The recipe for the best SEO strategy?
It’s a familiar read!
Take a base of keyword research. Throw in a dash of on-page optimisation. A healthy portion of content, and a sprinkling of link building.
And you’re ready to serve.
But for the same reason we choose to dine out, effective SEO strategies that achieve long term ranking success always include a few special ingredients that truly set them apart.
Special ingredients that ensure we come back time and time again.
The Michelin star chefs of the SEO world make this look so easy! If only you could get your hands on their ingredients list…
Well today’s your lucky day, as we dive into a few things we can vouch work ‘top-notch’, but are often forgotten when it comes to developing effective content.
Three overlooked ingredients that’ve helped us gain #1 positions in Google search and increased traffic 10 fold.
Ingredients that have helped us gain back links from the likes of mashable.com and wikipedia.org (DA 95+ websites).
By seasoning your SEO with these 3 ingredients, you can take your SEO strategy from drab to delicious. Maximising your business’ potential to generate new leads, boost traffic, and most importantly of all? Build authority backlinks.
All vital ingredients to increasing your ranking in search.
Ready to start? Let’s get cooking!
Ingredient #1. Cook Up Content Your Audience Is Hungry For
Content is a major ingredient for any website wanting to rank highly for competitive keywords.
Yet like the filling of a pie, even the finest herbs and spices can’t make the wrong content taste right.
What do I mean by this?
Let me explain:
A new blog has just launched, with the aim of being the go-to ‘sauce’ – pardon the pun! – for all things steak.
Let’s call them Seriously Steak.
While competition is…’rare‘…similar food sites are bustling with readers. What’s to stop Seriously Steak from gaining a following of their own?
Set on taking that #1 spot in Google, they’re going to devote time to cooking up some ‘juicy’ content.
Six months on? Seriously Steak are languishing in the forgotten reaches of Google’s search results. A place usually reserved for the Angelfire Blogs and Geocities sites of yesteryear.
So what went wrong here?
A glance at their content should give you a hint: they’ve been writing about salads!
Can you see the problem here? They weren’t serving up the content their target market would be interested in!
The ‘takeaway’ – puns aside – is that while it may not be sound dietary advice, when it comes to content, skip the salad! If your audience wants steak? Give them steak!
Researching Content Topics
How do you find a new place to eat?
Like most, you grab your phone. And within minutes, you’ve:
- Googled a list of local restaurants.
- Read eight barely legible Yelp reviews.
- Browsed four different menus.
- Decided that leftovers and Netflix sound more your style.
The lure of Netflix aside, the act of finding new places to eat couldn’t be easier.
If only finding ideas for your content were this easy…
Actually? It can be!
And here’s how:
By using the following tools, you’ll find the surefire recipes other websites are following to create content around the topics and keywords that matter to you. By doing so? You’ll be able to cook up irresistible content of your own.
Best of all? It’s entirely free!
Up first… Buzzsumo
Buzzsumo is the quickest way to find inspiration for your next piece of content. By using it effectively, you can find the content with the highest # of social shares around a given keyword or topic!
By why cover these topics?
It’s simple. There is no shortage of topics for blog content, however we want to find topics which people actually care about.
What people search for in terms of keywords is helpful.. which topics people share (and probably link to) is equally important to know.
Here’s how you find out:
- Head over to Buzzsumo.
- Plug in a keyword/s that relates to your niche.
Tip: As we’re looking for content, it’s important to use content-centric variations of your existing SEO keywords here. An Accounting Firm may search for ‘Accounting tips’, or ‘Business accounting guide’. Rather than just ‘Accounting’.
- Buzzsumo will sort the results by the total number of social shares each piece of content has received. This includes shares via Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+. As shown below:
Tip: Want to get a better idea of the bigger content picture? You can view results from the past year by selecting ‘Past Year’ in the ‘Filter By Date’ box located in the top-left of the page.
Alltop makes it easy to see what the internet’s top sites are cooking up in their content kitchens.
If you find a common topic being written about by these sites? Then it’s probably worth exploring further!
And finding them is easy. Just:
- Head over to Alltop.
- Plug in a keyword/s into the Alltop search bar.
- You’ll be presented with a list of ‘tags’ that relate to the keyword/s you searched with. Alltop doesn’t always have a direct match to your keyword, so choose one that’s cloest to what you’re looking for.
- Alltop will display the top sites – and their posts – for this ‘tag’, as well as the top 5 most popular stories across all of these.
