Brands around the world are investing in paid ads on Google and social media.
No doubt that it is a good way to quickly increase traffic to your website or any platform that you own. However, it will only work for so long.
Statistics show the drastic difference in how Internet users treat organic and paid search results.Reportedly, paid search results give 150% more conversions than organic search results. However, 70-80% of all searchers ignore paid ads and focus only on organic results.
Because users prefer organic results, 70% of marketers see SEO as a more effective investment than PPC and say their organic presence is their top inboundpriority.
Content writing is one of the top strategies used to build and boost organic traffic, and there are a few substantial reasons for that:
- content writing naturally attracts leads and effectively nurtures them
- it helps gain better search ranking results, resulting in more leads
- content helps you gain authority in your industry, as you share relevant knowledge with your audience and your peers
Of course, creating content by itself is hardly effective, when it comes to increasing organic traffic and ranking higher in Google results. However, there are a few strategies that you can implement to boost your organic traffic.
Let’s take a look.
Strategy #1: Optimize Keywords According to Search Intent
Many companies that create content for marketing purposes know the value of keyword optimization. However, keyword optimization is different today from what it was before.
Earlier, it was enough to include relevant keywords in the content while writing, but today Google, with its Hummingbird algorithm, learned how to recognize search intent behind keywords.
Thus, before including a keyword in your text, you need to figure out what’s the user’s intent is when they will be looking for your content.
Briefly on Search Intent
Search intent means the purpose of an online search.
When a user enters a keyword, they are looking for a specific answer to their specific need.
Thus, the list of keywords that you will use while writing your content should include different types of words and phrases tied to different types of search intent.
Below, you can see the list of 4 types of search intent with a
- Informational – a user is looking for information connected to a specific topic.
- Navigational – a searcher is interested in visiting a certain website or a web page.
- Transactional – a searcher wants to make a purchase.
- Commercial investigation – a user compares different products/services for the purpose of buying one of them in the future.
Here are a few examples for your convenience:
When writing content, you don’t have to include all 4 types of search intent keywords, it is important to focus on the purpose of your content and which interests of the users it can serve.
How Does Search Intent Work on Practice?
Let’s take Ahref’s article about search intent as an example.
If you analyze the keywords that this article contains with Google Keyword Planner, you will see that the majority of them are informational since the article mostly serves an educational purpose.
However, in this list of keywords you can also see a few keywords that serve the commercial investigation intent:
The purpose of including keywords with the commercial investigation intent in this article is to present an alternative to other services similar to Ahrefs. The article that serves primarily an educational purpose, uses Ahref’s solutions to both describe how search intent works and to advertise their services.
As you can see, the choice of keywords based on search intent should be tailored to specific goals of the searchers. If your content doesn’t correspond to the search intent behind the keywords included in it, this can negatively impact your search results.
Strategy #2: Structure Your Content for Featured Snippets
When writing content, you are following a certain structure – introduction, body, and conclusion. The body of your content can also be broken down into several parts that improve its readability, with the help of bullet points and lists. This also helps Google crawl your text and find answers to popular queries. This is how it creates features snippets.
With featured snippets, you can rank higher on Google results and get more organic traffic.
According to the study by Ahrefs, the page that has featured snippets steals organic traffic from the #1 ranking result in Google. A page that has no featured snippets receives 26% of clicks, while a page with featured snippets gets almost 30% of clicks.
Thus, when writing content, you need to pay attention to its structure to make sure that Google can turn parts of it into featured snippets.
How to Optimize Your Content for Featured Snippets?
Here are a few tips, how to help Google find answers to the popular queries when it’s crawling your content:
Break down your content with headings. You can turn a question into a heading in an article, and the answer below will appear in featured snippets:
Use bullet points to create a list for featured snippets. If your content includes step-by-step instructions, make sure you organize them into bullet points or a numbered list to be included in featured snippets.
