April 13, 2024
Banking

Don’t Waste Your Time Posting on Social Media, Do This Instead


A few months ago, I wrote an article about how to get your website to the top of Google. I talked about the importance of search engine optimization, content strategies, keyword research, and search intent. If you put your SEO foundation in place following that article, you are ready to create content that will rank on Google.

But what type of content is it? It’s content that the visitors of your homepage value. If somebody finds one of your articles via Google, clicks on it, and is captivated by it for an extended time, it sends a strong signal to Google that this article is worth sharing in its search results.

The question is, how do you create such content? Is it enough to use tools like ChatGPT, provide some prompts, and have it create articles for you?

I strongly suggest you put in more work than that. Google is constantly updating its search algorithms, and AI content will get filtered out more and more. It’s also not about quantity. If you have a website for which you want to get traffic from Google, focus on creating long-form, quality content. Make sure to share your experiences and knowledge, and don’t just recycle content that already exists. It is what AI tools do, and it only provides limited value.

How To Create Content That Ranks on Google

I’ll now share some of my experience writing articles that rank on Google. As an example, I use my Essaouira Photography Guide. I optimized it for the term “Essaouira Photography” and similar keywords. It’s not that difficult to rank for and not a high-traffic keyword. But it fits my content strategy, allows me to promote my Morocco Photo Tour, and gives me an easy top-3 ranking. It’s also evergreen content and nothing news-related. It’s crucial for smaller photography websites: try to create timeless content and update it regularly.

With the recipe I show you now and the SEO foundation from my first article, you’ll have a good chance of getting your content recommended by Google.

Informative Title

With SEO, providing a precise title that includes your keywords is more important than clickbait. Your target audience is people looking for specific information about a topic and not somebody scrolling through social media apps whose attention you must grab.

On my homepage, I primarily use informative titles. For more contested keywords, it helps to make the titles a bit more bold, though. Because once your article sits in the top 10 of Google Search, it’ll be surrounded by similar content. Here, you want your title to stick out. For example, my guide for calibrating monitors is not just a “Monitor Calibration Guide” but an “Ultimate Monitor Calibration Guide”. If you use such adjectives, though, you should also deliver. You don’t want visitors to your website to leave annoyed after a few seconds because of a misleading title.

Captivating Feature Image

My homepage uses the first image in my articles as a feature image. But most content management systems allow you to set any image from your article as a feature image.

What’s important is to select a photo that will pique a searcher’s interest. Google will often show the feature image next to your search result listing and in the image search. Especially for the image search, selecting a great photo will make your content stand out. Also, don’t forget to provide a descriptive ALT text.

Clear Structure and Table of Contents

Having well-structured content is not only helpful for your readers but also helps Google understand your content. Especially for longer articles, avoid big blobs of text. Use sub-headlines. Those are great for adding additional keywords.

If you provide a table of contents at the top, linking to your sub-headlines, Google will include those in the search results. It makes the search listing stand out more and provides additional information for potential visitors.

Personal Experience

My rule for writing articles on my website is to write only when I have something to say. If I can create an article in which I speak from experience, this is much more valuable than recycling information from the internet just to come up with a post for a trending topic. And as photographers, there are usually many topics about which we can share our personal experiences. Think of locations you visited and photographed, photo editing techniques you use regularly, and gear you love. There’s a lot to write about.

This way, you also set yourself apart from AI-generated content, which at the current stage mostly repackages existing information.

When you read about SEO, you’ll often hear about the importance of backlinks – external links pointing to your website. And it’s true, they are important. But you don’t have much control over them. What you control are internal links. They aren’t comparable to backlinks for improving your ranking on Google, but they are still valuable.

One thing they help you do is keep visitors on your website for a longer time. So, always think about existing content on your website when writing new articles and provide links to it if it’s related. In my Essaouira Photography guide, I link to my Erg Chigaga Photography Guide to provide more context. Linking them not only helps readers navigate my site and find additional information. It also tells Google those articles are related. It can boost the authority of the linked-to article. The effect is smaller than from backlinks, but it’s a low-hanging fruit. 

Check your Content

Once you’ve published a new article, you should perform two checks to avoid mistakes. The first check is to use Google’s Pagespeed Insights to ensure your content loads fast enough. It will point out problems with suggestions on how to fix them.

Next, head over to the free keyword checker tool from Seobility, and let it assess your article based on the keyword you want it to rank for. I will provide you with guidance for further improving your content. Getting a perfect score is no guarantee that your content will rank at the top, but most of the suggestions of the keyword checker are easy to implement.

Request Indexing

Don’t forget to add your new article to your sitemap. If you use WordPress, you’ll find plugins that do it for you. Also, head over to Google Search Console and request indexing, as it can take some time until Google discovers your article via your sitemap or internal links leading to it on your website.

It’s good practice to check back a few days later and ensure that Google indexed your article. If it doesn’t do so within one or two weeks, you can head to the “Page indexing” section of Google Search Console. Check if your article appears in the section titled “Why pages aren’t indexed”. It’s typical to have parts of your homepage appearing there. But make sure that no essential pages are listed. If that’s the case, check the reasons and try to fix it.

Analyze and Optimize

Once your content is online for a few weeks, check its performance inside Google Search Console. You’ll see how many impressions it got, how many clicks, its average position in search, and also for which keywords it ranks. This last information is helpful. It helps you to pick out additional keywords for which you can optimize your article. Look for keywords with many impressions but a small click-through rate. Those usually hold potential if they fit your topic well enough.

Conclusion

Now it’s your turn. Use the provided information, get free visitors to your website from Google, and start turning them into customers. I haven’t yet fully figured out the last part. Once I do, I’ll create another article about my findings.

Also, don’t worry if it takes time for your articles to rank on Google. My most popular article didn’t appear in the top 100 for six weeks after publishing it. Now it ranks in the top spot and brings me around 20 visitors per day. That’s pretty good for an article I wrote over half a year ago.

Also, once you have a few articles online, look for opportunities to create backlinks. Maybe there’s an opportunity to write a guest post somewhere and link back to one of your articles – it’s a great way of getting backlinks while providing additional value.





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