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4 Simple Ways To Unlock More Traffic From Your Content

15 Jan 2017

Many website owners have useful content - but how do you improve the chances of it grabbing organic traffic? This post discusses some of the ways in which you can try and turbo charge your content for better performance in the 2017 Google environment and beyond.

Tip 1 - SEO Basics:

Sometimes the basics can be overlooked. The page title, description and headings are still opportunities for you. If you want a quick easy to use tutorial in this area, try the Search Engine Watch guide. Some really good tips in here.

To see your Titles and Descriptions in action, the easiest thing to do is go to Google and type 'site:www.yourwebsite.co.uk' into the search bar. You will then get a list of all the indexed pages you have. The Title is easy to spot - its the larger blue underlined text you click on. The description is underneath that.

So you can quickly have a look through them and get a feel for whether they are optimised as well as they could be. To help with this I would suggest you use the Google Keyword Tool. Unless you are spending money with Google, then you may see summarised data but its still a useful reference point.

Tip 2 - Freshness

Look for pages that may already have been getting organic traffic and see if you can find way to improve them. These pages have at some point worked for you and it may be as simple as they need updating. If you have read our SEO buyers guide, you will have noted the improvements we have seen in regularly updated content.

This can be particularly helpful when your content is time sensitive, for example product reviews or seasonal events. The first step is to jump into Google Analytics and head here: 

 *Behaviour > Site Content > Landing Pages.* 

Once there, change the view to just show organic traffic. It should now look like this: 

Google Organic Landing Page View in GA

This organic traffic profile looks flat. Maybe its been neglected and needs some love. Make a list of all the pages that have gained traffic from Google. You can export the list into Microsoft Excel if that helps. 

Freshness Tips:

  1. Look through the pages that have gained traffic, try and identify ones where the traffic is dropping over time or has stayed pretty stagnant.
  2. When did you last update those pages? has anything changed in your industry that could warrant you updating the content?
  3. Top level pages are a good place to look such as those pages accessible from your main site menu.
  4. Start with the high traffic pages and work down from there. 

Make a note of pages on your site that could be updated and get to work. 

Tip 3 - Better UX:

If you have read much of the SEO industry news over the last six months or so, you will have seen that user experience is generally creeping into the picture. This is sensible thinking since users want answers as quickly as possible. What they don't want to do is wade through a document in hope of finding what they are looking for. They don't have time. 

Its therefore important that you make your content as easy as possible to skim read: 

  1. Does your content include good use of headings?
  2. Do you provide a summary of what the user will get from the page?
  3. If the page is long, do you use navigation aids to help users?
  4. Is the font easy to read?
  5. Do you suffer from paragraphitis? Do you over use long paragraphs?
  6. Do you make good use of lists, tables and images?
  7. Do you adhere to basic UX standards in terms of line width and line spacing?
  8. How does your content look on mobile?

A bad UX can ruin the best strategy and the best content. You may have produced fantastic, insightful work but if people can't be bothered to read it, you have wasted your time.

Tip 4 - Better Content:

Content quality is a ranking factor.

Google wants to reward high quality web sites - so make sure that if you write, then you do so to a good standard.

Avoid thinly covering topics.

A common problem is when site owners believe they need to write because it is important to Google. Only write on subjects where you can give it the expertise it needs. Thin content won't help visitors, so write for quality not quantity. Ask for a second opinion, maybe speak with your sales team. These are people who will probably field most of the customer questions and have the answers ready and waiting. Is this information on your site? could you defer some pre-sales issues that way?

Locate and improve content you have written if:

  1. you wrote it with Google in mind. 
  2. someone else wrote it for you and you aren't comfortable with it's standard.
  3. you didn't give it the time it needed to make it worthwhile.  

Be Original

Don't copy. Ensure you offer something different to other websites in your industry. Check your content by copying sections of text and searching for it on Google. If other websites start to turn up, you may have to consider rewrites. You are not original.

Provide Answers

Does your content go the extra mile needed to give people the answers they need? Maybe you didn't have time to put that guide together or convert your sales sheets into website formats. How about you add a short video to help explain the problem in an easy to follow way? Go beyond your competitors - don't imitate them.

Reference Great Content

If you can reference other pages that are going to help people get more from your content - link to it. Ideally this is on your own website but if not, reference external web pages that have done a great job in explaining a topic lose to your heart.

Have a good look through your content - do you have quality problems? Be honest and look to improve average content wherever you find it on your website.

Summary

Content is one of the two most important ranking factors at Google. The other being links. If you really want to stand out from the crowd, you need to turbo charge your content. Hopefully there are few tips in here to help get you started. Let me know how you got on in the comments.

The article was written by Jon Colegate. Connect with Jon:

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