How to Improve Your SEO in 2024

SEO in 2024

If you’ve been involved in the internet for any substantial period, you may remember the popularity of “black hat” tactics many webmasters used to “trick” rudimentary search engines. These tactics were used to get web pages ranked higher by these search engines. Such tactics would include loading pages with content stuffed with keywords and keyword phrases that the search engine would “see” and thus rate it higher in their organic rankings. The effect was that irrelevant websites often appeared while searching for the content users searched for. This, of course, posed a problem for search engines, whose job it was to determine relevant content for its users.

The solution became better systems and bots to scan content, punish users of these black hat tactics with poor rankings, and reward websites providing higher quality, pertinent content. The results have been dramatic. Over several years, Google made multiple changes, which caused a seismic shift in how web admins and marketers had to use content to improve their SEO efforts. Today, content marketing is a critical part of online marketing. What is content marketing, and how can small to medium-sized companies use it to stay competitive with larger competitors? What are some “best practices” of content marketing, and what are the real benefits? How can smaller enterprises keep up with bigger competitors in content marketing?

The Two Ways Content Marketing Helps Your Marketing

A solid content marketing strategy will help your organization in two general ways. First, it will help in your organic search engine rankings. Pertinent, up-to-date content will rank higher than older content that a bot may view outdated. This gets more eyes and presumably more clicks. The other significant aspect of content marketing is it helps funnel potential customers to you who may view you as an expert in your field.

In other words, if you sell all-natural dog treats on your website, not only will helpful information that includes words like “organic dog treats” and “healthy natural pet treats” help in attaining a higher ranking, but the information you provide will work to steer prospects to you as an expert in your category. If you provide an article on “Five Ways to Keep Your Dog Healthier”, readers interested in the information are more likely to be interested in your healthy dog treat products.

A well-executed content marketing strategy achieves higher rankings and a marketing philosophy that funnels readers to you. That is well worth the effort.

Content Marketing Strategies that Work

While there are certainly some best practices for using content marketing, they should not be confused with previous “black hat” strategies of the past. If a search engine ultimately views your site as intentionally deceptive, it can work against you, placing you further down in the rankings. So, the first thing to remember in content marketing is that your goal is to provide valuable content.

What is considered valuable? Timeliness is vital, as is relevance to what users are searching for. When your content is shared, it is viewed as more practical. Shared links can help in your rankings. Many organizations focus on social media to promote and share content. Including easy-to-share social media logos and links to your content is also essential. Create valuable, up-to-date, and widely shared content if you are in the zone. Google is always searching for relatable content that keeps its search helpful engine.

If your company can benefit from greater local and regional visibility, include the names of local towns, landmarks or highways in your content. This can be particularly helpful for real estate, property management companies, insurance agencies and even attorneys. Many of these businesses are licensed to operate in a particular state and can benefit from local, SEO focused content. In this case, blogs and articles on “Distracted Driving Laws in Florida” or “Finding Affordable Apartments in Boston” can pay dividends. Content marketing can be a very effective way to target local markets.

 What Are the Best Forms of Content Marketing?

It is harder for bots to determine actual content from a graphic image or video than from words, so written pieces are critical to content marketing efforts. For example, if you have wilful articles and content on “How to Buy a Diamond”, “What is Pure Gold?” and others can attract potential customers. Adding a short video or graphic examples can help, but be sure to include your keywords and phrases in the content itself. “How To” videos have become extremely popular on YouTube and video-sharing services, so do not ignore this visual content. Just ensure you have plenty of written content as the backbone of your strategy—tag graphics and video content with written descriptions.

Written content can be in the form of webpage content, articles, or news releases. Most have found blogs to be a valuable way of sharing content. Blogs allow a company to add personality to its posts and serve as a way to better interact with readers. Readers often ask questions, offer topic suggestions, and share exciting blogs with others. All of this serves to help your content reach higher and higher in your SEO efforts.

Suppose you can’t find the time to update your content yourself. In that case, other resources, including internet marketing companies, social media marketing companies, and even freelance writing websites, can provide customized content on a per-piece basis. Take the steps necessary to provide new, valuable content regularly. If you are not employing a content marketing strategy, now may be the time to start. Add valuable, pertinent, timely content to your online presence and watch your SEO rankings soar.