A content strategy is essential if you want your website not only to be found, but also to be appreciated by visitors. The core question is always: What do you want to achieve with your content? In your content strategy, you define all the important steps you need to take to achieve your goals – namely, to create visibility and satisfy customers. How such a strategy can look like, we explain to you in the following.
What is content anyway?
But before we get into that, it’s important to clarify what content is in the first place. Basically, it includes all types of digital content – whether text or multimedia content such as images, photos, videos and audio content. A general distinction is made between:
Informational content: Informational content has an informative purpose. It is not intended to promote products, but to inform the reader about facts. Typical informational content is provided by sites such as Wikipedia. Entertaining content is also sometimes classified as informational content.
Transactional content: Transactional content is intended to persuade customers to buy a product or use a service. Product descriptions or category texts in online stores are good examples of transactional content.
There are also other categories, but they play a subordinate role. The interaction between informational and transactional content is crucial for websites and a good Google ranking. Through the former, you can highlight your expertise in a particular area and at the same time shape the image of your company. Informational content can build trust with customers. Transactional content, on the other hand, is essential if you want to get visitors to your website or online store to buy something. Through clever copywriting, including images or videos, you can make it easier for customers to decide whether or not to buy a product.
Content strategy and social media
A huge range of opportunities for strategic content marketing is offered by social media these days. Companies that set up targeted SM channels to promote products and increase brand awareness are laying the foundation for long-term success.
The most important platforms include, for example:
Social channels allow companies to interact directly with customers. The more likeable and professional they appear, the more potential customers they attract in the form of followers. The possibilities for using content are almost limitless. Companies can inform customers about products or competitions in text form, post videos, reels and photos with funny or interesting content, and much more. An important buzzword in this context is authenticity. Transparency and customer proximity are basically rewarded on social media. The more and openly a company communicates with followers, the more positively it is usually perceived. However, this requires that the various channels are actively managed and regularly updated. Inactive accounts with outdated content look unprofessional. It is therefore important to formulate a separate social media content strategy as part of your overall goals.
The content marketing strategy: Step by step to success
Very few companies succeed in developing a good content marketing strategy. Many simply don’t realize the importance of high-quality content – or they want to save themselves the financial and time effort. Yet a good content strategy helps to win customers and maximize profits in both the short and long term. It makes sense to take a step-by-step approach to the implementation phase.
Step 1: Define your content marketing goals
Marketing is always about selling something – be it products, ideas or services. Only if you define short-term and long-term goals can you check whether your content marketing measures are successful or not. Obvious goals are, for example:
Highlight your own expertise
Improve the ranking position of your website
Which of these are particularly important for you, you must determine yourself.
Step 2: Target group analysis
An essential part of a content strategy is the target group analysis. Through this, you determine which buyer groups you would like to primarily address. There are different marketing measures for each target group. With regard to written content, the tone of voice plays a decisive role, among other things. How do you address potential customers?
For a younger target group, for example, an informal, familiar form of address and an overall relaxed tone of voice are ideal. Fun visual content in the form of videos or photos also goes down well. Thanks to apps like TikTok, the youngest consumer generation Z is now used to receiving information in small chunks in the form of short reels or video clips. The attention span of buyers in this target group is correspondingly short. So if you want to appeal to Generation Z, you need short, snappy and creative content.
For older target groups or those who are primarily looking for dry, informational content, on the other hand, a more formal “you” approach is more appropriate. Highly distracting, gaudy content is unnecessary – instead, information should be summarized clearly and concisely. In addition, there are of course a huge number of groups of people and subcultures, some of whom have very different needs. Therefore, define your target group as precisely as possible and think carefully about which content promises the greatest added value.
Step 3: The content audit
A content audit evaluates your existing content and assesses whether there is potential for optimization. In it, you get an overview of everything you have already accomplished. To do this, you can use special crawling tools such as Screaming Frog. These provide overviews of all subpages together with meta description page title and word count.
The content audit answers questions such as:
Which content is performing well?
Which content can be deleted?
Does the site navigation work?
Is content sufficiently linked?
Is certain content missing?
Based on the answers, you can then identify which points are particularly important for your content strategy to work.
Step 4: Topic analysis and editorial plan
In the topic analysis, you determine specifically what types of content need to be created. If you focus on informational content, for example, you can put together an initial selection of topics for a magazine, encyclopedia or guidebook section. In the area of transactional content, on the other hand, you can determine which products will need category pages or product descriptions in the future, additional visual content, and so on.
In the editorial plan, you then summarize which content will be created when. Ideally, you set priorities. You can also write down ideas for illustrating the content – for example, when it comes to integrating videos or photos on social media.
Step 5: Content creation
Now it’s down to the nitty gritty! The content must be created or optionally optimized – it is crucial that you keep the Google ranking factors in mind and adhere to the basic rules of SEO optimization. For each product and each topic you should research suitable keywords, create catchy titles and descriptions and pick out the most important W-questions. In addition, it is important to include suitable internal and external links.
Attention: When creating the text, you should not just frantically pile keywords on top of each other or even copy text sections from other websites. Google penalizes keyword stuffing with bad rankings – and the same applies to copied content. If the Google bot recognizes that you have stolen content from other pages or that content within your page is often repeated, it penalizes this. Instead, Google rewards unique content – content that is unique and offers readers clear added value. This includes, for example, detailed first-hand user reports as well as how-to guides, e-books or whitepapers.
This type of content evaluation is also being pushed by Google’s new Helpful Content Update. In the future, good content will be weighted even more heavily in the ranking – unhelpful content on websites, on the other hand, can have a negative influence on the ranking. It is therefore all the more important for you to consider exactly which content is relevant for your target group.
The success control
Once all content has been created, the only thing left to do is a final success check. For this purpose, you can use tools such as Sistrix and Google Analytics. Take a look at the following points:
How do the articles and product pages rank? If the rankings are conspicuously poor, it could be that you have set your keyword focus incorrectly or that the content simply does not fit the overarching theme. In any case, you can then consider whether optimization is a good idea.
How did bounce rate and dwell time develop? Values such as bounce rate and dwell time should always be evaluated in context. A high bounce rate is not necessarily bad. However, if visitors spend a remarkably short time on your blog’s advice texts, for example, and then continue their search, this indicates that the existing content does not answer the questions that readers are asking themselves. In this case, content optimization is also a good idea.
How has the overall visibility of the website developed? One of the most important indicators of success is the overall visibility. If it has clearly improved since you added the new content, you can assume that your strategy is bearing fruit. If, on the other hand, you see a downward trend or the visibility curve is stagnating, you need to investigate the causes. Is the structure of the website unclear, so that users have difficulty finding their way around? The causes can be many and varied.
Conclusion: How important is an SEO content strategy?
Developing a content marketing strategy can be crucial to the success of your business. You can use our step-by-step instructions as a rough guide. However, as described earlier, the main thing is that you deliver high-quality content. Inferior or mediocre content is not only recognized by customers, but also by Google itself and is often punished by bad rankings. Therefore, always focus on user interest.
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