Want to know how to increase SEO rankings and get more B2B customers to read your content? Take a look at the 5 steps in our guide for the best practices to follow when optimising your content for SEO.
The majority of marketers (60%) say that content marketing is their highest-quality source of leads. That’s SEO (Search Engine Optimisation, blog content, etc.
Today, content marketing remains one of the most cost-effective ways to drive traffic to your website and an important part of any B2B digital marketing strategy.
With stats like this, it’s no surprise that more and more B2B businesses are focusing resources on content marketing to drive growth.
So, how can you create quality content that increases rankings and readership?
Let’s dive in…
Before we begin, let’s quickly cover how SEO and content marketing work together for B2B companies.
High-quality content is the foundation of any successful SEO strategy. These two marketing channels realy do go hand in hand.
It doesn’t matter whether you’re writing blog content or product descriptions; if you want to make sure your website is found in the SERPS (search engine results pages) you will need to optimise the content for the right keywords.
SEO involves optimising your website and content with the right keywords and user experience to ensure you answer your potential customer’s questions.
Always remember that, while it’s important to ensure that you use the right keywords and make sure your content is optimised for SEO, you need to make sure your content is useful too!
👉 Read more about this in our blog: Google’s ‘Helpful Content’ Algorithm Update: How do you write content for humans?
Content is any information you publish online that can be indexed by search engines, including website content, blog posts, images, graphics, and videos.
📘 You can find out more about content marketing for your business in our blog: Why is content marketing important for B2B.
You don’t have to optimise your content for SEO but it will help your customers to find you when they’re searching online.
When ranking content, Google takes hundreds of factors into account. While we can never be sure EXACTLY which factors have an impact, there are a few that we know can definitely help.
Remember that it’s important not to look at these in isolation as it’s a combination of factors working together that decides whether or not your content appears at the tops of the SERPs.
Here are a few things to look out for…
Page speed is probably one of the most important ranking factors to consider when optimising your content.
Google wants to provide its searchers with answers to their questions and solutions to their problems quickly, with as little friction as possible. If your content takes more than 3 seconds to load, it’s unlikely that many searchers will stick around.
Page speed is essential for user experience which is something else Google looks at when ranking your content.
Elements to check when it comes to page speed include:
Dwell time isn’t a direct ranking factor, but it has an impact on user experience, which, as we have already mentioned, is critical for SEO.
But what is dwell time?
It’s the amount of time a visitor spends on your blog page between landing on your site and leaving. This lets search engines know how useful and relevant visitors find your content.
So, always make sure your content is relevant and informative for your particular audience.
According to research, nearly 60% of all online searches are performed on a mobile device. So, Google now sees this as important when ranking content.
Keep your site navigation simple, make sure it loads quickly on mobile devices and make sure it’s all mobile friendly and easy to use.
This will be key to ensuring your content ranks well in the SERPS.
Google is always looking to provide its users the most relevant, accurate, and up-to-date content. A determining ranking factor is the date a piece of content was indexed.
Google crawls a piece of content when it’s first published but you can update older pieces of content with new data or information to keep it up to date and refreshed. This is a great way to improve your website's ranking without creating a huge amount of new content.
Once the content has been updated, it will be reindexed and the updates with be taken into account. You might find this can boost the number of keywords the content ranks for or the position.
Without regular content, your SEO strategy isn’t likely to be very effective. And, without SEO, you’re not going to get any traction on your content strategy.
So, how can you increase rankings and ensure potential customers read your content?
Before building your content strategy and writing any content, you should always start with keyword research.
Understanding the keywords your customers are using to find your products and services online, the questions they’re asking, and their pain points, will help you to focus your strategy on answering these queries. Plus, it will help you to make sure your content appears when people are searching!
Not only will knowing what your customers are searching for help you to make sure your content ranks well, it’s also important for understanding search intent. When conducting your keyword research, make sure you think about what your customers want to know at all stages of the buyers journey too - this will help with lead generation and lead nurturing.
What does this mean? You can create content that aligns with why customers are using the keyword they’re typing in.
🔎Read more about search intent here: A guide to search intent for SEO.
Tools such as SEMrush will show you the keywords potential customers are using, the number of people searching per month and the competition for that keyword. We recommend starting with lower volume, low competition keywords. Otherwise, you’ll compete with huge brands and struggle to hit the top spots.
Once you know what keywords your potential customers are using, you’re going to need to include them in the content you write.
But how do you do this?
The title tag is the element that appears in the search engine results and let’s the reader know exactly what they can expect when they land on your site.
Always make sure your keyword or key phrase is included in the title tag because this is a ranking factor and shows users that your content is likely to provide them with the information they need.
You only get 60 characters here so make sure you get your keyword in there and it’s clear to users. Any longer, and the end will be cut off in the results.
This is not a direct ranking factor but it does appear in the search results. It’s another way to tell users what they can expect when they click through to your content.
Mention your keywords naturally throughout the body of your content and in headings throughout your content.
Make sure you answer the questions your customers are asking and match their search intent and you will find that your content is naturally optimised for relevant keywords.
Search engines look at content’s URL to understand what it is and how it fits into the rest of your site. It’s also one of the first elements to be crawled so make sure you include your keyword.
Your blog posts can include more than just text. Images and videos help to support your content and make it more user-friendly. This helps to make your content more visual and interactive as well as easier to read.
But, keep the following in mind when adding these to your content:
Links are another essential part of any SEO strategy. Links signal to search engines that your content is relevant and interesting to others.
You can contact other sites and see if they will link back to your content to build high quality links to your site and build authority. Google looks at the links pointing to a particular piece of content to make sure they’re relevant so make sure you’re not building links for the sake of it.
In addition to other sites linking back to yours, you’ll also need to build internal links too. These help to show search engines how relevant your content is and to build an understanding of how your content links to the topics you’re writing about.
So, if you’re writing a blog, think about other blogs on your site you can link to. Linking between blogs helps to increase the visibility of both blogs when visitors search for relevant keywords.
For example, we write about digital marketing on a regular basis. If we add a link in to a post on the importance of SEO for business, we’re providing more entry points into each blog and making it easier for Google to crawl each piece.
Find out more about internal links here: Internal links for SEO: what are they and why are they important?
Writing content for SEO is more than just cramming a blog post full of keywords and uploading it on your site. You’ll want to answer users’ questions in as much detail as possible. Google also knows when you’ve stuffed it with keywords too so you won’t be able to fool the search engine!
According to research, the best blog posts for SEO are around 2,100-2,400 words long.
However, while it’s easier for these blogs to rank, you don’t need to make every blog post this long.
If you get to 1,500 words and can’t cover any more information, always stop there. It’s better that your content is shorter and still answers the question than producing a long piece of content that is full of waffle.
Content clusters can also help you to make sure you cover your topic in detail. These will be informed by your keyword research and involve covering a topic in complete detail through a series of blog posts and linking them all together with one pillar post. This will also help you with the internal linking we mentioned above!
Making sure customers can find you when they’re searching is great for brand awareness, driving traffic to your website and will really give your marketing efforts a boost.
To recap, following these 5 steps will help you to boost rankings for your website and make sure that your site and content is found when customers are searching for your products and services.
⬜ Conduct keyword research
⬜ Use keywords strategically
⬜ Add images and videos
⬜ Build links
⬜ Cover your topic in detail
SEO and content marketing go hand in hand so make sure you build your content strategy around keyword research and optimise your content accordingly.
If you’d like to find out more about digital marketing that can get results for your B2B business, please get in touch on email@example.com. Or, jump straight in and request a free digital marketing audit.