It’s now become pretty common knowledge that one of the best ways to increase brand exposure is through content marketing. However, the best content in the world won’t help you generate leads unless the public is able to discover it in the first place.
This is where search engine optimization (SEO) comes in. By optimizing your content for search, you can ensure that more people will find – and potentially engage with – your organization.
Here are a few ways to raise your content’s SEO value.
1. Use Keywords Effectively
75% of Internet users never scroll past the first page of search results, which means you’ll need to get on that first page to capture people’s attention. One of the best ways to do this is by coming up with strong keywords that people looking for information about your niche would use when searching.
Chances are you’re already naturally including keywords in your content, since you’re providing information about a topic. However, there are often keywords you haven’t considered that can help you get higher in search rankings.
Try brainstorming what kinds of language potential customers might use to ask questions or describe problems associated with your product or service. Think about relevant topics to your industry, and then create a list of potential keywords for each topic. You can also use keyword research tools like the Google Adwords Keyword Tool to come up with your keyword lists. At that point, you can optimize your content for relevant keywords.
A good rule of thumb is to keep your focus on just one or two keywords per piece of content. This will help you keep the focus of your content narrow enough to make it easier to place keywords in strategic locations – like thefirst 65 characters of your headline – and avoid keyword stuffing.
2. Optimize Multiple Features
Along with the beginning of your headline, there are a few other strategic locations to place your keywords in order to help you best increase the SEO value of your content.
For instance, one of the easiest – but often overlooked – areas to optimize your content is in the URL. Having a clear, simple URL with a keyword or two will help search engines easily figure out what’s on the page, making it more likely that your content will appear higher up in search results.
You should also take into account your post length when putting up written content. Although Google tends to prioritize long articles over shorter ones, which means that you should have at least 300 words or so, overly long posts can turn off potential readers. This means articles should be somewhere around 700 words, and you should try to put keywords in about 1 – 2% of your text.
Finally, images are a great way to not only make your content aesthetically pleasing, but also boost your content’s SEO value. When you upload a photo, include keywords in the file name and fill out the alt text field with a brief description that includes a lot of those same keywords. Alt text is how search engines understand what an image is about, so filling it with keywords will help your content sit higher in the search rankings. Since93% of online experiences begin with a search engine, this is extremely valuable to getting more eyes on your website.
3. Use Links To Reference Others
Out of the top results on a Google search page, about99% of the websites have at least one external link. It’s important to place internal and external links in your content to increase its SEO value.
Internal links are helpful because they help search engines index your site, pick up on your main keywords, and overall improve the pagerank of the pages that you link. Basically, it brings other relevant content you’ve produced to the attention of search engines, giving you more bang for your buck than keeping everything separate.
External links lead to pages outside your website, which have a couple of uses. For one, they help search engines identify important keywords. More importantly, they help you gather incoming links from other websites as those content creators see you link to them. It’s generally good etiquette to provide someone with a link who links to them, especially if the content is related.
Although in an ideal world great content would be all you need to reach a wide audience, the reality is that you’ll need strong SEO strategies to expose your website to viewers in the first place. By paying attention to certain SEO techniques, you will be on your way to boosting your content and boosting your marketing ROI.
What are some other useful ways you’ve been able to boost your content’s SEO value?