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Marketers have the power to deliver growth for your business. If you align your understanding of the customer persona, the challenges they face, the problems you solve and your messaging and not to forget the Google algorithm and the keyword topics your customer will be searching for: you’ll get your content ranked first in search results. Sounds easy right? It’s not. We know it’s not. But over the last six months, search results and content ranking have changed. There are now better tactics and a more modern approach to growing visitors to your blog.
If you are publishing endless posts with little to no reason or structured strategy behind how the topics should be organised or ranked, you’re likely to be blogging in a less than optimal way. You’ll not see the increases in traffic that meet your expectations. If this is the case, its likely that your blog looks a little repetitive, a little structurally dis-organised. Search has changed a lot, and the underlying algorithms now reward different content and formats. It is critical that should you continue to deliver a blog strategy that you update the way in which you approach SEO. A more structured approach to the content on your site is needed for your blog posts to land on Google’s first-page search results ideally.
Topic clustering is the new keyword strategy
Topic clustering is a modern approach to SEO. It looks to reflect changes in search behaviour. The shift from treating search engines like robots to a more human approach. The basics of the topic clustering approach are to ensure broader coverage of a core topic area. It equally provides an efficient information architecture in the process so that content is structured in a usable and interactive manner. The topic clustering model, one large piece of material, a pillar page, outlines the topic it is surrounded and support by cluster content that is focused on specific subtopics. All pages are interlinked and provide internal links back and forth.
What the hell is a pillar page?
The pillar page content needs to be the definitive resource on your specified topic. It’s vital that you research other pieces on this topic area and ensure that yours becomes definitive if you can’t invest the time – then think about whether its the right approach. A half-baked strategy and research process will lead to failure. Your pillar page needs not be gated. You might rightly say – how does it convert – we’ll get to that in a while. But ungated is good for pillar pages. It will allow search engine crawlers to index the content and discover the terms and answers to your customers search questions. Finally, think about how you structure the page. There is a hell of a lot of information to present on a single page. You need to ensure you also provide plenty of opportunities to convert. Whether it’s CTAs or on page forms – think about your conversion strategy.
Shifting your approach to content marketing
Implementing a topic cluster strategy means a significant shift in content development strategy. Rather than writing post after post for a variety of long-tail keyword instead you must look to develop groups of related posts that align to a specific topic. Every cluster of content will then link back to your core pillar page. The idea being, when one page performs well, the entire cluster gets a positive boost. This will make it easier for Google (other search engines are available) to make connections and provide the semantic relationship between all of your district content piece, resulting in better placement and returns for your investment in content marketing.