On Site Explorer (OSE)
By using MOZ’s Open Site Explorer (OSE) you can take a peek at your competitors and discover their best-performing content.
- Head over to Moz OSE.
- Plug in the URL of a website you’d like to explore in more detail.
Tip: Don’t know where to start? Try using the URLs of some of the more relevant sites you saw while searching with Buzzsumo and Alltop.
- Choose ‘Top Pages’ from the menu on the left.
- OSE will display a list of the given site’s top pages. The pages that have been linked to the most. You’ll find a number of generic pages here – including contact, service and home pages – but dig deep enough and you’ll also find more than a few content pages. Pages that could hold the secret to your next piece of killer content!
Ingredient #2. Make Your Content Irresistible
Creating any old content is easy.
Creating irresistible content that readers, blogs and sites just can’t stop talking about? You’ll need to use some finer ingredients.
Think of it this way:
You’re browsing the store for ingredients for the night’s meal. Sure, you could choose a haphazard mix of ingredients and toss them in your basket. But when it comes to the eating? It’s the quality of the ingredients as much as the recipe itself that can truly make your dish sing!
And the same goes for your content.
By using the right ingredients, you can consistently create irresistible content that works to engage visitors, gets shared and shifts your Google ranking into overdrive.
In doing so, you can also quickly become the go-to expert in your niche.
So how do you do this?
Simply sprinkle a few of these extras in when you’re next creating content:
Provide Practical, Reputable Content
Recipes are one of the most popular forms of online content.
Because they’re just so damn practical!
By creating practical content, you’ll be providing worthwhile resources that will not only build your reputation as an expert, but can continue to gain links and social credibility.
For that extra something special? Back up your claims and ideas with hard facts and figures. People have grown wary of what they read online. If you can convince them that you’re a trustworthy source of information? They’ll be back for seconds and thirds.
Cook Up A Banquet
Microscopic portions might be all the rage in fine-dining restaurants.
But when it comes to your content? The bigger the better.
Readers are hungry for quality, lengthy content. They’re starved for it, in fact!
By creating lengthy content, you’ll impart a sense of awe in your readers. Making them that much more likely to share your content.
Create A Feast For The Eyes
They say good food is as much about presentation as it is taste.
What does this mean for your content? Make it a feast for the eyes!
Stats show that content with a higher emotional value gets shared WAY MORE than content without.
If images can speak 1000 works – let’s use this to our advantage!
In a saturated internet environment, standing out is key.
By focussing on layout, design, visual impact as well as images and video, you’ll break up that lengthy wall of text and tap into the benefits of driving emotional value with your content
Ingredient #3. Promote Your Content Via Outreach
So you’ve cooked up some killer content.
But, where is the traffic?
Possibly the most overlooked part of content marketing and SEO strategy is….
failing to promote your content.
It’s time to get the word out using some good old fashioned outreach. With a twist!
Ranking With Your Resources Via Broken Link Building
Created a killer resource? Seeking out sites with broken links to similar content can be one of the most effective methods of building quality backlinks to your site.
Backlinks that can put your site on the road to ranking success.
- Finding viable sites isn’t too different to locating Guest Posting opportunities. Though as we’re looking for sites with resource lists or links pages, use some of the search queries below instead:
- ‘[Keyword] + intitle:links’
- ‘[Keyword] + intitle:resources’
- ‘[Keyword] + “useful links”
- ‘[Keyword] + “helpful resources”
- Here’s a few more..
- ‘[Keyword] + intitle:links’
- Compile a list of the sites that you find with links or resource pages.
Not only will this save time, but it’ll be that much easier to sort through and find reputable, high-ranking sites you’d like links from.
- Once you’ve compiled a list, check each links or resource page with Check My Links.
- Check My Links will highlight broken links in Red. Sort through these and find any that link to a resource that your newer, fresher, tastier content could replace.
Tip: Use the Wayback Machine to see just what these broken links point to. Not only can you ensure your content would be a good fit, but you can tailor your content to give you a better chance of a successful link replacement.
- Reach out! The best part about Broken Link Building is that you’re already helping the site owner before you ask for something in return. Which makes outreach that much easier.
Tip: Unsure of how best to make contact? Check out these outreach templates for some ideas.
You’ve heard from us, now we’d love to hear from you! Are there any essential ingredients on your SEO recipe that you couldn’t go without? Let us know in the comments below!Digital & Social Articles on Business 2 Community