The concept of creating new forms of content, such as a blog, in order to advance your digital marketing efforts is certainly a part of today’s mainstream culture, as it relates to the world of Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
Although webmasters, content creators, and strategists are familiar with this idea, very few actually know how to produce content that is:
- Considerate of user and search engine expectations
Creating The Right Content
Too often, content creators invest a tremendous amount of effort in building out their blogs, only to be continuously disappointed in the amount of traffic their articles capture or attract.
Well, fear not friends, the path of opportunity around blogging to attract and convert new potential customers can be found by taking a careful, mechanical approach when creating new materials.
You do not have to be the world’s best or most experienced writer in order to create compelling content that can be found within search listings. Just follow my checklist!
- Set Goals: Understand what it is that you are actually trying to accomplish in your blogging efforts.Are you trying to become an information aggregator that pushes out new, unique forms of content several times a day, each day?Are you only interested in blogging as a means for increasing your monthly leads or revenue?
Understanding your true goals allows you to be honest with the type of content you’re creating, in the sense that if you are only interested in revenue, you need to be aware of your target audiences’ search intentions and do not have to churn out 1,5000 word articles on a daily basis.
- Create a schedule or content calendar: While this may take some time to create, it will actually afford you more free time throughout the month as you will know exactly what to publish, when to publish, and the essential materials you need like titles, images and links are already prepared.Depending on your time and resources, you can easily build a calendar that sees you publishing at least one new blog article each week, opposed to stressing out and rushing to throw something on your blog just for the sake of doing so.
- Research Your Audience: You may be an expert on your business and the complete ins-and-outs that relate to your services, but it’s important to remember that not everyone thinks like you…Especially, when it comes to consumers.Using tools like Google’s Keyword Planner and Soovle allow you to see multiple variations of a particular term or concept, along with an estimated monthly search volume, but make sure you actually plug in each term to Google (incognito) to see what populates.This will allow you to understand the type of competition you’re up against, as well as whether or not the target keyterm or phrase you’re using in your blog is actually relevant to what you have in mind.
- Invest In A Credible Hosting Partner: If your hosting company and server are not able to meet the demands of your site, you’re missing out on the opportunity to maximize monthly traffic and potential conversions.
- Eliminate Broken Links: Use free resources like Google Webmaster Tools in order to identify and address any potential broken link that may exist over time. Doing so allows you to consolidate your site’s SEO equity/authority, as well as provide a better user experience.
- Get Caught Speeding: The concept of PageSpeed or how quickly your website loads is something that has become one of the more recognized ranking factors within Google’s algorithm. Use Google’s free PageSpeed Tool in order to continuously assess and monitor your site’s load time, as well as address whatever issues it identifies.
- Don’t Forget Your Metadata: Although the value of metadata has diminished over time in terms of influencing rankings, they are still a core aspect of your site’s technical structure and have an influence over how consumers engage your brand from search engine result pages (SERPS).Make sure you align with the following best practices:
- Less than 65-70 characters
- Use a primary term or phrase that directly relates to the main subject of each landing page, followed by your brand’s name that’s separated with a “|” pipe filter e.g. SEO Services In Portland | Anvil
- Less than 156-160 characters
- Include primary keyterm(s)
- Include a call-to-action that uses an appropriate tone for the content that is being offered
- Not every blog article needs a unique description, but make sure you don’t use duplicate versions for multiple forms of content
- Word Count Matters: A number of credible studies show that there is a direct correlation between length and depth of information and visibility, rankings, and conversions.Make sure each of your blog articles contain at least 550 words of unique information, while landing pages should be at least 1,500 words.
- Don’t Over Optimize: The idea of inserting a dozen internal links that direct users to each of your services or offerings may sound good, but it’s awful from an SEO perspective.Content that contains excessive volumes of links are seen by search engines as “over optimized” or as malicious in terms of trying to increase your rankings by working with the concept of quantity over quality.An ideal ratio of text to internal/external links is 1 for every 400 words.Also, make sure to avoid the temptation of cramming awkward keyphrases throughout your article, like “Portland SEO,” opposed to “SEO Services that are available to Portland businesses.”
The Social Factor
- Share, Share, Share: It should go without saying that every form of content you create for your website should be shared across each of your owned social media profiles/platforms.Doing so gives you an opportunity to:
- Accelerate word-of-mouth advertising
- Increase your backlink portfolio
- Increase immediate visibility within SERPS
- Increase conversion opportunities
- Build Your Followers Each Week: Spend 15 minutes a week identifying relevant social connections that are interested in groups, organizations, and even competitors dedicated to your business or vertical.Speak directly to them, share relevant content that aligns with their interests/needs, and ask them to follow you back.Over time, this simple approach to follower growth will lead to new connections each and every month.
- Share Your Content At The Right Time: Knowing when your traffic and social audiences are most active throughout the day allows you to capitalize on mass interest, which in turn affords you the ability to maximize your own traffic.Use free tools like Google Analytics and Facebook Insights to map out your social sharing efforts.