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Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and content both play an integral role in your marketing strategy, and when leveraged properly, have the potential to yield substantially better results for your campaigns. It is imperative that your content works in tandem with your SEO to ensure it’s reaching your target audience. While SEO can help increase your website traffic, content that is useful and informative will keep your visitors engaged, build trust, and ultimately, convert them into customers. That said, these two elements cannot work by themselves. Here is how to leverage SEO to improve your website content and performance:

Create Strategic Content

The best way to approach strategic content is by keeping in mind how a search engine works. A search engine will try to scrape the content on a webpage to see what it is about and catalog it in their database according to what they deem the main topics to be. Due to this, it is imperative that the content on each webpage is focused on a specific topic to help search engines determine where your content fits into their bigger picture. For example, if you own a boutique that sells both clothing and accessories, you’ll want to make sure that you have separate pages for items of a different category. That way if someone searched jewelry, the search engine would index your specific page for those particular items. When there is too much content on one webpage, you risk the search engine being unsure how to index it properly and ultimately, ranking lower in search results.

New content not only signals to search engines that your website is up-to-date and relevant, but it also adds more keywords to your list of searches that can bring in traffic. Keyword research should also help guide which verbiage you’re using in your content to ensure that you’re reaching your target audience. There are SEO tools available to help you plan for gaps there may be in your content, as well as provide analytics for insight into what content has been successful thus far.

Refresh Current Content

Another factor you’ll want to consider is that search engines look at how often content is being updated when deciding where to rank you in search results. You’ll want to ensure that your content is being continually updated and refreshed not just on one webpage, but on all your webpages. This also makes sure you’re not ignoring any elements of your business.

Updating your website can be as simple as refreshing your content monthly or quarterly by changing the images, adding new products, or improving existing content with new relevant keywords. That said, you will also want to look at your website analytics and target the weaker performing pages specifically. If a piece of content continues to be low performing despite continual updating, it may be best to consider deleting it to not lower your overall scoring on search engines.

Include High-Quality Links

Having links embedded within your content indicates to search engines that you have authority, credibility and trustworthiness as a company. However, search engines have the ability to assess high-quality links from low-quality links and will filter out anything deemed low-quality from their rankings. For this reason, you’ll want to choose links that are relevant to your content and that come from reputable sources.

Similarly, having your content linked to on other company’s websites improves your SEO and how your content performs – this is called backlinking. As your content begins to rank higher on search engines, you will see your backlinks greatly increase. As mentioned, searching engines can decipher a good link from a bad one, so you will want to monitor your backlinks through your Google account to ensure they’re not poorly affecting your SEO. A poor backlink would be anything that comes from a not-so trusted website. You can remove negative backlinks by contacting the webmaster of the website and requesting removal or by creating and submitting a ‘disavow’ file to Google to ignore those backlinks.

Ensure Proper Formatting

For your content to be properly optimized it’s important that search engines rank it with a high readability score. This means that you’re formatting your content for the web by having shorter paragraph and mixed sentence lengths, as well as including subheaders and images.

The subheaders, alt descriptions for images, and URL all provide valuable information to search engines on how to properly index your content within their database. Proper formatting ensures they are able to index properly, but you can go one step further and include keywords in those elements on the backend of your web content so that it performs higher. You will want to make sure that those descriptions are clear and concise, as well as a consistent structure to how they are written so you can mimic it in the backend of future web content for consistency.

As aforementioned, the success of any marketing initiative relies heavily on both SEO and content being optimized. We encourage you to also learn about developing stronger SEO for your business by reading our recent blog, 5 Simple Ways to Improve Your SEO. For additional digital marketing guidance, feel free to contact one of our experts at LRO Solutions today.

Alita Fabiano

Author Alita Fabiano

Specializing in strategic communications, content marketing, SEO, and digital accessibility, Alita Fabiano has a passion for creating and managing digital content to help organizations thrive. Alita’s insights have also been published in the Ottawa Business Journal and Canadian SME Magazine, as well as she has been invited to speak to several organizations about inclusivity and accessibility.

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