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Do You Write For Users Or For Search Engines?


We all know how important it is to optimize our content for search engines, but if you look at latest search engine trend, Google is focusing on ranking honest content more than content written for search engines.

A good Rule of thumb is “Would you write this if search engines didn’t exist?”

Beside ranking and indexing you also need to gain popularity and authority among your community and readers. So you must write articles that help them and provide solution to their problem. It shouldn’t be “only” aim to appear in search engine result.

What happens when you search for a particular keyword, and as a results X site appears and when you clink and land on X site, you find there is not much information that you have been looking for on the subject. The simple reason is article was just design to get the traffic from search engine for that particular keyword. It’ll definitely makes you frustrated and probably within a second you’ll click the back button to check the next indexed site.


Why you should write for readers first?

#1 Users Google their problem, give’em the solution. 

Rule of thumb is “Don’t deceive your users”, give them the solution if you are an expert on that subject. Don’t write if you’re not proficient with that  niche or subject.  Don’t write an article filled with keywords and search phrases related to the problem but have no real solution for it.

#2 Read the article after finishing it and ask yourself “Does this help my users?”

Whenever the answer is “no”, you should know you need to change something. As a blogger I think your job is not to just spread and share the popular news on the blog actually your articles should have your essence and must dwell your unparalleled style of writing.

#3 What makes your website unique, valuable, or engaging.

Rule of thumb is “Whether your website stand out from others in your field”. Site design is one parameter, but most importantly the quality content is which counts. You can be prominent in your niche if your writing is unique, content is expectant and articles are helpful. If you still think design matters, have a look at this blog, you can’t get more neat and clean design than this guy have here. It is almost design-less, still regarded as one of the best blog in blog-sphere. (obviously for its unique and impressive content)

 #4 Search engines hate when you use these techniques. 

Rule of thumb is ” being a nice guy doesn’t mean you can’t succeed in a difficult game”.  You can be on the top without using improper tricks intended to improve search engine rankings. search engines ( or should I say Google) hate following ideas;

  • Automatically generated content
  • Scraped content
  • Link schemes
  • Cloaking
  • Hidden text or links
  • Doorway pages
  • Automated queries

#5 Keep it Simple straight and to the point.  

Rule of thumb is “Your readers are only interested in them”. Don’t make it unnecessarily lengthy. Cut the crap and come to the point without polluting screen with excessive examples, ramblings and stories.

If you follow above points while writing articles, it will definitely help build a strong community around your blog niche at the same time help you do better with search engines.

How writing for Users can Benefit you?

#1 Social Share

They comes, They read and if they like it they”ll share.

If users get their problems resolved through the tricks, tips and solution explained in an article on your blog, I don’t think there a reason why they would not be sharing your article in their social community. If the article is worth reading It’ll be share further in many other communities and groups instantly.

#2 Users can make your content go Viral

If your content is great, futile, funny or  resolving, couple of things can happen;

  • It can ranked and indexed at #1 position in SERP for that particular keyword or phrase
  • Can get viral on social sites like YouTube, Facebook, Twitter or Linkedin Group

Competition is hard for former, as there are experts who game the system with SEO tools, although the quality of content may be not as good as in article. You can still make it viral in Social Media. Tell me what exactly you do when you see something useful on your social timeline? The answer is obvious, you share it with your  fans and followers.  The same way it’s  shared by their fans and  follower and the content go viral among various social media communities and group in no time.

#3 Social Authority or Author Rank  

Last year Google introduced Google Authorship. It  is an algorithm which associates individual  authors with their published content. This gives individual writers an opportunity to build credibility. It is realistic and very much accepted and appreciated by publishers.

It has changed altogether the game of search engine Indexing and ranking. Google now value the social share and authority of publishers among their users or readers.

Hence the time now has come to start building social community around your blog niche and write articles that matters more to its user than to search engines.

I would like to know what goes in your mind when you write articles on your blog

– How well it’ll rank in  search engines OR

– How much appreciation It’ll get from content user or readers.

Please share your thought in comment below.


Shanker Bakshi is a blogger and an internet entrepreneur based at Chandigarh India. Back in 2007, he started his blog Net Profit Mantra and since then writing about How to Blog with WordPress and Make Money Online and other technical facets of web 2.0. A kind-hearted, fun-loving and helpful guy indeed.

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    • Aldenir Araújo

      I always write first with my readers in mind, because ultimately users helps us to build our traffic.. making money is other thing..

    • Deepanker

      I want to write for Users. But with optimization for search engines.. 😀

    • harroop

      What is benefits if we write for Optimization only

      • yoje singh

        The main benefit to write articles on the bases of optimization is that you will get lot of organic traffic from Google search engine.

    • aaranpuri

      One must not be writing for bots, but this doesn’t mean they should not sare about their rankings either. I think if the content is good and some basic SEO has been done, it’s best of the both worlds.

    • Dhiraj Barnwal

      For the first few months we don’t know who is our actual audience so I would prefer writing for Search Engines at the beginning and later for Users.

    • Beth Hewitt

      I always write first with my readers in mind, what are there problems and what solutions and value can I provide them with? Second I try to make Google happy. I want to get found after all. But building a community around everything you do, contributes to that anyway. 🙂

    • Kunal Ganglani

      I agree with you, stuffing the articles with keywords would definitely not make us rank 1 in the serp , and sometimes even I don’t know when some of my articles rank 1 and some don’t even rank. Google works in mysterious ways 😀

      • shankerbakshi

        Google is definitely mystical about ranking and indexing so better focus on niche and quality content creation.


      Great article and I agree with you point on “Rule of thumb is “Your readers are only interested in them”. Don’t make it unnecessarily lengthy. Cut the crap and come to the point without polluting screen with excessive examples, ramblings and stories.”

      This is something i learned from Seth Godin’s blog where he most of the time writes short articles with a very powerful message. And those are easily readable and has a high tendency to get shared with others on Social media.

      For the question you have asked what goes on in mind when i do write? I would say it’s a proble me or someone I know has or gives a lesson for life of my social circle on online networks and how much appreciation It’ll get from content user or readers.

      Thanks for the great content and I think you should have a comment system like comment lv to make the commentator to comment easily.

      • shankerbakshi

        Thanks for appreciating Fernando, Seth Godin is also my Favourite speaker. A small post with powerful message always works.

      • John Gibb

        I like Seth as well…

        He doesn’t have to write lengthy posts to get his message across, that’s what I appreciate the most about his content marketing approach.

        I couldn’t imagine him write a “link bait” article, do you? 🙂

    • vipin

      i write for the users because ultimately users helps us to build our traffic.. making money is other thing..

      • shankerbakshi

        Good to see bloggers still have faith I their content users….as I said they are the one who make the content go viral.

    • timeinmanny

      I would rather write for users. In fact content is for users and not for search engines. It is the search engines’ job to know which are the high quality content and which are not. I also did some manual check, there are results that do not follow the seo principles but still are ranking in the first place.

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