Want Better SEO and Online Visibility? Address Your Content Strategy
Everyone tends to speak of SEO as if it’s a code that can be cracked. But in today’s climate, SEO is far less technical and much more organic.
In other words, it’s not enough just to log into your website, plug in some code, and manipulate your search rankings from there. Google has become smarter over the past decade … so it expects brands, marketers, and SEOs to do the same.
Why Quality Content Matters
According to industry leader AudienceBloom, “The best links and brand mentions come from quality content.” The key word here, of course, is quality.
Google — and all the other search engines, for that matter — is in the business of making customers (that is, people searching for something on the web) happy. The company does this by supplying folks with relevant results that answer their questions and/or satisfy their needs.
In other words, the initial and longstanding mission of Google has been to organize the world’s information and make it accessible and useful. The entire Google algorithm is designed to deliver useful and relevant results through content that’s available on the web.
“These pieces of content are ranked by their order of usefulness and relevancy to the user performing the search,” content marketer Julia McCoy explains. “And that means, in order for your content to have any SEO value at all, it needs to be beneficial to searchers.”
When Google released its Hummingbird update in 2013, a noticeable shift occurred in the SEO industry. We saw a shift away from spammy, technical SEO and closer to high quality and human-centric strategies that please users over search engines.
And over the last five or six years, quality content has emerged unmistakably as the solution for better SEO and online visibility.
Five Ways to Create Quality Content With SEO in Mind
Most brands either don’t recognize that they need to create quality content to appeal to today’s search engines most effectively, or they simply don’t know how to create quality content. Once you grasp the vital importance of content and how it’s integral to building a robust SEO strategy, you’re ready to take the time to address the how part of the equation.
1.Useful and Informative
Quality content isn’t primarily self-serving. Though it may offer certain benefits to the brand, it has to be useful and informative for the audience. When you create content, think about how you can answer a question, solve a need, or address a pain point.
Along these same lines, content needs to be relevant: High-quality and informative content will boost your SEO efforts if it relates directly to your industry or niche.
There’s a time and place for quick news hits and timely pieces on current developments, but the bulk of a quality content strategy focuses on the creation of evergreen URLs and backlinks that has the potential to draw in customers for months and even years.
Evergreen content has no expiration date and retains value over time. Typically, you’ll find evergreen content in such formats as lists, tips, how-to guides, and product reviews.
We live in an age when people are highly distrustful of the media, news, and online content (and understandably so). “Fake news” has become a common concern, so discerning readers watch for signs of credibility and authenticity.
As you create content, make sure to focus on strong tools like hard data, studies, research, quotes, facts, and objective, authoritative sources.
Quality content shouldn’t be dry. It’s wise to balance the need for credibility and value with a strong element of audience-side engagement.
Incorporate visuals into your content that add flavor. It’s also effective to be strategic about formatting, so the content becomes more digestible.
The days of keyword stuffing are over, but that doesn’t mean keywords have become utterly useless. If you’re going to develop content that meets the demands of SEO, it remains essential to give search engines a way of knowing how to categorize your URLs.
Finding natural ways to incorporate long-tail keywords into your content will usually provide a nice jolt.
Elevate Your Brand
The fact that it takes time, effort, and money to create quality content discourages many companies from building a sustainable, user-centric SEO strategy.
But if you want to elevate your brand and see substantive improvements in your rankings and visibility, you’d be wise to focus on creating a compelling content strategy that prioritizes quality above everything else. Don’t put it off any longer.