How Content Marketing Helps SEO?

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When it comes to digital marketing, two pivotal elements are crucial in driving visibility and engagement: Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and content marketing. However, a surprising amount of business owners only take on one, and if they do action both, these initiatives are often done as separate marketing efforts.

In truth, SEO and content marketing go hand-in-hand — and they’re significantly more powerful together. These components not only coexist, but synergise to enhance your online presence.

How SEO & content marketing work together?

It’s a cliché because it’s true — teamwork makes the dream work! While SEO aims to increase visibility and drive traffic to your website through search engines, content marketing focuses on engaging and retaining this traffic through compelling content. Together, they enhance the reach and impact of your digital marketing efforts, and ultimately improve search engine rankings (SEO’s core purpose).

Here’s a closer look at the main synergies and benefits.

Natural keyword integration.

SEO relies heavily on relevant keywords to attract search traffic, but “keyword stuffing” as an SEO technique is out (and Google will penalise you for doing this). Through content marketing, you can target specific phrases and terms that your audience is searching for, embedding these keywords naturally within articles, blogs, and guides. The “natural” component is essential for driving connections with people, not just ticking the SEO box. In doing so, you increase the chances that your pages will organically rank higher in search engine results.

Rich, relevant, fresh content.

Ever notice how Wikipedia is the number one result for… basically everything? Search engines favour websites that offer rich, researched, varied, and updated content. By continually producing articles, blogs, videos, and other media, content marketing keeps a website dynamic and appealing to search engines and visitors.

Quality link building.

Quality content is more likely to be shared and cited by other websites, and will naturally attract links from other businesses — which are crucial for SEO. These backlinks act as “endorsements”, telling search engines that your content is credible, valuable, and authoritative, which boosts your site’s credibility and rankings.

Enhanced user engagement.

Search engines use engagement metrics as indicators of content quality, often rewarding engaging sites with better rankings. Effective content marketing captivates and engages readers, which increases the time they spend on your site. The longer they stay, the lower the bounce rate, which is a positive signal to search engines (and a measurable KPI) regarding the quality and relevance of your site. When content only appeals to search engines (and not real people), you’re left with high bounce rates and unengaged, frustrated visitors. After one or two bad digital experiences, users are more likely to go out of their way to avoid your website, leading to missed opportunities or sales.

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Leveraging content marketing for SEO.

So, now you know strategic content creation and management directly contribute to improved SEO. We’ve covered the “why”, but we know you’re itching for the “how”. If you’re new to the world of content marketing, the below strategies have been tried and tested by us.

1. Do detailed keyword research.

Keyword research lays the foundations for content marketing by identifying the terms and phrases that potential customers are using to search for products or services like yours. By understanding these keywords, you can tailor your content to match user needs, increasing the relevance and visibility of your content.

There are paid and free tools you can utilise for keyword research — the most popular ones are Google Keyword Planner, SEMrush, Ahrefs, and Moz. These provide insights into keyword volume, competition, trends, and more.

2. Optimise content for SEO.

On-page SEO is essential for making your content more visible and readable by search engines. Several key techniques include:

  • Meta tags (unique and relevant title tags and meta descriptions) are essential for each page. They aid search engines in understanding the content of your pages and also facilitate the display of snippets in search results.
  • Title headings (H1, H2, H3) structure your content effectively. Incorporate primary keywords into your headings (especially the H1) to highlight the main topic of the page so search engines can see what your individual website pages or blogs are about.
  • Internal linking to other relevant content on your site helps search engines in discovering new pages. This also helps in distributing page authority across your site, improving the SEO performance of individual pages.

3. Choose content mediums that perform well for SEO.

Different content mediums serve various purposes in your SEO strategy, such as appealing to specific audience types or stakeholders or pushing content out through different channels. Identifying which one you should use for which goal is key. There are three primary content marketing categories, each with a clear format and specific benefits:

  • Blogs are versatile and informative across any industry. They can target keywords and engage users, encouraging them to spend more time on your site.
  • Videos are highly engaging and can keep visitors on your page longer, which is a positive signal to search engines. Videos also appear in some search results, increasing visibility.
  • Infographics provide large quantities of information in an easily digestible “snapshot” format. Infographics are ideal for link building as they’re frequently shared across the web.

4. Utilise content types that perform well for SEO.

Within the medium categories, certain types of content tend to rank better. For example, long-form blog content (1,000 words or more) often ranks well because it provides comprehensive information and covers topics in-depth, which attracts more backlinks and user engagement. Educational content, such as how-to guides and tutorials, also performs well because it directly answers user queries. This could be presented through blogs or video platforms.

Measuring the impact of content marketing on SEO.

It’s impossible to know whether your content marketing is boosting SEO if you don’t track and measure your efforts. While SEO is a long-term endeavour and results can take months to show, you can immediately start tracking changes in your website metrics. Tools like Google Search Console, Google Analytics, SEMrush, and Ahrefs give performance data that will help you understand how your content marketing impacts your SEO. With it, you can continually refine your strategies for better results.

Review analytics & performance data.

Focus on KPIs that provide insights into how your content is performing in search engine results and with your audience. Three examples are organic traffic, Search Engine Results Page (SERP) rankings, and engagement metrics.

  • Organic traffic measures the number of visitors coming to your site from search engines. An increase here likely indicates that your content is well-optimised and relevant to what users are searching for.
  • SERP rankings indicate the position of your website’s content on search results. For example, a particular page might appear as the eighth Google search result when a specific keyword is searched for, but suddenly moves up to number five. Tracking changes in rankings can help you understand the effectiveness of your SEO and content marketing strategies.
  • Engagement metrics cover average session duration, pages per session, and bounce rate. High and increasing engagement rates are often a sign that your content is resonating with readers, encouraging them to explore more of your site.
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Content marketing and SEO Pitfalls to avoid.

Successfully integrating content marketing with SEO requires a balanced approach that focuses on quality, user experience, and adherence to ethical SEO practices. By understanding and navigating four common pitfalls, you can enhance your online presence and achieve sustainable success in digital marketing efforts.

  1. Focusing solely on SEO at the expense of user experience is something we see far too often. Websites that are hard to navigate, lack content, load slowly, or are not mobile-friendly will drive users away, negatively impacting SEO rankings.
  2. Choosing quantity over quality can harm your brand’s credibility and authority. Large volumes of low quality content are less likely to earn backlinks and can decrease user engagement, both critical factors for SEO success.
  3. Using shortcuts or “black-hat” SEO techniques like keyword stuffing, cloaking, or using private link networks can lead to penalties from search engines. Search engines have sophisticated systems that detect manipulative tactics, and penalties can range from a drop in rankings to being completely de-indexed from search results. This leads to a huge loss in traffic and, consequently, revenue.
  4. Attempting SEO without a strong content marketing strategy often leads to dry, misaligned, and unengaging content. Content marketing provides the substance that attracts and engages users, which is a critical factor that search engines consider when ranking sites. Without engaging content, websites struggle to achieve meaningful interaction (shares, comments, and return visits), and this tells search engines that a website lacks relevance or value.

Ignite your SEO efforts with engaging content marketing.

When SEO and content marketing work together, enhanced search visibility brings more visitors while compelling content keeps them engaged and coming back for more. This relationship not only maximises the reach of your content but also strengthens the overall effectiveness of your digital marketing strategy.To unleash the full potential of your business with quality SEO and value-giving content, reach out to Catalyst Content. Book a free 15-minute consult call today and see what’s possible with this no pressure, obligation-free conversation.

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