Include a table to structure numbers in featured snippets. If your content contains graphs or statistics, make sure you structure it with a table for Google to include it in featured snippets:
When writing content for featured snippets, make sure that you stay within the optimal word count. The featured snippet below has 54 words:
The optimal number of words for a featured snippet is from 40 to 50. If you include more words, Google won’t show all of them, but instead will offer you a ‘find out more’ option.
Strategy #3: Introduce the Skyscraper Method
If your competitors already have content you want to create, but you think that you can do it way better than they did, you can use the skyscraper method to outrank them on google and boost organic traffic to your content.
Briefly on the Skyscraper Method
This method is a link-building strategy, which allows you to improve your content by replicating the links.
The method includes 3 steps:
- Find content with relevant backlinks
- Create content that can outcompete it
- Offer your content as superior to sources that linked to your competitor’s content
The method is based on the principle that there is already a big demand for the content you want to create, but people are naturally drawn to better products. So, by creating content superior to your competitors, you can build organic traffic by ‘stealing’ backlinks from them.
How to Execute the Skyscraper Method?
To find content that you will outcompete and get backlinks from, you can follow these steps:
- set up Google alerts for the keywords you’re interested in
- study the drawbacks of this content
- create content that can outcompete it
- see who shared this content on social media and other platforms
- reach out to sources that made a backlink to your competitor’s content
When studying the drawbacks of your competitor’s content, don’t forget to go through the list of the keywords they use and consider the way you can exploit them to create a more in-depth updated version of this topic that will bring more value to its readers.
Strategy #4: Diversify Your Written Content
Google appreciates unique helpful content that searches can draw value from.
So, when writing content, you need to make sure that it serves its purpose to its maximum capacity. To do that, you can benefit from a few strategies:
1) Include Images to Your Content
Images help make your article more detailed and add more credibility to the points you make in it. Many online platforms, from thesis sites to SEO companies use this strategy to make their articles more informative and visually appealing.
However, there are more benefits that this strategy can offer:
- Images drive more traffic to your content. By including images in your content, you get a new source of traffic from image search engines. To take advantage of it, make sure you optimize all images in your content with alt text and image descriptions.
- Your content gets more shares. Custom-made images, such as infographics, present big value to your readers, as they help structure information in a more comprehensible way. Thus, your content is more likely to be shared by the readers.
- Images add details to your content. Although your content doesn’t become longer in terms of word count, images allow you to go into detail without using a lot of text.
It is important to reiterate that all images in your written content should be optimized to make sure that Google recognizes their value and purpose.
2) Diversify Your Content with Videos
You can make your written content even more detailed by including videos to it. Internet users prefer content that contains videos and 54% of consumers want to see more video content in the future.
When including video in your written content, make sure you avoid making a few common mistakes:
- Provide context. Don’t embed a video without giving an explanation of its purpose. Introduce a video with a short paragraph and summarize it with a few sentences.
- Optimize the size of the video to your blog. Make sure that the width of your video isn’t bigger than but slightly less than the width of your content column. It shouldn’t stand out too much but rather complement your written content.
You can also indicate in the title that there is a video in your post. This will help you drive more traffic to your article.
3) Repurpose Your Old Content
Lastly, you can boost organic traffic by giving new life to your old posts.
Repurposing content is an effective strategy that can help you introduce new value to the readers. And, it requires minimum effort.
You can update the content that you already have or turn the articles on similar topics into extensive guides. This way you will also gain authority in your industry as you effectively reuse your content to educate your audience.
Commit to Content Writing to See Positive Results
Indeed, getting better organic traffic results is a matter of months. There is a high competition going on to get on the first page of Google, and you need to be aware of that.
However, it should not discourage you to continue working on writing and improving your content.
To succeed in terms of organic traffic results, content writing needs your ongoing effort. This means that you should not only follow the tips provided above, but also monitor your content’s performance continuously.
Apart from that, it is important to keep up with updates concerning Google SEO Algorithm to make sure that you write content that lives up to the search engine’s requirements.