content strategy man yawning in a cafe

Content Strategy for SEO That Isn’t Boring

Traditional SEO tactics aren’t working anymore. The content strategy used by most marketers follows what looks good in reports and not what drives conversions. Using a tool like Ahrefs to find profitable keywords in your niche, scanning the first page of Google for similar articles, and creating similar content is a losing strategy today.

You eventually publish eBooks to capture some of those lead-nurturing emails after ranking for as many keywords as possible. Hopefully, by that point, you’ve converted your readers into customers.

By following the conventional SEO best practices outlined above, you may be able to increase your organic presence, get top-of-funnel traffic, and help your customers a little. That is no longer sufficient.

Google returns thousands of results for each profitable keyword, all of which say the same thing. As a result, “SEO content” has come to mean creating repetitive, curated articles that add nothing new to the conversation.

content strategy Google SEO

So, what happened? Websites receive lots of traffic but have low conversion rates. Google, or any ad platform, makes money off of clicks. Even their ad support team will steer you this way if you don’t push back.

SEO tools exacerbate the problem by restricting your writing to topics that people are already searching for. For example, they advise you to use the same keywords, headings, and examples regardless of whether they satisfy search intent.

Understanding search intent over keyword stuffing is important because the ultimate goal is to truly help readers and provide them with the information they came for, not to rank high on Google.

Methods for Improving Your SEO Content Strategy

SEO-driven content can and does work, but only if you don’t sacrifice your humanity to meet a Clearscope content grade.

Instead of publishing clones on your company’s website, here are three methods for creating unique, clear, and engaging SEO articles:

1. Perform a Content Gap Analysis

content strategy content gap analysis

Businesses are increasingly obsessed with replicating the same H2s and H3s in order to outperform the Google algorithm. However, it is critical to remember that you are writing for your readers first and foremost.

When planning your blog post topic, Google that keyword and see what comes up on the first page. When reading the top-ranked content, consider whether there is:

  • Missing information
  • Clear information – no fluff or filler
  • Too much copy – could be shorter

It is not always about increasing the quality of the content. Instead of long, difficult-to-read paragraphs, use bullet points to help you stand out.

How could you boost this article’s ranking even further? Are there sections that could be in a text box with an anchor link that helps readers get to the point faster?

In other words, use your article to fill gaps in already-ranked Google content. This way, you’ll know your content is better than what’s already out there.

Another strategy is to conduct a content gap audit for your published pieces by flipping the equation.

  • What published content has become out of date?
  • Is there a common source of pain that you don’t address in some of your pieces?
  • What does your content lack in comparison to articles on page one?

Examine your post as if it were on a competitor’s website. Then, do a content refresh to breathe new life into the pieces that have been gathering dust.

2. Produce Bottom-Of-Funnel Content

content strategy that includes bottom of funnel content

Any of my clients will tell you that I recommend a content strategy that includes all stages of the buyer’s journey. While I understand that content marketing is mainly used to increase top-of-funnel awareness, forgetting about customers in queue is a mistake.

Your top-of-funnel customers have a long way to go before they become paying customers. As a result, expanding your content marketing efforts to assist prospective customers at various stages of the acquisition cycle makes sense.

Brands aren’t answering all of the prospect’s questions at that point in the customer journey.  Bottom-of-funnel content (BOFU) creation is vastly underutilized.

What exactly is bottom-of-the-funnel content? BOFU content is aimed at buyers who are ready to make a purchase from you. These prospective customers have passed the “awareness” stage. Instead, they have very specific concerns and inquiries about your product or service.

Although SEO tools are useful, the best way to find bottom-of-funnel article keywords is to create them by collaborating with your sales team. Consider the following:

  • On a sales call, what questions do prospective customers ask about your product?
  • What is the main issue that your product or service aims to solve?
  • Which objections do prospective buyers raise the most during a sales call?

BOFU content frequently includes case studies, product reviews, white papers, and direct product comparisons. However, it can also be as simple as assisting your customers in completing their tasks by utilizing your product.

It all boils down to understanding, recognizing, and acting on search intent. If someone is looking for more information about your product, you don’t want to show them broad educational content that doesn’t specifically address your tool. Finding bottom-of-funnel content ideas can be difficult, so start by answering questions that your customers already have.

3. Find An Unexplored Angle

content strategy an unexplored angle

The most certain way to rank for any keyword is to mimic the format of the top-ranking articles.  You might be able to jazz up the H2s, but that’s all.

So, what’s the problem? Even if you are first, readers will not remember you. Customers will not buy from brands they are unfamiliar with.

Although SEO can be a great way to generate topic ideas, it should not be used as a content creation strategy.

So, how do you stand out from the crowd? Find a new angle on an old topic and be willing to experiment with it.

Perhaps you are more knowledgeable than others, or you have more authority in your field. Maybe you have a unique point of view that no one else has.

People are drawn to articles that challenge the status quo, and they will choose yours over others. Most importantly, they will remember you.

So, if you want to challenge a widely held belief, go ahead and do it. Poke holes and look for edges in an old topic.

Meeting search intent does not always imply implementing the best SEO strategy suggested by a tool. Perhaps a more effective type of content has yet to be tried.

Consider whether there is a better way to optimize your content for SEO before writing another “ultimate guide.”

Some brands may find the approaches outlined here unsettling. But if your approach is unique, there is a big chance that you can own a market position. It’s easy to forget that the ultimate goal of SEO is to increase business, not traffic.