Guides and Templates

On-page SEO and copywriting template

A template for content editors and reviewers

How will the copywriting template help me and my business?

There are several ranking factors that affect on-page copy. Each factor affects the way you structure your content, but balancing all of them while you're trying to write engaging copy can be difficult. This is especially true if you are editing existing content on your website and trying to restructure copy so that is is SEO friendly.

This resource is a practical template to help content editors improve how they create and update copy for web pages to improve their ranking in the organic search results while keeping the copy persuasive for human readers. It's aimed at improving the consistency and use of advanced on-page SEO techniques.

The template is in Microsoft Word format so that it can be amended to add notes or examples to tailor it for your own in-house copywriting guidelines to make it more relevant for your industry, agency.

How is the copywriting template structured?

The template is in three sections.

  • Section 1 is a 10-step structure for content writers to use when planning and creating content for a page. In time, each step will become second nature.
  • Section 2 gives more specific guidance on individual ranking factors. You may want to combine some of the detailed factors with the first part if you want a single list.
  • Section 3 gives a one-page summary example of SEO / style guidelines for blogging, without the guidance, that you can adapt for your organization. We recommend adding example posts that follow these guidelines to bring-it-to life.

Who is the copywriting template for?

This template gives a step-by-step process of 10 success factors to follow for content creators, editors, and reviewers who aren’t SEO specialists but need to know the basics of which factors they can influence to rank higher in the search results. They may also be looking for more details on how copywriting can be used to increase ranking.

Our main reason for developing this guide for members was the need to improve standards of copywriting for SEO in marketing teams of larger organizations where several people who aren't usually SEO specialists need to create and review web pages. However, marketers who are part of SMEs and need a quick overview of SEO ranking factors when creating content will also benefit from using this template.

Latest updates

This content is evergreen since best practices for copywriting for SEO remain similar. Updated in July 2020 to feature a one-page summary in Section 3 in response to member requests.

Resource Details

  • Authors: Dave Chaffey, Smart Insights
  • Format: Downloadable Word Document for you to amend for your organization. Structured around 10 steps to improve ranking within Google with detailed best practice guidance and examples.

About the author

Dr. Dave Chaffey

Dave ChaffeyDave is co-founder and content director of Smart Insights. He is editor of the 100 templates, ebooks and courses in the digital marketing resource library created by our team of 25+ Digital Marketing experts. Our resources used by our premium members in more than 80 countries to Map, Plan and Manage their digital marketing.

For his full profile, or to connect on LinkedIn or other social networks, see the About Dave Chaffey profile page on Smart Insights. Dave is author of 5 bestselling books on digital marketing including Digital Marketing Excellence and Digital Marketing: Strategy, Implementation and Practice. In 2004 he was recognised by the Chartered Institute of Marketing as one of 50 marketing ‘gurus’ worldwide who have helped shape the future of marketing.

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