If you can get smart with Google, rank organically, and hit page one, your online presence, leads, and traffic will experience a huge boost.
Because Google is still the #1 driver of all web traffic, hands down.
According to Net Market Share, as of October 2018, Google held 76.14% of the total search engine market share.
Also, search still outpaces social media in traffic.
Currently, search drives 34.8% of all site visits as opposed to social networks, which bring in 25.6% (Search Engine Land).
Not to mention how hot those inbound leads are. MarketingSherpa has said that the average conversion rate on organic traffic to leads across industries is 16%.
All of these things are great reasons to rank on Google.
But, here’s the thing:
Successful marketing is not built on web visits alone.
You must nail the “win their trust” element of SEO content creation to actually get somewhere worthwhile (leads >> sales >> loyal customers).
If you can consistently build valuable content over time – content that meets your reader at their place of need – you’re absolutely going to build winning, valuable marketing.
At Express Writers, we are living proof of how powerful SEO-based content marketing can be. It powers the majority of our six-figure monthly income and is solely responsible for every high-quality client lead that comes our way. I wrote a case study not too long ago on this:
Read our SEO blogging case study.
Valuable, SEO-optimized content published on your site can help you build trust with readers, which boosts your rankings, which boosts their trust… ad infinitum.How do you build trust and rankings through #contentmarketing? @JuliaEMcCoy discusses what high-value content can do for your business. #SEO Click To Tweet
In a nutshell, this is how to get into a circle of content marketing awesomeness. Read on!
4 Ways to Set Up High-ROI, Profitable SEO Content Marketing
1. Meet Them at the Right Keyword
Rule #1: You’re not looking for traffic to your website. You’re looking for the RIGHT traffic.
The most lead-worthy traffic comes from people who are searching for what you’ve got. Hone in on those keywords they’re searching. And you’ll not only pull them to your site, but you’ll also give them exactly what they need. That’s a HUGE trust-builder.
Example: A user googles “how to build a dog fence,” finds your blog, reads your expert advice, and finds a CTA for your product. Turns out, they NEED it because you met them at the right keyword with valuable content (cha-ching!).
This is called mapping keywords to the sales cycle (also called the buyer’s journey or sales funnel). For more information on how to do it, check out this guide from Neil Patel: The Keywords to Use for Each Stage of the Funnel.Rule #1: You’re not looking for traffic to your website. You’re looking for the RIGHT traffic. 🔍 More on setting up #SEO #contentmarketing by @JuliaEMcCoy Click To Tweet
2. Focus on Owned Media Platforms and Organic SEO Content
Robert Rose of the Content Marketing Institute recently predicted the rise of the value of owned media. As he says, the content you create and publish on your own platform becomes higher-value the harder it is to earn your audience’s attention:
“…as ‘reaching audiences’ becomes more difficult, fragmented, and filtered, the ability to generate and hold attention from an audience with original content becomes increasingly more valuable to the business.”
Owned media (A.K.A. content marketing based on your brand domain) does a few tasks for you in this dog-eat-dog internet marketing atmosphere:
- It gives you complete control over your content quality.
- It builds YOUR credibility and associates your content with YOUR brand name and URL – not some random host site.
- It gives you a brand platform home base off of which you can build vital backlinks.
Plus, an organic SEO content focus (think: content grown in your own domain soil) also provides value for people at the place where most of them are already searching for that value. Win-win.
3. Check Your Slime-o-Meter
Trust will be huge in 2019. It’s pretty much the core piece of today’s marketing that matters to customers.
That’s because, in general, people’s trust in institutions (government, business, the media, etc.) has fallen, according to the 2018 Edelman Trust Barometer Global Report.
In particular, in the U.S., trust has declined at the steepest rate ever recorded:
In the U.S., trust has declined at the steepest rate ever recorded. What does that mean for marketers? @JuliaEMcCoy shares her insights. #contentmarketing #seo Click To Tweet
The question to ask yourself: “Are we producing trustworthy, non-spammy/scammy/crappy/slimy marketing?”
In other words, how does your content rate on the slime-o-meter? Is it a solid “0” with no promotional language/offers to be found? Or is it creeping dangerously close to a “10,” with thin content that doesn’t bother to hide your pushy, self-aggrandizing sales pitch? (Back away, that one is too slimy to touch.)
Surprisingly, this isn’t the easiest question to answer. Your marketing blinders may prevent you from seeing your content the way your audience does. If this is the case, you need to clear your vision.
This means audience re-evaluation and research. (Read: TALK to them. Swim around in their brain waves. Understand them.)
Once you know them like your best friend, you can more accurately measure your content against that slime-o-meter. When all else fails, abandon any attempts at promotion and just aim for giving your readers the relevant help/entertainment/information they crave.
4. Don’t Ask for More Than Your Audience Is Ready to Give
One aspect of building trust in content is aligning your CTAs with the level of trust you currently hold with readers.
Hint: You don’t want to ask for more than they’re ready to give. That’s a turn-off.
Take a look at this trust pyramid from the Nielsen/Norman Group:
Each level of the pyramid corresponds to a trust level you must achieve with a user before you can climb up to the next one. To achieve a trust level, you must be able to overcome the user’s doubts about you.
For example, to hop into the baseline level of trust with a user, you need to help them answer these questions:
- Can your site/content help them accomplish their goals?
- Is your site/content credible, with dependable information?
- Does it have their best interests at heart?
Sometimes marketers try to insert a CTA that doesn’t align with their readers’ current trust level. The CTA is meant to move the audience to level up, so to speak, but it won’t work if you ask too much of them too soon, according to HubSpot.
My Marketing Lifecycle also represents this journey.
That’s where SEO content comes in. It gives your readers value that’s relevant to them, which builds their trust to the required level needed for them to complete the CTA.Are your CTAs asking for more than what readers are ready to give? Time to change that. Learn how in this new blog post by @JuliaEMcCoy. #contentmarketing Click To Tweet
Trust-builders in content include:
- Well-written, user-focused copy
- Organized, easy-to-understand formatting
- Supporting research and hard data (case studies, testimonials, statistics, reports, etc.)
- Useful links and resources
- Thoughtful, usable, attractive website design
How Do You Know Which CTAs to Use in SEO Content?
It’s not difficult to know which CTAs to use with your SEO content – just look at the keywords in each piece and the type of users they target.
- Are your main keywords broader in scope, meant to target people who have never interacted with your brand before, or who don’t know the industry?
- Use CTAs that don’t dig too deep. Offer a valuable freebie or download in exchange for an email address, at most.
- Or are your main keywords narrower and more focused, targeting people who may know your name and product but haven’t yet purchased?
- Use CTAs that call for a stronger action and more personal information, like making a purchase or testing a free trial.
From Trust-Building to Search Engine Dominance
To dominate in Google, earning your readers’ trust must be your #1 priority.
From the keywords you use to the platform on which you publish, from the meat of your content to your CTAs, you can and should nurture that trust with SEO content.
First, meet them where they’re looking for value in search. Then, become the authority source that brings value for your readers relentlessly.
As Joe Pulizzi has said, that kind of marketing pays for itself – and that kind of marketing tops Google, too.
Need high-quality content? We can help.