As a content writer, I understand the value of finding and optimizing your writing with keywords. Inserting keywords can help Google understand what your article is about and, therefore, will rank the post for those words. I even wrote a piece about SEO content writing and some tricks to help master it.
However, keyword optimizing isn’t everything, especially when it comes to this personal blog. I learned that the hard way. I’ve had posts that I didn’t expect to get much traffic do well while ones I spent more time on are glossed over. And don’t get me started about how one of my posts ranked for a completely different keyword than I intended.
But why? Well, it’s simple: Google judges more than just keywords. Neil Patel even wrote a great article about how Google focuses on searcher intent rather than just words and phrases.
That’s right — unfortunately, life’s not as easy as having a key phrase inserted throughout your writing. That means it comes down to the content and what you’re writing.
Here’s a few reasons why I sometimes don’t focus on keywords.
My Blog is my Happy Place
When I’m blogging on here, I’m totally doing it for fun. Sure, some of my articles are designed to help people, but no one’s telling me that I have to write this or that. Everything I put on here, from tips to new ways of approaching writing, come out of my desire to simply share.
When I write, you bet that I need to be in my happy place. If I didn’t love blogging, I’d probably deactivate this portion of the site. I’m a firm believer in if you aren’t doing what you love, then you need to reallocate your time to the things you truly enjoy.
If I wanted to, I could monetize my blog and try to push out content every day. However, I don’t. Why? I just don’t want to hate blogging. If I make it a chore, then I might end up stopping altogether. That doesn’t mean I’ll never do a sponsorship or put ads here, but I just don’t want money to be the primary motivator for posting. I’ve also done lots of blogging throughout my career and want to consider those strategies separate from my personal blog.
This personal blog is my place to show my personality, so I want to let it shine!
I have lots of ideas that can’t be constrained
When I write, I have a million ideas. Sometimes I’ll want to share my thoughts on something I’ve read about or cite a cool thing that inspired me to write.
However, oftentimes these posts end up going on tangents rather than sticking to one idea. There usually isn’t one word or phrase I’m trying to rank for, so I just let them be.
Even if my thoughts do follow one theme, I just want to let my words be my words. Searching for keywords and stuffing those in there can ruin my originality. So in these cases, I’ll just choose a loose keyword or just publish without optimizing.
I care about making quality writing
I don’t post to post: I care about genuinely putting out valuable content. If I wanted to post every day, I could, but I don’t think that fits my vision and abilities at the current moment.
I want my readers to learn something valuable whenever my name pops up. That means I spend a few hours writing everything I publish on here, even what I’d personally consider my “weaker” articles. For me, it doesn’t make sense to publish something that isn’t the best I can make it.
Always putting time into my writing ensures what I officially publish is top quality. If you look at my posts from a year ago, you can see that I’ve improved since then. I’m always hoping to reach bigger and better goals, and I can only do so if I’m putting the right amount of time into the writing craft.
Keywords can be Constraining
When I write with keywords, sometimes it feels like a school assignment. The teacher said I needed to write about topic XYZ, and I can’t add any other related thoughts to that topic.
Since keywords target a specific topic you’re trying to rank for, sometimes it will feel constraining. Add the fact Google is reading your article for content and also grading it based on what you write. That means content marketing strategy sometimes results in articles that have a very narrow focus.
This isn’t necessarily always a bad thing, since people want the answer to what their looking for rather quickly. However, sometimes certain subjects involve different layers that should be understood as parts that make a whole. After all, writing has a lot of depth to it when it comes to strategy, structure, and improvement, which is why I sometimes write lengthy blog posts filled to the brim.
Do You Always Write with Keywords?
What are your thoughts on blogging without keywords? Has it ever worked out for you? Let me know in the comments below.
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