also pointed out this:
“After the Hummingbird update, Google became a lot better at recognizing synonyms. Keyword stuffing, in order to let Google know what your text is about, became useless.”
Keyword stuffing causes that spinning motion. Now, Google’s Hummingbird update forces the captain of the ship to keep the ship heading straight from point to the point. And as the author, you are the captain of the ship! So you are responsible for smooth sailing. Or, smooth reading. So, does readability rank? Absolutely!
Our Writing Guidelines
Our writing guidelines make sure you provide structured easy to read articles. What you write and how you write directly affects us. Poor SEO in your articles will lower our site’s SEO credibility with Google. We will not allow this. For this reason we insist our writers follow good SEO guidelines. That is why we want you to know how to write your best article.
We have provided you with these articles to help to know how to write your best article.
So, before posting, you are responsible for ensuring your article or post meets our guidelines.
Writing for a digital publication is different from writing for a print magazine. The reason is that digital writing is for online consumption. Just as libraries have a system for making sure everything is found in a logical way, so must search engines. Both need a structure that helps with readability. If you cannot find it, you cannot read it.
Lastly, we thank you for your interest in writing for us. Don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions. And please feel free to leave us a comment below about “How to write your best article”
Writing Tools To Help you Learn How To Write Your Best Article
English in Action – Transition words – Transition words are words or short phrases that show relationships between different parts of your writing or show important stages of your thinking. They are important for helping readers to see connections between your sentences and paragraphs and to follow the flow of your thinking.
Word Count Tools – Free. This should be your new online Notepad. A must have for Good Readability level. F-K 8th Grade to 10th grade level. Lots of tools and resources. Does basic spelling and grammar checking in addition to all the tools and technical analysis for your writing.
Yoast SEO plugin We offer this for you on your post page. Includes a SEO/Keyword Analysis and a Readability analysis. This is available to you free and included in the writing platform. Make sure Readability and SEO both are in the green – Good.
SEO Tool Station – Free Online Google Plagiarism Checker Tool
Now I know you are going to say: I don’t steal other writer’s work. And I am sure you don’t. But when you forget to use quotes when quoting someone, that is exactly how Google views it. Using this plagiarism checker will help you catch those mistakes we all make. But this site has so much more to offer. In fact it has at least 25 tools you can use to help you become a better digital writer.
And they all wrote happily ever after!
Purdue Online Writing Lab (Purdue University)
Academic Writing Help Centre (University of Ottawa)
The Writer’s Handbook (University of Wisconsin – Madison)
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About The Author
Rick Stoneking Sr, is a retired, disabled, veteran, minister and formal federal agent. He is now the Founder/Owner/CEO of International Publishing Group, LLC (IPG), and International Travel Reviews™ (ITR). Rick is also a Disability Advocate. As a result, he promotes Accessible Travel for everyone.
In addition, Rick has written in one form or another for over forty years. He is published in multiple genres in both Christian and secular circles. His writing ranges from police reports to Special Agent Reports, to a Christian eBook, to a year-long daily devotional series. Rick has published articles and columns in well-recognized state and international magazines.