When you hear people discussing ongoing SEO content, there’s a good chance they’re talking about blogs. In fact, blogging is such a fundamental part of inbound marketing best practice that, at this point, it’s scarcely worth disputing.
There are plenty of good reasons for this, but the most important is SEO. Google likes websites that regularly update their content – and a blog is a great platform for regularly doing so. But if your entire SEO strategy is only focused on blogs, then you’re missing out.
There are opportunities beyond blog posts to write some great content that offers your readers value and drives leads.
Here are a few other things you might want to consider.
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#1- Long Form Articles
SEO and content writing best practices once assumed that any content longer than about 500 words was bound to fail. After all, the internet is about condensed information; the quicker it can be read, the better.
It turns out online readers’ infamous lack of attention isn’t quite as profound as digital marketers once thought. More recently, the industry has slowly realized that long form content actually ranks remarkably well – and people want to read it.
There’s an obvious SEO benefit to longer form articles; more words mean more opportunities to use keywords. But more broadly, Google likes to rank long form content higher, as there’s more chance of that article containing more insight and therefore more value.
Content that’s taken the time to be detailed and well-researched is probably more likely to have the answers you’re looking for than a more general 350 word article.
Video content is growing larger and larger, just take a look at YouTube where thousands of videos are uploaded each day. Video consumption is at an all-time high and this form of content is regularly used to improve SEO rankings.
Video content has a high return on investment, however, it is harder to create compared to content like blog posts. Although it may seem that Video content curation requires a lot of time and resources, there are tools that can help us with it.
Here are some ways to utilize these tools for your business.
- Create an explainer video to introduce your business/product
- Create a video showcasing your products, services, or features
- Create quick tutorials or step-by-step guides for users
- Promote your brand image via storytelling
There are many ideas for Video content and they all work depending on the business. It’s up to us to test and see what works best for good SEO results.
Infographics help businesses educate their audiences and provide useful information that can add value for leads and customers.
This visual content marketing format helps viewers better visualize data such as statistics so that they can have a better idea of why something is valuable or how something works.
If your business chooses to use infographics to attract and engage your audience, consider which topics are best suited for this format. Typically, any information that would benefit from a visual aid can make an excellent infographic topic.
You can use infographics to explain a complicated subject, present statistics that help others understand the value of what your business provides, or even offer a diagram of your product.
#4- How-To Guides
People always search for instructions on how to do stuff, and that’s why how-to content will always be popular. You can give your audience tips in the form of an article, a video or an infographic.
One of the best places to start when looking for how-to ideas is support and sales teams. Check help center tickets, inbound emails and calls from customers to zero in on the most common questions for content ideas.
If someone is taking the time to ask a question, it’s more likely than not they’ve already searched online. So this can add a lot of SEO value.
#5- Product Reviews
This type of content is similar to book reviews. The only difference is that you are reviewing not just books but a wide variety of products. This is a client-friendly type of content if you want to establish yourself as a thought leader in your particular industry.
For example, if your industry is in technology, reviewing the latest gadgets and tools can provide you credibility in the world of technological advancements. If you are looking to write one, then read here about how to come up with the right product review.
Podcasts gained a lot of traction in the past few years, partly due to availability and ease of consumption. Users can consume podcast content while driving, doing dishes, or similar activities. Creating podcasts is really no different to other content, it’s simply audio instead of video or written word.
Due to the demand, podcasts are a good source of traffic and will positively impact your SEO rankings.
Does your industry use a lot of jargon? Do you find yourself using words that only you and your colleagues understand? Jargon should be avoided when a simpler word will suffice, but if businesses in a particular niche could take advantage of a minefield of potential content.
Everyone loves a glossary: it’s quick to scroll through, quick to read and easy to work out whether it’s solved your query. If your industry uses a lot of terminology – why not create the place people go to understand it?
A glossary allows you to use a more diverse range of keywords than a more focused blog topic could achieve. It also creates great opportunities for further internal linking: every time you use a piece of jargon in future you can simply link to the relevant glossary entry.
All these links are great for SEO, and it saves you the effort of redefining words and concepts every time you write about them in future.
#8- Research Findings and Case Studies
In a world filled with opinions, more and more people are opting to look for real data through research and case studies. If you can put enough time and resources to conduct a study, SEO results will surely follow. Case studies usually get a lot of inbound links as they get cited somewhere on the internet, which is excellent for SEO ranking.
According to Buzzsumo, this type of data-backed content can attract millions of shares. Although this process may be time-consuming, it’s well worth the potential results.
eBooks are an effective type of long-form content that businesses can use to provide value for their leads and customers. The keyword here is value. Your eBook should not be a 5 to 10 page ad. Instead, it should provide some type of useful information and insight for your target audience about their needs and challenges.
Like many other types of content marketing, it’s not about selling to your audience, it’s about building a relationship with target consumers so that they trust your brand and come to you when they’re ready to make a purchase.
eBooks are one of the best types of content marketing for collecting lead information. That’s because they are typically gated, which means that visitors must provide some type of information about themselves in exchange for the eBook download.
Finally, I would say…
- Don’t ignore new formats. So if some of these are not things you’ve considered in the past, don’t ignore them.
- Recognize that you shouldn’t just use a format because it’s new. That is a terrible idea. You should use a format because it works well for your audience, because it serves all of these functions.
- Learn from who’s already ranking
- I wouldn’t say that you should just copy somebody else’s format because it’s easy to do and familiar. Make sure that familiar and trusted is the best way that you can compete.
- Look at these content formats and finding ways to get a competitive advantage from them. If all of your competitors are just doing blog posts and short-form and long-form articles, you might be able to win with a visual gallery, you might be able to win with an interactive piece of content or a tool, or you might be able to win with complex information visualized. That’s a powerful thing.
- Do use a multi-keyword approach in this analysis. So when I’m saying, “What is the searcher’s intent,” I’m asking you to consider all of the words and phrases that you’re hoping to rank for with this piece of content, not just a single keyword term or phrase.
That will give you the best way to choose the right content format for the search queries and the overall goal of attracting the right searchers.
All right everyone, look forward to hearing about some of the formats you’ve used, maybe some that aren’t on this list. If you have great examples of these you’d like to share, I’d certainly love to see them.