Let us not debate about the fact that content is king. The internet was created to facilitate the exchange of content. Sure, it has many other uses today — social media and e-commerce, to name a few — but the need for information remains at the heart of every online decision we make. We click on links, bookmark web pages, use search engines — all to find information that is relevant to our interests.
It should come as no surprise, then, that content is king, and that it also reigns supreme over search rankings. After all, the primary purpose of a search engine is to determine which website is the most relevant to the user’s query. The higher the number of quality content you have on your site, the more likely it is to appear at the top of search engines’ results pages when users make those searches.
Given the value of those user clicks, most websites today rely on Search Engine Optimization (SEO and even hire an SEO firm) to keep their sites search-friendly. One of the most important aspects of any online marketing approach is SEO. It determines whether your website will appear high in search results and hence, be noticed by more people. And what is the key to this? Well, we believe it’s high-quality content.
How to Use Content Marketing to Improve Your Search Rankings?
Below are some tips for beginners on how to use content marketing to improve your search rankings.
1. Create contents that are beneficial to your target audience
The main goal of content marketing is to pique your audience’s interest through articles that answer questions they may have and provide them with the information they require. This means that when you write a blog post or send out a newsletter, it shouldn’t come across as a sales pitch for your product. Rather, it should be a carefully considered and formed piece that will benefit your customers.
What do you believe your target audience would be interested in reading about? What are some of the most common questions you get from customers?
Create a list of the topics and questions you believe your target audience is interested in, and then start writing about them. This will allow your site to be of help when other users begin to ask the same questions or look for information on those topics.
2. Select the right keywords
When searching online, most users don’t take the time to write long phrases describing what they’re looking for. For example, instead of searching, “how can I get rid of this pimple? Which products should I use?”, they simply search for “pimple removal tips.”
It often comes down to keywords. It’s a good thing that online tools (like Google’s Keyword Planner, Ahrefs Keywords Explorer, Soovle, KeywordTool.io, and Jaaxy) are now available to assist you in figuring out which keywords your target audience is searching for.
Incorporating high-ranking keywords into your content improves its chances of ranking higher in search results. Brian Dean of Backlinko says that using the aforementioned keyword tools resulted in a 62.2 percent increase in his site’s organic traffic within six months.
Keep in mind that keywords should be utilized sparingly and within context, rather than strewn throughout each sentence you write. If you fail to do this, search engines may not tag your content as relevant but as spam.
Search engine algorithms can easily determine the frequency of a keyword and the existence of other useful terms within the article. So, in addition to choosing the proper keywords, make sure you employ them naturally.
3. Remember the basics of SEO
The fundamentals of on-page SEO (that is, SEO efforts that are limited to your website) are in place to lay the groundwork for a search-friendly site. These basics will give your content the extra push it needs, making it easier for online users to find them.
Here’s a quick rundown of the basics you shouldn’t overlook:
- Title tag. A search engine displays the page’s title tag when it lists your web page as a result. This will determine whether or not visitors will click through your site. So, ensure that your title tag is definitive of what these visitors can expect from the link. A keyword can even be placed on the title tag as long as it doesn’t come across as forced.
- Meta description. A brief overview or summary of your content can enhance the likelihood of a user clicking on your website. So, always remember to write a clear meta description to increase the likelihood of users visiting your site and reading through the content you are posted.
- Image Alt tag. The idea that a picture is worth a thousand words is very popular today. However, search engines are still unable to fully understand what your image is saying. You can make your pictures more search-friendly by adding image alt tags to perform as captions.
- Tagging. If you are managing a blog for your site, ensure that the entries are grouped or categorized through content tagging. This will make it easy for new readers to navigate through your blog, as clicking on a particular tag allows them to browse through the contents that are related to that topic.
4. Build inbound links to your posts
You’re probably aware that obtaining inbound links, also known as backlinks, is critical to a successful content marketing plan. The more links you obtain from other websites, especially high-quality links, the more Google views your website as a source of useful content.
You can build links to your site through several ways; email outreach is one. According to a study conducted by Brian Dean, 91.5 percent of outreach emails are discarded or ignored. However, Brian’s team also discovered that link-building outreach emails have a 21.9 percent response rate.
Reaching out to brands or people that already know you are one of the top methods for generating inbound links through email outreach. These brands or people may be following your LinkedIn account or may have mentioned you in their previous posts.
When reaching out to prospects, you may also consider their interests. Joining groups and communities on social media can help you gain access to others who may be interested in or who engage with the blog topics you typically write about.
Other Ways to Improve Your Search Rankings Through Content Marketing
Other than the tips already mentioned, some other ways with which you can improve your search rankings with content marketing are:
- Creating pillar pages and topic clusters
- Harnessing the power of internal linking
- Being a thought leader
Great content is the key to improving your search engine results. Content marketing will not only improve the chances of you gaining more customers and visitors to your website but also add value to the services and products your business offers.