[Column] Fleur Willemijn van Beinum: Analyse your competitors content
This is so obvious and simple, yet actually never done by anybody. General benchmark, give or take, about 50 percent of your www traffic comes from SEO. Or should come from SEO.
No need to explain an SEO strategy drives organic growth, is a cheap way to drive traffic, and therefore is an indispensable part of your content strategy. Yet, once you know what content to produce, you have your themes, and you decided to go short-form or long-form, how to crack the code, and get a high ranking?
Simple, check out your competitors. This is so obvious and simple, yet actually never done by anybody. It’s a bonus and you take your advantage.
How to do the copy analysis
It sounds complicated, actually, it is pretty easy once you know the trick. The keyword competitor SEO analysis for one keyword should take you about one hour. Start with your main themes, about 4 to 8. And you can always expand this SEO competitor analysis to all other keywords you want to be found on.
- Pick the keyword you want to rank on, in line with the core of your content piece and themes.
- Tip: open an incognito browser window to prevent your former search to influence the results.
- Go to Google and type in the keyword. Look at the organic top 5 or 10 first page results. Pick the credible sources. Reference: only select the links you would click on yourself and discharge the dodgy ones.
- Copy-paste the H1 and H2 headers from those pages and put them in excel. If there are a lot of H3, include these as well.
- Include the url in the Excel. Learning by doing.
- Make an analysis, break the H1 and H2 copy down in common topics and similarities.
- Tip: look at the style of writing. Depending on your industry, this writing can be very functional and not fancy marketing-driven at all. You should always write a ‘what’s in it for me’ copy, based on the needs of your audience. People google to find an answer to their question and to fulfill their needs, not to pro-actively read your beautifully written marketing sales pitch.
Go pro for copy
Now you know the difference between your competitors and your own copy. Three more tips.
First, get the copy pro on board for writing the content. It is an art, it is craftsmanship. The copy will make or break your content and your SEO ranking.
Second, involve your technical agency for the nerdy stuff in the backend to optimize for SEO. A part of the ranking is a threesome between the message, the copy and visuals, and the coding.
Last, not least. Obviously, there is much more to ranking on SEO than mentioned in this short blog. Think about URL structure, the naming of visuals, alt text, and meta tags.
Deep-dive in the nerdy details, do your homework, and optimize continuously. SEO is not a one-off, nor limited to copy.
Google and Bing
Usually, in the EU, we focus on Google. Yet, don’t rule out Bing as a search engine. It is on the rise due to voice search, Bing is the go-to source for Alexa and Cortana if they cannot find the answer immediately. Great insights on voice search by The Drum.
Fleur Willemijn van Beinum is an experienced Content and Social Media Strategist with a proven track record for over 35 top notch clients.
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