SEO and Content: Do You Need Both?
SEO and content are a lot like peanut butter and jelly. They both work (and taste good) individually, but when you put them together, the effects are magnified.
Why, then, are so many companies only talking about content or SEO? Companies these days seem to be focused on SEO and digital advertising (aka PPC) primarily. But they forget about the importance of content marketing. On the flip side, some companies want to add new blogs and send out newsletters or post on social media, but they’re forgoing SEO.
The magic happens when they work together.
Why and How SEO and Content Work Together
In a nutshell, there are two kinds of SEO: on-page SEO and off-page SEO. Most people think of off-page SEO as link building, which it is, but it’s also about gaining authority. Unfortunately, unless you’re building other sites and pages and linking back to the page you want to rank, you have little control over off-page SEO.
On-page SEO, on the other hand, is almost completely in your control. And on-page SEO is all about content. In fact, the #1 ranking factor in on-page SEO is content. It’s even more important than the behind-the-scenes components, such as tags, description, URL, and alt text on images.
When you launch an SEO campaign, your website’s static pages are optimized first. You want search engines to recognize that your brand is the authority in those keywords, so you’ll need great content, along with all of the backend components.
In addition to a well-written, optimized site, you need to add new content regularly. Google wants it-and your prospective customers want it as well. That’s the real key to updating your website and ensuring that SEO and content are working well together.
How can you add new content to your website regularly? The best (and easiest) way is through a blog.
Blogs: The Secret to Great SEO and Content
If you are blogging and not optimizing those blogs, you are missing the boat. Likewise, if you have employed an SEO firm that is not adding blogs to your website regularly, you may want to look for a different agency.
You should be adding a blog to your website at least once a month. As with anything else, the more you do, the faster you’ll see results, but you can go overboard as well. Once a week is ideal, but if you strive for once a month, you’ll be on the right track.
Each blog needs to be optimized. That means covering these key components:
- Include relevant keywords in your URL, title, first paragraph, slug, description, at least one header, and throughout the blog (about 3–6 times, depending on overall length).
- Add images with alt tags.
Keep in mind that you should only have one page on your website for each set of keywords you use. That means that you should use long-tail keywords to get more traction. One word isn’t as effective as a couple of words or a phrase, especially one a person might use in a search engine. Think of questions or terms your clients would be looking for.
To better leverage SEO and content, consider these examples:
- A plumber writing a blog about buying a disposal might use the terms “disposal purchase,” “best disposal option,” or “top-rated disposals.”
- An estate-planning attorney writing about how to avoid probate might include “tips to avoid probate” or “what to do to avoid probate.”
People tend to read blogs that answer questions, especially if they have a compelling title or numbers:
- Which Top-rated Disposal Should You Add to Your Kitchen Remodel?
- 6 Tips to Avoid Probate Following the Death of a Loved One
Yoast: An Easy SEO Tool for WordPress
If you have a WordPress site, as so many businesses do, add the free plugin Yoast to your site. Seriously; do it now. This is the dummy-proof way to ensure that all of the pages on your website are optimized and ready for search engines to find them.
One of the best things about Yoast is that it gives you information for improving both SEO and content. You’ll be guided not only to include keywords but also to separate sections and ensure your Flesch readability score is at the right level. Essentially, the indicators on Yoast will make you a better writer, especially for the web.
Without Yoast, you’ll just work too hard on your blogs. Plus, did we mention it’s free? You can opt for the paid version, which allows you to use a main keyword plus synonyms. It’s less than $100 for the year, so if you’re serious about really rocking your SEO and content, you may want to pay for it.
If You’re Not Using SEO and Content, It’s Time to Start
As with anything in life, we don’t know what we don’t know. If you are doing your own marketing, it’s likely that you don’t know how important SEO and content marketing are in growing your business. Sure, social media advertising and PPC will help you get leads, but if you’re looking for an affordable option that will drive results, SEO and content are your one-two punch.
Ink & Quill Communications provides comprehensive marketing solutions for businesses-and we almost always lead with content. After all, if you don’t have a cohesive story, you’re not going to get anywhere fast. Then, when you partner that story with SEO, you make magic.
We’d love to make magic for you. Choose a time on our calendar to learn how just 10 minutes could turn into improved results for your business.