Post written by Brett Farmiloe, Founder & CEO of Markitors, a digital marketing company that moves small businesses forward online.
I’m a nerd who loves analytics. I’m also stingy and hate paying monthly for SaaS marketing tools. Fortunately, Google provides all the tools I need to succeed as a marketer without paying a dime or signing up for a free trial.
Below, I share how you can take what Google gives you to create a search engine optimization content strategy and market your business through content on your website.
Google Autocomplete Feature
Nothing gets our creative SEO content strategy juices flowing like Google autocomplete. This tool uses search predictions to suggest what other people are searching for based on the terms you are typing. In other words, it’s a search marketer’s dream. Begin by going to Google.com and typing out the main keywords associated with your product or service. Immediately you should begin seeing the top search predictions based on what other people are searching for.
For example, let’s take “dog food.” Autocomplete will suggest five search queries that are your starting point for an SEO content strategy. Examples: Dog food container. Dog food brands. Dog food coupons.
Take Google autocomplete one step further by typing in every letter of the alphabet after your main keywords. “Dog food a” produces queries like “dog food allergies” and “dog food analysis.” “Dog food b” produces suggestions like “dog food bowl” and “dog food brands.” Make a long list of all the autocomplete suggestions that make sense for your product or service. Spin these keywords into content ideas like “Five Tasty Dog Food Brands That Puppies Love.” Then, get to creating the content.
This search prediction tool uncovers long-tail keywords in an efficient and creative way. It’s a wonderful method to kick off any SEO content creation strategy.
Google’s “Searches Related To” Section
A goldmine of ideas for your SEO content strategy lies at the bottom of Google search results pages in a section called “searches related to.” In this section, you will see search phrases that read like your future blog post titles. To draw upon our previous “dog food” example, searching for “dog food allergies” brings up related searches like “how to figure out what your dog is allergic to” and “best dog food for skin allergies.”
To find these content ideas, simply Google your main keywords and scroll to the bottom of the search result page. Jot these search queries into your long list of content ideas.
The goal with an SEO content strategy is to reduce or eliminate paid advertising on search ads. If content ranks high on Google’s search results organically, then there isn’t as much of a need to pay to appear for a set of specific search terms.
If you are running paid search ads through Google, then your AdWords account is littered with content ideas. Simply go to the “keywords” tab in one of your campaigns, select “search terms,” and you will discover the actual search queries that you are paying for. Include these search queries in your list of content ideas (and while you’re in AdWords, add some negative keywords to reduce your wasted ad spend on queries that don’t make sense).
Google Search Console
Google Search Console helps you monitor and maintain your site’s search rankings on the web. One of our favorite uses of this tool is to discover search queries that we’re on the verge of ranking for. Go to “Search Analytics” in the Search Console dashboard to view the clicks, impressions, click through rate and average search position for up to 999 keywords that pertain to your website. Sort the search queries by average position, starting from last to first. This report will help you identify keywords that Google thinks your website is about, but that you may not have any existing content for.
If you create optimized content targeting these keywords, then you will be giving Google better content to index that is relevant to your knowledge area.
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Google Analytics gives you the ability to find your best-performing content in terms of traffic generation and conversions. When creating an SEO content strategy, we love to make variations of a website’s best-performing content.
For example, let’s say that your website produced a blog post a year ago about “executive interview questions” that is now attracting 5,000 visits a month and is converting customers at a 5% conversion rate. Since you already have proven success around the term “interview questions,” you can now consider creating variations of that content to target similar keywords like “customer service interview questions.”
Using Google Analytics to identify your building blocks enables you to build your site for the future.
Google Keyword Planner
Google Keyword Planner helps you find new keywords, get search volume data, and most importantly, figure out if ranking organically for certain keywords will be worth the investment in SEO.
Within Google Keyword Planner you can enter your product or service, your website and your product category to discover new keywords. The keywords provided by Google Keyword Planner will give you exceptional ideas for the primary content on your website. For example, if you are a video production company, Google Keyword Planner can help you identify all the different services customers are looking for in a video production company, like “post production services” or “corporate video production.” You can take these keywords to create landing pages for each service.
The last part of Google Keyword Planner is the suggested bid feature. Next to each keyword is a suggested bid. These bids will help you forecast a monthly AdWords budget to see which marketing route is best for you: paying for each click or investing in SEO to rank organically.
There’s a lot that goes into SEO, but the simple focus on creating quality content with a laser focus on keywords is a constant. Take what Google gives to grow your business by starting with a sustainable SEO content strategy.