SEO GUIDE
Chapter 4: The Role of Content & SEO

What is SEO Content, and how ensure your Content is SEO friendly?

Often when people think of content, they immediately think of SEO. While they are separate entities in their own right, there is an incredible amount of synergy between the two. For years, many marketers have argued that for SEO purposes, the content didn’t need to be high quality. While that may have been the case a decade ago, things have changed significantly in 2020.

As a digital marketing agency in Bangkok, we recognise the value of quality content. It seems ludicrous to have a high-quality article that hasn’t been optimised or include backlinks. Likewise, why would you take the time to optimise a website and then include unreadable content? Content creation should be a central part of your SEO, and you should never fall into the trap of believing that content should be written for humans or search engines, it should be written for both. 

What content should I be looking to create?

Your content should be relevant, unique and engaging with experts often using the term “thought-provoking”. Content takes on many different forms, and what is suitable or appropriate in one aspect won’t be to another. However, they are all equally as important when it comes to the role that they play in SEO. The various types of content include:

Blogs

Blogs serve a multitude of different purposes, so it is not surprising that they have grown in popularity in recent years. Gone are the days when they were used solely by bloggers discussing lifestyle topics. In the modern era, they are used by e-commerce websites, SaaS businesses, along with other companies offering a comprehensive range of services.

While travel bloggers and marketing bloggers still earn a considerable amount of money writing unique and in-depth articles and guides while becoming respected influencers on the way, they are now more frequently used by businesses.

Key points about blogs

  •   They must be original
  •   Aim to offer a different viewpoint to stand out from the crowd
  •   Where possible, use unique data and conduct your own research
  •   It’s not about the number of words that you use; it’s about user experience
  •   Consistency in what you write is essential

·   Being willing to cooperate with companies and other influencers

Original Quality

How to find suitable topics to write about? 

There is an abundance of information available on the internet that helps to give ideas about what to include in your blog and some topics you could write about. Here’s a quick list of some techniques we use to give us some inspiration!

Ahrefs

Use tools like Ahrefs to provide you with popular questions (these can be worked into the blog headings)

Keyword Suggestions

Reddit

Use reddit to find trending topics and what sort of questions are generating the most amount of engagement. 

Reddit Example

Best by links

Using tools like Ahrefs you can see what pages and articles attract links (referring domains) and in turm how much traffic they bring.

Best by Links

Google Suggest

Google’s Search suggestions will be made up of the most popular variations of the search query being entered, this can help identify common questions being asked and also additional Keywords to target.

Google suggest

Google Ads

If you’re running a Google Ad campaign the likelihood is you’ll be using some kind of Broad or Broad Modified keyword targeting, this should open up your campaign to show for some longer tail keywords. By downloading your weekly search term report, it should show some longer variations of what people are searching for, and also the quality of the traffic. 

Search Terms

Pages listing your products and services

If you own or run an online business, your product pages must be of the highest quality. The content and optimisation should be first-class on these pages as they are likely to be used as landing pages for PPC, Google AdWords Remarketing as well as any paid social media campaigns.

Key points about your product listings

  •   It is vital to keep things clear and concise on e-Commerce websites with the price and a CTA being easy to find
  •   Get a professional to take photos of your products and always write copy which will appeal
  •   Your website must be fast loading and excellent UX speeds

Reviews

If you want to become an influencer and earn a living from it, you must become good at writing reviews. While it is certainly nothing new, they now hold more relevance in the age of the internet. If you prove to be a trustworthy influencer, you will help to forge people’s opinion and get paid to write sponsored reviews.

Key points when writing reviews

  •   Focus on one topic
  •   Never feel forced to give a 5-star review because a company pays well – it will damage your reputation in the long-term
  •   Be consistent with what you regard as superb or poor

Conducting research and case studies

Conducting your original research and sharing your findings with the rest of the world can be both academically and financially rewarding. You could try different experiments, test out common myths or conduct customer satisfaction surveys. The choices are endless, but if you prefer telling stories, write an article on a successful, or otherwise, business venture detailing precisely what you did and what you would change in the future. It is crucial that what you write is unique and brings something new and exciting to your readers.

Key points about research and case studies

  •   Take your time planning your research and presenting the results
  •   The data must be original and honest
  •   For case studies, focus on the human element as opposed to just giving dry facts
  •   Don’t be modest; it will make for a dull story!

