Stop Focusing on SEO: Start Focusing on your Content
You’re struggling to find a better way of engaging your audience. If you’re more concerned about search results than content quality, it’s time to get your priorities straight. Put content quality behind the wheel and SEO in the back seat.
Why SEO Doesn’t Rule
Keywords don’t resonate with people; stories do. That’s why your content quality must always have priority over SEO. SEO is important, but your audience shouldn’t consciously notice it. When you stoke the embers of your audience’s emotions on a consistent basis, the clicks will follow.
But building that consistency won’t happen overnight. Your content needs to fit the buyer’s journey: from awareness to consideration to decision. By creating that path, you can guide your readers where you want them to go.
How Content Resonates
Stories define who we are. Each organization, team, and person has their own story.
It’s not easy to tell a story that resonates. In marketing, a storyteller must empathize with a problem the audience is struggling to solve. That’s how your content quality can influence their decision to depend on you for solutions.
What Your Content Can Do
Now that you know why content quality is important and how it works, here’s what you need to do to get your pages noticed by search engines while keeping it authentic:
- Make your website responsive: Responsive web design makes your site look good on any device (desktop, tablet, and mobile). If you skip this step, you’re in denial of what people expect.
- Build a community: Give people a reason to read, share, and write about what’s important to you. If you’re not passionate about your message, you won’t get the type of response you’re looking for.
- Respect your audience: Write using a conversational voice and tone. If you stray from natural conversation and stuff your content with keywords, your audience will pick up on it and leave.
- Keep updating and improving: Search engines prefer fresh over stale when it comes to content. If you have opportunities to improve your content in any way, take advantage without hesitating.
- Create smart URLs: A URL can make the difference between clicking and ignoring. If your CMS allows it, separate each word in your URL with a hyphen so it’s easier to read and remember in an address bar.
- Be authentically descriptive: Clearly describe your content in the title, ALT text, link names, and image names. If you embrace the hidden stuff that’s important to SEO, it won’t get in the way of what you’re trying to say.
Don’t get us wrong—SEO is important, but it’s less important than content quality. Well-crafted, produced, and presented content that puts your audience first should always lead your strategy.
Putting it all together requires time, energy, and focus. If you could use some help, just ask.