WHAT YOU WILL LEARN
Since the time content marketing became prevalent, there’s been a lot of discussions about how the SEO practices will become obsolete.
While it’s true that many organisations have altered their business strategies with an increased emphasis on content, but that doesn’t mean the SEO efforts are rendered completely ineffective.
On the contrary, it’s the combination of these two aspects of marketing that brings more favourable results.
There was a time when businesses began cluttering their websites with as much content as possible irrespective of whether they are relevant or not. They often focus on quantity over quality.
Soon enough the organisations discovered that their content was fetching negligible traffic to the website, with absolutely no audience engagement.
This is where SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) steps in. Now there are many complex technical aspects involved with SEO. However, in its simplest terms, SEO is finding and introducing ways to boost your website’s rankings in search engines.
The role of SEO is not only to discover how to be more visible in the SERPs but also offer analytics and research to determine the relevant, most searched topics, make way for compelling content which will drive the desired results for both the consumers and the businesses as well.
Hannah Morrison, the marketing manager for MyAssignmenthelp, opines, “In order to cater to the target audience and providing them with the right solutions to their issues, it’s important to integrate the SEO and content marketing practices to create an overall impactful marketing strategy.”
With that thought in mind, let’s elaborate further on the factors that testify that SEO and content marketing should work in tandem to produce impeccable results.
Creating relevant content for the consumers
You may be already acquainted with the rather widespread debate over SEO and content marketing. Now in order to gain massive visibility online and yield favourable results, these two disciplines must work together.
It’s always wise to optimise your website content for SEO, but that cannot be the only parameter to establish the credibility of your website when you churn out the pertinent content.
Businesses and organisations should understand that the consumers are at the centre of both the SEO strategies and content marketing strategies. The reason is, without their clicks, none of your efforts to rank high on the search engine pages or drive traffic to your website will work out.
So, the content should be focused on what the consumers are looking for on the web. Now owing to Google’s ever-evolving set of algorithms that helps in keeping online content focused and of optimum quality, there will be very little chances of any mishap if you follow this cardinal rule, i.e. write engaging content about the things your target audience is most intrigued about.
And this is when adopting the right SEO practices along with a meticulous content marketing strategy works in favour of your business.
Answering the questions that consumers may have
Producing content which addresses the questions or issues that your target audience may have, is a principle that your business should abide by on multiple levels, both in terms of SEO and in terms of the value of the content.
First and foremost, by conducting thorough and precise research on your audience and trying to understand their specific pain points, you acquire a massive amount of insight on the people who are supposed to be your target audience.
Secondly, the knowledge you gather from the research allows you to produce impactful, and remarkable content that your audience can read through and utilize again and again as a valuable resource.
The ‘tutorial’ style content and how-to guides are always effective and engaging in terms of providing value to the audience and as well as for SEO, as the consumers tend to search for their requirements with a question in mind.
This is specifically true in case of the voice search process, where people generally present their search queries in the question form, so Q&A style content is appropriate if you want a boost in the SEO ranking of your website.
In this case, one valuable idea that many content marketers follow these days is to look for people’s questions on the websites like Quora, Reddit, or other online forums, which enable the marketers with an insight into what their audience is searching.
Then turn your most popular answers into more in-depth content!
Good content always attracts better search visibility
Since search engines keep upgrading their algorithms for indexing and offering content in its search results, search engines are becoming more focused in terms of offering the relevant content when the consumers search for something they require.
Since there are millions of content that get posted on websites and all are optimized for SEO each day, the only way businesses can hope to stay ahead of their competitors is by creating remarkable quality, and impactful content that provides your target audience with the solutions that they have been looking for.
Apart from that, ensuring that your past content is still pertinent to the reader presents many SEO benefits as well. The reason is, Google emphasizes on “freshness” of content while ranking the pages of the websites.
So you as a marketer need to update and repurpose the content to make sure it’s as pertinent and relatable to receive long-term benefits for SEO.
While presenting unnecessary or irrelevant content to lure Google’s web crawlers may have been a common practice a few years ago, but with rapid changes in the algorithms, such practices have become obsolete now.
Also from a content marketing perspective, poor content prepared to boost rankings will never be effective, as it will never be able to encourage, attract and retain the audience to read through the posts.
So authentic content will allow you to stay ahead of your competitors, as it provides the search engines something to index that will not be found anywhere else.
Additionally, it also assists the marketers to achieve the content marketing objectives, as original and quality content is far more likely to appeal to your target audience.
So you must ask yourself whether your content encourages people to come back to your site for more valuable information.
Does it add value to your consumers? Does it offer useful advice that inspires them to take some action?
More content means more keyword opportunities
Unlike us humans, search engines can’t see the websites. We can look at a website with pictures of baby and baby products and understand that it’s an e-commerce site that sells baby products.
Google or any other search engine has no way of deciphering the objective of a website unless it’s clearly defined in words somewhere.
Now content marketing enables you to think beyond the paragraphs of homepage content and alt text descriptions on images and videos.
Through the use of blog posts, articles, and different webpage content, you can use more keywords that are relevant to what your website is about, and what people are looking for.
For instance, if your website offers baby products and supplies, you may want to rank higher on keywords related to childcare.
Now rather than stuffing all the childcare-related phrases or terms on a limited space inside a webpage, you can prepare a comprehensive and informative post on like “how to care for a newborn baby” or create a blog post about the products or services that are a must-have to care for your child.
