I don’t usually start with a screenshot in my blog entries, in this case, I might just let the screenshots do all the talking for me. 💁
Before we dive into the nitty-gritty, I do have some bad news: there are no hacks or loopholes. While the timeline seems impossibly fast (especially considering how much of a grind SEO is in general), there was an incredible amount of work that was put into making this happen. If you’re looking for a shortcut, this is NOT that kind of article.
Also, do we get these kinds of results with every client? That would be a hell no. This is not our typical timeline which is why it is such a big deal. We do however see results with our strategy used with every client we take on… It’s all a matter of when.
Alright, the bad news is out of the way. Let’s dive into the deets on how we did this, and how you can do this for your own content property.
Start with the Strategy
We officially relaunched this client’s site on December 10. Prior to this launch, you can see their site was getting maybe 50 sessions on a good day.
Prior to taking over, the site’s blog was living on the Woo Commerce blog platform. The client had great content… It’s just that nobody could find it.
With any new client we always start with the strategy, and that starts with the keywords. You’ve got to find the right keyword targets.
Read THIS ARTICLE on how to find the right keywords. Seriously, this is step 1, so make sure you start there and come back to this when you’re done.
I’ve got my Keywords. Now What?
Awesome, the next thing we did was organize, organize, organize. If you think about what Google’s mission is at the end of the day, what comes to mind? It’s to organize the entire internet. They want to organize it by category, topic, good, bad, scammy, etc.
We organized for Google by submitting a new sitemap with HIGHLY ORGANIZED categories and subcategories. To read about how to do this for your media property, go to THIS POST.
Next, we got Granular with it.
We focused on initial efforts in republishing the existing content that was well-researched and well-written, just unreachable. Our Plattr republishing strategy can be broken into the following steps.
Step 1: Figure Out the Focus Keyword
Using the tactics from THIS POST in identifying your keywords, what is it? Is it a frequently asked phrase? How much volume is around this keyword (or keyword phrase)?
Step 2: Improve Your Content Comprehensiveness
The best article should be the one that is most comprehensive by keyword search. This means, to have a shot at rank 1, your article has to be the BEST one out there. To be the best you have to be the most comprehensive.
This is not to be mistaken with the long-dated LSI (Latent Semantic Index) algorithm (developed in the 1980’s) although, we still utilize some core components of the LSI-driven strategy to a certain extent…
Back then, you were able to stuff your articles filled with synonyms and related terms to the keyword in order to rank higher. No longer. Doing simply this doesn’t work.
Now you need to add to content to these keywords, define them, and connect the LSI term to the focus keyword. By adding more content (aka, adding more length), you’re becoming more comprehensive on the topic itself. And thus, improving your content comprehensiveness score. In fact, the word count has a pretty big effect on where you rank with google:
We’ve used a number of tools to identify our LSI terms, and these two are my favorite.
- LSI Graph is great. It’s free, and it does the job
- MarketMuse though…This is my favorite content tool of 2017 (and still in 2018). Not only will it tell you which keywords (and keyword phrases) should be explained in your content, but how many times it should be mentioned. The article comprehensiveness writes itself thanks to this tool.
Step 3: Edit Your Shit
Google will penalize you for bad grammar and misspells. Edit your content and get it as perfect as you can (without, of course, losing your flair and flavor 💁). Also check to make sure you’re not “accidentally” plagiarizing your content. If you are, give credit where its due (with a backlink and source) or rewrite it so that you’re not stealing content without permission.
Great tools to help you with this:
Step 4: Yoast It
Yoast is our favorite WordPress SEO simplifying tool of choice. Make all the lights turn green.
A couple of notes on Yoast that you should be aware of:
- It’s only scrubbing your content based on 1 focus keyword entry. If you have multiple keywords that you’re trying to rank the 1 article for (as you should), get Yoast premium.
- It still says not to use STOP WORDS, and for a while, we did stop. But since the end of 2016, we’ve been using stop words again, and have found more success using exact match search phrases than worrying about Google’s stop words (which are almost all the best words). So, we ignore this. Don’t agree with me? Go complain on your own blog. 🤷
Step 5: Content Upgrades
Remember, your post has to be the BEST. That doesn’t just pertain to the written piece of the content-It means to have quality outbound links, great original images, infographics, whitepapers, something that pushes the content over the edge to become the BEST thing out there.
Check out this article that we republished (and is killing it for our client):
We did everything in these steps including content upgrades (plural).
We made a custom infographic:
We also made a video that we boosted to Facebook:
This one article alone drives over 10k organic pageviews in 1 month and accounts for about 40% of all the leads generated for the entire site. Not hard to do-knowing is the half the battle!
Technology Improvements were Made as Well
While the content improvements helped this 1 article (and many others) get found on Google, the site as a whole benefitted greatly from a big technical facelift. As mentioned in the beginning of the article, the site was built on an E-com platform for WordPress called Woo Commerce.
I do NOT recommend Woo Commerce– Both as a E-com solution and definitely not for a blog. It’s shit (sorry!). It’s slow, clunky AF, and probably donates to puppy farmers. You’re wayyyy better off going on Shopify and installing WordPress on a subdomain.
In addition to getting the blog off Woo Commerce, we also implemented AMP (accelerated mobile pages) via Google Search Console. After all, over 60% of our traffic is coming from mobile, and pretty soon we’ll see this increase drastically.
Mobile first. Always.
By the way, if you haven’t seen the recent updates to Google Search Console that are frankly AWESOME and make life so much easier, go go go!
Make sure your site is FAST. You lose 75% of all visitors for every second your site takes longer than 2 seconds to load. That should scare the fuck out of you.
Here are the measures you can take to improve your site load time:
- Lazy load plugin. Prioritize what you want to load first, rather than have everything try to load at the same time
- Save all images for web and as PROGRESSIVE JPGS (not just jpgs). Again, uses less resources at load.
- Make sure your images are under 80KB.
- Use a CDN (Content Delivery Network). Seriously. It’s so easy. We recommend CloudFlare.
- For any content videos, don’t autoplay. Let the user play it themselves so make sure that you have a KILLER FREGGING THUMBNAIL and get that engagement. Note: This does NOT apply to anything outside of content. In sales funnels, we always auto-play the video no matter what.
Content Marketing is Hard
You can’t get away with shit in content marketing. It has to be thorough, beautiful, engaging, and technically sound. So, if you want to start ranking, stop being lazy, and just make the best goddamn site out there, 1 article at a time.
YOU GOT THIS. Handle it!!! 💪