For many years now, and certainly, since the inception of content marketing, the internet has resounded with the phrase ‘Content is King’. Actually, that’s nothing new. We all love to settle down with a good book and maybe even think we have a novel or two inside us just bursting to get out … though we just never seem to get the time.
From the internet’s point of view, if ‘content is king’, then new content is the shiny crown on the sovereigns’ head. Because shiny things, like new content, attract attention.
And online, attracting attention is crucial for success, and content based ranking is something important to consider. After all, the internet is a busy, bustling place, which is only getting busier. Estimates vary but approximately 300 new websites emerge every minute, adding to the 2+ billion which already exist.
To stand out from the crowd, your website needs to be more than a bulletin board or online poster. It should be a vibrant representation of your business and your brand; enjoyable for visitors, popular with Google rankings and appealing to customers. And in order for content to go viral and for that to happen, keeping your content fresh is critical. We as a content marketing agency have put together three reasons why:
You probably thought of this one straight away. In short, Google and Bing etc, favour websites that make fresh, high-quality content a top priority.
When the search engines crawl through your site, they ‘index’ that information and use it to produce a list of relevant search results, in a top-down pecking order. If you haven’t updated your content, it isn’t going to be indexed. On the other hand, the more you update your content, the more rapidly it gets indexed; which boosts your search engine ranking position. Updated websites and refreshed pages leapfrog older, arguably more stale, content.
Notice the use of the term ‘high-quality content’ in the first paragraph above. While it’s good to be fresh, it’s also important that the fresh is good: aka. easily readable, well structured, pithy & concise, and built around a core keyword(s).
One other ‘plus’, is that the more that you add to, and update your site content, the more opportunities you have to include links and keywords that will also improve your SEO across a wider search spectrum.
Search engines aside, there is also the question of consumer perception. Would you buy a product from a company that hasn’t posted anything to their site in years? Or which has its last Christmas promotion banner still up in August? After a few months of inactivity, people start to wonder if you are still open.
Making a poor impression on a potential customer is arguably worse than making no impression at all. So, try to keep everything spick and span. Remove outdated messaging (have you checked your Covid messaging lately?) and keep updating where you can.
You are the expert of your business and industry, so why not put your best foot forward and talk about updates from your industry, or product upgrades, or offer topical advice. Share this with your public and they’ll think the better of you.
And don’t just stop at the written word. According to Stanford University, 75% of people will judge the credibility of your business based on your website design. When updating your website content, spare thought for how it is visually displayed. Adding content to a site that looks like it’s from the ‘90s won’t necessarily help you.
Many people see content that is more recent as also being more relevant or valuable. If your ambition is to be seen as an industry authority, a thought leader, or just having your finger on the pulse, then offering fresh content is a big step in the right direction.
Benefits extend off-site too. Sites that have well-crafted and relevant content entice visitors to check back for updates and follow companies on social media: even ticking the ‘yes to notifications’ box.
Visits to your site from social channels, and an enlarging social footprint, all add to the credibility of your company and the value customers place on you, on your advice, and on your products and services.
Adding or updating content need not be an onerous task. Mostly it’s just an onsite expression of work you have already done or information you already know. Here are some ideas to amplify content and get you started:
When you roll out a new feature or make a change to what you do, share it. If that side of things is quiet, you can always reformat existing product and service pages content and layouts.
Maybe your Home page, About Us page or key product pages don’t change often: and why should they? So ring the changes elsewhere with a blog stream. Here you can share knowledge, expand your repertoire of articles and include topical, attention-grabbing keywords.
User-generated content, or your own photos and videos, can be a never-ending supply of refreshable material. And look good on social channels too.
Changing just one sentence on your site won’t have as much impact as changing a whole page. Minor adjustments tend to have a smaller impact on SEO than bigger changes.
As Yves Saint Laurent said, “Fashions fade, style is forever”. Well-written evergreen content can get high impressions and visits for months, or years after it’s first published. Don’t constantly update content based on the latest fad.
You’ll know plenty of customer questions already. Add them as an FAQ section(s), appending as you go.
Having said all that, there’s no getting away from the fact that adding fresh content does take time. And adding good fresh content takes longer. From our experience though, it is worth the effort.
However, if running your business is hectic enough and you’d like some help in the content space, please contact us and we’d be happy to advise you.