This way you can make the content helpful and interesting. It’s also a great opportunity to use keywords and rank well in searches.
Determining the objectives of your specific keywords
After you prepare a detailed list of terms and phrases to reach out to the right set of audience with your content efforts, it’s significant to check and control your efforts.
Is the content you are preparing for your consumers fetching the results you have estimated? Does it have any impact on the search engine rankings?
Now it’d be wrong to assume that the rankings would improve instantly. It will take a considerable amount of time to reflect any noticeable change in the search engine rankings.
But while there is no guarantee of success in this case, but a well-executed strategy that involves a focused content will offer great results for the long haul.
It’s also vital to highlight that, the content has a fundamental role in achieving the SEO objectives, but at the same time, one shouldn’t be too dependent on it.
Keywords shouldn’t be stuffed in a way that the content quality suffers.
Ensuring effective link building
A vital part of SEO is forming links back to your website, which helps increase rankings in search results.
Good content will (almost) automatically attract links. You need to make sure that the content is used effectively so that it can capture the attention of the audience.
There is nothing scientific about this, the only thing that businesses can do is focusing on developing content that people will want to link to and see how it works.
Getting backlink is one of many unique functions of having a proper SEO strategy. This aspect of the SEO strategy is only possible when you’re churning out impeccable quality content with the help of content marketing. You can also choose to build links by tying up with a link building agency.
But the ideal way to build links is by posting relevant and intriguing content and allowing the rest of your peers to link back to it. For continual SEO success, this practice has to be carried out religiously.
If you want this significant element of SEO, you also need to adopt the indispensable aspect of content marketing. The only way to get a link back is to have relevant content that the audience will be delighted to look at.
Enhancing the mobile user experience
Optimising content for better user experience on mobile devices is vital since the digital traffic on mobile devices is on the rise.
Studies have found that nearly 90% of mobile media users access Google sites via smartphones. Such stats only point out the necessity of your content to be designed and optimised specifically for mobile devices.
Experts have emphasised that having a responsive design doesn’t have any negative SEO effect. In this case, the major considerations organisations should take into account to have a responsive design include voice search behaviour, content length, formatting and structure, page load time, video and image processing etc.
The consumption habits of the mobile users and responsive elements should be at the core of creating a fluid content consumption experience across every device.
Content keeps the consumers glued to your page for longer
Let’s assume someone visits your website after finding it in the search results and doesn’t find the solutions he or she is searching for, and immediately leaves the site without looking any further.
This is known as bounce, and the number of people who come to your site is responsible for your bounce rate.
Now Google can determine metrics like bounce rate/dwell time. If a page reports a high bounce rate, this indicates that something is not right with that specific page, and Google obviously wouldn’t want it to continue rank high if it’s directing all its visitors right back into the search results.
This is where the power of content comes in, as it can help you to fight a high bounce rate, especially if it’s done strategically.
For instance, the bounce rate of your homepage is high, and you believe that’s because the consumers don’t know where to get all the information regarding your services or products.
You could present some content to inform about your organisation and tell people how to select the services you offer. This will ensure that the visitors stay on the page longer, then move to other pages of the site, and clear their confusion, it’s resolving three problems at once.
As has been pointed out earlier, content that isn’t useful to your visitors doesn’t serve any purpose and immediately drive the consumers away.
If people don’t engage with your content, this can have an adverse effect on your bounce rate. So the length is crucial, but don’t disregard your visitor’s valuable time, either.
Effective content attracts social shares
Search engines are programmed to present high-quality content primarily because when the consumers actually find the content they are searching for, their overall search experience turns out fulfilling.
Now considering that the whole point of preparing an SEO strategy is to have a consumer-centric approach and provide results that are relevant to the specific audience.
So it’s crucial to create content that agrees with the SEO best practices.
As has been pointed out earlier, links are a major factor to consider in the liaison between content marketing and SEO, but the social share is also another factor that marketers should pay attention to.
The logic behind SMO (Social Media Optimisation) is the same as SEO. The audience only shares or likes the content that they genuinely enjoy reading.
Incidentally, search engines consider these social signals as a crucial factor while assessing quality, so producing pertinent content is a major component of successful SEO and SMO strategies.
Converting the consumers
A huge factor in case of getting prospective consumers to make a purchase decision on your website depends on whether they trust you.
That’s why creating a proper SEO strategy connected with content planning allows the organisations to present compelling content that elaborates on their requirements.
Once your SEO and content strategies are in place, you can create an effective conversion strategy and leverage the SEO-friendly content to convert the visitors.
Content marketing without SEO can be compared to a king without its queen. They work in tandem to achieve the desired results in terms of providing the consumers with the right kind of solutions fast, and in the appropriate way they want.
The internet is crawling with a million different types of content, and SEO acts as a nice shortcut for your prospective consumers, thereby saving time and money on different types of marketing methods.
The parting note
SEO and content may be recognised as distinct disciplines that require different knowledge, but one cannot function without the other.
Content creators and marketers should be presenting their pieces with complete knowledge of SEO strategy, making sure that the aspects like internal linking, headline optimisation and use of keywords are covered.
In this case, what’s also important for content creators is to find the perfect balance between maintaining the SEO and producing genuine content.
Now when you consider the factors above carefully, producing SEO-friendly yet, natural content won’t be a huge issue.
I’m a UK based freelance SEO consultant and digital marketer and I provide results-driven online consulting and digital marketing services to SMEs. Are you ready to grow in 2022? Get in touch today!