Everyone wants good content. But not many people can define and agree on what good content really is.“Good” is a subjective term; without the relevant customer data directing your content efforts, chances are you are aiming blindly in the content game and failing to connect with your readers.
Google has made it clear that it is all about getting the answers right to the people who are looking for them. For that, Google learns about the intent of customers behind a particular search. In the age of Hummingbird, keyword searches have lost their charm and search queries have become more, well, natural.
This has a lot to do with the change in search interface. Mobiles enable customers to search things on the go and with improved voice search, people, especially the millennials prefer asking questions in their own voice. This has led to more conversational queries even if the customers choose to type them out. Google now uses machine learning to better understand user needs to turn out better search results.
You want to be on top of those search results. But to do that, you want to make sure you are providing your customers with comprehensive and relevant information. It is a combination of accumulating in-depth knowledge of customer base to generate SEO informed intelligence and the right tools to determine how to reach out to them on topics of utmost interest to them. It is crucial that you do not leave any gaps in your content to be found and filled by your competitors pulling your ranking down in semantic search results.
Tips to make sure you content strategy is up to par:
- Know your customers
You already have a lot of information on your customers that can kickstart your content gap analysis. Talk to the customer support team and learn what are some of the questions frequently asked by your customers. Get the sales team onboard and learn about industry challenges. You will learn more about your client base and the process will help you identify themes that you have successfully addressed in the past and topics that you should cover in the future.
- Listen and learn from your customers
Record conversations with you customers, transcribe them and then look for word patterns. Look for reoccurring similar phrases and you will get a clearer idea of how your customers look for answers for their queries. This is particularly important as Google can now learn what pages mean through related keywords, synonyms and close variants without relying completely on exact keyword phrases. Keywords are not significant without relevant content and logical context. To understand what your customers expect from you, try to learn their language.
- Get the right tools for the job
Thanks to an array of cool tools out there, an accurate content gap analysis has become more achievable. There are scores of tools to choose from. Here are a few of my favorites:
To make the most of this clever tool you will need a paid account. However, the free version offers limited organic keywords, backlinks and advertising reports that can be very helpful in shaping your content strategy.
The organic keyword report can help you not only see the organic keywords that are driving traffic to your own or competing
website but lets you view the organic keyword ranking and their search volume.
With such a powerful tool at your side, you should dig really deep. Check out your competitors and their competitors and export the keywords into a csv file for later analysis. This can speedup and refocus your brainstorming sessions for new content topics.
There are scores of other reports delivered by the tool that you can use to identify unique high impact content gaps.
SEO analysis is tedious and can take hours of auditing, data mashing and excel manipulation. Revvim delivers SEO recommendations to maximize your site’s organic search traffic from search engines by automating the grueling analysis and helps you take necessary actions to make the best possible SEO impact. JND Global is an official Revvim partner and we have achieved more than 400% growth on our key accounts with them.
If there is one tool you need to measure your marketing performance against your competitors, it is this. You can find gaps and thus opportunities to fill those gaps in your own content and marketing strategy. Among other useful reports, The Referring Sites report enables you to see which sites are referring the most traffic to your competing website. This can open a whole new dimension for topic analysis where you can analyze what kind of searches your potential customers are doing and how you can include similar themes within your content to attract more traffic.
Like SEMrush, it is important to keep an eye on Organic Keywords. You can check Paid Keywords to identify phrases and words so crucial to your competitors that they are actually paying for them. Also by checking which social sites are driving the most traffic to your competing website, you can dig deeper into what kind of content your competitor is posting on that social website.
4. Google Advanced Search Operator
This is yet another cool way to see the backlinks on any website. If you want to see where your competitors are getting backlinks from, simply type “link:” followed by the domain name you would like to check. Google learns about important results for searched queries through many factors and relevant links help Google evaluate a website’s authority on a subject. This can also give you an insight into what websites are driving traffic to your competing website and this can in turn widen your content strategy.
5. Google Alerts
You want to know where you are getting links and mentions and also what your competitors are up to. Create alerts to monitor your own activity and that of your competition. This is an easy way to discover new topics to create relevant and useful content for your customers and to share it with them through various social media platforms.
These are only a few ways to create an all-encompassing content strategy by finding content gaps and filling them. What are some of the free and paid tools that you use to do the same? Please feel free share in the comments section below or tweet to me @jennifered