April 20, 2018
Despite all its benefits, SEO has one big shortcoming: it takes time. Time for new pages to index, time to write them, time to analyze results and competitors.
However, there is one ranking factor you can really take advantage of and control.
The Hummingbird Google update made content the star of every SEO strategy. This update took place back in 2013.
All updates to follow it had either to do with the technical aspects of optimization or with strengthening the importance of content and semantic search.
As I said in many of my articles here on SiteProNews, authority content is typically long-form. But it has one more important feature: it’s in-depth.
The rise of semantic search, followed by voice assistants like Alexa brought long-tail keywords in the spotlight. The good news is that it’s much easier to rank for them.
Today, people are more likely to search for “how do I bake an ale pie” or “ale pie recipe” than “ale pie”. But whatever you search for, the SERP will look rather similar: the pages that go in-depth about the topic and touch every possible angle of it are favored. They rank higher.
The bad news is that you have to truly commit to your content strategy if you want your rankings to soar.
You’ve probably guessed by now: the ranking factor you can influence in a day or less is content depth.
Now let’s see how you can do it.
Content depth – how to make sure you content ranks higher than your competitors’
Like any other successful endeavor, this also has to start with research.
Go to your Search Console and look for your top-performing pages. Congratulate yourself for those ranking in the top five positions, then move on. They are not your concern right now.
Look for the lower ranking posts/web pages and their corresponding keywords. These are the ones you can start updating.
However, please note that updating them doesn’t simply mean adding more words. It means going deeper, exploring your topic even further.
How do you know how to do this?
Well, you start by looking at the LSI keywords you already have in place. Then identify opportunities to add other LSI keywords – check my post on this topic here and get all the how-to and the tools you need for this.
More importantly, you need to know whom you’re up against. SEO doesn’t happen in a void – you have some competitors to beat.
For that, you can use tools like BuzzSumo to identify the top ranking posts for your very own keyword. But I recommend you dig even deeper than that.
You can go about this manually – type your keyword in Google and take a look at the first ten results. Be sure to do this in an incognito window, though, you don’t want biased results now.
Alternatively (and easier), you can use the SEO Content Template Feature in SEMrush. It’s available in the free version (1 free query per month, though) and it’s a wealth of information.
By simply inputting your keyword, you get the top ranking posts for your keyword, but, what is more important is the recommendations you receive. You literally get a template that you can use. Everything is there:
- Title length
- Meta description length
- Suggested LSI keywords
- Recommended text length
- Recommended Flesch-Kincaid readability score
- Suggested websites to get backlinks from
- The posts your competitors created and managed to rank with bolded keywords
All this information is pulled from your competitors’ links, analyzed and then offered to you in a format that helps you improve existing content or create new content.
Better yet, for existing content you can paste your link and get suggestions on how to improve it.
I know I said that you can do all this in a day or less. I haven’t forgotten about the time it takes Google to index your page.
Luckily, there’s a fix for that, too. Go back to your Search Console, go to “Fetch as Google”, post your link and…that’s it!
Your page will be indexed immediately.
Pretty quick, right?
You can use this process for any post that is underperforming. More importantly, you can start using it right now to create authority content that ranks great from the start.
Still, remember that you are not the only one in your industry creating new content regularly. Go back to your Search Console to check how your rankings change at least once a month. Then rinse and repeat the process above.
Speaking of great content, my digital marketing agency has empowered countless companies all over the world with content that speaks to both search engines and customers. Hit us up if you need help creating content that ranks and sells.
Adriana Tica is an expert marketer and copywriter, with 10 years in the field, most of which were spent marketing tech companies. She is the CEO of Idunn, a digital marketing agency that helps clients all over the world with copywriting, social media marketing and marketing strategy. Follow her blog here: http://idunn.pro/blog.