Infographics

On the whole, infographics are easy to understand, which means that they a commonly shared. They can act as a superb substitute for text, but if care isn’t taken, it can make them hard to understand, and their impact is reduced. The whole point of infographics is to make information easier to digest and understand.

example infographic

Key points about infographics

  •   Users love to share high-quality infographics so take your time to ensure that the data is correct and the design suits the data
  •   Don’t overdo it! Only use them for the most critical points otherwise they will lose their effect
  •   You can incorporate them into a story by adding other charts and pictures
  •   Writing a transcript about the data contained in the infographics is essential as crawlers can’t “read” any text that is included in an image

Guides, hints and tips, instructional content

We have also seen endless “How to…” or “Guide to…” blogs, and there is a good reason for this, they are what users want to read, and they generate traffic. They are well suited for including keywords, but as there is such an abundance of these guides, you may need to be creative to come up with something new and unique.

Key points about guides

  •   If you include videos, make sure that they are original
  •   If you are writing about a product or service offered by others, reach out to them to try and get backlinks and ask them to share the content on social media
  •   When writing about your own products or services, don’t forget to include internal links to the relevant landing page

Top lists

Just as like “How to…” guides are popular, so too are “Top X…” guides when it comes to written content. Once again, this is an area which has become quite saturated, so it is worth taking your time when you are choosing a topic. These types of list often get shared on social media, so they are an excellent way of generating more traffic.

Key points about “top X…” lists

  •   The headline should make it clear what the post is about
  •   Make an effort to stress unusual or exciting facts
  •   Never complicate the structure
  •   Always use proven and respected sources of data

Encourage readers to suggest things that you may have missed off your list as well as asking for feedback

Example content

Interviews

There is no better way of building credibility than speaking to an industry renowned expert or guru. Getting a unique interview and getting their take or opinion on a subject that others find fascinating will quickly build traffic; get natural backlinks as well as social shares. In addition to your own readers, if the interviewee has a large following and shares the interview, it will generate more traffic. Interviews can be written, audio, videos or even podcasts.

Key points with interviews

  •   Always try to interview someone well known and respected
  •   Plan the interview and questions in minute detail
  •   Planning will help the interview to flow naturally
  •   Allow the interviewee to talk, even go off at a tangent, your readers or listeners are more interested in their opinion than yours!

Videos

Videos are becoming increasingly popular as they generate higher levels of user engagement. As a consequence, you will get more likes, social shares and backlinks. According to HubSpot, videos create more leads and can increase conversions by as much as 80%.

Key points when creating videos

  •   Write a clear script, proofread it, proofread it again, practice it, practice it again!
  •   Set yourself a budget that will be adequate but don’t go over it. Use the budget for hardware, editing as well as hiring a professional – it will be worth it
  •   Include a transcript to make sure that crawlers detect keywords
  •   Create a marketing plan and budget that includes some promotional activities

You mustn’t always feel compelled to create your own video. Share and embed video that exists and includes the opinions and advice of an industry guru – try to use different ones to add balance and avoid repetition. Videos can enrich content and reduce reader bounce.

EBooks

Although eBooks are not as popular as they were a few years ago, they are still an excellent way of generating leads. For both B2B and B2C, email addresses are usually required to download the material, and this can be used later for marketing purposes, with their consent, of course. The quality of the book needs to be high, and they usually come in a PDF format containing several pages. Remember, your objective is to generate leads, so you need to give readers a reason to hand over their contact details!

EBook download
E Books, or Guides can be a good way to 'exchange' information for lead generation

Key points connected to eBooks

  •   Just because it is in electronic format, it doesn’t mean that it is not a proper book and should be written as such. It must have a beginning, middle and end, a catchy title and fantastic content
  •   Proofreading and a good layout are essential
  •   Give reasons for readers to download your book – include new interesting facts and offer something that your competitors don’t

How long should a blog be?

The length of the article is nowhere near as important as it used to be when keyword-stuffed, wordy articles topped the rankings. However, many of these articles were almost identical, and this needed to be addressed. Thankfully, from a reader’s point of view at least, creating content just for the sake of it tends not the bear fruit.

Rather than focusing on the length of your article, concentrate on the structure and use the correct

Copyscape
Copyscape is a free tool that checks external duplication

Google’s algorithms are complex and can now detect if something is blatant plagiarism or whether the same words appear naturally within your text. However, you will be penalised for plagiarism, so avoid it, regardless of how tempted you may be! If you are unsure if your content is unique, use a plagiarism tool such as Copyscape to make doubly certain.

Table of Contents

Chapters
Chapter 1

The Basics of SEO

Chapter 2

Search Engines

Chapter 3

On-site and the technical aspects of SEO

Chapter 4

The Role of Content & SEO

Chapter 5

The importance of
keyword research

Chapter 6

Link Building in SEO

Chapter 7

UX & SEO

Chapter 8

Useful Resources