How Content Marketing and SEO Relate in 2017
Content Marketing correlates directly with SEO
When it comes to digital marketing, many of us have a tendency to see things in black and white, technical SEO and heuristic based Content. The truth of the matter is, the best results come from a healthy combination of the two. Content and SEO are the ying and yang of a great web presence.
The first thing to keep in mind when thinking about the term Search Engine Optimization, is what are your customers/prospects actually looking for? The single best way to gain traction with Google is to simply be the best answer to a question. How is ice-cream made? What are good cloud solutions for logistics companies? Should my team invest in a new project management platform?
Creating quality content that is helpful and specifically targeted to an audience will naturally bring in visitors and lend itself to visitors that stay longer. This in turn helps reduce your bounce rate, which is important because a high bounce rate can penalize you in the Google search algorithm. Bounce rate is a measure of how many people visit your site, and immediately click right back out. Many websites average bounce rates nearing 75%. This means that ¾ people that visit a website find it unhelpful, boring, or incorrect. Yikes!
The second way that quality content directly impacts SEO is through keywords. Long gone are the days when spam websites could simply keyword certain terms into their site and hope for thousands of visitors. Google now uses a very advanced semantic search process. This means that Google is focusing on context and intent.
So, if you are creating content that targets certain keywords in the URL, headline, meta description, and first 100 words of text; AND is highly helpful, search engine rankings will reflect that. Otherwise, your site may be written off as irrelevant and pushed into the abyss that is the back pages of Google.
The last thing to remember about the integration of content and SEO is that not all traffic is created equal. There are four main types of internet traffic: paid, organic, referral, and direct.
Direct traffic is when somebody simply types your URL into their search bar. This is the worst type of traffic because Google gives you almost no credit for it.
Paid traffic is any traffic that you gain through advertisements. This type of visit matters more than direct traffic, but only a little bit.
Referral traffic refers to any visitors you gain through inbound links. This is very important because each unique backlink that gets created tells crawlers that your website is generating useful information that other people are using and referencing. Good content will often be shared many times over.
Organic traffic is when people click directly to your site after typing a query into Google. This is the most powerful type of traffic, but also the hardest to gain. Creating many inbound links will help move your site up in the rankings and allow users more opportunities to organically find you.
Crafting a web strategy can be a difficult aspect of business, but it’s important to remember that: 1. Nobody can hear you if you are shouting into a void (i.e. your content is not optimized), and 2. Nobody will listen if what you are saying is boring, irrelevant, or poorly created (i.e. your content is weak). The best marketing strategies revolve around creating high quality content and then using SEO and distribution techniques to help visitors find it.