SEO Content Strategy: How to Bring Humans & Search Bots Together
This is no news that content is the most fruitful way of gaining organic traffic by providing customers solutions to their search queries. However, designing an SEO strategy that caters to both the search bots and the consumers’ needs is equally important. SEO content strategy is essential for every business, even though most marketers believe if they have well-written and helpful content, they do not require an SEO content strategy.
Most companies focus on either extremely keyword-forward SEO or entirely ignore SEO to provide useful information to their consumers in the name of content marketing. However, this is precisely where most content strategies fail to impress search algorithms/bots and viewers. Creating content that brings humans and search bots together is an extremely crucial task that marketers should successfully carry out to generate expected results.
All this is achievable with thorough audience research and quantitative search data. Striking the right balance between SEO and content strategy is one way you can connect every piece of content to your consumers.
Why Do You Need to Bring SEO and Content Strategy Together?
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is necessary for your website and brand visibility because, at the end of the day, what you need from beautifully put-out content is results in the form of conversions and traffic. And without SEO, all these efforts will go in vain because no one can find you when they search for products similar to yours on a search engine. Hence, the ultimate goals of needing SEO for your website content are relevancy and a higher rank in the search engine result pages (SERPs).
If you don’t want to believe the words, here is data showing how SEO is essential for digital marketing to satisfy search bots-
- Organic searches are the primary source of business for B2B businesses, and Google alone counts over 2 trillion searches per year.
- According to a study conducted by SEMRush, 78% of marketers who believe they have a well-developed content strategy were highly successful in 2021.
- According to a study, 89% of marketers investing in SEO and content marketing rely on SEO as their most-effective content distribution channel.
- Another study also revealed that most internet users only click on the results available on the first page of searches and don’t even navigate to the second page. Moreover, the first page linked in the searches takes the trophy home with over 25% more clicks.
What we can conclude from the data above is that SEO and content strategy work the best when they go hand in hand to produce results that give investors ROIs. Other conclusions made from the above studies are-
#1- Organic searches are the primary means to grow businesses, especially B2B.
#2- More and more companies are showing interest in SEO and content strategy since a high percentage are investing in it.
#3- Companies investing in content marketing need to analyze their results to see the efficacy of their approach.
What Is an SEO Content Strategy and Why Do You Need It?
First and foremost, you need to understand what an SEO content strategy is. It is planning for your valuable content that addresses a few key questions, including –
- Who is searching for you or services similar to yours?
- What are their pain points?
- How can you provide solutions to their pain points?
- How will you conduct the required analysis of your progress?
Understanding the Basic Elements of an SEO Content Strategy
An excellent and implementable SEO content strategy is one that includes all the bases that can provide customers with solutions to their pain points and businesses with good results. To better understand the process, here are the basic elements of an SEO content strategy that you should design for your business.
Element #1 – Understanding Your Target Audience
While it may seem too much on the face, the targeted viewers are often overlooked when preparing an SEO strategy. This is because SEO primarily wants to impress the search bots to get your website a better ranking in the SERPs. However, the entire process can be quickly streamlined if you focus on your customers by understanding them better. It makes the task of SEO easier since search bots look for valuable information, something your target audience will also be looking for. Some ways you can get to know your target audience better are –
A. Designing a Customer Persona: If you already have a customer persona, great! But if you do not have one, you definitely need it. Customer personas are basically the essential character descriptions of your targeted audience. You can follow any format for creating these but remember to include crucial details like name, age, gender, location, job title, interests, personal preferences, and other information related to your products and services that can affect sales.
B. Using Google Analytics: Google has multiple tools you can employ to help in your SEO and content strategy. One such tool is Google Analytics which can help you efficiently reach your goals. You can better understand your viewer by using the demographic and interest data in Google Analytics. Under the demographics section, you will find crucial information about your viewers’ age, gender, and traffic and conversion data categorized according to the other information. At the same time, the interests tab will provide details regarding the various interests and preferences your prospective clients lean towards.
C. Analyzing the Sites Your Customers Are Interested In: The best way to make an impact on your clients is by getting their attention. And the most straightforward way to do that is by finding something they are interested in. You can find similarities in your audience niches by visiting the websites that are most popular amongst them. Creating the base of your advertising and promotional strategies with these interests in mind will perfectly mesmerize them into learning more about your business.
D. Using Surveys: Another method you can use to understand your customers better is by taking their surveys and knowing why they are interested in your products and services. You can accomplish this with multiple online tools that are becoming pretty popular today to analyze your viewer responses and feedback in real-time, like Google Forms and SurveyMonkey.
Element #2 – Needs of Your Prospects
Knowing the interests of your users is critical to providing them with better products and services. But how do you know what they exactly need from you? You can get this information by discussing such details with your customer service and internal subject matters team. The marketing team usually does not know much about the reviews of the customers, and this is where your customer service and internal subject matters teams come in. These are the best departments to provide you with information about your existing and potential customers as they frequently interact with them. They know how your customers feel about your products and services and can give you a better insight into this information.
Understanding why your customers like or dislike your products and services is essential to improve on them. Think of it like this – if you remove the existing pain points of your consumers that they may have with your products or that of your competitors, you will gain an upper hand by finding a solution. You can begin with the following questions-
- Who are your target customers?
- Why are your customers using your products and services, and how are you solving their concerns?
- Why do your customers face that problem in the first place?
- How are your customers using your products to solve their pain points?
- Why do your customers think your product can solve their problems?
- When do your customers purchase your products and services?
Element #3 – Aligning the Keywords, Topics, and Content With Your Sales Funnel
Users don’t directly search for the entire problem at once on a search engine. They use keywords that can target their pain point and provide them with quick solutions. Once you understand your prospect, you will also understand which keywords work the best for them and how you can direct them toward your website. When you have your keywords, you can develop topics and content similar to the interests of your consumers.
With that done, you can then write content that aligns with your sales funnel to get the desired results. You can complete this by –
A. Understanding the Search Intent of Your Customers: As mentioned before, customers use the search engine to find solutions to their queries. The query may be finding a site they already know, getting information, or purchasing items. These goals are called search intent and are of three types; navigational, informational, and transactional.
B. Conducting Smart Keyword Research: Generally, organizations conduct their keyword research by finding keywords mostly searched by people related to the products or services they sell and sticking with the ones with the highest search volume. However, an effective and more straightforward way to do this would be to use tools like Ahrefs and SEMRush, which will find relevant keywords for you according to the primary and secondary keywords related to your business.
C. Prioritizing Topics: Prioritizing keywords and aligning them with your sales funnel is essential since most viewers do not exactly follow the expected sales funnel flow. You can do this by using keywords most relevant to your products or services, solving the pain points of your consumers, and adding keywords that are most searched by your targeted customers.
Element #4 – Your Goals and Measurement Processes
Every business has a set of goals they want to achieve no matter which industry they belong to. These goals may be higher rankings, more traffic, better conversions, etc. Once you establish your goals, you can then evaluate the success of your SEO content strategy. You can use tools like Google Search Console to check your rankings in the SERPs and Google Analytics to check your overall progress using the strategies employed.
SEO and content strategies are dynamic and develop all the time as customer expectations from a business keep changing. However, the above blog should give you the evergreen basics of SEO content strategies that will keep the search bots and your consumers happy with your brand.