Why Great Content is Critical to SEO
If you want to generate quality leads and high conversion rates of potential customers for your business, it’s important to understand why content is critical to SEO.
Conversely, you should also understand why SEO is also crucial to content in terms of reaching the intended audience. The synergy between the two creates a coherent and comprehensive marketing approach in online business.
Content marketing and SEO are sometimes treated as separate and even competing fields that require specialized attention, but the two are interdependent. One will not work as well without the other.
Web content such as blogs are written mainly for people – to answer a very real question a potential customer may have, to inform, entertain, and be of use. However, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t make it easier for spiderbots and web crawlers to go through your site – they make it easier for your target audience to find you, and that means your SEO will be more successful.
A quick content 101
It may sound like a cliché but content remains king – it dominates online marketing. All other marketing strategies like SEO, PPC, and social media marketing revolve around content. But what exactly is content and why content is critical to SEO?
Talking purely online, content can be any form of digital data that has some value to users. It could be articles, blogs, videos, software applications, infographics, artwork, podcasts or e-books, for example.
Content may serve any or all of the following purposes:
Various genres of entertainment can be found online. These include music, movies, quizzes, and online games. The value that this content provides is in terms of either relaxation or stimulation. This type of content is very attractive and appealing to your audience.
Inform or educate
Infographics, news, whitepapers, analytical articles, instructional videos, and webinars are examples of informative content. It’s typically more serious than entertaining, and provides answers to questions your audience may have. This type of content is especially important if you have high-tech products or services.
Success stories, community support forums, and motivational videos are some examples of inspirational content. Case studies and testimonials in particular are a great way of inspiring your audience as they are very relatable.
From political opinions to interactive demos, persuasive content seeks to convince your target audience to make a decision or take action. For instance, a freemium product offering may convince a potential customer to buy or subscribe after a one-month trial period.
Persuasive content may also be informative, entertaining, and inspiring at the same time.
Good quality content is ranked better by Google and other search engines, so SEO is dependent on good content.
Benefits of great content
Without great content, keywords and how high your page ranks on Google become all but useless. Even if your target audience and potential customers find your website because of good SEO, you probably won’t engage or convert them if your content is not what they want.
You need to know your audience before publishing any type of content. Your keywords must not only be relevant to the content but the content itself must be relevant to the audience.
Great content is critical to SEO because it:
Improves click-through rate
Click-through rate (CTR) is the ratio between the number of visitors who clicked on a link on a page and the number of page impressions, or people who saw your page. It measures the level of visitor engagement and persuasiveness of web content.
Great content can effectively persuade visitors to click on your links, and a higher CTR means better ranking for your website.
Helps generate backlinks
If you have useful and authoritative content, people will tend to link back to your content, for example in their blog posts or on social media. These backlinks are considered votes of confidence that allow your website to rank better on Google.
There are several ways to generate backlinks, such as through guest-blogging and podcasting. The more backlinks you have, the better. However, they must be from quality and credible sources that ideally already have an established audience and good domain authority.
You can strategically incorporate relevant keywords into your content. This will allow you to be more competitive within your industry as your website is likely to be more quickly indexed and ranked higher by Google.
Provides better user experience
Content refers to various digital elements on your website such as texts, graphics, navigation links, and videos. If these elements are well-organized and user-friendly, they improve user experience. In turn, website visitors may regularly come back and be converted into customers.
4 ways quality content can boost SEO
1. Better audience engagement
Quality content engages the right audience. This means that you do not simply create brand awareness for your target market but you are able to persuade them to buy or subscribe. Quality content can help sustain visitor interest, boost page views, reduce bounce rate, and encourage sharing.
2. The possibility of going viral
If you have interesting and entertaining content (we’ve all seen those cat videos), it has the potential to go viral – even if viral means only in your industry rather than globally. This creates not only brand awareness but boosts traffic to your website.
3. Higher conversions
Quality content attracts the right audience, who are already interested in what you have to say. This means that it can be easier to persuade website visitors to become paying customers or subscribers.
4. Customer loyalty
Once you have converted your website visitors into customers, ensuring long-term and regular transactions is easier if you have useful and relevant content. It’s not only a matter of being satisfied with the product or service you offer. It’s also about the after-sales experience and nurturing your relationships with customers through new, relevant content. It keeps them coming back for more.
How to create optimized content
Strategies for optimizing content vary depending on the type of content. For instance, some strategies for article content may not apply for video content. The bottom line for optimizing content is to enhance the user experience.
User experience can be improved if:
- The content can easily be found on Google
- The website loads in less than three seconds
- The webpage is compatible with both desktop and mobile devices
- The layout and navigation are user-friendly
- The page contains relevant and useful information
Some elements for optimizing content include meta-tags, keyword density, inbound links, outbound links, good layout, user-friendliness, interactive options, and fast page-load time. Almost all types of content require one or more of these elements.
Content is considered fully optimized if it appeals to both customers and Google. Firstly, it has to provide added value to your customers. Secondly, it has to be easily indexed by search engines. Finally, it must contribute to higher conversion rates.
SEO and content marketing work hand in hand. They complement each other. Check out our in-depth guide to content marketing here, and if you need help to drive more organic traffic to your website, let’s chat.