There is a reason behind the connotation, Content is King. Ever since Google updated to the algorithm Panda in February 2011, thin, duplicate, and low-quality content has taken a beating.
Similarly, high ad-to-content ratio and content farming have become unsustainable practices for businesses trying to rank higher in Google search results. This is what makes Content Marketing even more important than ever before.
However, Content Marketing itself is challenging to do justice to, because it involves both a technical and strategic approach. This is why it is best to rely on an experienced, professional marketing agency to do the job for you.
The Evolution of Search Engine Algorithms
Until a few years ago, SEO and content marketing processes were considered somewhat discrete. Each was believed to focus on and be supported by different parameters that did not interact with each other frequently.
However, the evolution of SEO and its close relationship with content marketing emerged after Google’s algorithm updates. Search engines now prioritize content on a given search query, because they aim to provide the best quality answers to every type of question. This has become the root of SEO – optimizing content in a way that more people find it useful when it ends up in their search results.
This also means that if your content is not the best answer to a search query, it might not land up on top of the millions of competitive content pieces on the web. Not surprisingly, 90.63% of web pages get no organic search traffic from Google. It is here that Content Marketing emerges as the best solution for greater visibility.
What is Content Marketing?
Content Marketing refers to the collective process of growing and generating web traffic by creating, publishing, and promoting audience-focussed content. The basis of Content Marketing is a healthy collaboration between Content and SEO.
This is because you want to offer higher value to your online viewers and also let search engine algorithms decide your content value. The goal is to add value to customers and leads through inbound marketing; the audience comes across your search-engine optimized content when they enter a query, instead of being actively pitched to.
Content Marketing differs from traditional marketing tactics like advertising. It showcases your strengths, expertise and ownership through great content in online marketing activities. This could comprise creating and promoting any form of online content – blogs, social media posts, infographics, videos, and so on.
The practice of Content Marketing might not necessarily promote a brand, but certainly tries to stimulate some interest in its products and services.
The Importance of Content Marketing for SEO
You might be aware of the fact that SEO drives 1000%+ more traffic than other organic tactics, such as social media and email marketing. Poor content practices have a direct negative impact on SEO, as was witnessed in June 2019, when The Daily Mail lost 50% web traffic due to the high ad-to-content ratio and low-quality content.
For search engines like Google, the increased focus on user interest has led to the game-changing impact of quality content. In 2018, Google added an entire section on Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness (EAT) to its Search Quality guidelines. These are all the reasons who content marketing is so important to SEO.
Let us dig a little deeper.
Search Engines reward Websites that Answer Public’s Questions
While it is important to produce great content, it will produce measurable results only when it is addressed to what people are searching for.
Search engines are looking for content that offers real and demonstrable value to audiences. Whether it is a very specific query or targets the community as a whole, content must be both superior in quality and relevant to the viewer.
Since Content Marketing focuses on both content excellence and user intent, it actually helps search engines deliver quality answers to customers. At the same time, it offers the freedom to test and choose what type of stories make an impact, stand apart from the crowd of competitors and earn top ranks in Google’s SERP.
People are Consuming Content Constantly
Internet users, which includes both your customers, potential customers, and other audiences, are spending over 20% of their time-consuming content online. Around 70% of them are reading or viewing stories from brands that interest them.
This is because the content is helping them learn, compare and discuss. It is not an anomaly today to check our phones the first thing in the morning. The power of content has replaced our morning newspapers, phone calls, libraries and even brand recommendations.
This is why Content Marketing has assumed a significant role. You win when you respond to the needs and trends of the market through custom content. Your focus shifts to promoting not your brand but for your content, because that is how customers are more likely to find you and remember you for long.
More Content = More Keywords
Search engines do not see and rank “websites” as we do. They are looking for keywords in headlines, copies, alt text descriptions, meta tags, and so on.
Articles, blogs, guides, or other forms of written content help you use and include more keywords. Thus, you increase the probability of catching the search engine’s eye.
Great Content can keep Users Longer on Your Page
Google prefers longer content. Studies suggest that the top-ranking pages on Google’s SERP (search engine result pages) also have a higher amount of content. The average content length of top-ranking pages is often between 2300-2500 words long.
This is because detailed and informative content tends to fully answer the customer’s question while also presenting additional aspects to solve the pain point. Visitors appreciate content that is well-structured and substantial and spends more time on such pages. Clearly, such a content strategy translates to better SEO and higher rankings.
Content Marketing has gradually become the key to success for businesses trying to establish a solid digital presence. It helps brands connect with audiences on the pillars of relevance, value, and usefulness. Think of content marketing as a means to amplify your message and showcase your expertise, and it becomes clear how it is so important to SEO today.