Why Avoid Content Marketing in Your SEO Approach?
Last week, Search Engine Watch posted an article about techniques for avoiding content marketing in a successful search engine optimization. With a total of 8 techniques to supplement for content, my question is, why would you avoid content in favor of 8 other SEO approaches?
Let’s go through each of these and see why I take issue with the conclusions in the article:
1 – Pick an alternative to Content
This suggestion makes little to no sense. In this point, the article suggests that utilities, communities and games are content alternatives. Technically, these are forms of content. Content does not just mean text; that’s an oversimplification.
Furthermore, the article seems to suggest that your site’s primary function should be to offer utilities, communities or games. This is incredibly naive, as most sites that require SEO belong to businesses (as the writer is aware), so how can small businesses benefit from a site that focuses on things other than it’s products or services?
That being said, I don’t think companies should avoid creativity. If you can incorporate a game that people enjoy and which leads people to your business, that’s awesome. However, you should know that this is a form of content and that it, in and of itself, will not necessarily help your search rankings.
2 – Skip the Exact Match Domain Name
Another false dichotomy. Yes, if you want to rank for the term “Personal Injury Attorney in Amherst” making your domain name personalinjuryattorneyinamherst.com will probably not help as much as it used to years ago. Rather, you should brand your url and focus SEO on other aspects of your site. But, how does this rule out content? It doesn’t. If anything, this technique puts more weight on the content aspect.
3 – Build an Intuitive, Responsive Website with Rich UI and UX
A responsive website with a “rich” user interface and experience is exactly what you need. And if you have a blog on it, it’ll be even better.
4 – Optimize the Most Important On-Page Factors
SEO basics that neither exclude or necessarily work without the addition of content updates. Plus, you can do far more with on-page SEO if you have additional content to work with.
5 – Verify Your Business Listing in Google+
I would dare to say that while this is extremely helpful in addition to other aspects of SEO, it probably wouldn’t work at all without content, on-page SEO and a myriad of other factors.
6 – Build Local Citations, and Ensure Consistency
This is a great tip. I think that consistency is key, not only for SEO, but to deter confusion for web users. That being said, local citations only go so far and don’t necessarily make for good linking, since anyone could set them up for any old site. The consistent, informative citations that lead to a website with more helpful information and consistent branding will have favor over those that lead to sites with poor content.
7 – Earn Natural Reviews
That’s an easy thing to tell people isn’t it? “What should I do for Google rankings?” “Get yourself some good, natural reviews.” Other than the article’s point about embedding reviews on a website, this tip is hardly helpful. Any decent business owner or employee works hard to provide high-quality products or services. They can encourage positive reviews all they want, but customer and client complacency is not something anyone can control.
So, if anyone ever tells you to “earn” natural reviews, you can thank them for their condescension and take this more practical advice: give your loyal customers or clients an incentive to write a review. A $5 gift card to the local coffee shop, a discount on a product, etc. Sadly, people often respond to incentives, but rarely respond to good service. It’s just a question of what reviews are worth to you.
That being said… You should know that as helpful as reviews can be, they don’t replace content.
8 – Social Media
Clearly social media is important. Hugely important. But, here’s the thing… it’s not just an aspect of SEO anymore, it’s a major aspect of your entire marketing plan. Furthermore, social media does not replace on-site content for SEO purposes. Rather, the two aspects of web marketing work synergistically to propel your brand, inform users and bring in business.
Content marketing is most definitely essential to your SEO. Furthermore, even if it wasn’t necessary, why would you avoid it? It helps alongside other techniques, and is most definitely an essential part of specific aspects, such as development, on-page optimization and so on. Therefore, continue to create compelling, interesting, informative and nuanced content and remember – just because someone gives you advice doesn’t make that advice insightful, helpful or useful.