Content marketing and search engine optimisation (SEO) are both important pillars of digital strategy. 75% of users don’t scroll past the first page of Google search engine result pages (SERPs). Adding SEO into your content marketing strategy will generate favourable results and is essential for organisations to compete in this digital landscape. However, most digital marketers see them as two distinctive practices. This leads to missed opportunities to attract traffic to your website.
Content marketing is referred to as, “a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly defined audience — and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action”.
It’s a great way to communicate relevant information to your target audience that delivers meaningful results. Content can be used in building customer loyalty, by demonstrating thought leadership and useful answers to your customers’ questions. If done effectively, content marketing can be highly profitable in the long and short term for businesses.
Every organisation should have clear business and marketing goals. Content can be used throughout the sales and marketing funnel. From building online visibility through various channels at the initial stage of sparking interest, through to conversions.
Content spans various mediums, channels and will differ depending on what you’re setting out to achieve, whether your aim is to:
Content marketing is beneficial industry-wide and often underpins multiple digital strategies, including:
SEO or Search Engine Optimisation is the marketing tactic of increasing the quantity and quality of traffic to your website from organic search results on search engines, like Google, Bing or Yahoo. This can also be referred as “free” or “natural” traffic. To achieve this, there are different techniques digital marketers can use and some can be technical, such as: enhancing metadata, utilising appropriate tags, constructing strategic sitemaps, fixing broken links, just to name a few.
Along with these, an essential part of SEO practice is to optimise your website for your most valuable keywords. This will increase your organic rank for the same keywords and how content marketing helps SEO strategy.
How can content marketing boost your SERPs ranking?
Your organisation’s marketing team could have written the most exciting and engaging piece of content ever created. However, what’s the point if it doesn’t show up for any of the 3.5 billion searches that occur every day?
As simple as it sounds, driving traffic to your website is done by optimising content with relevant keywords that prospecting customers are searching for on a search engine – and really by a search engine we predominantly are talking about Google. Google is used for almost all (94%) search engine traffic, so when it comes to SEO, organisation will benefit most from following their guidelines.
This will increase your organisations visibility for the keywords you want to rank for. Google crawls that content and will rank it based on its relevancy, quality and usefulness. Google will reward great content.
Prioritising content marketing in your SEO strategy will provide new, informative pieces of content that employs your most valuable keywords. Rather than over-optimising your existing content, which will eventually affect your search ranking negatively, content marketing will add value to your website. More importantly, Google likes new, updated content. Freshly published content gets rapidly indexed and contributes to improve your ranking. The more content added, strategically set around your most valuable keywords, improves your SEO ranking.
Valuable content produces backlinks
Content marketing helps businesses spread their sought-after organic keywords through their websites in an engaging, valuable way, it can also increase the number of backlinks. This will eventually lead to the improvement of your domain authority (DA).
Domain authority from Google’s point of view is the equivalent of a business’ reputation. It’s scored between 1-100 and the higher the DA, the more reliable and relevant Google perceives the website and its content. Great content and high-quality backlinks are the key to boosting your score, and in-turn being rewarded by appearing on the first page of Google SERPs.
If your website content is valuable, other websites will link back to it. Sometimes an extra bit of help is needed in order to promote your content and achieve some backlinks, this includes digital PR, social media amplification or outreach activity.
Once again, this can only be achievable if you have a content marketing strategy that will allow you to produce valuable, engaging content that is worth link back to.
There are four simple steps that organisations should follow to ensure a successful digital strategy.
1. Set objectives
First and foremost, identify and set the right goals for both SEO and content marketing. Ensure they’re both working towards the same results and are easily measurable, (for example, to increase web traffic and conversion rates).
2. Keyword research
Secondly, understand your target audience and their journey. Start researching keywords that your target audience may be searching for, this will help you produce content that is relevant. This helps you better understand their journey and will help identify the keywords you need to rank for. Industry digital marketing tools such as SEMrush, Moz and Keyword Planner are a great way to research: search volume, competition and average bid costs. These tools will give you a starting point or topic when writing content.
3. Optimise your content
Create SEO friendly content that considers keywords, search volume and interest. But also make sure it’s optimised for mobile devices. Ensure that all on-page SEO factors are successfully implemented, such as: internal links, title tags, headers, meta descriptions, keywords optimisation, alt tags and content quality. This will ensure that the content will rank higher in SERPs.
Finally, promote your content on social media and through digital PR activity. If you want to go the extra mile, think about outreach content or guest posting in order to transform your content marketing effort into high quality backlinks.
It’s important that marketers bridge the gap between SEO and content marketing, merging both strategies into one. This will lead to greater conversions and leads from organic website traffic, resulting in a better ROI.
Achieving the best results from content marketing and Sitecore SEO isn’t so straightforward without the right tools and expertise. UNRVLD’s award-winning search marketing team has extensive experience in helping leading enterprises with their digital strategy.