The repetition of keywords over and over throughout your content and meta data once meant better rankings on Google. Those days are long gone. Although keywords are still relevant in today’s SEO sphere, the way they are being utilized in content creation has changed.
Google has become a lot better at understanding how users interact with the websites they are viewing. High quality, relevant content here is key. It’s often easy to tell when you’re are being pitched a product or service by an overly aggressive sales article. Instead, investing in content that is more user or audience based than brand based will be more beneficial, as users are more likely to engage with content that feels natural as opposed “salesy.”
The quality of the content ultimately affects user engagement. While engagement isn’t always easily measurable, it is highly valuable – both for you and in the eyes of the search engines. Writing useful, informative and interesting content that targets your specific keywords, will likely encourage people to promote it, share it and link back to it – all of which boosts your authority on the subject, and tells search engines like Google “Hey, look! This person knows what they’re talking about!” From start to finish, your content must be compelling. This includes a captivating headline, which will make readers want to read more (but avoid click bait!). Remember – a high rank doesn’t matter at all if your audience is not happy with their onsite experience.
Incorporating unique and relevant images and videos alongside your text content, can make your content much more user-experience focused, which can also help increase engagement. In 2016, a whopping 73% of content-creators are prioritizing creating more engaging content, and 55% are prioritizing more visual content. Think of some of the websites you visit regularly, how many are purely text based? My guess is not that many. The ones that consistently rank highly and most likely have a high engagement rate and high number of returning users are those with elements like quizzes, videos and images (Buzzfeed). Some of these quizzes may not have a particularly high word count, but they are entertaining, engaging and most of all, audience based. This leads to people sharing them all over social media, which ultimately boosts rankings.
Don’t let all that effort go to waste by not marketing it properly. As the old adage goes “What people say about you is more important than what you say about yourself”, and this is never truer than when it comes to trying to get your content to rank highly.
Google wants to know that other people are linking to you, and that they are using keywords related to your content in their link anchor text. This ties back to your keywords in your content. If what you’re writing about isn’t clear, people won’t be using the right words to link back to you. Making it public and sharing on social media is a great way to make people aware of your content.
Blog posts are an ideal way to focus on more long tail phrases, which really delve into the specifics of your topic or product. In fact, 52% of consumers say that reading blogs about certain products has impacted their decision to purchase and 19% of beauty buyers who make purchases based on blog reviews or posts say that they originally found the content via search. This doesn’t just apply to ecommerce, as 57% of marketers say they have gained new clients from blog posts, which just goes to show that content is relevant no matter what field you’re in.
The three main things to remember when creating content for your site are: quality, uniqueness and relevance. If you hit all three of these targets with your content, your visitors will be happy and more likely to share or link back to it. No one wants to link to poor-quality, repetitive and completely irrelevant content, be it stuffed full of keywords or not.